Supermarket Sainsbury’s has unveiled a poignant new advertising campaign featuring an account of the 1914 First World War Christmas truce to screens in millions of homes.
Called Christmas is for Sharing, the full length TV ad aired for the first time last night in the Coronation Street ad break to help raise funds and awareness of The Royal British Legion’s work supporting servicemen and women.
Directed by Ringan Ledwidge, the advert is a creative interpretation of Christmas Day 1914, when British and German soldiers laid down their arms and came together on neutral territory to share greetings, treats, mementoes and even a game of football.
Sainsbury’s and The Royal British Legion have sought to make the portrayal of the truce as accurate as possible, basing it on original reports and letters, as well as working with historians throughout the development and production process.
In the ad, the story is told from the perspective of a young British soldier who dares to venture from his trench onto No Man’s Land to greet his rivals and come together in a football game.
He shares a moment of connection and friendship with a young German soldier and, as the truce ends and they return to their trenches, the German soldier is moved to discover that his British friend has hidden the gift of a chocolate bar in his pocket.
Mark Given, Head of Brand Communications, Sainsbury’s, said: “Christmas is a special time of year when people come together to share simple moments and kindnesses. This year, we wanted to reflect that theme of sharing in our Christmas campaign through the lens of one of the most extraordinary moments of sharing in modern history, when on Christmas Day 1914, British and German soldiers laid down their arms, and came together on neutral territory to share stories, mementoes and even a game of football.”