Hot Chip band member brands Brexit border checks a ‘sad farce’ after ‘humiliating’ passport error

Musician described the border crossing as ‘a drably chaotic charade’

Louis Chilton
Wednesday 06 January 2021 11:24
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Government gives three conflicting versions of passport rule for post-brexit travellers

A member of the band Hot Chip has described the Brexit border checks as a “sad farce”.

Felix Martin posted from the band’s Twitter account on Monday (6 January) evening, writing that his passport was stamped while he and his son were crossing over to France via St Pancras, despite being a resident of France.

The UK has recently changed its border policies after leaving the European Union, with the terms of the recently agreed Withdrawal Agreement coming into effect.

The British ambassador to France confirmed on Twitter that Martin’s passport should not have been stamped, adding that “your rights will not be affected if your passport is incorrectly or unnecessarily stamped”.

Martin said that he was “treated with derision”, when crossing the border.

“Border staff need to be better informed,” he wrote, “as it was a humiliating, unnecessary experience for me. Vague reassurances that it will all be ok are not enough.”

He continued: “The entire experience of crossing the border (passport stamping, half-hearted customs inspections at Gare du Nord) has the feel of a sad farce. A drably chaotic charade dreamt up by people who will never face the crappy reality of this pointless exercise in self-harm.”

Martin plays drum machines and the synthesizer for Hot Chip, the British indie dance band best known for their 2008 hit “Ready for the Floor”

You can read The Independent’s breakdown of the new Brexit rules and travel restrictions that have come into effect here.

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