London Gatwick airport: e-gates back working after nationwide issue causes chaos for passengers

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
Passengers at Gatwick Airport have faced huge delays since late last night following a nationwide shutdown of UK Border Force e-gates.

The Home Office said this morning (Wednesday, May 8) that the issue had been resolved.

As reported on the BBC, airports including Heathrow, Gatwick, Edinburgh, Birmingham, Bristol, Newcastle and Manchester all confirmed a Border Force problem was causing delays for people arriving back in the UK late on Tuesday.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Pictures and videos have been shared on social media showing long queues.

Last night, Gatwick Airport said on X (formerly Twitter): “Some inbound passengers may experience delays at immigration due to a nationwide issue with UK Border Force e-gates.

“Our staff are working with UK Border Force - who operate passport control including the e-gates - to provide assistance to passengers as required.”

E-gates are automated gates that use facial recognition to check a person's identity and allow them to enter the UK without talking to a Border Force officer.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Staff had to manually process passengers instead as a result of last night’s outage, the BBC reported.

Gatwick AirportGatwick Airport
Gatwick Airport

The Home Office told the BBC that the system came back online shortly after midnight.

It added that the problems were caused by a ‘system network issue’ and were first reported at around 7.50pm yesterday.

A spokesperson for Gatwick Airport said today: “The e-Gates had a national outage last night, but were back up and running at 00:52 BST, and queues dispersed completely within 20 minutes of this.”

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.