The news is awash with the struggles of desperate and impoverished people of all kinds. Some are queueing at food banks and others are attempting to infiltrate the UK to live. The statistics for the numbers of people breaching the UK’s borders legally or illegally is in the hundreds of thousands. These people come to work and to give a better life to their beloved children.
There were 25,020 asylum applications in the year ending March 2015. This was an increase of 5% compared with the previous 12 months (23,803). The numbers are much higher this year as the problems with the world, especially in Middle East and Africa, continue.
The civil wars in Syria and Egypt among other regions have caused mass emigration. It is now the biggest refugee crisis since the Second World War. The solution would be to not participate in illegal and unethical wars, to not fund terrorism and to repair the damage that civil warfare is doing. The long term plan is not in place and that is the source of the problems with migration and immigration.
Net long-term migration to the UK (immigration less emigration) was estimated to be 318,000 in the calendar year 2014. This was just below the previous peak (320,000 in the year ending June 2005) and a statistically significant increase from 209,000 in 2013.
The stock of the migrant population more than doubled from 1993 to 2013. The size of the foreign-born population in the UK increased from about 3.8 million in 1993 to over 7.9 million in 2013.
Britain has a troubled past with its international interactions. The Afghanistan and Iraq wars may have stopped terrorism in some ways, but they have clearly produced terrorism in a number of other ways. Isis is a group which is a danger to the west and the wider world. There is a lack of ability to conclude the violence of terrorists when murdering and torturing innocent civilians as the US and British armies do in the Middle East and beyond.
The violence and bloodshed is evident in the distant and recent past. Interaction with the outside world was very much one of the boss to the worker during the colonial era. There is, therefore, a certain amount of responsibility that England must take for the cultural melting pot that is at boiling point now.
The rise of the BNP and UKIP shows that a more educated and reasonable conversation must be encouraged if extremism and fascism is not to flourish in England.
641,000 people immigrated to the UK in 2014. This was a huge increase from 526,000 in 2013. There were statistically significant increases for immigration of EU (non-British) citizens (up 67,000 to 268,000) and non-EU citizens (up 42,000 to 290,000).
For a population which already has its problems with child poverty, food banks, lack of housing, increased class sizes, health problems, class problems, historical scars and identity confusion, it is a strange time to be British.
In 1920 a British town looked like this:
Now it is likely to have less top hats and many more international migrants.
The England of Charles Dickens, Virginia Woolf and The Who is becoming almost unrecognizable.