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The story of how British citizenship developed and why this matters for questions of race, migration and belonging in 'Global Britain'

Hosted and produced by Michaela Benson.

Cover Art: George Kalivis

Production and post-production: Art of Podcast 

May 27, 2022

What is the UK’s Nationality and Borders Act? How does it relate to previous acts concerned with nationality and immigration legislation? What is the back story to some of the central changes that this act introduces? We cover all of this and more in this bumper episode to mark the start of Series 2 of Who do we think we are?

Presenter Michaela Benson introduces the Nationality and Borders Act and how this sits in a longer history of Acts which considers changes to nationality and immigration legislation alongside one another. She also joins podcast researcher George Kalivis in the archive, where they discuss the behind closed doors responses of Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher about what Britain should do in respect to the resettlement of refugees from Vietnam in the 1970s and 80s. We’re joined by Trent Lamont Miller and Dave Varney of the British Overseas Territories Citizenship campaign to discuss the impetus behind this campaign and the journey to get legislation changed to allow the children of British Overseas Territories citizens born outside of marriage abroad to be entitled for this citizenship status. But as our conversation with Fizza Qureshi (CEO of Migrants Rights Network) reveals, the success of this campaign for BOTCs is bittersweet in the context of the predominantly bleak consequences of this act.

You can access the full transcripts for each episode over on the Rebordering Britain and Britons after Brexit website.

In this episode we cover …

  1. Nationality and Borders Act
  2. Resettlement of Vietnamese Refugees
  3. British Overseas Territories Citizens
  4. Refugee and migrant rights


When you have no effective safe routes to come to the UK, or where you have those routes, and they're measly, in terms of the numbers that are available to people, or they're really narrow in their scope, I mean, what other ways are people going to have to resort to, apart from getting on a boat to entering the UK?

—Fizza Qureshi, CEO Migrants Rights Network


This just makes no sense to me because my British BOTC father did not marry my foreign born mother ... every child has copies of both parents DNA, they have two sides of the family tree for the UK Government to take a pair of scissors and cut away one part of that DNA and family tree and then say you're not valid, you're not welcome, go away. It's deeply hurtful.— Trent Lamont Miller, BOTC Campaign


Find out more

BOTC Campaign on Twitter and Online

Migrants’ Rights Network Online, Twitter and Instagram


Read more

Rieko Karatani, Britishness Reconsidered

Margaret Thatcher reluctant to give boat people refuge in Britain


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