AN MP backing a family’s bid to remain in Britain has said she is ‘deeply disappointed’ at the Home Office’s refusal to allow their appeal.

South African Louise Gent wants to remain in Middlewich with her husband Troy and their two teenage children.

But the Home Office has given Mrs Gent and Chelsy, 18, and Cadin, 13, just 14 days to leave the country or face arrest and deportation.

 Mrs Bruce said: “I am deeply disappointed for the Gent family, particularly since I asked for their circumstances to be given the Home Secretary’s personal attention as long ago as April, and reiterated this request in May.

“I have not yet had the opportunity of seeing the rejection letter received by the Gents, but will, of course, be strongly supporting their right to appeal.” 

The family claim that no direct consideration has been given to the case by the Home Secretary by the fact the letter refusing their appeal contains a number of glaring errors. This includes a claim neither parent has the right to remain in the UK, when in fact Mr Gent is a British citizen.

Mr Gent,  who plans to make yet another appeal for his family, said: “It is shocking the Home Office has just put us through the same ‘machine’ again despite our pleas for them to reconsider our case with the support of our MP who indicated she would write to Home Office, as well as the new Home Secretary, informing them of our situation and that our case would receive ‘special attention’.”

 Louise added: “We feel if the Home Secretary had been aware of our application there would not have been such errors as in the rejection letter, specifically where it states neither parents has the right to live in the UK when Troy is a British citizen. This is clear evidence no real thought or consideration has been given to the application, and it has just been processed by the ‘machine’ otherwise such errors would not have occurred.”

Since their plight became known, there have been calls on social media and in a petition for the family to be allowed to remain. Friends of Cadin, a pupil at Middlewich High School, have rallied to help with their support for him to stay at the school.

Mr Gent, who works as an electrical engineer in Stoke-on-Trent, was born in South Africa but is allowed to remain in Britain where the family have lived for six years because his father was British and he has dual nationality.

Mrs Gent’s family moved from Bristol in the mid-19th century to serve in the British Army at a colonial outpost in South Africa, but this does not qualify her or children for residential status. The family claim they are among people targeted in the same way as Windrush migrants by the Home Office’s more hostile attitude towards immigration exposed earlier this year. 

Mrs Gent worked in a Manchester office until last year. Her daughter has been awarded a place at Cumbria University, Lancaster, but is unable to accept the offer without a visa or student loan.