The Day the Immigrants Left
Evan Davis explores the effects of immigration in the UK. As a test, immigrant employees in Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, temporarily pass their jobs on to unemployed locals.
Evan Davis presents a programme exploring the effects of immigration in the UK by focusing on Wisbech, a town in Cambridgeshire.
Since 2004 this once prosperous market town has received up to 9,000 immigrants seeking work - the majority from Eastern Europe. But with nearly 2,000 locals unemployed and claiming benefits, many of them blame the foreign workers for their predicament.
To test if the town needs so many foreign workers, immigrant employees are temporarily removed from their jobs, and the work given to the local unemployed. Now the town's British workers have a chance to prove they can do it.
Eleven British unemployed workers are recruited to go into a range of different Wisbech workplaces including a potato company, an asparagus farm, an Indian restaurant and a building site run by a local landlord.
Moving beyond the workplace, Evan Davis investigates how the town's local public services, such as schools and the NHS, are coping with the demands of the new arrivals.
As the British unemployed workers get to grips with their new jobs, this documentary examines the facts and dispels the myths around the subject of immigration.