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In a UK first, MI Media secured a partnership for the Motor Neurone Disease (MND) Association with much-loved TV soap, Coronation Street, for the first ever ‘Coronation Street Presents…’ As storyline research partner with the soap, MNDA will utilise this exclusive format to showcase the charity’s new advert. 

In another first, Coronation Street actor Daniel Brocklebank, whose character Billy Mayhew’s husband is affected by MND, is providing the VO for the ident. Throughout the rest of the campaign, we have secured unprecedented access for the MND Association to Coronation Street’s storylines to ensure that we can place the ad’s airtime against the most relevant episodes and plots. 

 Motor neurone disease (MND) is incurable, progressive and terminal. It will ultimately take everything from those living with it – the ability to walk, talk, eat and eventually breathe. Created by GOOD Agency the campaign shows the brutality of the disease, juxtaposed with the one thing it cannot take – The Love Inside. The idea is brought to life through beautifully shot, heart-rending scenes of real-life couple Mike and Zoe Sumner. Mike was diagnosed with MND in 2020. The film shows the powerful connection people maintain with their loved ones, despite the devastating impact of the disease.  

The message has been underlined by the death of Dr Louise Jordan, a former GP who supported those with MND. She stars in the later stage of the campaign and since filming in November, has sadly died. Her wish, and that of her family, is that the campaign, including the advert featuring her, goes ahead. 

The soundtrack used is ‘The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face’ by legendary artist Roberta Flack. The use of the track is even more poignant as Roberta Flack herself is living with MND. 

Coronation Street, the UK’s longest running soap, has a current storyline where a central character, Paul Foreman, has been diagnosed with MND. The campaign partners with Coronation Street, leveraging the increased awareness of the disease to deepen the connection with the MND Association. 

The TV advert and social campaign launched on the 29th January during Coronation Street on ITV at 8pm. The launch will be followed by subsequent adverts at pivotal points in Paul’s storyline over the coming months.  

Tanya Curry, Chief Executive at Motor Neurone Disease Association said, “The launch of this new campaign is an important moment for the MND Association as we explore new ways of raising awareness of this devastating disease among a different audience.”

“From the outset we wanted the campaign to focus on real people and capture the range of emotions experienced during a person’s MND journey. By working collaboratively with a dedicated and professional team, including people with MND who have helped us shape each element, I believe we have done that in a very powerful way.”

“We hope these adverts, as part of a wider reaching campaign, will deepen our connection with the Coronation Street audience, inspire support for our work and push us closer to achieving our vision of making MND treatable and ultimately curable.” 

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