We can all make a difference in 2015

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I have been very privileged to have been the Mayor of Ribble Valley since May, and the Mayoress and I have been overwhelmed by the wonderful reception we have had at all our engagements.

The boundary walk and tree planting has ensured I have visited every village in the Ribble Valley. This has reinforced, once again, what a wonderful place we live in and we must all strive to ensure we maintain and enhance it.

We have both a general election and borough elections in 2015 and I urge you all to vote in both these important events. Democracy can be fragile, as a glance throughout the world will confirm.

Ours may not be a perfect system, but it is one which gives us freedoms our ancestors fought for. So please ensure you use your democratic right to vote.

As last year year drews to a close, we could all look back on the ups and downs of 2014, the successes and failures, the fun and sadness, both in our personal lives and also in the wider world.

The outlook for a peaceful world in 2015 does not look promising, but if we understand the real meaning of Christmas we can look forward with hope and anticipation to a year when we all can make a difference, as we strive to improve our lives, and those of our neighbours, plus the world we live in.