“All the Best” as we say in Liverpool!


Our Lib Dem Christmas Card this year tries to capture both an ancient hymn and the wonderful visit to our City of the 3 Cunard Queens

So that’s 35,000 Christmas Cards delivered. 3 Christmas Parties attended and all the presents bought! So now Christmas can start!
I must admit I do have it easy. I have my own Mrs Claus in the guise of Erica who seems to have been locked into the kitchen since 1st December.

She is an absolute whizz at Christmas. Almost all the presents that we give have been brewed, cooked or distilled in 16, Dovedale Road. I have been casting gluttonous eyes at the meat pie she has cooked but have received a stern warning that it’s for tomorrow not today!
Erica and I always have a peculiar Christmas in most people’s eyes. Subject to the weather we hope to be eating hot sausage sandwiches for our Christmas lunch down on her allotment. It might not seem much of a lunch but I can just about cook it myself. Well I have to do my bit don’t I!? We love Christmas Day because for us it is one of the quietest days of the year. As I said to Snelly on Radio Merseyside you can never mistake Christmas Day. Very few cars on the road. Single men and women off in funny hats to spend Christmas Day with family and friends. Kids falling over and injuring themselves on their new bikes.
It is truly a lovely day providing you can afford it and you have someone to share it with. I always watch Scrooge three times at Christmas and hope for redemption in the way that Scrooge receives it. Perhaps I should not comment about Christmas because I actually have no religious faith. But for all people surely the Christmas story is a sound one.
The rich worshipping the poor. The birth of hope in a dark world. The bringing of new life out of the darkness. Cannot we all share these simple messages? In fact most of us do. When we look at the main religious faiths most of the main stream religions preach peace and harmony and actively strive to deliver them. I have seen two stories in the past days about mosques staying open to feed the hungry and care for the lonely over the holiday. I walked past a shop yesterday on Smithdown Road which is ”shut for Christmas but open on Christmas Day for the homeless and lonely – no charge”
Next year will bring its own challenges. Not least three elections In Liverpool for the Mayor, Council and Police Commissioner. My colleagues and I believe that Liverpool badly needs a change of leadership and direction if we are to deal with the serious social problems which still exist in our city. But all that is for another day.
In the meantime let’s revel in the fact that we live in one of the finest cities in the world. A city where community and compassion are part of the DNA of those that liver here and the way that our city works. When Erica was Lord Mayor last year we became absolutely aware of how much goes on in this city. We have 56 years of service between us as councillors but even with that experience we did not how much gets done by so many people for so many people. If Liverpool was not a supportive and volunteering city it would have collapsed decades ago.
So Erica and I indeed wish not only our Church Ward constituents but all the people of Liverpool a happy and restful Christmas and a happy New Year.

About richardkemp

Leader of the Liberal Democrats in Liverpool. Deputy Chair and Lib Dem Spokesperson on the LGA Community Wellbeing Board. Married to the lovely Cllr Erica Kemp CBE with three children and four grandchildren.
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