Dear friends – we leave for Europe in less than two weeks and I didn’t feel it possible to drive through Calais again this year without stopping to volunteer at one of the refugee centres for a week. My heart broke to see all the razor wire, twenty-foot-high fences and armed security put there in response to people who are fleeing for their lives and who don’t have the luxury of a van like ours to travel and sleep in. I was going to write about it but what could I say when I’d done nothing to help? It just felt like false tears. We don’t have a huge amount of extra space in the van but I’ve seen that solid, good condition, winter shoes are very much needed as the seasons turn, and as such I’d like to arrange to take some down with us from north Wales. If you’ve got any and are based along the north east Wales coast we can collect sometime over the next 10 days. Please NO dress shoes, wellies, office shoes, heels, sandals etc… and also no shit. No shoes you wouldn’t be happy to wear yourself this winter. What’s needed are good walking shoes or trainers in sizes 40-43. If you have anything you could donate or if you wanted to buy a pair for us to take that would be hugely appreciated. I am a poet and as such I believe that poetry can change the world, but sometimes a pair of decent shoes is what will change one person’s world for the better.