What is Operation First Contact?

London NoBorders has received information that the hotel company Arora International ( in form of their branchArora Management Services Limited) has started a second attempt to make money from the Home Office's deportation business. The company plans to use the site of a residential school for children with behavioural and learning difficulties in Pease Pottage, Crawley, Sussex owned by the Arora Group subsidiary "The Crossroads Childrens (sic) Education Services Ltd.", into an immigration detention facility. It is the second attempt by Arora Hotels to extend their business into detention following the company's failure to gain planning permission to turn one of their hotels in Crawley into a holding facility for immigrants in 2010. Crawley Forest School has been told to vacate the property by 1 April 2011.

First Contact

On 25th January planning consultant CGMS sent out a letter informing
about Arora Hotel's plans. They plan to push the process through within weeks, having the detention facility ready by mid-May.

The letter makes no secret that the facility is planned to replace the use of Yarl's Wood and nearby Tinsley House detention facilities for holding families and children, and explicitly refers to this fact as an explanation of the need for urgency. The letter also explicitly refers to children inside the holding centre. Not only is the UKBA extending their detention capacity, but the government is also breaking their pledge to end the detention of children.

Arora try to legitimise their rush by starting some kind of "community process", but silently hoping that the process would go through unnoticed. In this they have failed.

CGMS ends their letter saying that they "would welcome any comments you may have on the proposal and [they] would be happy to answer any queries."

So they want your feedback, and we think they should get it.

What to do?

We are asking people to do exactly what they ask for: contact CGMS and Arora Hotels and let them know your opinion about the planned detention centre for families. To make it easier for them to deal with incoming queries and to bundle the feedback nicely, we propose that you contact them

between Monday 7 February 10am and Tuesday 8 February 5pm.

Stay polite, stay firm!

Spread the word!

Arora/CGMS wanted to push this through without being noticed. Help us to spread the word, ask your friends to join #Operation_FirstContact.

Who to contact?

Convieniently, we have collected a list of public contacts of both Arora Hotels and CGMS here:

Tel: 020 7583 6767

Tel: 0121 616 4850

More contacts at:

Head Office:

Press and Media

Head Office enquiries

Public Inquieries:
+44 (0)20 8757 7770

+44 (0)1293 530 000

+44 (0)20 8759 7777

+44 (0)161 236 8999