The magic of the Scottish Borders at Christmas will be brought to life on screens across the UK as the region takes a starring role in a leading retailer’s festive advert.
Kelso and Eyemouth were among the filming locations and the streets were transformed into a winter wonderland for filming of this year’s Marks & Spencer advert.
And as the Christmas advertising season gets underway – last year’s M&S advert featuring Paddington Bear attracted more than 20m viewers on YouTube – Scotland’s national tourism agency believes that it could inspire people from across the UK to visit the region for themselves this winter.
Kelso’s cobbled streets were transformed into a winter wonderland for the filming of the M&S food advert whilst Eyemouth’s historic Gunsgreen House was also a location for the advert.
Paula Ward, VisitScotland Regional Leadership director, said: “The Scottish Borders is truly magical at Christmas and it is no surprise that M&S has chosen to film its festive advert in this part of the world.
“With its rugged coastline, charming towns, rich history and spectacular scenery, the Scottish Borders is the perfect choice for a holiday or short break at any time of the year. We are home to so many unique experiences that make Scotland the envy of the world.
“The region is especially perfect during the festive holiday season. The warmth of our people, the beautiful displays by talented independent retailers and the unique gifts that can be sourced here make it a must visit Christmas shopping destination. This advert could create a boost for tourism in the region, with people across the UK inspired to visit the Scottish Borders for themselves.
“It is also fitting that the region has been chosen to show off M&S’s food offering. Food and drink plays a critical role in attracting visitors to the area with a number of quality producers placing emphasis on the provenance of their local sourced produce. From local cider, gin, whisky and beer to luxury chocolate, bakeries and sweet treats, there really is something for everyone to enjoy in the Scottish Borders this Christmas.”
Local tourism organisation, Visit Kelso, said the community has really got behind the experience and hopes to attract visitors from far and wide.
The Visit Kelso committee said: “News that M&S was filming part of its Christmas campaign in Kelso Square created a great buzz about town, and further afield through our social media pages.
“We hope that the magic and sparkle created will be recognisable as Kelso, inspiring lots of people to visit and shop for their own Christmas wish lists. A friendly welcome, genuine Christmas spirit, and personal service waits, in our wonderful selection of independent shops.”