And so, dear friends, we reach the end of another year of brine based fun. A year of ups, downs and everything in between. A year that’s seen surfing hit the mainstream as never before.

A year that, whether you’ve just started out on your surfer’s path or are a salty old sea dog, is one to be rejoiced and remembered. If you did your first pop up, trimmed across your first wave, nailed your first carve or made your first aerial it’s all gravy. Experience to be savoured. Real world happenings that are yours and yours alone. Done for the simple reason of fun. Not because it makes you look cool or got you more likes. Let’s face it. No one looks cool in a winter wetsuit with all the trimmings.

Surfing is selfish. There’s no argument there. It is done by yourself for your own pleasure and when you’re old and grey these moments will burn bright in your timeline. If you surf with friends then the experience is shared of course, but the rides are all yours, the caress of the ocean is your own.

Selfish it may be but it’s as a community we can move forward. Much as we enjoy our oceanic playground it is still, bafflingly, under threat and next year, as always, we must be vigilant. We are the frontline. The guardians of our realm. Do what you can when you can.

Support SAS, #2minutebeachclean, the Plastic Project or start your own initiative. Pollution in any form isn’t cool. Reduce, recycle, reuse. Whether the changing climate is being forced by us or not is a moot point. We need to make less of an impact on our planet period. We need our ocean, land and sky to be clean. Not a dumping ground.

The month of January is named for the Roman god Janus. A two faced deity with one face looking back to the old year and one looking forward to the new. The Romans would make promises to the god for the new year. Thousands of years later we do the same. Whether the Romans promised to go to the gym and eat less Maltesers is something we’ll never know.

Your resolutions, if you can be arsed to make any, are your own. We’ve just got a few suggestions, that don’t involve loose promises to go the gym more, that we could all do with sticking with…

• Have fun
• Don’t be a dick
• Look after your beach
• Get in the ocean whenever you can
• Support your local surf shop

We are the dancers on the edge of the ocean. It’s a privilege. May you all have a brilliant, glorious, wave filled 2016…

*Clinks glass*