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Thousands detained at migrant holding centres in Kent

Migrants forced to sleep on concrete floors with dirty blankets Credit: HM Prisons Inspectorate

The Chief Inspector of Prisons has condemned border officials in Kent for holding thousands of migrants - including children - at centres in Folkestone and Dover without food, hot drinks, or medical checks. In some cases, forcing them to sleep on a concrete floor.

During last summer's crisis, which saw the Channel Tunnel and ferries suspended on dozens of occasions, and the M20 closed for Operation Stack:

  • More than 3,600 migrants were apprehended and detained at three bases on the Kent coast
  • Between July to September, about 1,200 people were held each month at Dover and Folkestone
  • That's equivalent to 40 detained each day

The prison inspectorate report reveals - for the first time - the sheer scale of the numbers caught entering the UK through Kent.

You can watch Abigail Bracken's report below. Interviewees are: the Chief Inspector of Prisons, Peter Clarke; Conservative MP for Folkestone and Hythe, Damian Collins; and Phil Kerton from Seeking Sanctuary.

Conditions of Kent immigration centres criticised in report

A report by the prison inspectorate has condemned the conditions in which migrants were held at the Channel Tunnel and Dover.

Almost 5000 entered Kent illegally last year. The migrants -including hundreds of children - were housed on concrete floors, with no food, or hot drinks, and no immediate medical attention.

ITV Meridian spoke to Chief Inspector of Prisons, Peter Clarke, and Damian Collins, MP for Folkestone and Hythe.


French minister: Calais migrant camp would come to Kent

A senior French minister triggered a furious political row today by saying the Calais migrant camp will come to Kent if Britain votes to leave the European Union.

Economy minister Emmanuel Macron told the Financial Times that leaving would end the agreement that allows the UK to enforce border controls - and keep unwanted migrants on the French side of the Channel.

It's the first time a French government figure has made such a threat. But it's being branded "scaremongering' by MPs campaigning for the UK to remain in the EU. More from our political correspondent Phil Hornby.


Transport Secretary to visit rail line close by damaged sea wall

Credit: ITV News

The Transport Secretary, Patrick McLoughlin and the head of Network Rail will today visit the railway line between Dover and Folkestone.

The line has been closed since December by a crack in seawall causing severe disruption for travellers.

The cracks were discovered on Christmas Eve but engineers have also found a number of sinkholes all of which is requiring a major rebuild.

Flooding hits Dover as rains continue to fall

Parts of Dover and Deal have been hit by flooding after a deluge of rain in the last few days.

This was the scene on the Alkham Valley Road where the waters rose high enough to stop traffic.

Alkham Valley closed by flooding Credit: Scott Janaway

The Met Office has issued a yellow rain warning for the area. It says a further band of heavy showers will continue to affect parts of Kent and East Sussex for the rest of Tuesday and into the first part of tomorrow.

The showers are expected to give up to 10 mm of rain in an hour.

It says a further 10-20 mm is likely in places through the whole period with perhaps as much as 40 mm locally in the east.

It's warning of local surface water flooding affecting road travel at times.

Credit: ITV News
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