Slough launches charm offensive to prove 'it's fit for humans now'
Wednesday 13 August 2008
Slough's image as a concrete wasteland made it the butt of jokes for years. Poets have used its name as a byword for blandness and mediocrity. Now, after 71 years of slurs about its lack of joie de vivre, the beleaguered Berkshire town fights back.
The "Proud to be Slough" campaign has been designed to combat the negative opinions espoused by the likes of John Betjeman, Ted Hughes, Jimmy Carr and Ricky Gervais, giving the town a bright image as a diverse and peaceful location and a good place to do business.
Council leaders and pillars of local commerce considered a "rebranding" name change – Slough means a mud-filled hollow, a bog, or a dead layer of skin. Instead, T-shirts bearing a "Proud to be Slough" logo have been printed. Visitors will be met with a billboard campaign. A website celebrates Slough as the UK's "third most productive town outside London", and lauds the presence of Europe's largest privately-owned industrial estate.
Slough's struggle with its image dates back to 1937, when Betjeman penned: "Come, friendly bombs, and fall on Slough/It isn't fit for humans now."
Sasha Baron Cohen's Ali G compared the town unfavourably to its neighbour, Staines. The Slough-bred comedian Jimmy Carr quipped: "If you want to know what Slough was like in the 1970s, go there now." And when Ricky Gervais needed a "middle-earning, middle-aged and middle-management" place for The Office, he selected Slough.
Trevor Lambert, one of the team behind "Proud to be Slough", begged to differ. "I think Betjeman has a lot to answer for," he said. "He never actually came to Slough but was only passing through it. Whenever the media talks about Slough, it always brings up the same criticisms, which have become lazy clichés."
- 1 Pope Francis issues top 10 tips for happiness
- 2 Disney heiress Abigail disowns her share of family profits in West Bank company
- 3 The secret report that helps Israel hide facts
- 5 Israel's propaganda machine is finally starting to misfire
Russell Brand accuses Sean Hannity of terrorism after aggressive Israel-Gaza debate
Pope Francis issues top 10 tips for happiness
Justin Bieber posts Instagram photo of a crying Orlando Bloom after Ibiza fight 'over Miranda Kerr'
Disney heiress Abigail disowns her share of family profits in West Bank company
Air Algerie AH5017 crash: Jet fell 30,000 feet in three minutes ‘due to violent storm’
The secret report that helps Israel hide facts
Land for gas: Merkel and Putin discussed secret deal could end Ukraine crisis
Woman and two children killed by mob in riots over 'blasphemous' Facebook post in Pakistan
Richard Dawkins tweets: 'Date rape is bad, stranger rape is worse'
Putin is 'thuggish, dishonest and reckless', says British ambassador to US
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – Britain as others see us
- < Previous
- Next >
£180 - £250 per day + competitive: Orgtel: Financial Accountants - Key Banking...
£200 - £500 per day + competitive: Orgtel: I am currently working on a large p...
£18000 - £25000 per annum + Commission: SThree: Computer Futures are currently...
£18000 - £27000 per annum + Commission: SThree: Sales - Trainee Recruitment Co...