Letter: Bah! Humbug!

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The Independent Culture
Sir: Chocolate manufacturers and others have in many cases succeeded in taking over, and destroying, the real purpose of Advent calendars.

Until a few years ago, an Advent calendar was a way for children to discover and enjoy the Christmas story, which was unfolded day by day. Now in many cases the sale of so-called "Advent calendars" is simply a means of persuading parents and others to encourage greed by giving 24 extra (albeit small) presents in advance of Christmas itself, and is nothing to do with Advent at all.

Advent is a season of thoughtful preparation for the festival of the Birth of Christ and all that it means, and it seems very sad that children may now be deprived of this simple and enjoyable means of understanding what Christmas is really about.

SHIRLEY RYMER

Calne, Wiltshire

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