Drink Safely This Christmas

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Councillor Patricia Stallard, Hampshire County Council’s Executive Member for Health and Public Health is reminding people to be aware of how much is too much when it comes to festive drinking. 

She said: “Everyone wants to have fun at Christmas, and for many of us, festive drinks are part and parcel of the enjoyment. However, it’s very easy to drink more than we intend to, or is good for us. It’s also really important for people to be aware of whether they are safe and legal to drive, the morning after a night out.” 

The County Council’s free Don’t Bottle it up online tool helps you work out how much alcohol you are drinking and how this affects your health. It also offers free and confidential advice, as well as information on local support. 

The Morning After Calculator App helps you calculate roughly when it will be safe to drive the morning after drinking alcohol. If you are drinking any amount of alcohol on a night out - even one drink - you should leave the car at home and make alternative arrangements. 

Celebs Team Up To Thank NHS In Christmas Bid For No.1

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Following the huge success of the NHS Choir in 2015 which beat Justin Bieber to the Christmas number one, a new NHS music video has been launched for 2017, with a whole host of celebrities backing #ThankUNHS.

The song was written by ex-NHS doctor, Adam Kay, who wrote the best-selling book ‘This is going to hurt’, which showed the true behind the scenes of the NHS. The track is performed by comedian and musician Micky P Kerr and is the perfect combination of hard-hitting lyrics and light-hearted video.

The track, which brings together The Kink’s ‘Days’ and ‘Thank You Very Much’ by The Scaffold, features a range of celebrities including Johnny Vegas, Shaun Ryder and Julie Hesmondhalgh. It also features hundreds of members of the public singing their gratitude to the NHS.

In the track, NHS patients are saying #ThankUNHS for helping with everything from cancer treatment and speech impediments to delivering their children and mental health services.

The video also highlights every member of NHS staff, looking beyond the doctors and nurses, that work throughout the Christmas period to keep each aspect of the service running, including porters, estate managers, receptionists and IT staff.

Johnny Vegas said: “Myself, and all those who I love, have been helped countless times by the amazing staff at the NHS. To say a simple thank you to them over Christmas, when we’re all tucking into our vats of wine and their morale is dipping, seems like a great thing to do.”

Former Coronation Street star Julie Hesmondhalgh said: “Like probably everybody in this country, I have a million things to be grateful to the NHS for. My daughter was born in the NHS and my Dad died with great dignity and the best care possible in an NHS hospital.

"The NHS is the thing that we should be proudest of in our country and this is just to say how grateful we are and to promise to keep on fighting to save the NHS, we will not let it go”

The general public is being encouraged in the video to share their own #ThankUNHS pictures across social media and these will be populated on the campaign’s dedicated website

The #ThankUNHS chorus is sung by Micky P Kerr and children’s choir Little Belters. The Manchester-based children’s choir company, founded by elite opera singing sisters Claire and Tina O’Brien, featured on Dragons’ Den last year where a rendition of Years and Years’ ‘King’ by a team of 5 to 11 year olds moved Touker Suleyman to tears.

#ThankUNHS is the brainchild of Manchester filmmaker and owner of specialist film agency Magnafi, Simon Lewis. Simon was also behind the film and ad campaign that helped take the NHS Choir to number one in 2015. He was supported in the campaign by Manchester-based content agency Trunk, Cheshire-based engagement agency Big Brand Ideas and creative Twitter community One Minute Briefs.

Simon said: “I got the idea for the track after reading Adam Kay’s book. Whilst it delivers plenty of laughs, it also does a great job of showing just how tough it is within the NHS.

“Many of my family work within the NHS so I see first-hand the incredible strain they are under, and how it can affect their morale. #ThankUNHS is our way of trying to boost the morale of all those working within the NHS this Christmas. At a time when many of us are kicking back and indulging in festivities, the NHS continues to look after us, under increasing pressure. This is a chance for us all to say thank you.”

The track, compiled by Gary Hilton and Steve Southern of GAS music on label Ostereo, will be available to download on iTunes on Monday 18th December or can be downloaded now from Band Camp here.


DVLA Christmas 2017 Opening Times

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Customers will be able to use the DVLA's online services throughout the Christmas and New Year period.

DateOpening hours
Friday 22 December 8am to midday (drivers premium line will be open until 4pm)
Saturday 23 December 8am to 2pm
Christmas Eve closed
Christmas Day closed
Boxing Day closed
Wednesday 27 December 8am to 5.30pm
Thursday 28 December 8am to 5.30pm
Friday 29 December 8am to 5.30pm
Saturday 30 December 8am to 2pm
New Year’s Eve closed
New Year’s Day closed
Tuesday 2 January 8am to 7pm

Is There Such A Thing As A Perfect Christmas?

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UK adults believe there is no such thing as the perfect Christmas and instead embrace family squabbles and awkwardness on 25th December, according to new research.

According to the survey of 1,031 UK adults, carried out by One4all, the Post Office gift card, an overwhelming number (67%) of British families squabble at Christmas.

Playing board games was the most common (24%) cause of family feuds at Christmas.

Children squabbling over toys (22%), the host/hostess not having enough help (19%), giving and receiving gifts (18%) and deciding what to watch on TV followed in the top five.

Indeed, 3 million Brits believe there is no such thing as the perfect Christmas.

The research also polled respondents about what contributes to their idea of the perfect Christmas, and found it is the small things that really matter.

Opening presents as a family (61%), watching Christmas films (46%) and TV programmes (42%) together, pulling Christmas crackers and indulging in sweets (35%) all play their part in the perfect, quintessentially British Christmas Day.

Aoife Davey, group marketing manager at One4all Gift Cards, commented: “There’s something so magical about Christmas Day and all that comes with it – even down to the usual squabbles over a game of Monopoly or a burned turkey! Tensions do run high at Christmas time, but often (as the research has shown) it is over very minor things like games and which Christmas special to watch on TV.”

Glaswegians (77%) were the most likely to experience arguments on Christmas Day, closely followed by those in Edinburgh and Newcastle (both 73%).

Meanwhile, those in Nottingham experienced the most harmonious Christmases (56%), closely followed by Liverpudlians (56%).

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