Garages filled by donations from St Albans residents to Syrian refugees campaign

Richard Howitt MEP meets St Albans for Refugees' Liz Needham and other volunteers at their base for

Richard Howitt MEP meets St Albans for Refugees' Liz Needham and other volunteers at their base for donations - Credit: Archant

The generosity of people in St Albans has seen two council-supplied garages filled to the brim with donations of tents, camping equipment and clothing for Syrian refugees housed in camps in Calais.

And now, thanks to kindness of a commercial storage firm, the organisers of StAlbansForRefugees have an extra 450sq ft available in Letchworth and are urging locals to keep the donations coming.

Ian Gaunt, the southern regional manager of Bizspace, heard about the campaign group through its extensive media coverage and decided he would like to help.

He said: “I had been looking for somewhere for the past couple of weeks. We had the space and we were trying to find a charity locally.

“A colleague heard Liz [Needham, co-organiser of StAlbansForRefugees] on the radio so I decided to give her a call.”

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Following an appeal in the Herts Advertiser, the two council-sponsored garages that were being used to store donations were filled up – so Bizspace’s offer could not have come at a better time, according to Liz.

She said: “This time last week we had one half-full garage; now [Monday morning] we have two garages full to the doors.”

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The group, made up of volunteers from St Albans, plan to sort through the donations before making a trip to Calais next month and are now calling on locals to donate as much money as possible to cover the cost of fuel and the ferries.

To donate to, visit, where you will find addresses of the garages and contact details for the organisers.

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