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The artwork for the Lord-Lieutenant's Christmas card was created by David who lives at The Meath's supported Living Accommodation in Godalming, Surrey

LORD- LIEUTENANT’S NEW YEAR MESSAGE

This has been a sad and tumultuous year for our country, and for the world generally.

For many of us it was marked especially by the immensely sad death on 8th September of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth, which followed so soon after the huge and joyous success of her Platinum Jubilee in June.  There have been countless expressions of sorrow and appreciation from every part of the world for a monarch who embodied so totally the importance of service and duty to her country.  Her death reminded us vividly both of the meaning of monarchy as a precious part of what defines our nation and of the contribution both she herself made over 70 years, and which the Royal Family as a whole continues to make, to the encouragement and recognition of the countless individuals and institutions that work for the betterment of our communal life.

World events beyond Britain have also had a profound impact on people and countries everywhere.  Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February is a war which continues to bring misery and suffering to hundreds of thousands of people.  Few of us will have been aware before this terrible war that Ukraine was responsible for growing 10% of the world’s wheat, together with large amounts of vegetable oil, or could have foreseen the effect this interruption to normal trade has had on nations everywhere. 

The war has meant that the price of energy, gas and oil have increased out of all proportion.  With rocketing inflation this has increased the cost of living to the extent that a significant number in Britain – and including Surrey – may be unable to afford to feed their families and heat their homes.  So it is more important than ever for us to be looking out for each other, something which we are very good at doing.  This extraordinary spirit was shown during Covid when communities throughout the country organised themselves to ensure that everybody was kept an eye on.  I would urge you all in the coming months to ensure that vulnerable individuals living near you are made to feel safe and protected.  It does not cost money, but it does cost time. 

We have seen just this concern in our response to the war in Europe.  Since the late spring Britain has been a wonderful host to many Ukrainian families who have had to flee their country.  Surrey has proved to be one of the largest Ukrainian centres in the country.  However, the six-month arrangements for the refugees to stay with a host family is now drawing to a close, and it is time to find new homes.  I would encourage you, if you have the room, to consider playing host to a family in these most difficult circumstances.

But there is good news too.  We look forward to the crowning of our new Sovereign, King Charles III at the beginning of May.  Many towns and villages will be celebrating and organising parties to commemorate this great occasion.  There is to be a special service in Guildford Cathedral on Sunday, 7th May.  The coronation should be a special moment for celebration for us all.

In closing, can I wish you and your families a very happy, enjoyable New Year, blessed with peace and opportunity.

Michael More- Molyneux

Lord-Lieutenant of Surrey

The artwork for the Lord-Lieutenant’s Christmas card was created by David who lives at The Meath’s supported Living Accommodation in Godalming, Surrey

             

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