Commonwealth Immigrants Act 1962

Commonwealth Immigrants Act 1962
Commonwealth Immigrants Act, 1962[1]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Long title An Act to make temporary provision for controlling the immigration into the United Kingdom of Commonwealth citizens; to authorise the deportation from the United Kingdom of certain Commonwealth citizens convicted of offences and recommended by the court for deportation; to amend the qualifications required of Commonwealth citizens applying for citizenship under the British Nationality Act, 1948; to make corresponding provisions in respect of British protected persons and citizens of the Republic of Ireland; and for purposes connected with the matters aforesaid
Statute book chapter 10 & 11 Eliz. 2 c. 21
Royal Assent 18 April 1962

The Commonwealth Immigrants Act 1962 was an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom.

Before the Act was passed, citizens of British commonwealth countries had extensive rights to migrate to the UK. In response to a perceived heavy influx of immigrants, the Conservative Party government tightened the regulations, permitting only those with government-issued employment vouchers, limited in number, to settle. The leader of the opposition in the parliament at the time, Hugh Gaitskell, called the act "cruel and brutal anti-colour legislation".

The Act was amended by the Commonwealth Immigrants Act 1968, before being superseded by the Immigration Act 1971.

These Acts resulted from widespread opposition to immigration in Britain from a variety of political groups, but most notably the Conservative Monday Club, whose Member of Parliament members were very active and vocal in their opposition to immigration.


  1. ^ Short title as conferred by s. 21 of the Act; the modern convention for the citation of short titles omits the comma after the word "Act".

External links

Copy of the Act as originally passed