John Lewis have unveiled their eagerly anticipated Christmas TV advert, which this year celebrates small acts of kindness.
The heart-warming campaign, entitled 'Give A Little Love', is said to have been inspired by the British public's response to the coronavirus pandemic this year.
The advert begins with a young boy whose football has become stuck in a tree.
A friend steps in to help him which sparks further acts of kindness, with each clip switching between live action and various styles of animation.
The advert ends with the message 'Give A Little Love' written in the sky with smoke plumes from a plane resembling a World War II spitfire, in homage to Captain Sir Tom Moore.
The former British Army Officer inspired lots of people with his act of kindness this year, as he raised ￡1.5million for NHS Charities by doing laps of his garden ahead of his 100th birthday in lockdown.
John Lewis' ad features several nods to the coronavirus pandemic, including the moment two neighbours pull an extra long cracker that stretches between their houses in a nod to social distancing.
While an off-duty nurse is also seen helping out a young girl after noticing her glasses are broken as they share the same bus journey home.
After what has been a difficult year for many people, John Lewis said they had considered scrapping their costly winter marketing campaign altogether but instead decided to use their ad to celebrate the good as well as raise money for some worthy causes.
The two new joint ads, from Waitrose and John Lewis, are aiming to raise ￡4million for charities Home Start and Fare Share.
While a further ￡11million is to be donated by branches of the stores to help local charities supporting families in need this Christmas.
The retailer said it hopes the campaign, which will run under the strapline "Give a little love", will encourage people to donate.
Rather than handing money over to just one advertising group this year, John Lewis and Waitrose paid a variety of creatives to come up with their own kind moment for the commercial - which explains the mismatch of animation.
And for the first time, the John Lewis ad is soundtracked by an original song written and performed by BRIT Award winner Celeste.
The soulful voice of the 26-year-old British-Jamaican singer is heard throughout the commercial accompanied by a soft piano.
Speaking about being asked to take part int he campaign, Celeste said: “I felt really honoured to be asked to take part. The message that everyone really wanted to get across was the idea if you’re kind and giving, then these little acts hopefully can ricochet and make the world a better place.”
Ten pence from each download of A Little Love will go to the charity campaign.
Explaining the reasons behind this year's campaign, James Bailey, executive director of Waitrose, said: "Each year festive adverts come and go - and some are remembered more vividly than others.
"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," he admitted.
"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."
It comes after a testing year for the John Lewis Partnership, which has cut around 2,800 jobs since the start of the pandemic as it closed eight stores and reduced its head office workforce.
In September, the group also told staff they would not receive a bonus for the first time since 1953 after it dived to a ￡635 million pre-tax loss for the six months to July, following a ￡470 million write-down on its stores.