For the first time in three years we are actually looking forward to a relatively 'normal' Christmas!
The dreaded Covid, while still an issue, has largely subsided which means many thousands of people being able to travel home for Christmas which will be a huge boost for both businesses and families who have missed their loved ones dearly during the festive season in recent years.
That being said, we are still living in challenging times with the war in Ukraine ongoing, the cost of living and housing crises causing much stress and suffering closer to home and the never ending battle with climate change never far from our thoughts.
But, despite the difficult days, it’s also worth noting there are myriad things to appreciate.
Here in West Cork, we are incredibly lucky to live in one of the most stunning corners of Ireland and we'll never tire of being surrounded by some of the country's kindest and wittiest people.
It has been a very tough few years for businesses throughout the region, but the power and positivity of the local people has pulled us all through.
Here, at The Southern Star, we've worked hard to deliver unrivalled breaking news, video features, podcasts, social media coverage and brilliant-in-depth reporting to the people of West Cork – which is no more than you deserve.
The centenary of the death of Michael Collins was one of the biggest West Cork news stories of the year and we did our best to do it justice with our special 24-page supplement of the Big Fella. You can read that in full by clicking here.
Our In The News podcast continued to bring our listeners the stories that matter most to them and our episode focusing on the centenary was our biggest ever with over 50,000 of you tuning in. Listen back to it here.
It was another great year for sport in West Cork too with our rowers once again doing us proud on the world stage. Paul O’Donovan and Fintan McCarthy were world champions once again after a typically dominant display in the lightweight men’s double sculls A final at the World Rowing Championships in the Czech Republic in September.
We will endeavour to bring more high quality productions to our readers and viewers in 2023.
2022 was also the year we relaunched the Southern Star ePaper, allowing us to connect with more of our readers than ever before.
In August we released an updated iOS app for Apple users and for the first time ever made our app available to Android users. This was an important moment for us as we look to build for the future and continue to bring you the best possible offering every day of the week.
Find out more about how you can benefit from taking out a Southern Star ePaper subscription here. We appreciate the support!
And, as we look forward to another busy year, we are curious to look back at the most popular stories, as ranked by our online readers, for 2022:
Most read stories of 2022
As we say goodbye to 2022 and look forward to another year, let us all take this opportunity to look out for each other once more, and remember that while kindness has no cost, it is an invaluable gift.
Thank you, to all our readers, subscribers, viewers and advertisers, for your continued support.
And don't forget, this week's Southern Star is in shops NOW!
Siobhan Cronin, Editor