Following an internet campaign for OXO to re-advertise at Christmas in memory of late actress Lynda Bellingham, ITV today confirmed one of the classic commercials will air on the network on Christmas Day.
“Because we know her big thing was to be here for Christmas, I feel now like she will be with us for Christmas in the way we loved and remembered her. We all wanted the Oxo mum didn’t we and to be able to see her on Christmas Day must bring so much happiness to her family.” – Coleen Nolan
Lynda starred as the ‘OXO mum’ from 1983 to 1999 with each advert airing as a ‘mini soap opera’ with family life set around the dining table. The Oxo Family appeared in 42 trailers over the sixteen years they regularly aired on commercial television.
A Facebook page, currently with almost 200,000 members, was set up by Beverley Hardwick with the statement that the members wanted OXO to ‘Bring back the… Christmas advert that everyone loved and remembers. In memory of Lynda. Lynda wanted just one more Christmas with her loved ones.’ The advert re-screening would, they hoped, let everyone have ‘one last Christmas with Lynda’.
“It’s one of those campaigns that starts and you think when everything has quietened down they won’t bother, the fact is they’ve tirelessly campaigned and they’ve got it and it’s fantastic!” – Coleen Nolan on Loose Women
In a number of interviews before her death last month Lynda, who also presented a number of series for ITV including regular appearances on Loose Women, said she was looking forward to ‘one last Christmas’ with her family. The 66-year-old actress had been battling colon cancer since 2013.
“We’re pleased to announce that following weeks of campaigning ITV will air one of Lynda Bellingham’s classic OXO adverts on Christmas Day. Well done Beverley Hardwick who set up the Facebook group and gathered so much support for this campaign!” – Loose Women statement
Sharing the news with viewers and receiving a big applause from the panel and the audience, Ruth Langsford told Loose Women viewers earlier today:
“We can announce that we can share Christmas with Lynda – Lynda’s Oxo advert from 1984 will be shown on ITV on Christmas Day. The advert will be shown during the commercial break of a major, prime time show. It’s lovely isn’t it. I think she’d be thrilled…what a lovely legacy to leave behind.”
The Fan Facebook page can be found here.
Owners of the OXO brand, Premier Foods, said today:
“To honour the sad loss of such a fabulous actress, organisations and individuals involved in the creation and production of this initiative have given freely of their time. Premier Foods will make a donation to Action Against Cancer, one of the charities supported by Lynda, in line with the wishes of her family. “
The company added,
“As the face of Oxo for many years she had an unwavering ability to attract audiences of every age – that’s why the advertisements ran for so long – and are remembered to this day. We salute her courage in her final days.”