Hundreds of people cross English Channel to UK in new record for single day

·2-min read

At least 430 migrants made the journey across the English Channel to the UK on Monday, a new record for a single day.

Dozens of people, including women and young children, were seen walking ashore after one beach landing on the Kent coast, while more arrived elsewhere.

Today’s figure passes the previous daily high of 416 set in September 2020, according to data compiled by the PA news agency.

People thought to be migrants make their way up the beach (Gareth Fuller/PA) (PA Wire)
People thought to be migrants make their way up the beach (Gareth Fuller/PA) (PA Wire)

High numbers of crossings have continued this summer despite Home Secretary Priti Patel’s vow to make the Channel crossings “unviable”.

Also on Monday, plans for sweeping reforms of the asylum system, dubbed the anti-refugee Bill by critics and campaigners, were debated again in Parliament.

In Dungeness in Kent, around 50 people were seen landing on a beach after crossing aboard in a single dinghy.

Some raised their hands in celebration as they stood on the beach, while others sat down on the shingle shoreline amid 24C sunshine.

The large dinghy is believed to have left northern France or Belgium earlier on Monday before crossing the dangerous 21-mile Dover Strait.

The vessel had been watched by the RNLI as it got closer and closer to the coast before eventually landing on the beach at around 1pm.

Among the arrivals were women and children, some too young to walk, and some people had to be supported as they walked on to the beach.

In Parliament on Monday, Theresa May sounded warnings over the prospect of the UK sending asylum seekers to Australia-style offshore processing centres.

The former prime minister said she considered the idea when home secretary but rejected the option due to “practical concerns”.

Her remarks came as MPs considered the Nationality and Borders Bill, which includes clauses to allow the UK to be able to send asylum seekers to a “safe third country” and to submit claims at a “designated place” determined by the Secretary of State.

Bella Sankey, director of charity Detention Action, said: “The Home Office’s anti-refugee Bill is political theatre that doesn’t even pretend to deal with the issue or make our system, safe, fair or efficient.

“We need a mechanism allowing refugees arriving at the UK border in France to be given safe passage, and until we have it, all else is noise and distraction.”

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Dozens of migrants land on Kent beach after crossing channel in dinghy

Dozens of people land on Kent beach after crossing Channel in dinghy

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