A Bucks New University graduate is one of the creative minds behind the BBC’s eye-catching new adverts promoting the World Cup coverage. 

James Cross, who graduated in music industry management and marketing in 2002, is creative director of BBC Creative, the broadcaster’s in-house agency, which is behind the ad campaign for the forthcoming tournament in Russia.

Every frame of the advert was individually embroidered and illustrates iconic moments from previous World Cups, as well as introducing the football stars competing in Russia this year, from Ronaldo and Lionel Messi to Mohamed Salah and Harry Kane. 

More than 227,000 metres of thread were used to make more than 600 unique frames of tapestry, enough to stretch the length of a football pitch.

Along with the film, which ends with the tagline ‘History will be made’, the campaign includes an actual seven-metre long tapestry which fans will be able to add to with their favourite moments from Russia 2018 and which will be displayed at a museum.

James was previously creative group head for the agency McCann Manchester, and only set up BBC Creative, in Salford, Greater Manchester, in 2017, running it with creative partner Tim Jones.

He said: Our advertising campaign for the 2018 World Cup has been a real highlight. We have been really happy with the response so far as it has created a buzz around the BBC’s coverage on TV, radio and online.” 

The Salford office is responsible for all BBC Sport, CBBC, BBC Learning, Children In Need, Sport Relief, CBeebies and Comic Relief campaigns.

On his education at Bucks New University, he said: “I think I was quite naive to the world when I started at Bucks but left full of confidence and insight into what I wanted to achieve.

“I regularly recall things I learned at Bucks and the inspiration many of the lecturers gave me stays with me to this day. The real-world insight of the lecturers was a highlight. Each of them had industry experience.”