Dozens of EU citizens travel to Peterborough restaurant for help achieving UK settled status

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Dozens of EU citizens travelled to a restaurant in Peterborough to get help achieving settled status in the UK.

Around 40 men and women visited House of Feasts in Eye Green today (Thursday) with many coming from outside the city as they seek help to remain indefinitely in the country after Brexit.

A TV crew filming at House of Feasts today. Photo: Damian Wawrzyniak

A TV crew filming at House of Feasts today. Photo: Damian Wawrzyniak

This was the second event put on by restaurant owner Damian Wawrzyniak who won his own battle with the Home Office and is now looking to use his profile to assist others needing guidance.

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Damian was joined by qualified immigration officers who travelled from Birmingham to work for free helping the EU citizens.

Polish national Damian, who recently earned settled status, said: “The word is spreading which is good.

“The officers were going through the process and application with EU citizens.

“If a person applied before and received pre-settled status, or if they did not know how to go through the application, they went through the process until it was successful. And it’s all free of charge.

“There were lots of elderly people who have been here a long time and needed help. They are happy as the job is done.

“I had my own problems but I had a platform so it was sorted pretty quickly.

“There are thousands of people who do not have a platform like this, so I’m doing as much as I can to help.”

Damian has lived in the UK for 15 years so was surprised to be told he had been given pre-settled status - meaning he would have to reapply at a later date to stay in the country - as he had lived here well past the five-year threshold required for permanent residence.

After a vocal campaign, which drew the attention of national politicians and earned a phone call from a senior Home Office official, he earned settled status.

The Home Office said the dad of two had never been denied settled status.

The first event helping EU citizens was held last month with just under 20 turning up, including an Austrian national who has lived in the UK for 51 years.

That total was more than doubled today and included people who had travelled from Leicester, as well as a German TV crew.

The next meeting will be held on Tuesday, November 5 at the restaurant in Crowland Road.

People seeking more information can visit the Facebook page: Pre-Settled Status - Support Page.