It's customary at this time of year to say, "Where did the last 12 months go?" - and I won't disappoint. I think for all of us the pace of national events has seen 2019 go by in a flash.
However, during that breakneck year we did find an opportunity to do some forward planning, to help secure the future of The Guild in the years ahead. I'm talking, of course, about our Guild 2025 strategy. You'll find a full update in the opening of our news section, and I strongly urge you to get involved and, where possible, offer your knowledge and opinions to one of its six working groups.
This issue, we have two features looking at very different areas of the industry. Our cover story on pipeline theft examines the techniques used by thieves to access pipelines. Fortunately, the feature also looks at ways to tackle this growing problem, to help reduce the financial cost and loss of life that, tragically, is so frequently involved.
Our second feature is a call to action to better maintain coastal outfalls. David Watson, chair of our Intakes, Outfalls and Landfalls Panel, reveals why these assets are so crucial and why we really ought to be doing more to look after them.
The issue also features a round up of your annual dinners, presentations and site visits. It's good to know that, across the UK and Ireland, branches are meeting, eating, talking and sharing ideas and that we are far, far more than a "get together once a year" organisation.
Having said that, our big Annual Dinner is on the horizon and - if the start of 2020 is anything like 2019 - it will be with us before you've barely finished saying Happy New Year. I do hope you'll be joining us for the occasion.
Happy Christmas, all.