Let me tell you about the time I was a migrant - no job, no money, no future, no hope and no option but to travel in despair to another country with a view to building a better life.

Once there I sought out my own countrymen and women, shared a flat with one, dated another, kept my own customs and habits and spoke English as far and wide as possible. I was never persecuted and never viewed with suspicion, that I was aware of.

The country was Switzerland and in time I built a network of friends, learned another language, travelled the world, made enough money to buy a flat when I returned to Scotland three years hence, and got the kind of experience only working in an international newsroom can give you.

I thrived there. Being a white, middle class, nominally Christian male who worked hard, abided by the law and paid his taxes, of course, helped.

Let me tell you another anecdote. Every so often I fly from Scotland to the remarkable little airport at Southampton, where there is a railway station less than 100 paces from the terminal affording the passenger a host of destinations.

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For reasons I won’t go into in depth here, save to say that I like my grub, I always look forward to eating well in the airport restaurant. Except that it has been closed since lockdown, and shows no signs of reopening.

The reason? No staff – a hindrance which we see day and daily across the land, particularly in the vital hospitality and social care sectors.

And while I would wholeheartedly agree with the decision to send migrant Albanian criminals back to Tirana because we have quite enough of our own thanks, I fear for people who risk their lives attempting to come to this country in small boats for a better existence.

This centres on Brexit, the disastrous removal of the United Kingdom from the European Union, on the shakiest of doctrines.

My point here is not political – I generally keep my views to myself. My point is, as usual, about message. Brexit was sold to many people – some of them, let’s face it, xenophobes at heart – who believed the spin that leaving the EU would solve the migration problem.

In reality it has made things immeasurably worse.

Legal migration of EU nationals has been scythed, crippling many industries, while the illegal migration those voters were trying to obviate, of non-white, non-Christian, non-taxpaying people from the Middle East and Africa, has ballooned.

This country is crying out for workers. That’s a message that can’t be distorted.