Leading North-east figures have sent us their festive messages.
Stars of Aladdin, this year’s panto showing at His Majesty’s Theatre in the Granite City were full of festive cheer as they passed on their Christmas messages.
Jimmy Osmond, who is playing evil sorcerer Abanazar in Aladdin, said: “I love being Abanazer, your long-haired lover from Aberdeen, but instead of booing – let’s cheer in the New Year.”
Long-time dame Alan McHugh, who has returned this year as Widow Twankey, said: “I’m sure you’ll all have a fantastic Christmas… Oh yes you will.”
And Jordan Young, who plays the lead role of Aladdin, added: “Merry, merry Christmas to the wonderful people of Aberdeen, and have a fantastic 2018.”
Lord Provost of Aberdeen Barney Crockett said: “I’d like to extend my warmest wishes for Christmas and the festive period to the people of Aberdeen and my hopes that everyone will enjoy a prosperous and peaceful 2018.
“Although, as is well documented, Aberdeen has been facing some testing times, the very best of the city has been shown in our resilience and self-confidence throughout the last
“We have welcomed the world to some fantastic new events in the city such as The Tour and Nuart, as well as old favourites such as Spectra and our much-loved Christmas Village. It’s been so heartening to see how positively the people of Aberdeen have responded to these superb events.
“On a personal note, this year has been so memorable not only with the honour of becoming Lord Provost and being involved in such wonderful occasions such as Denis Law’s Freedom of the City and the Mela but also in meeting people from all walks of life in my civic role including religious leaders of all the faiths that go to make up our tolerant, welcoming and multicultural city.”
Provost of Aberdeenshire Bill Howatson said: “Christmas is a time of enjoyment and festival, of good times, family and friends. But not everyone can enjoy Christmas and we should give a thought to them at this time.
“Many people throughout Aberdeenshire will be working to provide the essential public services we all use every day.
“Others will go through the festival in the same way they do every day, trying to cope with difficult circumstances.
“To those of you working to keep crucial services running, to support those who need it most, I offer my sincere thanks.
“I would like to take the opportunity of this Christmas message to applaud the work of volunteers throughout the North-east.
“They make a huge contribution to the life of us all, and they represent a powerful force in our society working tirelessly in a range of settings not only to support Aberdeenshire Council, but to help the wider community. I wish them well for the future.
“And to one and all I wish a very Merry Christmas and a happy and healthy year ahead.”
Chief Superintendent Campbell Thomson said: “As another year comes to an end, the festive period is always a chance to reflect on the achievements and challenges of the past 12 months.
“In the past year across the North-east crime has fallen significantly, which is testament to the very positive work of our dedicated officers, staff, special constables and partners. I also know we could not record such results without the continued support from communities themselves and would like to thank you sincerely for your assistance when it really mattered.
“The festive period will be business-as-usual for emergency services and little will change for the police officers and staff on duty throughout. I am very grateful for the efforts of those who will be working so that people can celebrate with their families and friends knowing someone is out there helping to keep you safe.
“It is also important for us all to remember about vulnerable people who may live alone or don’t have a support network. I would ask you to continue looking out for family, friends and elderly or other vulnerable neighbours, reporting any suspicious activity to police. Unfortunately criminals don’t take time off just because it’s Christmas.
“On behalf of all officers and staff at North East Division I would like to wish everyone a happy and safe Christmas and New Year and hope that it is memorable for all the right reasons.”
Derek McInnes, manager of Aberdeen Football Club, said: “The year has had more ups than downs and, while the festive period is always a busy one for anyone involved in football, I’m looking forward to spending some time with my family.
“However, we have a game two days after Christmas Day, so there won’t be too much time to relax!”
Euan Esslemont, head of service for Grampian for the Scottish Ambulance Service, said: “Thank you on behalf of all staff at the Scottish Ambulance Service for your support during 2017.
“Alcohol has a significant impact on ambulance operations right across Scotland, in particular throughout the Christmas period.
“Our staff all too often are called out to respond to people who are intoxicated, having overdone things, and this can cause a delay to response for patients with a genuine medical need.
“All our staff at the service work to save lives, yet they are often also impeded from doing their job by verbal and/or physical abuse by others who are intoxicated, making the situation and their job harder and more unpredictable with added danger.
“Please have a great time this Christmas, but we ask you to please be considerate. Look after yourself and those around you as no one wants to end a night out in the back of an ambulance! “Take care and stay safe.
“We wish you all the very best for 2018.”
Principal and vice-chancellor of the University of Aberdeen, Sir Ian Diamond also passed on his warmest wishes for students and staff alike.
He said: “I would like to wish our students, staff and alumni a very Merry Christmas.
“I would also like to send festive greetings to all our graduates who do so much to advance our city and region. I would also extend our warmest thanks to the people locally who take part in our clinical trials or volunteer for our scientific studies; and to the generous donors who support our work without whom it would not be possible for us to have one of the world’s leading universities in this beautiful part of Scotland.”