A record number of migrants and refugees attempted to make the dangerous crossing of the English Channel to reach Britain in just one day. The UK Border Force detained 86 people, believed to be the highest number intercepted in a single day. Two small vessels carrying 23 people were the first to be intercepted, followed by a boat carrying 18 people and a further boat carrying 23 people. The remaining people in two separate groups were picked up from beaches in East Sussex. On the following day, two further boats carrying 21 people were intercepted.
The French authorities also detained 51 people on beaches in Calais.
More than 1,200 people have crossed the Channel in small boats during 2019, with 336 in August. Two migrants have drowned in attempting the crossing.
There are concerns that the closure of a gym in Calais currently used to house migrants and refugees, and increased activity by people smugglers, could further heighten the numbers attempting to cross one of the busiest sea lanes in the world.