Mark Eastwood has backed Newmillerdam residents in opposing plans to once again house asylum seekers in the St Pierre hotel.
As the Conservative Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for the new constituency of Wakefield West and Denby Dale, and the current Member of Parliament for neighbouring Dewsbury, Mark Eastwood has been speaking to councillors and local people in both Wakefield Rural ward, and nneighbouring Denby Dale, which is also affected by the plans.
The hotel is due to temporarily house asylum seekers for the second time, having previously been used in 2020 during the Covid-19 restrictions for single males.
“I am disappointed that the St Pierre hotel will be used for asylum seekers again. The area around Newmillerdam is a visitor hotspot for Wakefield, and with Cedar Court also in long-term use for asylum seekers it’s harming the tourism industry in the area at peak season. I have been speaking to local people who have told me about the previous problems caused at the St Pierre and it’s clear that it’s not a suitable location. I have promised to do all I can to help.”
Mark has demanded an urgent meeting with Mears – the Home Office contractor managing the hotel accommodation – to discuss this issue. He has already brought the matter directly to Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, and has secured a meeting with Immigration Minister Robert Jenrick to put forward the concerns of people in Newmillerdam.
Councillor for Wakefield Rural Cllr Cynthia Binns said,
“I’m very glad that Mark is backing us to oppose the continued use of these hotels. It’s extremely concerning for people in the Wakefield Rural ward and it’s entirely the wrong location for this kind of thing. There’s no local facilities for asylum seekers in the area and we need these hotels to support our economy – with places to stay for visitors, somewhere for business conferences and meetings, and family functions like weddings.”
Mark is backing Rishi Sunak’s plan to stop the boats, and explained,
“Stopping the boats is the only way that we can get our local hotels back to the use they were intended for, and make sure we have enough resources for the people that genuinely need our help. It’s important to provide for those in need, but we can’t condone paying criminal gangs thousands of pounds while others do the right thing.”