CHRISTMAS MESSAGES 2012: A year that gave us many reasons to celebrate - I hope 2013 will bring even more

THIS year gave us many reasons to celebrate.

The country took to the streets to celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, street parties were held in our communities giving us all the chance to celebrate being British and our unique country.

Hosting the Olympics put Britain on the world stage and the success of our athletes has inspired our nation with their determination and perseverance.

The Olympic torch relay throughout the UK included all the country and allowed us to celebrate our own local heroes.

The unparalleled success of the Paralympics has changed the way many perceive disability. Their triumphs and the support they received encouraged anyone and everyone to participate in sports or take up a new challenge.

Locally, we have had the green light for a new railway station at the Science Park and we have made significant progress towards securing broadband provision for the whole county and a southern bypass for Ely.

For me personally, 2012 saw me celebrating my 25th anniversary of serving South East Cambridgeshire as an MP and becoming a grandfather for the first time.

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Although times are still not easy and I know many are facing financial difficulties, it is important to celebrate the successes we have seen this year; whether personally or together as a nation.

New Year is always a time of new beginnings and new opportunities and I hope that 2013 will bring us many new reasons to celebrate.

Finally, may I wish you a very Happy Christmas and New Year.