Christmas message

This Christmas we will hear more of the extraordinary events 100 years ago. In the midst of the most merciless and death soaked war the world has ever witnessed, the soldiers of the UK and Germany in various places along the front organised informal truces. They sang carols for themselves and for each other. They exchanged coat buttons, tobacco and other rations. They swapped addresses and talked of home.
We know that the senior officers were appalled, and issued instructions for the troops to maintain a hostile purpose and aggressive stance to the enemy. We know that some at home were also alarmed by the outbreak of fraternisation. Most of us today see these events as the triumph of the spirit of peace and commonsense over the evils of war. Others still are disturbed by the break down of military discipline. The UK high command wisely decided not to take action against the units who had disobeyed orders by trying to make trench life just a little more bearable for a few hours over Christmas. The tragedy of the Great War is a reminder of our current good fortune not to be engaged in a major conflict.
Today we have our problems, which many of us are impatient to tackle. Today’s suffering for many who need our help is different from the mass suffering of our troops and the anxiety and grief of their families in 1914. As Christmas approaches we can all do a bit more to help the lonely, assist the incapacitated, bring some joy into the lives of those who suffer from low incomes, poor opportunity or disability.
I would like to thank all who work so hard to provide good services for our local community, and especially to those who provide for us over the Christmas period itself.
All can take heart from the great Christmas stories, revel in the pantomimes and Christmas tales, see old and new favourite Christmas films, and join in the carols and local events that mark this time of giving and celebrating. For me Christmas begins when the Mayor switches on the Christmas lights and we sing our first carols of the year in the Marketplace. It takes off when I hear the choirs of our local primary schools performing along to the music of the Berkshire Maestros.
Young and old, children and parents can all take pleasure in the magic of Christmas. The lights, the decorations, the Christmas trees, the great displays in the shops conjure up the images of Santa and thoughts of fun and relaxation. Dasher, Dancer, Prancer,and Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner and Blitzen the reindeer add that touch of exotic mystery to the story. May this Christmas bring some good cheer and rest to you and your family.

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4 Comments

  1. lojolondon
    Posted December 21, 2014 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

    Above all, may 2015 bring what all British patriots want – freedom from the yolk of Germany and the EUSSR, a return of democracy and democratic representation for the UK in Westminster.

    • peter davies
      Posted December 21, 2014 at 9:37 pm | Permalink

      Here, here….. Back to reality I just cant see it happening anytime soon

  2. BobE
    Posted December 21, 2014 at 7:03 pm | Permalink

    A few men were tasked with discovering who the one really good sniper was so that they could try to kill him the next day. I’m unsure if they ever found out who he was.

  3. Narrow Shoulders
    Posted December 22, 2014 at 8:14 am | Permalink

    Merry Christmas to you and yours Mr Redwood.

    I fear that the traditional Christmas you write about is under threat from the apologists for our way of life supported by those who feel it is OK to abuse our hospitality.

  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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