Ninety people cross English Channel to Dover in two boats on Christmas Day

Small boats used to cross the Channel by people thought to be migrants are removed from the water at the Port of Dover on 20 December.

Ninety people crossed the English Channel to Dover in Kent in two small boats on Christmas Day.

They were the first crossings recorded since December 21 and take the provisional total for migrants making the dangerous journey from France this year to 45,756.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has promised legislation in the new year to help tackle the problem by making sure that if someone enters the UK illegally they do not have the right to stay in the country.

Meanwhile ministers are also working to tighten immigration rules to curb numbers coming to the country legally.

Home Secretary Suella Braverman has drawn up a plan that would target foreign students, make it harder to bring spouses to the UK, and increase the minimum salaries for companies employing skilled workers, The Times reported.

Under a draft of the proposals, seen by the newspaper, the Government would increase the minimum income threshold for British citizens applying for a family visa.

Currently a couple must earn at least £18,600 and may need thousands more for any children they seek to bring to the UK.

The plans could also make it harder for overseas students to bring dependants with them.

Immigration Minister Robert Jenrick has previously suggested that the rules around student dependants are “ripe for reform” as he is concerned people are coming to university as a “backdoor way of bringing their families into the UK”.