Number of migrants landing in Britain nears 27,000

Nearly 27,000 migrants have crossed the Channel so far this year, after more than 900 completed the crossing on Thursday and Friday

  • Home Office reveals Border Force intercepted 29 boats last Thursday and Friday 
  • New figures mean almost 27,000 migrants have made deadly crossing in 2021
  • Smugglers now using larger dinghies to cross English Channel route in winter 

Nearly 27,000 migrants have crossed the English Channel so far this year, after more than 900 more completed the crossing on Thursday and Friday last week.

The Home Office revealed that Border Force intercepted or rescued 29 boats, carrying 917 people, from the freezing waters. 

French authorities also prevented another 560 migrants from making the trip.

Nearly 27,000 migrants have crossed the English Channel so far this year, after more than 900 more completed the crossing on Thursday and Friday last week 

The Home Office revealed that Border Force intercepted or rescued 29 boats, carrying 917 people, from the freezing waters 

The last few days have seen an influx of migrants after bad weather conditions made crossing the treacherous shipping lane nearly impossible for almost two weeks

Smugglers used to avoid the sea route in winter, but the use of larger inflatable dinghies has allowed traffickers to continue sending migrants across the 21-mile stretch.

The pandemic and increased security around freight terminals has forced smugglers away from the land routes. 

In 2020, the number of migrants arriving by water in small boats from France was 8,420.

Home Secretary Priti Patel has come under fierce criticism for failing to get a grip on the crisis with Prime Minister Boris Johnson ordering a review.

Home Office’s Clandestine Channel Threat Commander Dan O’Mahoney criticised French authorities’ reluctance to co-operate with Border Force despite the UK handing France £54 million this year to stem the flow of migrants.

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