Forget the madness and make time for family and friends

PRAYERS ANSWERED ...for those parishioners wishing for a white Christmas at St Mark's Church, North End, Portsmouth, in 1920
PRAYERS ANSWERED ...for those parishioners wishing for a white Christmas at St Mark's Church, North End, Portsmouth, in 1920
I have included this picture not so much for the view but for the cars of the late 1970s or early 1980s. Picture: John Rich

NOSTALGIA: It only seems like yesterday... but these cars in Portsmouth are now classics

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Today we round off our look back at Christmases past by concentrating on the meaning of friendship and community.

This time of year is always manic, but despite the hysteria and the pressure the vast majority of us eventually find time to catch up with friends and family.

Landport Drapery Bazaar's Christmas dinner at Kimbells, 1970

Landport Drapery Bazaar's Christmas dinner at Kimbells, 1970

Today’s pictures emphasise just that – from work gatherings to village get-togethers, from school shows to the community of faith, and not forgetting those who were forced to make friends with those in the bed next to them in hospital.

My colleague Bob Hind and I wish you all a very merry and sociable Christmas.

The children's ward at Gosport War Memorial Hospital at Christmas 1948

The children's ward at Gosport War Memorial Hospital at Christmas 1948

A Christmas party at Bedhampton in the 1960s.

A Christmas party at Bedhampton in the 1960s.

WHAT ARE THEY DOING NOW? Pupils at Arundel Court First School, Portsmouth, in their Christmas production of 1993

WHAT ARE THEY DOING NOW? Pupils at Arundel Court First School, Portsmouth, in their Christmas production of 1993