OVER Christmas I’ve been considering my three wishes for 2009, and as politics covers so many aspects of our lives the list could be almost endless.

I’d like to see reductions in crime, improvements in school results and protection of village amenities, but I’ll pick just three: one national in scope, one more local and one more recreational.

My first wish is that the worst forecasts for the recession prove to be unfounded. Already businesses are struggling, unemployment is rising and homes are being repossessed. We should never forget that behind the headline statistics real hardship and misery will be felt by ordinary families.

So I hope lower interest rates, targeted Government intervention and the enterprise of British businesses will stop the recession lasting through 2009.

My second wish is that the cancer centre will open this year at Musgrove Park. I’m delighted cancer patients who wish they did not have to travel to Bristol for treatment will see that wish come true.

My final wish, which many will share and renew annually, is for Somerset to win the County Cricket Championship.

The team performed strongly last year, the enhanced County Ground will look magnificent this summer and a victorious team would give huge pleasure to thousands of Somerset residents.