Rewrite demanded for Viz-style guide to survival

August 11, 2000

Liverpool University's Guild of Students has been asked to amend a Viz-style information leaflet for freshers, after local councillors complained that it did not reflect the city's real issues, writes Jennifer Currie.

But Geraint Hopkins, president of the guild of students, said that the leaflet, "How to go out in Liverpool without getting the tripe beaten out of you", which was produced in conjunction with the City Council's City Safe project, draws attention to problems associated with drugs, gangsters and prostitutes in order to ensure that new students can avoid them.

Mr Hopkins said: "We state in the introduction that although Liverpool is one of the safest cities in the country, you will still get violence wherever you live. We hope that it will help reduce fear among students. If it prevents one person from getting attacked, then it is worthwhile."

Based on a similar scheme successfully used in Manchester last year, the leaflet mixes rowdy cartoons of local scenes with warnings to students, which include "don't stare at people in the pub".

The leaflet has been temporarily withdrawn to allow "minor changes" to take place.

The team behind the Manchester version received a letter of commendation from the city council's chief executive.

Mr Hopkins believes that the Liverpool councillors have over-reacted.

He said: "You have to remember that the leaflet is for students to read in a pub, so if it had been po-faced and based on middle-aged conservative values then nobody would pick it up and read it."

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