Immigration chaos spreads from Heathrow to Eurotunnel

Ruth Doherty
Immigration chaos spreads from Heathrow to Eurotunnel
Immigration chaos spreads from Heathrow to Eurotunnel

Stock photo, Rex

The chaos and long delays being experienced by passengers at Heathrow's immigration has now spread to Eurotunnel's terminal at Coquelles.

According to the Telegraph, travellers wishing to cross the Channel are missing shuttles services and having to wait for an hour to clear British immigration posts.

Coquelles has 11 Border Force control booths at Coquelles, just outside Calais, where drivers fill in British immigration forms before moving on to the train.

But Eurotunnel says they are very rarely all in use and, in thisi instance, queues are forming out on to the French motorway system.

The news emerges as reports suggests passengers could be forced to pay for having their passports checked under new government plans to end the chaos at London's Heathrow Airport.

Higher landing charges for airlines are being proposed in order to solve congestion at Britain's borders, and these fees are likely to be passed on directly to airline customers.

British Airways has already confirmed that increased landing charges could lead to higher ticket prices for passengers, says a report in the Financial Times.

Staff cuts to Heathrow's Border Force have triggered long queues which are "damaging the UK's reputation", according to the mayor of London Boris Johnson.

Waits of up to two and a half hours have been reported, and this is projected to get worse during the Olympics in what has already being predicted as a "summer of chaos".

Theresa May was this week summoned to see David Cameron about the issue, and the Government subsequently announced the deployment of extra border staff to tackle the immigration crisis.

The 80 new members of staff will be available immediately and will work through the busy summer.

But Mark Serwotka, the general secretary of the Public and Commercial Services Union, said this was like "putting a sticking plaster over a serious injury" and would do nothing to "stop the inevitable from happening" during the Olympics.

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