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18 most disastrous newspaper and magazine layouts

Posted on Wednesday, 31 July by

18 Newspaper and magazine fails

In light of a recent newspaper advert mishap, we thought it would be a good idea to scour the archives and all corners of the internet to find some of the most disastrous newspaper and magazine layouts of all time.

The advert that sparked our interest in the cutthroat world of layout design, was Enterprise Rent-A-Car’s ad in the Pembrokeshire Herald, that let’s just say: offered an unexpected service to the family audience of the local rag.

According to sources of Roy Greenslade (media trainspotter numero uno) the advert was indeed sabotaged, but crucially not spotted before publication. Leaving the publishers a little red faced, apologetic and apparently reporting the incident to police.

HoldTheFrontPage reported that publisher Tom Sinclair told readers:

The extra copy contained language that was inappropriate for a family newspaper like ours.

“I would like to make it absolutely clear that the adverts were altered without the knowledge of our advertisers or this newspaper.”

With this in mind, we thought you may want to see more of the same.

1. The Enterprise advert in question…

Enterprise Advert

2. Erm… it probably wasn’t them.

Guardian Crime Duo

3. Schoolboy error.

No Images

4. Copy, paste, repeat.

Click Here Paper

5. A strike?!

Bowling Advert

6. Awkward.


7. News that the other papers won’t tell you.

Royal Couple

8. Is that you, Heston Blumenthal?


9. See ya!

Man Ferry

10. Erm… we say no.

We Say Yes

11. Classic punnery.

Spills Load

12. Classic mistake.

The Killers Murder

13. Bet he was happy.

Sudbury Star

14. Check your typography, tut tut.


15. We demand a campaign against shoddy layout designers.

Asda Father's Day

16. You’re sacked, LOL.

Death LOL

17. Holiday tip number: 67

Suit Yourself

18. We never really liked Paul McKenna anyway.


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Lewis Scrafton
22. Co-founder and editor of SQ Magazine. Studying at University of Sussex. Interned at MATTER and published in The Guardian.

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