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Marks & Spencer put local communities at the heart of Christmas

The campaign created by House 337 highlights the joy of giving back

Georgie Moreton

Assistant Editor, BITE

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Christmas has come at a time where the spirit of community and giving back feels  more important than ever. This spirit is embodied by Marks & Spencer Clothing & Home’s Christmas campaign from House 337 that celebrates the generosity behind an M&S gift and will see the retail giant donate £1 million to the Neighbourly Foundation, a charity that supports local community causes across the UK.

In response to the mounting cost of living crisis, the campaign ‘Gifts that give’ positions Marks & Spencer as a thoughtful destination for Christmas shopping where the gifts consumers choose from M&S will also help support local good causes.

Through a partnership with charity Neighbourly, Marks & Spencer will donate £1,000 to 1,000 different community groups across the UK. The heartfelt spot sees a family sharing gifts at Christmas time when a joyful choir enters into the scene leading up to a full blown community Christmas celebration in the streets. A young actor voices over the scene telling audiences that gifts purchased from M&S spread joy beyond the gift receiver “from city farms to local choirs”.

The campaign features real local causes, with over 70 cast members taking part in the celebration including individuals from The Kaotic Angels Club, Bengali Sanskriti Club Peterborough, Paddington Arts Dance Group, Valley Invicta Primary School at Eastborough’s Majorettes, the Kearsly Brass Band, Caenhill Countryside Centre and the Y Centre Skaters.

The campaign was produced by Partizan and directed by Michael Gracey (the Greatest Showman) and features music from Harry Styles, with the ad’s soundtrack “Treat People with Kindness”. In keeping with the campaign’s theme, Harry Styles has kindly donated his fee to homeless charity, Centrepoint.

“When we found out that many charitable groups and organisations are experiencing a drop in funding, we knew we had to put community spirit right at the heart of this year’s campaign and create something that would make people smile.” says Anna Braithwaite, M&S Clothing and Home Marketing Director.

She added: “Gifts that give is a heart-warming, feel-good and colourful celebration of the unsung heroes that do so much for so many. M&S has always been there for the nation. Through our partnership with Neighbourly, we’re thrilled to be supporting 1,000 of these incredible organisations this Christmas and shining a spotlight on the positive and lasting impact they make in their communities.”

The campaign is a heartfelt example of the cost of living creativity that has shone through in many of this year’s Christmas ads, reinforcing that the spirit of the festive season is better when shared.

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