There are reports that the opening concert of this year’s Spitalfields Festival almost had to be cancelled because of Border Agency officials.
The Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra were due to play at Christchurch
Spitalfields, the festival’s principal venue; but when they arrived at
Gatwick on Friday afternoon three of the orchestra’s members were
arrested, held in detention for five hours, and then sent back to
The multi-national orchestra’s founder and conductor, the harpsichordist and organist Ton
“They kept them in detention like criminals and they weren’t even
allowed to give us their music – because they were criminals, of course.
It was a disgraceful way to behave, and I had to leave them there in order to be in time for the concert.”
The three musicians, violinists and a viola player, who had come from Spain via Amsterdam,
where their passports were said not to have been stamped properly, are Japanese.
This is a seriously nasty piece of behaviour, yet another piece of officious jobsworthyness on the way to England becoming A State of Denmark.