IS it just me, or has Christmas come around very quickly this year?

It’s been a whirlwind few weeks where I have attended a number of events that remind me why I am so proud of West Dunbartonshire.

Commemorating 100 years since the end of the First World War was emotional, and I was humbled to honour our armed forces at the Boer War Memorial in Dumbarton and again at services in Clydebank and Christie Park.

We also welcomed artist Tom McKendrick’s exhibition, Soldiers, to Clydebank Town Hall and I got the opportunity to meet his subjects and hear their stories and experiences. It is a very moving piece of work and I would recommend a visit before it finishes on January 12.

I’ve also been delighted to see work being done on a number of projects. I attended the official opening of Clydebank Community Sport Hub earlier this month, and was amazed at the transformation that has taken place in just 10 months.

Local children took part in demonstrations showing how valuable the facility will be, and I also saw the land which will be divided into allotments for community use.

Work has also begun on the high-tech District Heating Network, and the new care home, at the Queens Quay development in Clydebank.

I was invited to the Community Sports Awards, which was a great event and hearing how much each nominee does for their sport and their community left me feeling inspired.

I was also happy to help residents mark personal milestones. Over the last six weeks, I welcomed three new citizens, congratulated three couples on their golden wedding anniversaries and wished a very special lady Happy Birthday as she turned 100.

More recently, I’ve been enjoying lots of festive fun including carol concerts, charity Christmas lunches, school nativities and festive lights switch-on events.

It’s brilliant to see such a sense of community spirit and I hope it’s something that stays around long after our Christmas decorations are packed away.

I, for one, am looking forward to another productive year in 2019 – kicking off with the Monte Carlo Rally, which will set off from Clydebank on January 30. But, for now, let me wish you a very merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.