Jump to content
sandra2jeremy@w

Immigrants at Ouistreham

Recommended Posts

We crossed over from Ouistreham a couple of weeks ago on our way to Ireland. We caught the night sailing from Ouistreham. We had a meal in a port restaurant (Le Roulis) situated where the traffic slows down for lights, sharp curves and a roundabout on the entrance to the ferry terminal.  As each heavy lorry approached, it was pursued by 25+  male African youths, running in the middle of the road, forcing open the rear doors of the trailer unit and climbing aboard. They were in turn pursued by a Gendarmerie car, lights and sirens on. Some lorry drivers increased their speed, sounded their horns and attempted to outrun the youths. Several lorries continued at a fast pace with their rear doors swinging open, highly dangerous. This spectacle continued throughout our meal. Someone will get killed. Talked with a local couple who said they have moved on from Calais and are destroying Ouistreham. The Africans seem to be camping in the woods on the outside of the town. The police presence is immense, from the entry to the town to the port.  There is now a large mobile scaffolding tower where security staff scan the roofs of the high vehicles. We were both quite frightened, it was unpleasant. I think we will need to book St Malo for trips home from now on. As ever, the service on the Mont St Michel was superb, despite a problem with lowering the ramp on arrival, but we were kept informed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We came back on the afternoon MSM sailing from Caen yesterday and saw some immigrants waiting at the roundabout just sitting around. However, once through check in a man with a trailer in a nearby lane said to one of the BF marshalling staff tht he had a stowaway. Two Caen port workers arrived and extracted a young guy from his trailer, then with a bit more poking around discovered another! Both were escorted off the premises! A little later a Genderame arrived and spoke to the driver taking details and obviously asking him where he thought the two immigrants had got into the trailer. It all seemed very amicable.

Stowaway (1).jpg

Stowaway (2).jpg

Stowaway (3).jpg

Stowaway (4).jpg

Stowaway (5).jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted something similar the other week. Le Havre by contrast is quiet. Maybe it's due to the number of sailing why Ouistreham is becoming attractive. Risk v reward.

Brit motorhomers have been advised not use the Aire adjacent to the ferryport and the one across at Merville.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What a shame, very sad, not just for us but for the desperate people focussed on getting to the UK.

We'll be inbound as usual to Ouistreham in a few weeks, arriving at 06.45, but glad that in the last few years we've taken to having a stopover in Brittany or Normandy on the way home before going Cherbourg to Poole, and the short drive home.

It sounds as if our usual few hours at Ouistreham before the overnight return ferry, a walk along the beach, around the town etc. is now a thing of the past.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You don't necessarily know if they are economic or political migrants though. But they are all young men, no families with them.

I would imagine it is safe enough to park in the town though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 26/05/2018 at 18:22, cvabishop said:

You don't necessarily know if they are economic or political migrants though. But they are all young men, no families with them.

I would imagine it is safe enough to park in the town though.

On my most recent trip, there were equal numbers of Genderame and migrants in the car park opposite the port. In contrast to the beach car park where there was neither visible.

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, neilcvx said:

Ahh the Daily Mail not like them to over dramatise something and stoke racial hatred.

To be honest, I think that it is a fair article. It portrays the young men as compliant when turned away and highlights how they chase after lorries. It is exactly what  I have seen more than once at Ouistreham.

It can be dangerous for the men, however they are not threatening (as has happened at Calais). 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Queuing at Ouistreham on May 29th, we saw a young African lad being removed by a dock worker, who floored him with a hefty kick on the ankle.  The gendarmes stepped in to seperate them, and took the lad away.  Dock worker had to be calmed down too. 

Will be using Ouistreham again at the end of the month, this time with our dog, and will have to forego his favoured run on the beach before entering the port.  Will try Lion-sur-Mer.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 12/06/2018 at 07:40, juliadream said:

Will be using Ouistreham again at the end of the month, this time with our dog, and will have to forego his favoured run on the beach before entering the port.  Will try Lion-sur-Mer.

We traveled back on MSM in the morning of Monday the 11th of June from our D-Day celebration trip, plenty of "Immigrants" were in evidence, as is normal these day, but so too is the heavy Mobile Gendarmerie presence and a squad of French soldiers carrying machine guns patrolling the port and it perimeter.

We took our customary dog  walk to the beach after check in,  passing en route groups and sole "immigrants".  as is also customary they did not engage with us or we them. Juliadream I would not let them deter you, we even make the same routine in the dead of winter when it is dark, and feel completely safe. The walk is a signal to our dog who is nearly four and carries her 3 rd passport that we are taking yet another ferry trip (BF does not carry as many dogs as it says, its just the same  dog (s) making the same trip).

I note with interest that the row of quite old trees planted between the two security fences have recently been cut down, I am amused that  the Ville de Ouistreham Riva Bella use this fence to espouse its green credentials of Zero Phyto, while in fact all the vegetation between the fences has be  killed with something also.

It looks as though yet again changes are being made to the Port as, the yellow line to the Ferry has now been removed and to the landside of the Paul Spriet loading bridge used by Duc De Normandie and Normandie in the early days.  New lanes , with hard standings for cabins (douane or check in?)  has been constructed. we shall see .

At least at Ouistreham dog walking is allowed dog are not  banished to hot cars, and facilities though not up to the standard of Coquelles or Folkestone are provided, At Pompey the only facility aimed at dogs is the big black dog bowl full of stale water and covered in moss adjacent to the human toilets which are usually closed out of season to the right of the BF checkin cabins Portsmouth City Council and BF should hang heads in shame at this.  Dogs pay too.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The above post bemoans the lack of canine facilities. I have written to BF and as we live near Portsmouth I even visited the palatial civic offices to raise the issue. The results from both sources were not at all encouraging. Pompey blame BF and other port users, BF blame Pompey. As you pointed out - dogs pay as well! If Folkestone/Calais can make provisions which are OK, then why not the others?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm in St Malo this morning, just waiting on Condor Rapide to leave for Jersey, and there are no indications of any migrants around the port, nor of any increased police or gendarme presence. They were opening any car where the boot was not visible through the side windows but otherwise it was business as usual. Ed

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A slightly different take on this. We arrived at Ouistreham from Portsmouth  last night and were one of the last to drive off, and were expecting a long wait to clear passport control. As we drove off the ship, there were two men with very big guns at the top of the ramp. We drove round to  passport control to find just one, rather severe looking, lady with a high viz jacket and clipboard. She was clearly looking for certain vehicles but the rest of us were just waived through with no formalities. In recent times that is probably the quickest from starting the car engine to leaving the port we have achieved. Even better, the town was not clogged up.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Saw this on Twitter, what a sad state of affairs for such a nice little place like Ouistreham , where next?

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, neilcvx said:

Saw this on Twitter, what a sad state of affairs for such a nice little place like Ouistreham , where next?

 

Ahh the Daily Mail not like them to over dramatise something and stoke racial hatred. 

 

 

Pot and kettle?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 minutes ago, alleeganger10 said:

Ahh the Daily Mail not like them to over dramatise something and stoke racial hatred. 

 

 

Pot and kettle?

Not really as it’s a quote from a traveller with no hidden agenda about immigration unlike the hate filled Daily Hate.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 minutes ago, nottingham said:

We are travelling back through Ouistreham in September - is there likely to be a problem inside the cafes?

I wouldn't have thought so. Life in Ouistreham goes on as normal and in addition there are a group of young men that try and get on lorries / trailers etc..

They are not threatening and there does not appear to be organised gangs.

As long as you have a normal car and don't have a trailer, I would recommend that you just do what you would normally do.

 

David 

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My father went through on Monday morning and I've asked him to get back to me to tell me if he saw any specific problems. I'll let you know what he says. Ed. 

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, nottingham said:

We are travelling back through Ouistreham in September - is there likely to be a problem inside the cafes?

Not at all. It's a stand off with the Gendarme. If they try anything they'll be carted off and therefore registered as being in France - not their goal. The Gendarme don't really want to have to deal with them if they can help it, so they both sit there staring at each other. The Gendarme step in if anyone tries anything they shouldn't, but otherwise it's just limbo.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So here is his reply (but bear in mind it was the morning after the football final so there may have been less people up and about that early) :

"I saw one chap asleep on a bench when I was walking the dog along the canal prior to boarding the boat plus some hanging around the fun fair just outside the port area. But no police or signs of trouble." 

Ed

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 hours ago, neilcvx said:

Not really as it’s a quote from a traveller with no hidden agenda about immigration unlike the hate filled Daily Hate.

IMHO

its best to “go see for yourself”. Like the reporter did,? Albeit he was reporting on a much more important event, the D day celebrations, than  spread 3rd hand opinion  and from the comfort of wherever you happen to live, As Neil has done,  Such things are obviously not good for  BF, Ouistreham, Caen France  or Europe or even the U.K.

I’m not sure the person posting did not have agenda, otherwise why post?

I will state again our experience is, and we are on our 6/7th trip this year, ( I lose count) the “Immigrants” pose no danger.

It’s not BF fault they are there, nor is it the Ouistreham’s save for the fact that it’s elus, 30 years ago, along with the CCI of Caen had the vision to build a Gare  Maritime and help finance the boats that use it. Improving tourism and job prospects in this area beyond imagination.

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wasn’t aware it was against forum rules to post Tweets from BFs Twitter feed , I would certainly regard them as more trustworthy than an article from that paper, the poster of the Tweet from what I can see had no agenda, people’s perception of what they see as a “danger” certainly varies I’ve no doubt the immigrants wouldn’t bother me but my wife for example wouldn’t be too happy.

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We've been in and out of Ouistreham several times this year. The chaps generally seem to hang about up the road by the supermarket. If more than a few come down to the square the gendarmes send them back up the road.

The chaps have no interest in private motorists in cars, they are more interested in trying to get into lorries which is a pretty futile exercise.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

×