Gran ‘happy to be home’ after deportation ordeal
A COUNTY Durham gran who was deported despite living in Britain for 30 years has finally returned home.
Irene Clennell was placed in an immigration detention centre before being deported to Singapore earlier this year.
The 53-year-old, from Ouston, who is the main carer for her British husband John, had to re-apply for permission to return and live in the UK after being sent back.
The Home Office granted her a spousal visa last week.
And on Wednesday she landed back in the UK to be reunited with her family.
She said: “I am so happy to be home. It feels fantastic and it is good to see my family – I have friends coming to see me as well.”
With just £12 in her pocket, Irene was taken from her home with no change of clothes.
The mother-of-two was given minutes to say goodbye to her loved ones.
Irene lost her indefinite leave to remain due to spending long stretches of time in Singapore over the last three decades to care for her dying parents.
She was held in a Scottish detention centre for several weeks before being deported back to Singapore in February.
She said: “Knowing I do not have to worry about putting in another application for a visa for two and a half years is good.”
The Government said her latest visa application meets the immigration rules for entering the UK.
A statement added: “This does not negate the previous decision which was the result of Mrs Clennell having entered the UK as a visitor, overstaying her leave to remain and making several applications while in the UK which did not meet the immigration rules.
“During that time, it was open to her to leave the UK voluntarily at any time in order to reapply under the correct route as she has now done.”
A GoFundMe page was set up to help raise legal fees for her case, which passed £55,000.
Irene Clennell was deported to Singapore