SEAFORD: Christmas messages from key figures in Seaford

Norman Baker MP

Norman Baker MP

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AS THE Seaford community gets ready to celebrate this Saturday key figures in the town have the following messages for residents during the festive season.

SEAFORD MP NORMAN BAKER

WELL I must say that it’s been a long old haul since the General Election in May, but an exhilarating and eventful one. Who could have predicted this time last year how events would have unfolded?

There is much from 2010 I will certainly remember positively, not least having the honour to have been elected to represent Seaford and Polegate and surrounding areas in a fourth successive parliament, and of course then being appointed to government to become the first Liberal or Lib Dem transport minister since Sir Archibald Sinclair took up post in 1940.

Less welcome has been the need to curb spending to deal with the appalling financial legacy we inherited - the country is paying out £120 million a day in interest payments alone.

And locally it’s been tremendously disappointing to have the local NHS pull the plug on the long-promised new health facilities for Seaford and probably Polegate too.

It looks as if we will again have to take inspiration from Robert the Bruce who finally saw the spider complete its web and so was inspired to go on and win, way back in 1314, if memory serves me well.

Can I thank those constituents of mine who will be working over the holiday season on our behalf, such as our firefighters, railway workers, and postmen and women – oh, and my milkman - and wish the rest of my constituents a good break over the Christmas period, and everyone a happy and peaceful 2011.

SEAFORD MAYOR BOB ALLEN

TRADITIONALLY Christmas is a time of peace, goodwill to all.

The Mayoress and I have been privileged to join in the Christmas celebrations with so many organisations who are conveying this message.

The Street Pastors who are bringing peace to those troubled and lonely at night.

St Wilfrid’s Hospice bringing peace and help to many.

The Rotary sleigh sharing goodwill to all the roads in the town.

The Lions and Lionesses who do much wonderful work throughout the year, but especially at Christmas.

We are lucky there are so many people giving their time and spreading the message of Christmas throughout the town in a practical way.

Jill and I would like to wish everyone a very happy Christmas and a prosperous New Year.

SEAFORD SERGEANT CHRIS VEALE

I WOULD like to remind people to drink alcohol safely over the festive period.

Firstly I would like to remind people to consume their alcohol responsibly.

Disorder caused by drunken revellers can be a large drain on police resources and a major concern for local residents.

The people involved are also putting themselves at risk in a number of ways – either by being a victim of crime or by taking part in high-risk behaviour.

Secondly if you drink or drug drive in Sussex this Christmas, you could be giving a family ‘the worst ever Christmas gift’.

I cannot emphasise how dangerous it is to get behind the wheel after drinking alcohol or taking drugs, (either illicit or medicinal) especially as we arein Christmas party season.

In the last three years, drink-driving has been the cause of more than 50 per cent of fatal collisions in Sussex during the months of December and January.

Incredibly, drivers aged 24 and under were involved in more than a third of all injury collisions. 88 per cent of drink drivers were male and almost 40 per cent of killed and serious injury collisions occurred at weekends, particularly in the early hours of Sunday morning. There is no excuse to drink and drive. Even a small drink affects a person’s ability to drive safely, so it’s best to have nothing at all, or leave the car at home.

In these tough economic times, it could be tempting to take the risk and drive instead of taking a taxi.

But pre-planning how to get home safety by lift or taxi sharing must be the best and most sensible option.