The figures were supplied by the federal Economy Department. It is not easy to follow a vocational training if you want to become a shoemaker: it's only possible in evening schools. Dave is one of the few who did it. At 29 years of age, he is Belgium's youngest shoemaker: "The profession has lost its attraction. You need to have a real passion", he told the VRT.
Christine Mattheeuws of the NSZ says that the profession is battling an image problem. "And still, it has its pros, because demand is a lot bigger than supply. The fewer shoemakers, the more work for those that remain."
Many towns or villages no longer have a shoemaker. Dave sees that many of his clients come from neighbouring towns. "I see all ages, young and old. And yes, we can also repair sneakers."