Three-storey barge to house hundreds of small boat migrants off the cost of Dorset | The Sun

A THREE storey barge has been bought by ministers to house hundreds of small boat migrants, it was announced today.

As revealed by The Sun on Sunday, the floating Bibby Stockholm off the cost of Dorset will host asylum seekers for new arrivals in the coming months.

The deal was signed earlier today by the Home Office to charter the vessel.

The 91-meter barge can hold up to 500 people on it, which ministers want to be seen as a "deterrent" for people trying to come to the UK on small boats.

Portland Port had already confirmed it was selected by the Home office to provide accommodation.

Chartering it is set to cost tens of thousands of pounds every day – but ministers hope the more basic accommodation will put people off making the dangerous trip.

Ministers say the cost will be less than the pricy hotels many people are currently staying in.

The deal will be for 18 months, but migrants aren't expected to move in for another few months yet.

Only single adult males will use the site while their claims are processed.

There will be healthcare provisions, catering and 24/7 security to minimise disruption.

The Home Office is in discussions with other ports and further vessels will be announced in due course.

Immigration Minister Robert Jenrick said: “The Home Secretary and I have been clear that the use of expensive hotels to house those making unnecessary and dangerous journeys must stop. We will not elevate the interests of illegal migrants over the British people we are elected to serve.

“We have to use alternative accommodation options, as our European neighbours are doing – including the use of barges and ferries to save the British taxpayer money and to prevent the UK becoming a magnet for asylum shoppers in Europe.

“All accommodation will meet our legal obligations and we will work closely with the local community to address their concerns, including through financial support.”

Most read in The Sun

ry's the limit

Rylan Clark over the moon as he lands role in huge soap


Chelsea could name Lampard as caretaker with icon in crowd for Liverpool game


Stacey Solomon praised for showing natural body in bikini on family holiday


Camilla to be known as the Queen from the Coronation onwards

Chief Executive of Portland Port, Bill Reeves said: “We are keen to play our part in the national effort to house some of the thousands of people needing accommodation.

“We encourage everyone in the community to approach this with an open mind and help us show other areas just how successful this type of initiative can be, both for the migrants and the local community.

“There will be close co-operation with local agencies, including the health and emergency services during the preparations for the vessel’s arrival and its operation. We will also work closely with local community and voluntary groups.”

The agreement is the first of its kind ever signed by the British government.

Councils are expected to be sweet talked into accepting the extra migrants with an extra £3,500 cash payment each.

But local Tories are trying to thwart the plan.

Local Tory MP Richard Drax is plotting legal action to try and stop it – saying his area is unsuitable.

Read More on The Sun

Love Island feud reignited as islanders brand co-star a ‘mean girl’

Our whole family work at Wetherspoons – here are the things we wish you knew

The Home Office has been in talks with the port for some time. It is near Weymouth, the hugely popular seaside town.

The port has previously been home to a floating prison boat – named HMP Weare – which docked there from March 1997 until it closed in 2005.

Source: Read Full Article

Previous post Photos show reality of America's top tourist spots
Next post Elon Musk risks row with BBC by labelling it 'government-funded media'