The past year has seen a gradual return to a lifestyle that is much closer to normality but we are not in the clear yet.
If it wasn't for the comprehensive vaccination programme delivered by the National Health Service with support from public and voluntary sector partners then we would potentially be facing a much bleaker situation.
A tremendous amount of thanks must go to those involved in the planning and delivery of this programme.
It's given us the opportunity to reconnect with friends and loved ones and return to enjoying many of the things we once took for granted.
It is important that we do not allow this positive work to go in vain and we continue to be vigilant over the festive period.
We can all play our part through sensible decision making and regular testing prior to attending events or visiting family and friends.
If we can do this then we will hopefully see further progress in the year to come.
Best wishes to you and your family over the Festive period.
Provost Tom Kerr