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Newbury MP Laura Farris makes first visit to Vodafone HQ - and gets a glimpse of the new Christmas advert which focuses on tackling digital poverty with charity Barnardo's

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Laura Farris paid her first visit to Vodafone’s Newbury HQ today (Friday) - and was given a first glimpse of the telecoms giant's Christmas advert.

Newbury MP Mrs Farris was given a tour of the campus and shown a number of initiatives, including a 5g mast and some advanced technological projects which are helping to keep children connected with school friends while in hospital and giving farmers up to the minute information on pregnant cows.

She was also given a sneak preview of the Christmas advert itself. This year the company has chosen to focus on its everyone.connected campaign and in particular the Great British Tech Appeal – a collaboration with children’s charity Barnardo’s.

Laura Farris at Vodafone. Ref: 45-0521
Laura Farris at Vodafone. Ref: 45-0521

Mrs Farris said it had been a “fascinating” visit and she was already looking forward to returning again.

The multi-million pound Christmas campaign aims to connect one million people living in digital exclusion by the end of next year.

The company is asking people to donate old mobile phones, which it will then ‘clean up’ and add free connectivity to for up to a year. Barnardo’s will then distribute these to families in digital poverty, whether that’s children trying to access school work; people trying to secure job interviews; or those trying to access healthcare needs online.

The company, West Berkshire’s biggest private employer, began welcoming more of its staff back to the Newbury campus in September and said more than half of its offices are now open.

You can see the advert on ITV this evening.

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