Channel 4 plans new TV show in which Britons must cross English Channel in dinghy to 'educate' on migrant crisis

Channel 4 announced the new programme​
Channel 4 announced the new programme
Google Maps/PA
George Bunn

By George Bunn

Published: 09/07/2024

- 20:34

The show, entitled 'Go Back To Where You Came From' will target a group with a wide range of perspectives on immigration

A new Channel 4 series will challenge a group of opinionated Britons to attempt the 'perilous' journey refugees and migrants make to the UK.

The four-part series currently titled "Go Back To Where You Came From", will see a group with differing views on immigration, dropped into two high-risk locations

The challengers will start their journey in Mogadishu in Somalia and Raqqa in Syria, travelling to the homelands "that refugees are so desperate to leave."

It comes as Prime Minister Sir Keir Starmer confirmed Rishi Sunak's Rwanda deportation scheme to deter migrants from crossing the English Channel is to be scrapped.

Channel 4 announced the new programme\u200b

Channel 4 announced the new programme

Google Maps/PA

The contestants will then travel to countries on migrant routes through Africa, the Middle East and Europe into the UK, facing a wide range of challenges.

Senior commissioning editors Anna Miralis and Madonna Benjamin said: "This is an extremely bold commission that continues to reinforce the Channel’s commitment to tackle difficult and highly relevant subject matter.

"It is hoped that this will offer up an opportunity for the British public to help understand some of the terrifying perils asylum seekers face when they attempt to travel to the UK.

"The adaptation of this multi-award-winning Australian format will be thoughtful and impactful and is likely to create an intense debate about an issue that Britain has grappled with for decades."


The headquarters for British television broadcaster Channel 4 standsThe headquarters for British television broadcaster Channel 4 standsGETTY

A Channel 4 spokesperson said: "How will they cope experiencing the threat of near-by missile strikes, witnessing mass overcrowding of camps, and being up close to those living in devastating poverty?"

The series is based on a 2011 Australian programme which followed the journey of six Australians who took a refugee journey backwards from Australia experiencing immigration raids, living in a refugee camp and travelling on small boats.

Head of constructed factual at Channel 4 Liam Humphreys said: "We are thrilled to be working with C4 on this audacious and ground-breaking idea which will provide a unique and compelling perspective on the plight and flight of asylum seekers.

"Go Back To Where You Came From (w/t) is a perfect illustration of how a controversial and thought-provoking format can, through a very human focus, challenge preconceptions and ignite the national debate."

RNLI Lifeboat and a Border Force

An RNLI Lifeboat and a Border Force vessel with groups of people thought to be migrants onboard


It comes as a number of children have been brought ashore in Dover as migrants continued to cross the English Channel on Tuesday. People arrived on Border Force and RNLI lifeboats after making the journey amid calm sea conditions despite the overcast and rainy weather.

Pictures showed youngsters among the group of people wearing life jackets, and some wrapped in blankets, as they came into the Kent port.

The arrivals came as three asylum seekers who brought legal action over their potential removals to Rwanda had their cases resolved at the High Court on Tuesday after the new Labour Government decided to scrap the deportation policy.

More than 13,600 migrants have arrived in the UK so far this year after crossing the Channel. Monday saw 65 people make the journey in one boat after a six-day pause in activity – the first crossings since Labour’s election victory.

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