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Marketing Edinburgh chief tried to bypass councillors to push ‘Incrediburgh’ campaign slogan

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By Jennifer Faull, Deputy Editor

January 1, 2013 | 2 min read

It has emerged that Lucy Bird, the ex-marketing chief of Marketing Edinburgh, who was behind the failed ‘Incrediburgh’ slogan tried to “bypass councillors in an effort to ensure the unpopular strategy was given the green light”.

According to a report by the Scotsman, emails between Bird and city councillors show she was aware from an early stage that there was “strong reaction against” the slogan from and that leaders called for the campaign to be postponed.

The e-mails, released under Freedom of Information legislation, also revealed that Councillor Steve Cardownie, walked out of a meeting with Bird because he believed the campaign was set to get the go-ahead.

Bird then asked for a meeting with council chief executive Sue Bruce, writing in an email: “As an arms-length company we did not expect or anticipate the need to seek approval for our work.”

Bird suggested that Marketing Edinburgh and the council back “WinterInEdinburgh”, and asked Bruce if the revised slogan could be run “without further approval or reference up within the council”.

The £300,000 campaign ran with the ‘Incrediburgh’ strategy and was widely criticised upon its October launch. Bird later left her position at Marketing Edinburgh in December 2012.

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