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John Lewis’ new Christmas advert has launched and it’s dividing opinion this year

The retailer has partnered with two charities for this year’s Christmas advert

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John Lewis

John Lewis has released its highly-anticipated Christmas advert for 2022 and, this year, opinions are divided.

The retailer has used its festive ad as an opportunity to raise awareness around fostering children over the Christmas period, with it centring around a middle-aged man teaching himself how to skate ahead of the arrival of a teenager named Ellie who owns her own skateboard.

The short film, titled The Beginner, shows the man progressing with his skating skills, which result in a broken arm along the way.

Viewers are left questioning the motive behind his new hobby until the final scene, which shows a social worker arriving at his door with young teenager Ellie, who has arrived at her new foster home armed with her own skateboard.

As Ellie stands nervously at the door, she notices the skateboard, to which the man raises his broken arm and says: “Oh yeah, I skate a bit too”. 

The ad, made in partnership with charities Action for Children and Who Cares? Scotland, ends by informing viewers that there are over 180,000 children in the British foster care system, before revealing the retailer has made a pledge to support the futures of young people from care.

John Lewis said that ‘in a challenging year, we felt it was important to demonstrate that it’s what we do that matters most’, adding it was proud to use its Christmas ad to ‘generate conversation and action around an often overlooked issue’.

Many viewers were quick to praise the retailer for using their now-famous Christmas advert to highlight such an important issue. One social media user wrote: “The best JL ad in years! Lovely sentiment and really sends a message”.

Another commented: “Bravo to @JohnLewisRetail for their understated Christmas ad which highlights children in care. Just goes to show a simple well told story can be just as effective as a budget busting epic, perhaps even more so.”

A third commented on her own experiences in the foster system, writing: “I’ve been in foster care most of my childhood, and I’ve never felt that most people were truly aware the enormity of the care system and the benefits to children like me.

“So waking up to this was the best Christmas present I could hope for. Thank you @JohnLewisRetail”.

However, not everyone was too impressed with this year’s ad, with some even accusing the retailer of exploiting the issue of children living in care.

One person wrote: “First was dogs for Christmas, now it’s children in care for Christmas?! Kids living away from home and their reality is so much more than this rosy tinted image, they need care all year.

“Christmas is one of the most difficult times and JL is exploiting this. Disappointing.”

Others even found issue with the lack of festivities, with one person writing: “Just rethink and check what is the main reason for Christmas. I don’t see any nativity in the ad.”

John Lewis’ director of customer Claire Pointon said: “At John Lewis we care deeply about families and recognise that they come in many different forms. For our biggest moment of the year, we decided to focus on one kind of family that is often overlooked.

“We are also very aware that not all care experience outcomes are as positive as Ellie’s. The home Ellie enters is filled with kindness and the foster father’s actions demonstrate that, ultimately, it’s what you do that matters most.”


Northern housing estate so rough bus drivers were forced to stop going there

The services were fully suspended over the weekend following a spate of antisocial behaviour

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Google Maps & Eddie / Flickr

A northern housing estate became so plagued with anti-social behaviour that bus drivers were told to avoid stopping there.

Two bus routes through the Swarcliffe Estate in Leeds were cancelled earlier in the year after teenagers reportedly targeted the vehicles and passengers with stones and rocks. 

In a social media statement, First West Yorkshire announced that the 40 and 56 services would be avoiding the estate in both directions, citing ‘attempted vandalism’. 

The tweet thread read: “SERVICE UPDATE – 40/56. Due to attempted vandalism, we are diverting away from the Swarcliffe Estate in both directions.

“So sorry for any issues this may cause on your journey.

“This will be in place until the end of service this evening. This is for the safety of both our drivers and passengers. I am sorry for the disruption caused.”

Read More: One of the world’s deadliest snakes found on industrial estate in Salford

In a post on Facebook, Councillor Jessica Lennox, of Cross Gates and Whinmoor ward, addressed the vandalism, confirming that the 40 and 56 buses would be diverting around the area ‘as a result of some serious vandalism that took place earlier’. 

Mtaylor848 / Wikimedia Commons

Residents have previously spoken about how they ‘live in fear’ on the estate, saying intimidating anti-social behaviour is becoming worse.

One local teenager told Leeds Live of the youths who vandalised the buses: “They throw stones and break the buses whenever they come down here. I wasn’t surprised.

“Just the other day I saw three buses stopped at the bottom of the estate because they all had glass smashed everywhere. It had gone over a nearby mum and her pram.

“If you see a big group of people anywhere around here you turn around and go the other way.”

Google Maps

Her grandmother added: “Stones are always thrown at buses around here as there’s nothing for the kids to do… It’s really bad where big groups gather around the Co-Op.

“My grandson lives around the corner and he’s been attacked twice. We don’t really go out at night, and would use a taxi if we did. It’s not nice for the drivers or the passengers.”

Another resident, Keith Pettman, told the outlet that the estate was suffering major issues with antisocial behaviour, saying: “There’s some youths on the estate that are a little rowdy.

“They mess about with bikes and things like all bored teenagers do but I know they get in the way of buses and people.

“There’s definitely vandals around that will smash a few things up every so often. The field also gets ripped up and recently a load of dustbins got set on fire.”

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Pub chain giving away FREE pints to anyone with one of these 50 surnames

Are you on the list?

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Greene King

England’s World Cup campaign got off to a flying start yesterday with a convincing 6-2 win over Iran.

Our Welsh neighbours – who are also in Group B with us – managed a draw with the USA, thanks to a late Gareth Bale penalty.

But goals aren’t the only thing to celebrate this World Cup, as a pub chain is giving away FREE pints to lucky fans who have one of 50 surnames.

Gerald England / Geograph

Greene King is dishing out a free drink to anyone who has the same surname as a player in either the England or Wales squads.

If you have one of the lucky last names, you can claim a pint on the house at any point during an England or Wales game.

All you have to do is head to a participating Greene King pub with your driving licence or passport to prove your name.

Anyone with one of these 50 surnames can claim the free pint: 


All you need to do is head down to your nearest participating boozer and show the bar your photo ID during any England or Wales World Cup group stage game.

You can find the nearest pub to you taking part in the offer here.

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Will Ferrell appeals for spare room in North West to watch Eurovision

Got any room for Will?

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Earlier this year it was announced that Eurovision 2023 would be held in Liverpool instead of Kiev, due to the ongoing war in Ukraine.

Following the news, all hotels and accommodation in the city quickly sold out – with many establishments dramatically increasing their prices in the process.

As such, finding somewhere to stay during the annual song contest has become nigh on impossible, even if you’re a Hollywood superstar like Will Ferrell. 

Will recently appealed for help in finding accommodation for next year’s Eurovision during an appearance on BBC Radio 2 to promote his new film Spirited.

The actor previously wrote and starred in the 2020 film Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga, playing Icelandic singer Lars Erickssong.

READ MORE: Will Ferrell’s Buddy the Elf returns to screens in new Asda Christmas advert

During the BBC interview, Zoe Ball mentioned how much she enjoyed the film, to which Will responded: “And it’s in Liverpool this year, isn’t it?”

After being asked if he wanted to go, he said: “You know my mother really wants me to take her to Eurovision, she’s dying to go and she’s always wanted to go to Liverpool.”

Will added: “But aren’t the hotels all booked now?”

After the comedian appealed for a spare room to stay in, Zoe said: “If anyone is willing to put up Will Ferrell and his mum in Liverpool or the Liverpool area during Eurovision.”

Will revealed his requirements: “We need a clean, tidy room. We’ll share a room – two bunk beds that’s all we need. I know we’re kidding but my mom would love that, she’d be thrilled.”

Eurovision 2023 will consist of two semi-finals on May 9th and 11th, before the final on May 13th.

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