By SIR ANDREW GREEN
Chairman of Migration Watch UK
Published: 17:48, 8 March 2012 | UPDATED: 13:23, 9 March 2012
Migration Watch has this week published a short Briefing Paper 12.3 summarising some of the key facts about the impact of immigration on our population, jobs, housing and education. We hope that it will be helpful to those who are following the debate as the government struggles to bring immigration under control.
Amid the welter of detail on immigration, it is vital to keep three points firmly in mind.
The first is that immigration on the present scale is an entirely new phenomenon in Britain’s history. Talk of Britain being 'a nation of immigrants' is simply a fallacy promoted by the immigration lobby. In fact, we are one of the most stable societies in the world. We have had no invasion for nearly a thousand years, nor have we had a civil war for more than three hundred years.
Indeed, there have been only two numerically significant migrations to England since the Norman invasion in 1066. The first was the Huguenot migration in the 16th and 17th centuries and the second was the Jewish migration of the 19th and 20th centuries. Neither amounted to more than a tiny percentage of the population at the time and both were spread over a period of fifty years or more.
For many years, there was a net outflow to North America and to the Empire. Indeed, there was virtually no net immigration to the UK until the mid 1990s. It is only in the last dozen years or so that net immigration has shot up five fold from about 50,000 a year to 250,000 in 2010. If this is allowed to continue, it will drive the population of the UK to 70 million in just 16 years time. That means roughly an extra 5 million due to immigration – equivalent to building a city the size of Birmingham every three years just for new immigrants.
No wonder there was such a huge public response to our petition 'No to 70 million' on the Downing Street website. We got to 100,000 within a week.
Calculated: Mass immigration was a deliberate Labour policy during the Blair years
Secondly, there can be no doubt that all this is the result of deliberate Labour policy. It is impossible to admit 3.5 million people in twelve years just by mistake. This was confirmed in an article in the Evening Standard in October 2009 by a former speech writer for Blair, Straw and Blunkett. He revealed that mass immigration 'didn’t just happen; the deliberate policy of Ministers from late 2000 until February 2008 was to open up the UK to mass immigration'. He added that there was 'a driving political purpose; that mass immigration was the way that the government was going to make the UK multicultural'.
Lastly, the scale of this immigration will bite everywhere – on maternity services, primary schools, housing and the health service. We are only just beginning to see those effects. And there is, of course, very little money to tackle them. The government’s case for cutting immigration to tens of thousands is cast iron.
© Copyright of Sir Andrew Green