Manston Asylum Centre is now completely empty after migrants placed in new accommodation

22 November 2022, 12:42 | Updated: 22 November 2022, 12:44

An aerial view shows the Manston short-term holding centre for migrants, near Ramsgate in south east England
An aerial view shows the Manston short-term holding centre for migrants, near Ramsgate in south east England. Picture: Getty
Fran Way

By Fran Way

Manston Asylum Centre, the Home Office site in Kent which is being used to hold people that have arrived on UK shores from small boats, is understood to be completely empty.

Thousands of migrants had been placed in the tents at the former military airfield, leading to overcrowding and outbreaks of disease.

In recent weeks, the site has been at the centre of controversy as it’s been made to hold up to 1,600 people for no more than 24 hours while they undergo security and identity checks. In exceptional circumstances this can be extended for five days.

After that they’re supposed to move into the Home Office’s asylum accommodation system which is often a hotel due to the shortage of accommodation.

However, earlier this month there were reportedly 4,000 people living there for weeks on end.

Other concerns at the site include the death of a man who arrived in the UK on a small boat on November 12.

READ MORE:Immigration minister Robert Jenrick refuses to provide details about migrant held at Manston processing centre who died on Saturday

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Human right campaigners raised concerns that the man was being held at the site unlawfully, after he died seven days later on November 19.

Officials now say that everyone staying at the temporary site has been placed in new accommodation.

It is thought the government has purchased space in hotels to ease the blocking.

Manston, reopened as a migrant processing centre in February to address the growing concerns about people arriving on small boats. In 2022, more than 40,000 people have crossed the Channel in this way.