I would like to wish everyone a very Happy Christmas.
It has been another very busy year for me. We had the drama of a long and gruelling general election with a shock result that none of the pundits or commentators expected. We are continue to see real progress on the economy as the deficit comes down and economic stability and security delivers falling unemployment, low inflation, low interest rates, and rising wages.
The work of an MP is incredibly varied. Some of the issues I deal with affect the whole borough, others just one street, or one person. This work brings me into contact with a wide range of different communities. In the run up to Christmas, I am always touched by the generosity of all of them and the willingness to go the extra mile for the good of others: from charity church fayres to Mitzvah Day.
In Northern Ireland, after ten weeks of chairing intensive cross-party talks, we concluded with a new agreement. This has put the political settlement there back on a more stable footing and prevented the return to direct rule from Westminster that many feared was inevitable after crisis hit the devolved institutions.
Christmas is a time when families come together and so, back home in Barnet, I hope that you and can find time to relax and focus on the things that matter: family and friends. Merry Christmas, and best wishes for the New Year.