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Issue 1285 - Joy!

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Each year, the decision gets more difficult. This time round we had over 1,000 incredible entries. In truth, many of them could have won, but we had to find just one. And after an agonising judging process we can finally announce this year’s winner of The Big Issue Kids’ Christmas Cover Competition: Martin Wellstead, aged six, from Wimborne, Dorset.

"It’s amazing to win the competition," he beamed

Big Issue editor Paul McNamee felt something simple struck with Martin’s picture. "It just said ‘Joy!’. It lifts your spirits and makes you smile, simply and honestly. That feels very timely right now."

Also this week...

The Brits abroad: The Grand Tour (formerly of the Top Gear parish) stars Clarkson, May and Hammond talk Brexit, haircuts and the human condition.
Is Sajid Javid the man to turn the ship around on housing policy? We find our from the Communities Secretary’s how a trip to Finland led him to persuade the Chancellor to fork over extra cash to tackle homelessness.

In Letter to My Younger Self, it's one of the B’s in ABBA! Benny Andersson talks becoming political with age, and how becoming a father at 16 "wasn’t an ideal situation".

Chinese activist, dissident, artist and exile Ai Weiwei’s new film Human Flow looks at the the people the world would rather forget – the 22 million people registered as refugees. He tells The Big Issue why he thinks the world is so divided.

From the simplest of picture books to the most sophisticated prose and poetry, it’s the golden age for children’s books. Big Issue books editor Jane Graham highlights some of her top treats. A perfect gift guide for the young reader in your life.

And lots, lots more.

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