Asylum seekers spared ‘filthy Pontins hell hole’ as Home Office scraps plans

The government has scrapped a plan to house asylum seekers in a Pontins holiday park after widespread criticism.

It is the latest in a long line of wacky policies towards asylum seekers that have been U-turned on.

Asylum seekers were set to be housed in the park in Merseyside, but faced stiff opposition from Tory MP for Southport Damien Moore, who described the plans as "completely inappropriate".

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There is an ongoing search to find sites to house asylum seekers instead of housing them in hotels, which the home office says costs the taxpayer £6.8million a day.

Ministers are searching for large sites to replace the costly use of hotels to house asylum seekers waiting for their claims to be assessed.

Following the backtrack, a Sefton Council spokesperson said: "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."

This specific Pontins is not renowned for its comfortable dwellings, and has a two out of five rating on TripAdvisor.

One visitor to the site described it as a "manky filthy hellhole."

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"Well, I knew it wasn't going to be the best, but it was worse than expected," they wrote.

"Front door leading in was shocking enough, spiders all over the small apartment, nothing was clean, floor filled with grime, massive stains on the bed, clearly hasn't been cleaned or decorated since it was built.

There was also "fag ash all over window sills" and "broken glass everywhere."

Immigration Minister Robert Jenrick has been tasked with finding suitable accommodation, though so far his search has been found wanting.

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So far a former student halls of residence, other holiday parks and an unused military site have been floated, but none have been given the green light.

Another plan to turn a former RAF base in North Yorkshire was also scrapped last summer after heavy opposition from locals.

A Home Office spokesperson said: "The number of people arriving in the UK who require accommodation has reached record levels due to the unacceptable rise in small boat arrivals and our commitment to accommodate those from Afghanistan.

"We therefore continue to look at all available options to source appropriate and cost-effective temporary accommodation."


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