A tree for number 4

Mr Jones has lived by himself, with his cat Percy, since his wife died. He has one daughter, but she lives miles away. Next door to Mr Jones live Phil and Jane MacDonald and their two sons, Alex and Sean.

Most of the houses in Park Road had Christmas lights on Christmas trees. But one house that remained dark was number 4, Mr Jones' house.

One Saturday, five days before Christmas, Alex and Sean were kicking a ball about in the garden. Alex, the Park Road Beckham, gave the ball a huge kick. It flew over Sean's head, over the hedge, and into Mr Jones' garden.

"I'm not getting that," said Sean.

Alex pushed open the sagging gate and searched for the ball. He found it just under the front room window. He couldn't resist looking in. Alex came out of Mr Jones' garden looking thoughtful.

"It's really dark in there," he said. "He hasn't got any decorations at all."

That afternoon, Alex and Sean went to town with their parents. The market was packed with people trying to buy late presents.

"Dad, can we go to the Christmas tree stall, please?" asked Alex.

"But we've got a tree," said his mother. "We don't need another one!"

"It's for Mr Jones," said Alex. "I want to give him the tree for Christmas."

Alex went to see Mr Jones when they got home. Mr Jones was very surprised to see Alex standing there with a Christmas tree in his arms. The old man found some lights and Alex helped him put them on the tree.

"That's the best Christmas present I'll have," said the old man. "Thank you for thinking about me."

But it wasn't quite the best Christmas present that Mr Jones had that Christmas. Alex noticed that on Christmas morning a car stopped outside number 4. Mr Jones' daughter and his granddaughter got out of the car.