Councillor Nichola Mallon said: “In my role as Lord Mayor I have been privileged to meet with and be inspired by people and organisations who are doing wonderful work across our city. As well as thanking them, I wish everyone a very Happy Christmas and a peaceful New Year filled with hope and joy.
“But as we celebrate with our friends and family I would urge everyone to remember our all too often ‘forgotten citizens’, those on the margins of our society, who may be struggling and in need of our help and support.
“At this time of year, in particular, their plight is especially poignant. I would urge everyone to extend the hand of friendship to the vulnerable and those less fortunate. It’s important to remember that at Christmas, while we are at home with our friends and family, it’s very different for those who are alone or without a roof over their heads.
“I never cease to be amazed by the compassion and generosity of people and organisations right across Belfast. I thank you for the good work you consistently do.”
The Lord Mayor added: “Celebrating the Best of Belfast is the theme of my term in office and without question the people who call this city ‘home’ are our greatest asset. Together we can look forward to 2015 with optimism.
“My heartfelt wish for everyone is that they achieve all they hope for in the year ahead. Very best wishes to everyone – have a peaceful and enjoyable festive and new year break”.