Merry Christmas!

So, here it is – Merry Christmas! For many of us, it’s a time to take a step back from the working weeks of the year and spend time with, and be thankful for, our families, our friends, and our communities, whatever shape they come in and wherever they may be.

For some, it remains a working day and we are thankful to our health and hospital staff, our emergency services, and the carers, our hospitality professionals, and other service providers, who remain ready to help, and provide for, anyone who needs it.

And for others, it can be a lonely day. In Warwick, which continues to be a town built on communities and community spirit, please give a thought and time to anyone you know who may be left without companionship to share this time with.

We must be thankful for the kindness and generosity of those who have already offered to provide solace and company for individuals who find themselves alone this Christmas; particularly the team giving their time to prepare and host a complimentary Christmas lunch at The Court House for those looking for companionship on the 25th. Good work, team.

As I write this, it’s the final day of the magnificent Warwick Poppies installation at St Mary’s. This event, built by an inspirational community of town’s people, and supported by local, national and international communities and individuals, is the defining moment for Warwick in 2018.

The display, with its visual impact, has been a powerful and evocative way to remember all those who fell, and those that lived through, the Great War as we commemorate the 100th anniversary of its final day and the ensuring peacetime.

I found a Christmas card from 1918 in the National Army Museum, sent from France, which reads:
There with the setting of the sun,
Yonder lies the heart, my son,
Take off that pack,
Lay down that gun,
No more through wars to roam,
You Britishers, you work’s well done.

Similarly, to all of you, whether taking a well-deserved rest from work, or those of you working for the benefit of others during the holidays, well done; and I wish you all a very Happy Christmas and a Peaceful New Year.

Councillor Richard Eddy, Mayor of Warwick