For this year’s Christmas competition I asked readers to submit letters written to Santa Claus. As ever, I received many more than I could include, and enjoyed reading them all. These are the winners, names at the bottom.
Patrick Kidd www.thetimes.co.uk
Dear Santa, Because of the fantastic job I did — THE BEST EVER — controlling the China virus I deserve the following: Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Georgia. Yours, Donald J Trump
Dear Santa, All I want is some decent soap. I can’t seem to get my hands clean these days — always one damned spot left. But it needn’t be highly scented; I’ve tried all the perfumes of Arabia to no avail.
Also, my husband needs some new glasses. He keeps seeing things that aren’t there, daggers mostly. I don’t think it’s the drink.
By the time you get to Glamis, you’re nearly home so why not stop over for a rest? I’ll make up the spare room, like I did for Duncan. You’re welcome to stay until tomorrow — and tomorrow and tomorrow. All the best, Lady Macbeth.
Jacob Rees-Mogg, Leader of the House of Commons, Lord President of the Council, Member of Parliament for North East Somerset presents his compliments to Saint Nicholas, Holy Hierarch, Bishop of Myra and begs to inform him that during the past twelvemonth his behaviour has been without fault. In consequence of which he humbly requests the Patron of our Yuletide Festival to furnish him with the following:
Item: One monocle
Item: A new pair of spats
Item: A carbon-neutral penny-farthing.
In joyful anticipation, he expresses his profound gratitude.
Dear Santa, Please could I have some tickets for the theatre? After a difficult few years I need a relaxing evening where nothing can go wrong. Yours, Abraham Lincoln
Dear Santa, We haven’t written for many years — I used to sign my letters Lilibet — but write now to ask for a new cabinet for one of our palaces. My husband and I are in disagreement over this. He says we have plenty. We have had plenty, but when I heard him talking about a William Kent yesterday I realised how desperately we need a new one. Please send a Lord Privy Seal, First Lord of the Treasury, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, etc etc, to the Palace of Westminster. Yours affectionately, E To Err
Dear Santa, There’s something we just can’t abide: politicians who cannot decide. [Next slide]
The two of us each eventide with Matt or Boris by our side [Next slide]
(Though neither of them’s qualified to lock down part or nationwide), [Next slide]
And Gavin, who should be certified, or Peston with his diatribe. [Next slide]
So next year please let’s turn the tide and get through this with British pride [Next slide]
If, Santa, will you please provide your sleigh for vaccines countrywide. Yours truly, Chris & Patrick
Listen Santa, When I asked for a cowboy outfit, I expected a profitable business not some Village People schmutter. Anyway, the chaps were too long, the waistcoat too small, and the hat blew over the side of the yacht. This year I expect a peerage. No, not porridge. If you’re looking to sell up, I’ll take the workshop — but I’m not paying the elves’ pensions. SIR Philip Green
Father Christmas, When I sent you my list of presents, I did NOT expect to wait until Christmas Day. I wanted them the same day. You’re a useless idiot. It pains me to say it but civil servants could do a better job. Priti Patel
Dear Mr Claus, Please could I have a plastic skeleton? As Secretary of State for Education I have singlehandedly guided us through these problematic months and confidently expect a promotion to Health in a reshuffle. My plan is to learn all the body parts so I can tell the doctors how to do their jobs. However, I overheard Boris telling someone I don’t know my arse from my elbow, so realised I need help. Your ’umble servant, Gav
Dear Santa, I’ve been a very good boy so please can you bring me an oven (British, of course, or your reindeer will get stuck in the queues from abroad) because my one isn’t working. A deal I recently cooked came out very flat. I was going to ask for some fish as well but I’ll be able to get loads very cheaply soon. Thanks very much, Boris Johnson
Dear Claus, You are, by edict of Parliament, instructed to stay away from our lands. Should you doubt our resolve, I remind you of the late Charles Stuart. With the grace of God, Cromwell, Protector.
Dear Father, I have been good, so far. I was a bit disappointed to get gardening equipment and a fruit tree last year. I’d love some clothes! Eve
Darling Santa, All I want for Christmas is a private island where we can live our simple lives, growing carrots and eggplants far away from PR people and photographers. And could it have a small jet and a landing strip so Harry can pop over to the mainland when we run out of oatmilk? Yours humbly, Meghan.
Dear Santa, Rather than seeking a gift, I offer one. Having observed your lifelong need to please, dress in bizarre costumes and pop down chimneys, I propose you swap your sleigh for my couch. No charge. Yours professionally, Sigmund Freud
Dear Santa, For my first Xmas can I please have a smooth exit for Papa, less vexit for Mama and a lot more bixcits for Dilyn as well as a scalextric for me. Thank you x Wilfred Johnson, aged 7 months
Dear Father Christmas, We feel rather embarrassed about sending a list since you gave us EVERYTHING we asked for last year. War, Poverty and Death are, for us, like socks, boxer shorts and a book token but, oh boy, to get Pestilence too! Wow!
However, our PR dept caution against “catastrophe fatigue” and suggest that this year we ask for a Cliff Richard CD, a pair of slippers, Quality Street and a voucher for an Unconscious Bias Course. Though if you could manage a teeny bit of cataclysmic flooding . . ? Thanks v much, White, Red, Black and Pale
Winning entries sent by Bharat Jashanmal, Vivien McCoubrey, Margaret Attlee, Pete Moore, Nicholas Cranfield, Jeremy Fox, Gerald Gouriet, Jeremy Dore, Steve Larkin, Zilma Watts, Alastair Stewart, Tina Morgan, Joan Salter, Walter Ford, Ian Elliott and Suzie Marwood.