Last night, Harefield hospital staff, patients, supporters and friends gathered at St Mary’s Church for our final big event at the year. The week before, more than 400 people gathered at St Luke’s, across the road from Royal Brompton Hospital.

These two Carols by Candlelight were memorable occasions. They were carefully designed services with beautiful singing from highly professional choirs and many enthusiastic amateurs, with dozens of volunteers stepping forward to read lessons, take donations or hand out mince pies.

In any year, these would have been special events, but as it’s been two years since we’ve been able to come together in this way, it felt all the more meaningful. It was great to see communities that we are so proud to be part of re-connecting with each other and with the Charity.

We are raising money at the moment for our Road to Recovery: Post Covid Mental Health Programme, and because of the generosity of people over the last few weeks, we are now many thousands of pounds closer to our target.

Last night, the Harefield Hospital chaplain, Cameron Barker, talked about the potential of communities to come together in difficult times to reduce the darkness by lighting a beacon of hope. In many ways, that’s what supporting a charity is about. Providing hope for people at their darkest moments.

I wish you all a wonderful and peaceful time this Christmas.

Thank you for your support, now and always.