Around 1,000 people reached the UK in a single day after risking their lives in small boats in the English Channel, a new record for the current crisis.
A young girl wrapped in a red jacket was seen being carried ashore in Dover on Thursday, one of hundreds brought to the Kent port after being picked up at sea.
Lifeboat crews and Border Force boats were busy late into the evening after spending hours intercepting boats in the Strait of Dover throughout the day.
Thursday’s total will surpass the previous one-day record for the current crisis of 853 set earlier this month when the figures are finalized.
It comes despite the fact that two people lost their lives attempting the perilous crossing and others went missing at sea in recent weeks.
Border officers were busy late into Thursday evening in Dover as they worked to process the many arrivals.
Children wrapped in jackets and blankets against the autumn cold, some carried in the arms of adults, were among those helped on the quay throughout the day.
Further along the coast, more people were reportedly seen arriving on Hastings beach after being picked up by the RNLI.
In 2019, Home Secretary Priti Patel promised to make migrant crossings an “infrequent occurrence” by spring 2020, then pledged in August last year to “make this route no viable”.
Meanwhile, the government has agreed to pay France millions of pounds to bolster security on its northern coast.
Despite growing numbers of small boat arrivals, the UK continues to see far fewer boat arrivals and asylum claims than many of its European counterparts.
At least 100,907 people have arrived in Europe via the Mediterranean by land and sea since the start of the year, according to data from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
At least 1,313 people are believed to be dead or missing, according to the same data.