A UK immigration concession has been arranged for overseas skilled shearers to stop a UK skills shortage.
16 March 2011
UK immigration concession for New Zealand, Australian shearers
Sheep shearers from New Zealand and Australia should have no problems coming to the UK for the season due to an transitional scheme put in place by the UK Border Agency.
Each year hundreds of skilled shearers are recruited from the southern hemisphere for the shearing season in the UK, however efforts to tighten up Britain's immigration laws meant sheep shearing was removed from a list of approved occupations for a UK Visa.
Chief Executive of the National Association of Agricultural Contractors, Jill Hewitt, said her organisation had been working with government to put the scheme in place which will allow shearers to come on a seasonal temporary basis.
“The NAAC has been actively involved in the process and is confident the UK will not suffer from a shortage of shearers this year,” she said.
“We are working closely with shearing contractors in the UK, and shearing associations in New Zealand and Australia, to try and ensure the smooth passage of shearers to the UK.”
British High Commission communication manager, Chris Harrington, said shearers will be allowed to enter the United Kingdom on a concessionary basis, which means they do not have to get a visa but must prove to a British immigration officer that they are genuine shearers.
The UK Visa Bureau is an independent consulting company specialising in helping people with their UK Immigration applications to the British High Commission.