Dover: 'Nonsense' to blame Brexit as a concept says Epstein
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This weekend holiday-makers and lorry drivers faced hours-long delays on the M2 nearing the Port of Dover. Chief Executive of the Port of Dover, Doug Bannister, blamed the delays on Friday, July 22, on France for failing to have sufficient border control provisions.
Foreign Secretary and Tory leadership hopeful Liz Truss said the delays were “unacceptable” and the situation was “entirely avoidable”.
She said: “We need action from France 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.”
Her leadership rival and former Chancellor Rishi Sunak told France “to stop blaming Brexit and start getting the staff required to match demand”.
Calais MP Pierre-Henri Dumont claimed delays were caused by Brexit and the requirement to stamp every passport.
He said on Sunday, July 24, it was “fake news” to blame the French authorities and that Dover struggled to cope with peak demand.
Mr Bannister later accepted that Brexit had resulted in delays, and told LBC on Saturday, July 23, his team were “recognising that we are in a post-Brexit environment, which means the transaction times through the borders are going to take longer.”
In a poll that ran from 10am on Saturday, July 23, to midday on Monday, July 25, Express.co.uk asked readers: “Is Britain’s exit from the EU to blame for holiday travel chaos?”
Overall, 10,588 people responded and readers were divided on the matter yet slightly more argued “no” Brexit was not at fault, according to 51 percent (5,403 people) of votes.
Meanwhile, 49 percent (5,138 people) said “yes” it is to blame for the disruption.
A further 47 people said they did not know either way if Brexit was at fault.
Many readers argued that the holiday chaos was not caused by Brexit as delays occurred when the UK was still a member of the EU.
Username beethoven said: “Did we not have queues like this before we were in the EU? Of course we did. Did we not have queues and problems at airports every summer?”
Another, username ValBrooker, said: “If the delays at Dover are caused by Brexit, why does the problem only exist at the port of Calais? It has nothing to do with Brexit and everything to do with the staff.”
Others suggested that Brexit was an easy scapegoat, with one reader, username 420404 writing: “No it is not, but you can bet it will be blamed for the next one hundred years.”
And username DaveMadley said: “Brexit is not the cause of any problems, it was the Government’s failure to manage the negotiations properly.”
However, other readers claimed Brexit was at fault due to the additional border checks required.
Username LondonPride said: “Because of Brexit, British citizens are limited to 90 days in the Schengen area.
“This means French immigration officials are legally obliged to check and stamp EVERY British passport. Before Brexit we could be waved through.”
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Username RejectBrexit said: “What stuns me is how Brexiters never accept any responsibility for Brexit.
“Of course this would not be happening if we had not got Brexit done. That is glaringly obviously caused by Brexit.”
Another, username UnitedKingdom, said: “Of course it is only a Brexit problem. What did Brexiters expect when they ripped up personal freedoms?”
And username A Realist said: “It appears that Brexit has created a wonderland, leaving people wondering when they will receive the untold riches, and other benefits Brexit promised them.”
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