The Joint Public Issues Team (JPIT) works for peace and justice on behalf of the Methodist, Baptist and United Reformed Churches, and the Church of Scotland. This Christmas, it will be doing just that through a creative retelling of the nativity story. A Very British Nativity depicts a cast of children enacting the Christmas story, with one key change: instead of making their way to Bethlehem, Mary and Joseph are arriving into the UK in 2016.

Beyond its festive humour, the film addresses the shocking realities of the UK asylum system. This is a system in which an estimated 37,000 people entering the UK are forced to live on just £5 a day, are often denied the right to legal aid, are placed in substandard accommodation and are denied the right to work. It was over 2,000 years ago that Mary gave birth to Jesus in a stable, but A Very British Nativity asks how far we’ve really come since that time. Are we treating the most vulnerable people in our society with the dignity they deserve?

A Very British Nativity is released on 6 December.

To see it, email Lucy Zwolinska at, or visit averybritishnativity