Christmas is a time for giving.

It’s also when loved ones often come together during the holiday season. But spare a thought for the lonely, the sick and those living in dire poverty.

I was moved by a Christmas ad for a local pub in Northern Ireland that has gone viral.

The story begins with a pensioner visiting a grave, where he has a reflective moment. He appears almost invisible as he passes others in the street who are sharing precious moments with one another.

However, all changes when he enters Charlie's Bar and orders a pint of Guinness. There, a dog belonging to a couple, runs to the man and breaks the ice.

The couple ask if they may join him and before long, all three are enjoying a cheerful conversation together.

I know Northwich has a renowned community spirit. But there’s no harm in reminding ourselves that everyone needs human contact and that we can all play our part in keeping an eye out for others, especially the lonely and the vulnerable.

May I close by wishing you and yours a Merry Christmas and let’s hope for a happy, healthy and peaceful New Year, especially given the troubles abroad.