Both of the MPs for Reading give their Christmas greetings to readers of The Reading Chronicle. 

Matt Rodda, the Labour MP for Reading East said: “As we approach Christmas, I would like to wish everyone in our community and the wider world a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

"I hope that everyone, across our community gets the chance to enjoy the festive season and to spend time with their friends and family.

"It has been a difficult year for many local residents due to the cost of living crisis and many other issues and I want to thank all those who are supporting those in need.

"I do hope that our whole community will be able to enjoy Christmas and that we can all look forward to a brighter New Year."

Mr Rodda represents central Reading, East Reading, Caversham and Woodley. 

Sir Alok Sharma, the Conservative MP for Reading West said: “My very best wishes for a restful and joyful holiday period to all my constituents in Reading West and friends across our local area.  As many of us seek to re-charge our batteries for the year ahead, celebrating the holiday period with family and friends, let us also offer friendship and give support those less fortunate than ourselves.

"Reading has always been a generous town, with a fine civic spirit, and I look forward to seeing that continue into 2024.

"Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year to everyone.”

Sir Alok represents West Reading, Tilehurst, Whitley, Calcot, Theale, Pangbourne and surrounding villages.

West Berkshire

Laura Farris, the Conservative MP for Newbury, who also represents the West Berkshire villages and Hungerford said: "As the year draws to a close, I wanted to reflect on a few significant moment and standout achievements of people in West Berkshire.

"My personal highlight of the year was the return of the Newbury Show, made possible only by the dedication and commitment of Steve Ackrill and everyone at Newbury and District Agricultural Society.

"The Newbury Show – a fixture of the West Berkshire diary since 1909-  had been absent from our calendars since 2019 and for part of that time its future had seemed uncertain.

"The Show’s return this year was highly anticipated and did not disappoint, offering a fantastic showcase of West Berkshire’s farmers and all that we treasure about our local countryside.

READ MORE: See pictures as Berkshire county show returns

"In November, The Greenham Trust held their inaugural Charity Awards to celebrate and recognise the extensive charitable sector in West Berkshire and the richness of the support they bring.  

"It was such a pleasure to present Merv Rees at Ark Cancer Charity with the award for Health & Wellbeing Charity of the Year and celebrate other winners including Citizens Advice, Time to Talk, West Berks Foodbank, All Yours, Gill Leech and Paul Black at West Berkshire Mencap, and Gillian Durrant at Newbury Community Resource Centre.

"We are so fortunate in West Berkshire not only to have so many dedicated charities, but the foundation of support that comes from the Greenham Trust, and I especially pay tribute to Chris Boulton, its generous Chief Executive.

"There have also been some notable achievements locally. The Watermill Theatre has shown remarkable resilience after the inexplicable decision of the Arts Council to cut its funding, developing an exceptional production of The Lord of the Rings and ending the year with a nomination for Theatre of the Year (nationally) at The Stage Awards 2024. 

"The dynamic team at Retreat at Elcot Park won the Best Country Hotel from the Good Hotel Guide, and Vicars Game, the butchers in Ashampstead were a regional winner in the Countryside Alliance Awards 2023.

"But irrespective of local success, it is perhaps most heartening of all to see Newbury and the surrounding towns and villages full of people and Christmas cheer with the long shadow of the pandemic now behind us.

"I wish everyone in West Berkshire a very Happy Christmas and best wishes for the year ahead."