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When in doubt, blame the French!!

July 25, 2022 12:28 PM
Originally published by Babergh South Suffolk Liberal Democrats

nts4 (Photo by Aleks Marinkovic on Unsplash)As numbers travelling to Europe by ferry grew towards its summer peak with the school holidays underway waits of up to 6 hours were being forecast and the need for a scapegoat was clear!

When in doubt blame the French! They apparently didn't have enough officers at Dover to carry out the necessary checks including stamping passports (for those lucky enough to have got through the delays and queues to renew their passports!)

Foreign secretary, Liz Truss, said France was to blame for "entirely avoidable" delays, calling on officials there to "build up capacity at the border to limit any further disruption for British tourists and to ensure this appalling situation is avoided in future".

Except that doesn't seem to be the case

Here is what Doug Bannister, Dover's chief executive told the BBC

"We are operating in a post-Brexit environment which does mean that passports need to be checked, they need to be stamped and indeed the capable people that do man the booths - Police aux Frontieres - they're doing their job that they need to do now."

Now the Financial Times reports that in December 2020, the UK Cabinet Office rejected a £33m proposal to double the capacity for French government passport checks at Dover after the port requested funding to help it to pay for additional Brexit-related border expenses

Looks like Jacob Rees-Mogg the Brexit opportunities minister can chalk this up as another "benefit" of the hard break deal insisted upon by the Conservative party. When will they face up to the inadequacies of their deal and seek changes to smooth relationships with our biggest market and holiday destination?