DAVID TUTT, LEADER OF EBC: Wishing you a happy, safe Christmas

Whilst driving along I was listening to the Christmas music on the radio and heard the words “it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas”.


Having previously listened to the news about the massive increase in Covid numbers and the prospect of further measures in an attempt to stem the spread of the virus, I couldn’t help thinking that it is certainly beginning to feel a lot like last Christmas!

The past 12 months have been tough for most of us.

It has felt a bit like a roller coaster of highs and lows, as the successful rollout of the vaccine firstly appeared to be allowing life to return to normal, only for variants of Covid to send us back nearly to where we started.

The past few weeks have seen the Omicron variant spreading rapidly and a rush to deliver booster jabs in an attempt to tackle this.

My own experience of booking an appointment was I am sure one shared by many, as the online booking service crashed multiple times, normally, after I had been watching how close I was getting to the front of the queue.

Once this was overcome however I was truly impressed by the slick process at the Crumbles vaccination centre and the friendly, professional approach of everyone there.

This quickly helped my frustration at the time spent trying to make the booking fade away, and as I was going home I was reflecting on how lucky we are to have had access to this service when so many people in the world are totally unvaccinated and unprotected.

There is a great inequality which wealthier nations need to address, not only for the sake of others but also for ourselves.

As all of the time that this pandemic remains untreated in some countries, the virus will mutate and the new variants will quickly spread around the world.

Christmas is of course a special time.

For those of us who are Christians, it is a time to celebrate the birth of Christ.

It is a magical time for children, a time when family and friends come together and a time for relaxation.

Some people will not of course have the opportunity to relax, and this year, more than ever, our gratitude goes to those who staff the NHS and indeed to all key workers for the sacrifice they make on our behalf.

Let us hope that we will not see the levels of hospital admissions that we witnessed last year and that the festive period is not too traumatic.

We can of course all play our part, by limiting the number of contacts we have and ensuring that we wear face masks at indoor venues.

However you are spending the next few days, I wish you a very happy and safe Christmas!