“Off with your head!” - sinister City College Norwich tweets were marketing ploy by students

City College level 3 travel and tourism students ready for their performance at Norwich Castle in Be

City College level 3 travel and tourism students ready for their performance at Norwich Castle in Beautiful Nightmare in Wonderland, with Callie Nind, 19 as Alice; Molly Harris, 18, as the Queen; Amy Paris, 18, as the White Rabbit; Molly Dawson, 18, as Tweedle Dum, front left, and Ellie Anderson, 18, as Tweedle Dee. With them are the sales and marketing team. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2015

An increasingly-sinister series of messages sent to a college's 7.500 Twitter followers has been revealed as a stunt designed to drum up support for an Alice in Wonderland-themed event students will hold at Norwich Castle.

The stream of tweets on City College's official twitter feed started on Tuesday morning with the message: 'Sometimes I believe in as many as 6 impossible things before breakfast'.

As the day progressed, the Alice-related tweets became stranger and stranger, including 'I can't help you if you don't even know who we are... STUPID GIRL', 'How would you like to have your head hacked off?' and 'what a regrettably large head you have. I would very much like to hat it'.

Bemused Twitter followers thought the college's Twitter feed had been hacked, with one follower writing 'Whoever's hacked the ccn account is really weird and hasn't taken full advantage banter levels are low'.

The college responded: 'Off with your head!'.

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When another Twitter user described that as an 'oddly threatening tweet from a college', it responded 'It is better to be feared than loved'.

The 'hack' was organised by travel and tourism students, with the permission of college authorities, to help promote their Beautiful Nightmare in Wonderland event at Norwich Castle on Friday, June 12.

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Students also spent Tuesday afternoon in Norwich city centre in costume, raising further awareness of the event, and handing out fliers.

Imogen Parry, 16, who is a member of the event's sales and marketing team, said: 'The Twitter page that City College has is very big, so we thought having a hack starting first thing at breakfast time would be good. We thought if we progressed it during the day and made it more sinister, people would be thinking about it.

'We had lots of teenagers saying 'who has City College been hacked by?' We had quite a lot of feedback.'

She said the costumed characters in the city centre equally successful, attracting the attention of children and parents, and one elderly man who walked up to the students four times quoting Lewis Carroll.

The students' 'twisted Mad Hatter's Tea Party' will start at 7pm. Tickets, costing £17.95, can be bought through the college's finance office on 01603 773155 or 773331, or online at tencommercial.org.uk

Do you have an education story? Email martin.george@archant.co.uk

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