AS THE nights draw in ever earlier, shops play Wizzard, Chris Rea and Mariah Carey on loop, and supermarkets try to outdo each other with their adverts, we know that Christmas is fast approaching.
Over the Christmas period, it’s important to remember those for whom Christmas may be a difficult time of year, or who may be alone, or working.
Our armed forces abroad, spending time away from family, those who may have nobody to spend Christmas Day with, or our emergency services, still on call as we tuck into our Christmas dinner.
This will be my first Christmas as a Member of Parliament, and I have had the honour of meeting so many people in the past seven months, in Dewsbury, Mirfield and across the constituency, that make our area great.
The NHS and health are something which, as many of you will know, I feel passionately about and will always campaign to defend.
It is those NHS workers, working over Christmas I want to pay particular tribute to in my column today.
I know that our health service staff will be working tirelessly to keep us safe and healthy, sacrificing their own Christmases for the sake of our own.
Recently, I spoke in the House of Commons about mental health, about how it affects us, problems encountered in treatment and how early intervention is so vital in ensuring that the conditions effects are minimised.
It is over the Christmas period that many of these mental health conditions may be exacerbated and it’s vital that we look out for one another.
I know too that many of you have faced particular challenges and so please always do get in touch with me or my office and we will always try our upmost to assist you.
I look forward to continuing working for all of the Dewsbury constituency as we head into 2016.
Over the Christmas period it’s so important that we enjoy those things that are truly important in life; our families, friends, neighbours and communities.
I know this will be a special time for many, both Christians and non-Christians alike.
So I’d like to thank you, at this special time of year, for everything that you do to make our area such a special place to live.
I wish you and all of those closest to you, a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.