Chef and Brewer - No Pie For The Guy

In a revealing endeavour to illuminate the shifting sands of Christmas traditions within the UK, Professor Kate Williams, a renowned historian and expert in Christmas traditions, spearheaded the poignant “No Pie for the Guy” campaign. This initiative, conceived in collaboration with the esteemed Chef & Brewer Collection, aimed to cast a spotlight on the notable decline of the cherished tradition of leaving mince pies for Santa Claus on Christmas Eve, among other evolving festive practices.

Key Insights:

  • Dramatic Decline in Mince Pie Tradition: There’s been a striking decrease in the number of Brits who uphold the tradition of leaving mince pies for Santa—from a robust 48% in yesteryears to a mere 17% in contemporary times.
  • Shifts in Festive Customs: The campaign also sheds light on the changing dynamics of other beloved Christmas traditions, including the hanging of stockings, the age-old custom of caroling, and the preference for real versus artificial Christmas trees, signifying a broader evolution in festive practices.
  • Evolution of Christmas Dinner: An intriguing trend is the introduction of unconventional sauces on the Christmas dinner table, indicative of the broader shifts in the UK’s culinary preferences during the festive season.
  • Modern Traditions Thrive: Despite these changes, certain traditions like gathering for Christmas films and frequenting country pubs continue to flourish, highlighting a blend of tradition and modernity in the celebration of Christmas.

Media Engagement and Impact:

The campaign garnered extensive media attention, achieving a substantial reach across various platforms:

  • National Coverage: Garnered significant attention through segments on prominent BBC radio stations and extensive presence on regional channels, illustrating the widespread public interest and engagement with the evolving Christmas customs.
  • Regional Insight: Discussions featured on BBC Newcastle, BBC Tees, BBC Humberside, and other regional stations provided localised insights into the changing traditions.
  • Specialised Outreach: Targeted broadcasts aimed at specific demographics expanded the campaign’s impact further.

Campaign Outcomes:

  • Extensive Reach: Reached approximately 5.595 million people, facilitated through 46 media opportunities, highlighting the campaign’s wide-reaching impact.
  • Engagement and Sentiment: The campaign sparked discussions around the evolution of Christmas traditions, focusing particularly on the decline of the mince pie tradition and the rise of new customs like watching Christmas films and dining out at country pubs.
  • Connection to Traditional Pubs: Positive sentiment towards the Chef & Brewer Collection across all interviewed stations reinforced the pivotal role of traditional pubs in Christmas celebrations.


The “No Pie for the Guy” campaign, through its collaboration with Professor Kate Williams and the Chef & Brewer Collection, adeptly highlighted the dynamic nature of Christmas traditions in the UK. While it revealed the decline of certain practices, such as leaving mince pies for Santa, it also demonstrated the adaptability and enduring popularity of other festive activities. This exploration into the evolving nature of Christmas celebrations underscored a public fascination with how traditions morph over time, yet continue to unite people during the holiday season.