30th Mar, 2017

A Christmas message from the chair of Warwick District Council

Correspondent 25th Dec, 2016

CHRISTMAS seems to have come all of a sudden this year and we are all immersed in preparations. I was given an amazing present not to be refused. David Guilding, the manager of the Spa Centre, together with the cast of Beauty and the Beast, very kindly offered me the opportunity to raise money for my charity in Sierra Leone – Bo Children’s hospital. So far the audiences are being so generous and I hope we shall reach our target of £5,000.

In February we shall have a visit to One World Link of the wife of the founder of the hospital who will be coming hot foot from her annual visit to the hospital. More info at oneworldlink.gov.uk. There are many heart-warming efforts being made in our district to give people a Happy Christmas.

I went to an Age UK reception and was very moved by the stories of elderly people who are lonely. So many old people never see anyone to whom they can speak from one end of the week to the next. Age UK have set up a scheme to make sure no-one spends Christmas Day on their own. It really saddened me to think how difficult Christmas can be without time with family and friends.

The Side-by- Side performance was a wonderful reminder of the resources people have however difficult life can be for them. The performance of the cast of people with, and without, special needs, was hilarious and touching. Their talent competition ranged from poets to singers and dancers. They were so good, they all won. The ‘Side-by- Side rendition of Shakespeare was brilliant. There is a lot of music to enjoy at this festive time. In the bitter cold, I joined two school choirs and a group of dancers on Christchurch gardens to Follow the Star – organised by the Baptist church. They sang beautifully as did the County Music Service playground singers. When youngsters sing, the dedication in their faces and the beautiful sound is great fun and an inspiration.

Speaking of inspiration, I am looking forward to hearing from parish councils in the New Year. They are selecting candidates to be considered for the award of the most inspirational woman in Warwick district. The winner will be announced at my final meeting.

Wishing you all a peaceful Christmas and New Year.

Jane Knight

Chairman Warwick District Council