Posters praise Christianity post message 1/30 pt of spacey

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The Independent Online
Up and down the country, giant posters are spreading the good news: "Christians Make Better Lovers." Anyone who doubts this is urged: "Find out how in a church near you."

The message, in big purple letters, is the work of Christian advertising executives taking advantage of a change in Government regulations at about 400 town and city sites.

Francis Goodwin, joint managing director of Maiden Outdoors, which owns the poster sites, said: "It's not a serious campaign, but there is a kernel of truth in it, showing that love is at the heart of Christian faith."

Mr Goodwin, who is part of the Christians in Media group, which includes top advertising executives, hit on the poster idea after new rules introduced from 1 January prevented cigarette advertisements appearing within 200 metres of schools. Sites alreadybooked for cigarette adverts before the change could not be resold to other clients. As a result, about 400 poster boards were due to be blanked out - until Mr Goodwin decided to use them to advertise the church.

He was helped by an anonymous donor who paid for the printing costs and two creative advertising executives, Martin Casson and Chas Bayfield. Mr Bayfield has worked on the highly successful Mercury and Tango television commercials.

The posters went up last week-end and will remain on display for another two weeks. So far the only complaint has come from a Baptist minister in Birmingham. Mr Goodwin said: "I'm expecting to get a few complaints. You always hear from people who are unhappy with an idea, but never from those who like it."