John Lewis & Waitrose Christmas advert “celebrates kindness” during pandemic

John Lewis Partnership Waitrose Christmas advert covid-19 pandemic lockdown
The Christmas advert marks the first time the John Lewis Partnership has included a specially commissioned song.
// John Lewis & Waitrose’s 2020 Christmas advert encourages Brits to “give a little love”
// The latest Christmas ad highlights the kindness of Brits during the Covid-19 pandemic
// The partnership said it is aiming to raise £4m for two charities – FareShare and Home-Start

John Lewis Partnership has said its latest Christmas advert highlights the kindness of Brits during the Covid-19 pandemic, after questioning whether it would be appropriate to produce one at all this year.

The parent company of John Lewis and Waitrose said it had considered shelving the production of the anticipated advert, but charity partners had persuaded it to go ahead.

The advert, which is once again a combined campaign for both John Lewis and Waitrose, was launched on social media at 7am today.

READ MORE: John Lewis urges government to provide clarity on Christmas reopening

The campaign runs under the strapline “give a little love” and aims to encourage further acts of kindness.

The John Lewis Partnership said it was aiming to use the advert to help raise £4 million for two charities – FareShare, which helps those facing food poverty, and Home-Start, which works with parents who need support.

The partnership pledged to match all customer donations up to £2 million.

Furthermore, John Lewis customer director Claire Pointon said the company would “deviate slightly” from the style of previous adverts, due to the backdrop of the pandemic.

The clip starts off with a boy whose football has become stuck in a tree and moves through a series of acts of kindness, and then switches from live action to various styles of animation.

The two-minute advert was created by agency adam&eveDDB, which also helped to produce a complimentary 30-second clip that carries a direct call to support the two charities.

The advert also marks the first time the John Lewis Partnership has included a specially commissioned song.

British singer Celeste wrote and recorded the track, A Little Love, with 10p from each download going to the partnership’s charity campaign.

“Each year festive adverts come and go – and some are remembered more vividly than others,” Waitrose executive director James Bailey said.

“But our advertising this year will leave a lasting legacy – and in that way we hope it won’t just be for Christmas.

“We did consider whether it was right to produce an ad this year at all.

“However, FareShare and Home-Start told us how much of a difference this campaign could make, both on a financial level and in raising awareness of the incredibly important work they do with families across the UK.”

John Lewis executive director Pippa Wicks said: “We recently set out our ambition for our business to be a force for good – so we decided that this year was the year to break the mould and do something different.

“We have a long tradition of helping support the communities which we serve, so, as we launch one of the best-loved assets, our Christmas ad, it’s fitting to take this one step further by working hand in hand with two incredible charities supporting families in need.”

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