New year messages: to a prosperous 2015 — and helping those in need

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I can hardly believe a year has passed since my last New Year message.

As provost of East Renfrewshire, I am proud to represent our wonderful communities across the area and indeed the country.

This time of year is an opportunity to look back at the many accomplishments of the past 12 months.

East Renfrewshire continues to be an area that puts its people first. For example, we deliver the best schools in the country, reflected once again in record-breaking exam results in the summer,.

Our youngest citizens are at the heart of what we do – and will remain a top priority.

This year we have announced plans for an innovative early years centre in Auchenback and a new family centre for Busby and Clarkston.

And our health and care service is second to none. I am delighted that we will be delivering a fantastic new health and care centre for the Eastwood area.

We are all aware that the current economic climate is still a huge concern and it is important that we recognise many people face financial difficulty.

We must spare a thought, too, for those who find this time of year particularly difficult, whether through hardship, illness, grief or loneliness. Those of us who can, please take some time to share some of the season with those relatives and neighbours who need it.

Perhaps we should also spend a little time reflecting on what is important — being thankful for our loved ones and all that we have.

May I miss you all a prosperous 2015.