Stunned bathers found asylum seekers landing on a beach in front of them.
About 30 people are estimated to have arrived in a dinghy at Kingsdown around 11 a.m. today.
A local man photographed the moment they landed ashore and made their way up the beach to the cliffs in the area.
They were also visible as they were wearing coats on a hot, sunny day on the beach.
But it would still be much colder in the middle of the English Channel, especially for those aboard an open ship.
A woman who lives there said: “We heard that there are around 30 of them, including a few children between the ages of four and five.
“Everyone wore coats in this heat.
“They got out of the boat and went up the stepped path to the cliffs.”
The canoe was left on the beach and was later recovered by border force officers.
Police were called and a number of those who disembarked were seen by villagers gathered near North Road.
The incident occurred the day the government’s Nationality and Borders Bill entered second reading in Parliament.
One of its measures is to deport those who enter the UK illegally after passing through a safe country where they could have applied for asylum.
Those who sail in dinghies almost always come from France.
Asylum seekers who find themselves on the UK side of the Channel are usually picked up by border forces and brought to Dover for questioning and treatment.
Those who have reached the beaches on their own have also landed in areas such as Romney Marsh.
Earlier this month, it was reported that nearly 6,000 people reached the UK in the first half of this year.
There have been months of controversy over a number of people arriving and being held in the old Napier Barracks in Folkestone.
KentOnline has contacted the Home Office to confirm full details of what happened at Kingsdown today.
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