“Let love and kindness never leave you”, a wise man once wrote, writes John Turner.
History shows that a time of crisis will bring out either the very best or, sadly, the very worst in people.
I am happy to say that in my recent experience, the people of Scotland, of Glasgow and especially of the West End have been displaying their very best, in wonderful expressions of that love and kindness.
So I can sum up my current thoughts, feelings and emotions in two little words: THANK YOU.
Thank you to the thousands of you who have flooded back to the West End since the Level 4 restrictions were relaxed last Friday.
Thank you for visiting the businesses in Byres Road and the Lanes. Thank you for your custom, and above all, thank you for the many, many kind words you have shared with us, telling is how pleased you are to see us open again, and hoping we have a successful Christmas period.
I cannot put into words the impact that has on us as small business owners, we are so grateful.
Thank you to everyone who has donated a gift at the Social Bite collection barrow next to the Christmas tree in Vinicombe Street.
I am advised that they collected over 1,000 gifts in the first week alone. People of Glasgow, you are awesome.
Thank you to our amazing NHS workers, carers, nursing home staff, doctors, scientists, and all others who have been at the forefront of the battle against this pernicious virus that has affected our lives so radically this year.
Thank you to all those of you who have clicked on, downloaded and spread the word about the beautiful Christmas song by the Lapwing duo, local schoolteachers Phil Ford and Tim Kwant.
They have now received airplay on many local radio stations, and the song was number 3 on the Amazon download chart, and is climbing up the main singles chart.
It has been played on Radio 2 by Ken Bruce (twice!) AND no lesser mortal than Graham Norton has said that he will air it on his show this coming weekend.
Well done lads!
The story of Christmas is that of light conquering darkness, of dismay and despair being overcome by peace, joy, love and kindness.
Keep your love and kindness on, Glasgow.
And THANK YOU.
A very happy Christmas to you and all those dear to you.
- John Turner is chair of the Byres Road & Lanes Business Improvement District. With his wife Janet, he also runs Janet & John Scottish Arts & Crafts in De Courcy’s Arcade in Cresswell Lane.