Marks & Spencer pledges to donate £2m to charities as part of its festive food adverts

Marks & Spencer has said it will donate £2m to a range of charities as part of its celebrity Christmas advertising campaign. 

The retailer’s food division will release nine ads over the festive season – one a week, each featuring a voiceover by a well-known actor.

Each actor will select a group of charities that are close to their heart for the retailer to donate to.

The celebrity line-up includes Dame Julie Walters, Jeremy Irons, Dame Helen Mirren and Tom Hardy.

The campaiagn kicked off on Friday (6 November) with Olivia Colman, who asked for her donation to be split between three charities: Anthony Nolan, Back Up, and Tender Education & Arts.  

Each advertisement will feature the logos of the charities chosen by the actor providing the voiceover.

The retailer will announce the new charities each week, as the ads are broadcast.

M&S Food has also selected 10 members of staff from across the UK who are its most active charity volunteers, making donations to those colleagues’ chosen charities.  

In total, the Christmas campaign will donate £1m to good causes.

An additional £1m in donations will be shared between 35 charities that M&S supports as part of its community work, including Shelter, Together for Short Lives, Unicef UK and Guide Dogs. 

The retailer said customers an select one of those charities to receive a donation from the retailer each time they shop online. 

Sharry Cramond, marketing director at M&S Food, said: “[This] has been a difficult year for all of us, but at a time when charities are seeing their incomes fall significantly, we want to make sure that the M&S Food Christmas campaign builds on our existing charity partnerships and gives much-needed support to those that need it most.”

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