Picture your perfect day in Liverpool. You’ll want something fun-filled, full of activities, with plenty of changes of scenery, preferably with a beautiful backdrop, to make your day as memorable as possible.
You also might need a map. A handy guide, one that’s designed to help you plan ahead and make the most of our fantastic, family-friendly and fabulously entertaining destination of choice. You’ll want the Liverpool City Region superstars, of course. The big-hitters. The very best. The shining examples of what Liverpool City Region has to offer you – and we’ve got just the thing.
Marketing Liverpool has recently partnered with Merseyrail and Liverpool City Region Combined Authority to develop a lively and engaging map, to capture traveller’s imagination and encourage them to hop on a train and seek out a new Liverpool adventure.
Marketing Liverpool’s Marketing Manager, Pam Carroll worked closely with partners to develop the map and she’s been on quite a journey. Here she tells us more about the project and the story behind our new map to the top Liverpool City Region visitor attractions, billed as ‘Your ticket to an EPIC summer’.
Pam, tell me about the map. What was it designed for and where will it be used?
“It’s been designed to specifically profile visitor attractions right across the Liverpool City Region. Before this new map, there wasn’t a single map that visitors could use to navigate their way across the region. Merseyrail has subsequently adapted the map to display across their network, making it really easy for visitors to interact with and hopefully encourage them to further explore the region.
“This latest development stage has combined the regional attractions map with the Liverpool City Region railway map to enable visitors to get around the region more during their stay, whilst also having the benefit of understanding the breadth of things to see and do across the wider city region.
It really does quickly flag up all the great things you can do in just an hour’s journey time or less.
“One of Liverpool City Region’s biggest selling points to visitors is the sheer variety of our offer here and, crucially, how compact that offering is. It’s so easy and fast to get around the region. You can go from the city centre to the beach in minutes.
“As just one example, you can Safari in Knowsley in the morning, pop over to Royal Liverpool Golf Course in Hoylake for a round of golf and get back in time for lunch and to catch a play at The Shakespeare North Playhouse. A day out in Liverpool offers a whole world of experiences and that’s what we want people to do. We want them to broaden their horizons and get out more and enjoy the whole of the wider region, that’s just minutes away on the train.”
I love the design. It has an illustrative style that’s very visually engaging. What can you tell me about it?
“We undertook a lot of research to examine the current Liverpool City Region map ‘landscape’ –examining all the maps that already exist. We also gave a lot of thought to how visitors use maps, considering the look and feel, the cartography styles and what resonates more strongly with the biggest audiences.
“This informed our brief because it was clear that strong visuals over lengthy detail are far-and-away preferred by mass audiences. People want something quick and easy to refer to and easy to follow, especially when they’re on the move. We were also very keen to profile the very best of the city region assets that are within under one hour’s distance from the city centre and really concentrate on them, so some tough decisions had to be made but I’m confident that we arrived at the best map possible.”
Were there any other challenges when it came to producing the map?
“Well, this was a completely new project that previously didn’t exist or had even been attempted before, which presented both a great opportunity and a significant challenge. In the first instance, we needed to develop an asset that is useful for the end user but we also needed something that would be adopted by our regional partners, from Knowsley, Sefton, Halton, Wirral and St Helens. I’m delighted to say that early feedback has been resoundingly positive from visitors and our partners have wholeheartedly supported the project.”
How did the project’s partners feed into the development of the map?
“Our city region borough partners worked to identify key attractions that represent their area’s offer and our travel partners at Merseyrail were key to the effectiveness of the final design, as they provided the necessary dimensions to accurately portray the distances and relate this back to the Merseyrail network, for ease of reference.
“Liverpool John Lennon Airport was a great source of information and fed into the maps’ creation too. We also worked with local creative agency, ICE Creates, who then turned our vision into a reality, through numerous edits and revisions, as you can imagine, before we arrived at our final destination, so to speak.”
Finally, how does this project fit into your broader role?
“This project is typical of the work I do, which is all about promoting not just the city of Liverpool, but the wider city region, as a visitor destination. We’re working to combine the ‘pulling power’ of Liverpool with the diverse range of outstanding experiences the wider region has to offer, including its coast and countryside.
“With funding support from our key partners – including Liverpool City Region Combined Authority Strategic Investment Fund, other local authorities and an array of private sector funders, we can achieve great things as a collective.
“This particular project is based on what we call an ‘attract and disperse’ philosophy. This means that we want to attract people here and we want them to stay for longer and for them to experience the whole of the region during their stay. This map is just another useful, visual device to help us achieve this goal.”
For more great ideas for things to do in Liverpool City Region head to visitliverpool.com