Press releases

John Lewis Launches 2016 Christmas advertising campaign 'Buster The Boxer'

Thursday 10 November 2016

Advert set to a cover version of 'One Day I'll Fly Away', performed by British band Vaults The Wildlife Trusts are this year's charity partner

The first terrestrial TV airing will be this evening at around 9:15PM on ITV. The advert will launch with the hashtag #BusterTheBoxer. The ad can also be viewed on and on John Lewis's YouTube channel

Set to a cover version of the song 'One Day I'll Fly Away', recorded by the British band Vaults, the two minute advert tells a magical, make-believe story of Buster the Boxer dog and his family at Christmas.  

The advert tells the story of a little girl called Bridget who loves to jump. Her Mum and Dad buy her a trampoline for Christmas and hide it in the garden to surprise her with on Christmas Day. However, after dark, in a magical world observed only by Buster, a cast of wildlife animals emerges – two foxes, a badger, a squirrel, and a hedgehog – who discover the trampoline and have fun jumping. On Christmas morning, Bridget excitedly runs out into the garden to discover her present however Buster bounds past her and starts bouncing on her trampoline - she watches him wide-eyed.

As the story brings to life some of Britain's most-loved wildlife, John Lewis has chosen The Wildlife Trusts to be this year's Christmas campaign charity partner. 

Craig Inglis, Customer Director at John Lewis said; '2016 has certainly been quite a year, so we hope our advert will make people smile. It really embraces a sense of fun and magic, reminding everyone what it feels to give the perfect gift at Christmas. 

'Each year we work with a charity which fits our ad, and we hope this year’s campaign will encourage more children to discover a love of British wildlife and encourage support of The Wildlife Trusts.' 

John Lewis will make a donation to The Wildlife Trusts from the sale of soft toys of the characters which feature in the advert.  The retailer has also worked with the charity on a number of fun, educational tools which will be available online, to encourage more children to develop an interest in British wildlife.  

Commenting on the charity partnership, Stephanie Hilborne OBE, Chief Executive, The Wildlife Trusts said; 'The Wildlife Trusts believe that everyone should have the opportunity to experience the joy of wildlife and wild places in their daily lives.  So John Lewis putting some of our most beautiful British wild animals at the centre of their Christmas advert and making The Wildlife Trusts their charity of choice this Christmas is great news.  With this support we will be able to inspire thousands more children about the wonders of the natural world.' 

Blythe Pepino, lead singer of Vaults said; 'We were approached about doing a version of 'One Day I'll Fly Away' for the iconic John Lewis Christmas ad and loved the song choice. It's such a powerful and beautiful song, made famous by the amazing Randy Crawford. Recording it at the Abbey Road studios with the talented, producer Chris Hill, and a 70 piece choir and 66 piece orchestra, was a truly incredible experience.'

In-store activity 

The retailer's flagship shop on Oxford Street will offer an exciting virtual reality experience using Oculus Rift that will bring to life the magical world of Buster and his friends.  There will also be a 360 film experience available using Google Cardboard in Oxford Street and accessible on and YouTube.  

Social media

In a first for the retailer, John Lewis will be partnering with Snapchat to create a bespoke Snapchat lense, which is available until midnight tonight, that will transform users into Buster the Dog. Plus, throughout December, customers visiting any of John Lewis's 48 shops will also be able to apply a  Snapchat filter to any of their pictures taken while in store.

Until Sunday 13 November, customers will also be able to use bespoke Twitter stickers so they can personalise their own photos with Buster and his friends. 

Sky Partnership 

This year, in a unique partnership with Sky, in addition to the advert, a 'making of the ad' film and bespoke content about British Wildlife, presented by Wildlife TV presenter Patrick Aryee will be exclusively available to Sky's millions of customers via the On Demand homepage and Sky Go.

Production details

Buster the Boxer has been created by advertising agency adam&eveDDB with media planning and buying by Manning Gottlieb OMD. It was directed by Dougal Wilson who also directed  three previous John Lewis Christmas adverts including 2011's The Long Wait, 2012's The Journey, and 2014's 'Monty’s Christmas'. 

Notes to editors

The cast

Buster the Boxer dog: Biff age 5
Little girl, Bridget: Played by Summer age 6
Mum: Played by Nicole
Dad:Played by Olayinka

CGI wildlife animals:
Betsy - the badger
Otto - the fox
Olivia - the fox
Hallie  - the hedgehog
Sid - the squirrel

Previous Christmas Advertising Campaigns:

2007 The Shadows
2008 From Me To You
2009 Sweet Child O'Mine
2010 A Tribute To Givers
2011 The Long Wait
2012 The Journey
2013 The Bear and the Hare
2014 Monty the Penguin
2015 The Man on the Moon

About Vaults

The London trio, Vaults, have shot from being the hottest unsigned band in the UK – courtesy of a Number One Hype Machine slot – to acclaimed performances at Glastonbury and Latitude. Since then the band have been consistently proving themselves as confident songwriters with their self-proclaimed 'introspective electronica' and it's easy to see how comparisons to the XX and even Bat For Lashes have occurred along the way. 

The band have a slew of notable admirers including Ellie Goulding, Alt-J and Bastille. Vaults penned the score for the closing series of Channel 4 show 'Glue', featured on the 'Fifty Shades of Grey' soundtrack alongside pop superstars Beyonce, Sia and The Weeknd.  The band recently performed on Radio 1's Live Lounge with UK garage duo Gorgon City for their massive collaboration 'All Four Walls,' which was on the Radio 1 A-List and currently has over 14 million Spotify plays.

About The Wildlife Trusts

There are 47 individual Wildlife Trusts covering the whole of the UK.  All are working for an environment rich in wildlife for everyone. We have more than 800,000 members including 150,000 members of our junior branch Wildlife Watch. Our vision is to create A Living Landscape and secure Living Seas. We manage around 2,300 nature reserves and every year we advise thousands of landowners and organisations on how to manage their land for wildlife. We also run marine conservation projects around the UK, collecting vital data on the state of our seas and celebrating our amazing marine wildlife.  Every year we work with thousands of schools and our nature reserves and visitor centres receive millions of visitors.  Each Wildlife Trust is working within its local communities to inspire people about the future of their area: their own Living Landscapes and Living Seas.

About John Lewis

John Lewis operates 48 John Lewis shops across the UK (33 department stores, 12 John Lewis at home and shops at St Pancras International and Heathrow Terminal 2) as well as It is part of the John Lewis Partnership, the UK's largest example of worker co-ownership and all 30,000 John Lewis staff are Partners in the business.

John Lewis stocks more than 350,000 separate lines in its department stores and across fashion, home and technology, and was named  'Best In-Store Experience', 'Best Clothing Retailer,' 'Best Electricals Retailer,' 'Best Furniture Retailer,' 'Best Homewares Retailer' and 'Best Click & Collect Retailer' in the 2016 Verdict Customer Satisfaction awards. is consistently ranked one of the top online shopping destinations in the UK. John Lewis Insurance offers a range of comprehensive insurance products - home, car, wedding and event, travel and pet insurance and life cover - delivering the values of expertise, trust and customer service expected from the John Lewis brand.

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