Publican says progress has been made on Ukrainian visas

The Queen at Brandeston

The Queen at Brandeston - Credit: Matthew Usher

A village publican said some progress had been made on securing visas for a Ukrainian refugee family trying to get to Suffolk. 

Harriet Aitchison, who runs The Queen pub in Brandeston, said two members of the Kyiv family- Iryna and Alina- had received visas, but Inesa’s son Gleb was still waiting for his. 

The problems with Gleb had been exacerbated because he does not have a passport and he is still residing in Switzerland, along with the rest of his family. 

Harriet said: “Two of the ladies have had their visas processed, but we are still waiting for the mother and son to have theirs processed, but it is getting a little late in the day.” 

Harriet Aitchison (right) pictured with her mum Caroline

Harriet Aitchison (right) pictured with her mum Caroline - Credit: David Garrad

She said the family could remain in Switzerland for another couple of weeks, but after that would need to move on. 

In March, the EADT reported how she was calling on MP Dan Poulter to help resolve the visa situation. 

She said: “We decided to offer the accommodation because at the moment we don’t have any staff who require it so at the moment it is sitting empty. 

Most Read

“We had considered doing holiday lets, but when the war in Ukraine started, we thought we could give it to one family or two.” 

So they made the property available through the Government’s Homes for Ukraine scheme which enables refugees from the eastern European country to apply for a visa if they have a named person in the UK wishing to sponsor them. 

They were put in touch with the family and had been liaising with them through a friend who used to work in Georgia and can speak Ukrainian. 

Mr Poulter said he was liaising with the Government to expedite the case and was hopeful that the family would soon be on their way to Brandeston.