CHRISTMAS and New Year is traditionally a time for reflection and brings together family, friends and others in an atmosphere of enjoyment and merriment.

However, there are others who will be working, whether within the public or private sector, or volunteering, providing essential services to those most in need throughout our communities and to those I would like to say a very big thank you.

The dedication and commitment shown by thousands of people from across the constituency is heart-warming to see and I have never failed to be impressed and humbled by the work that they do.

This time of year, however, can be very hard for those who might be by themselves or who may have lost a loved one during the year.

On a personal note I lost my mother this time last year and my family and I will be remembering her fondly.

Although Christmas is a time for merriment, maybe we could spare a thought for those who are not so fortunate and drop in to see how they are.

Have a Happy Christmas and a very Happy New Year!

Chris Ruane

MP Vale of Clwyd