As I prepare to write my 2020 Christmas letter, I realise that this year my life – all our lives – unlike any other year I have known, has been shaped, constrained and reworked by external events. If my letter is a water-colour sketch, then this is the background wash.

It was the spring when you could walk into the City Centre on a weekday afternoon and it was as quiet as Christmas and you would be the only person in Radcliffe Square and you could stand in the middle of the High Street and take photos to your heart’s content.

It was the spring of government sanctioned daily walks when you would bump into people you knew and stop for a socially distanced chat and we were all in it together.

It was the spring when OWNS and The Porch closed on the same day and my head told me it was the right thing and my heart broke. It was the spring (and the summer and the winter) when, finally, everyone was offered a roof over their head. It was the spring The Porch reinvented itself, but I couldn’t volunteer because I was neither young nor healthy.

It was the summer (and the autumn and the winter) when we weren’t all in it together. We were still all in the same storm but not all in the same boat.

It was the autumn of hope.

It is the winter of waiting.