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Small pub ‘shows John Lewis’ how it’s done

A small pub’s Christmas advert has gone viral, with some calling it better than John Lewis’ festive offerings.

Charlie’s Bar in Enniskillen, Co Fermanagh, Northern Ireland, unveiled its festive advert on Friday shows an elderly man with a sad expression on his face, walking through town alone.


In the advert, the man is dismissed in the busy clamour of people immersed in their own lives.

That is, until, he enters the bar and is joined by a couple who sit, drink and talk with him.

The man is seen visiting a graveyard

PA/Handout

The video – which is filmed and edited by Aoife Teague – ends on a quote from a W. B. Yeats poem: “There are no strangers here, only friends you haven’t yet met”.

Now the video has gone viral racking over six million views on social media.

Many people on social media commented that the bar’s advert was “better” than John Lewis’s festive offering, with others left emotional, including one user who said: “Brilliant … if this doesn’t bring a tear to your eye, you need a heart transplant!”

The owners said that Christmas can be a really lonely, tough time for some people.

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The man walks through town alone

PA/Handout

Manager of Charlie’s Bar Una Burns said: “I feel completely overwhelmed to be honest.

“We’re just a small, local pub and we just wanted to provide a Christmas advert that hopefully resonated with people and for us, it became apparent over the years that Christmas can be a really lonely, tough time for some people.

“We see that more than others as on Christmas morning – when we’re open – there are some people coming in with maybe nowhere else to be and need people to speak to.

“We were not expecting the reaction that it’s received – it’s just blown up, and it’s been so lovely to read the comments underneath the posts as well.”

She said the advert was the first proper one the pub had made, but that it may need to become an annual occurrence.

Una added: “My dad is the owner and my granddad was the previous owner.

“People have been comparing it to the John Lewis advert, which we could have never expected – that’s brilliant.

“We were actually talking about 2024 and maybe releasing a Christmas advert then, but we have set the bar really high for that after the reaction this one’s got.”

This year’s John Lewis advert features a Venus fly trap nicknamed ‘Snapper’.

The advert has been met with a mixed reception on social media.

Some called it “scary” and that it reminded them of the monstrous Audrey II from 80s horror-comedy musical film Little Shop of Horrors.

However, others said it offered light relief and was “uplifting.”

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