TWO weeks ago, everyone was abuzz following publication of the astonishing net migration figure for 2022 of 606,000. The level of immigration this reflects is numbing. The government’s attempts to manage what they knew would be a very high number by encouraging speculation that it could be one million was pathetic. It was reminiscent of the Blair era and Campbellism. In the event 606,000 (it would have been closer to 750,000 if the previous methodology had been used) was still shocking.
What does net migration of more than 600,000 mean? We have done some number-crunching, focusing on population and housing. We published our (startling) findings today as part of the formal launch of the ‘campaign to cut immigration’.
The wonderful editor of TCW was kind enough to draw attention to the petition that we put up ahead of the formal campaign launch after the massive net migration figure was revealed on May 25. Thousands who, like us, think enough is enough have already signed. You can find the petition at www.cutimmigration.co.uk, the campaign website.
Over the coming weeks and months, we will make the case for, and underline the critical importance of cutting immigration, echoing the wishes of nearly two thirds of the UK’s adult population. According to a recent YouGov poll, 60 per cent think immigration has been too high over the past 10 years. Just 8 per cent think it has been too low. Other polling suggests the number who think it has been too high is even greater.
The paper I mentioned earlier is an eye-opener. It reveals that if net migration (the number arriving minus those leaving) were to continue at the present level of 606,000 per year, the UK population is projected to grow to between 83million and 87million by 2046.
The impact of this on housing is illustrated in the paper. If net migration remains close to last year’s record level and the birth rate remains at around the present level, nearly 16million people would be added to the population of the UK over the next 25 years – that is approaching twice the current population of London. We would have to build six to eight million more homes over the same period, about 260,000 homes per year or nearly 720 per day.
To put it another way, it would mean having to provide homes, services and amenities for at least 15 more cities the size of Birmingham. 2046 is only 23 years from now – just as today’s toddlers are thinking of moving into their own place, away from mum and dad.
The fact is that while the current absurdly loose immigration system remains in place, there is no end in sight for the runaway mass immigration we are now experiencing. Our labour market has been deliberately opened to the entire world with no limits on numbers and at much lower levels of qualifications and salary. This government have even abandoned the previous requirement that employers should first advertise vacancies on the domestic labour market – in other words, complete capitulation to employer demands.
The detrimental impact of uncontrolled immigration at current levels is huge, and housing is just one aspect of our lives that is affected. As the campaign progresses, we will shine a light on other areas where mass immigration impacts our lives such as the added pressure on the NHS, on schools and communities, as well as making integration of new arrivals so much more difficult.
On the other hand, if net migration were reduced to 100,000 per year or less, the housing shortage would be eased considerably and the pressure would lift at a stroke. Young people would have better prospects of getting on to the property ladder. More of our beautiful countryside will be saved for future generations.
Meanwhile the government are desperate to keep the focus on Channel crossers. While this is important, I can’t help feeling that it is as much as anything a strategy for diverting attention away from legal immigration which is totally out of control and at least ten times higher than the number entering illegally.
I have written before that in the 20 years since 2001, the UK population increased by 8million of which nearly 7million was due to immigration – that equates to the combined populations of Birmingham, Manchester, Belfast, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Leicester, Liverpool and Newcastle plus Peterborough, Ipswich, Norwich, Luton and Bradford. A much higher population increase can be expected in future years unless immigration is sharply reduced.
Indeed, immigration has already taken place on such a rapid scale that Baroness Louise Casey’s report in 2016 found that some areas had changed ‘beyond recognition in a short space of time’. In London, Birmingham, Manchester and Leicester overseas arrivals and the children of migrants already constitute the majority. Our population is growing and changing rapidly without the consent of the majority. It is very hard to see how change at this scale and pace can possibly serve the wider interests of our community or help integration.
The new website sets out our case for reducing immigration to 100,000 a year and describes the many problems that have arisen due to the sheer scale of immigration. More analysis and briefing will follow in the course of the campaign.
I will conclude with this: if net migration were to be reduced to 100,000 or less, many of the problems born of very high immigration would simply melt away. The ‘cut immigration campaign’ with our petition is an opportunity to send the government a loud, unambiguous message that they must cut immigration. If they fail to act now the fundamental changes to our towns and cities and, indeed, to Britain itself will accelerate further.