Migrants won't be housed in Pontin's holiday park

Migrants will NOT be housed in Pontin’s holiday park after council opposed Government plan

  • Pontin’s Holiday Park, Merseyside, ‘no longer’ wanted to house asylum seekers
  • It comes after criticism from Sefton Council and Conservative MP Damien Moore

Plans by the Government to house asylum seekers in a Merseyside holiday resort have been cancelled, the local authority said.

Sefton Council said the Home Office ‘no longer’ wanted to pursue plans to house asylum seekers at Pontins Holiday Park in Ainsdale, Merseyside, according to the BBC.

It comes after the council and Conservative MP Damien Moore had opposed converting the site into asylum accommodation since they were approached by the Home Office about the plans in December last year.

The plans were considered by the Government as a cheaper alternative to hotels for housing asylum seekers awaiting decisions on their claims, which the Government says is costing £6.8million a day.

Pontin’s Holiday Park in Southport, pictured in 2020 when it was used as a Covid-19 testing facility 

The Home Office has abandoned plans to house asylum seekers in Merseyside’s Pontin’s Holiday Park, according to the local authority.

A council spokesman told the BBC: ‘We have now been informed that the Home Office no longer wish to pursue plans to house Asylum Seekers at the Pontins site in Ainsdale. We are awaiting written confirmation of this decision.’

The authority is understood to have raised a number of objections, including the logistics of accessing the site, which still operates as a holiday resort, and the impact on the local tourism industry.

The Conservative MP for Southport, Damien Moore, described the Pontins proposal as ‘completely inappropriate’. 

He said an influx of vulnerable families would have added further pressure on local services, which have been rated ‘inadequate’ by the regulator Ofsted. 

He also criticised the Government for the lack of communication around a ‘key issue’ affecting his constituency. 

Mr Moore said: ‘MPs should be updated by Home Office officials on how discussions are going’.

Immigration Minister Robert Jenrick considered the site as part of a plan to find larger and cheaper alternatives to expensive hotels – including student halls of residence, holiday parks and military sites.   

A plan to turn a former RAF base in Linton-on-Ouse, North Yorkshire, into an asylum centre was scrapped last summer in the face of local opposition.

Source: Read Full Article