Ah, the Daily Express. You appear in this blog with the tedious inevitability of an unloved season. And you're off on one about immigration, as usual:
Sounds nice, doesn't it? A VIP club? Tell me more:
UK-BOUND migrants were yesterday massing in their own comfy members-only club in Calais before making their bid for Britain, the Daily Express can reveal.
French charities have helped to create a virtual “departure lounge” for illegal immigrants heading across the Channel, offering them rest and recreation before they complete the final leg of their journeys.
How delightful! The Express claims to have seen photos of this VIP departure lounge and mentions a piano, cinema and sports hall. Plush! They say:
Our investigators gained access to the illegal “Sangatte II” centre and exclusive photographs show it bears a closer resemblance to a holiday camp than a shelter for the homeless.
Where are these photos showing how delightful it is, then? Oddly enough they appear not to have been put online - maybe they were in the original paper, to which I don't have access. But if you read the No Borders Brighton blog's excellent rebuttal of the Express article, and this other article by them, as well as this by Calais Solidarity - dismissed as 'left-wing activists' by the Express - you might be forgiven for doing a bit of a double-take. Because here's what it looks like:
Does that look like much of a holiday camp to you? As the Brighton No Borders blog says:
"Comfy members-only club" makes it sound like the Athenaeum or something. It a freezing cold industrial hanger with concrete floors and a couple of thin walled bottom of the line Wendy house-style tents with small electric heaters inside to make it seem at least partially comfortable if one chooses to sit down on one of the rickety chairs.
That doesn't sound like the same place at all, does it?
And where are these "exclusive photographs" that are supposed to show all this then? Certainly not in the article. The one used in the article is taken at the old feeding station that hasn't been in use since before last summer. The plain fact is that the press are allowed in the hanger by invite only and nobody from the Express or any other newspaper would be allowed to take photographs while the hanger was in use.
"One observer said: “They are being treated like VIPs.”" So that wouldn't be one of your investigators then that supposedly made it inside. And which VIPs would that be Peter? Certainly not any on this planet.
... Fucking hell, you make it sound like the Ritz Pete. It's a hanger. It has not been converted into anything. There is one small office built onto the back wall of the hanger, just like in any old garage or small warehouse building, with enough room for a desk and a filing cabinet. Where do the "relaxation rooms...cinema and sports hall" come into it? Again, you have must have been inside a completely different building. Or maybe you are just plainly lying...
No matter for the Express, though. All their readers know is that it's a VIP club, that it's comfy, and it's got a piano. And there are angry quotes from UKIP and the Tax Payers' Alliance to ensure that they get the message. Shame there wasn't enough room for a decent quote explaining the reality of the hangar from those who are running it, really. But then where's the fun in that?