Bar's Christmas ad highlighting 'painfully hard’ time for some goes viral: ‘We are truly overwhelmed’

Photos of Christmas advertisement posted on social media. (Credit: Charlie's Bar Enniskillen via Storyful)

We’re not crying, you’re crying. 

A family bar in Northern Ireland recently released a Christmas advertisement highlighting how the holiday season can be a "painfully hard" time for some people, stressing the importance of connection with others.

The ad, from Charlie’s Bar in Enniskillen, shows an elderly man leaving his home alone, and then laying flowers at a gravesite. He walks through the town of Enniskillen, ignored by those around him, before heading into the bar.

Inside the pub, a dog befriends the man and a couple asks if they can join him for a drink.

The bar’s manager, Una Burns told FOX Television Stations that Charlie’s Bar has always been a place where people from all walks of life can come together. 

"Over the years, we've noticed how the festive season can be particularly lonely for some," Burns shared. "The idea was born from real stories and experiences shared within the walls of our bar, aiming to capture the essence of companionship and the spirit of Christmas." 

The post, which was published last week, stated, "Christmas can be such a joyful time for some and painfully hard for others. One thing’s for sure - you’ll always receive a warm welcome when you walk through our doors."

The business continued, "We will be open on Christmas Day, so if you are alone this festive season, drop in for a chat."


Charlie's Bar opened its doors in 1944. (Credit: Charlie's Bar Enniskillen)

As of Friday, the post had more than 84,000 likes on Instagram and thousands of comments. 

"We are truly overwhelmed and humbled by the response to our video. To see millions of views and hear so many heartfelt reactions is beyond what we ever anticipated," Burns continued.

In a follow-up post, Charlie’s Bar thanked the public for its "incredible support" over the past few days. 

The bar opened its doors in 1944 and markets itself as a "warm, traditional atmosphere." According to their website, it is one of Enniskillen's most established traditional pubs and the oldest, family-run bar in the town.

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"Being open on Christmas Day is a tradition at Charlie's Bar Enniskillen. We believe it's important to offer a warm, welcoming space for those who might not have anywhere else to go. It's not just about serving drinks; it's about providing a place of comfort, familiarity, and festive cheer. For many, Charlie's Bar Enniskillen is a home away from home, and we feel privileged to be able to extend that feeling to our community on such a significant day," Burns noted.

Following the video’s release, the bar announced a Christmas Kindness Fundraiser to support Age NI, a charity that assists the elderly in the community. Every contribution provides space, meals and drinks for older people during the holiday season. You can donate here.

Burns added, "Christmas is often portrayed as a time of joy and family gatherings, but it's important to acknowledge that not everyone has this experience. Our message is a gentle reminder of the power of small acts of kindness and the importance of reaching out to those who may feel isolated."