Home Office took staff to Crystal Maze attraction amid Windrush scandal

Support us and go ad-free

Home Office managers have been reminded to spend taxpayers’ money “carefully and wisely” after splashing thousands on a team-building trip to the Crystal Maze experience at the height of the Windrush scandal.

The department said the visit to the London attraction – offering teams the chance to experience the challenge of the popular Channel 4 game show presented by comedian Richard Ayoade – was needed to get away from the “distractions of the office”.

Details obtained by MailOnline under freedom of information (FOI) laws showed the department booked 48 tickets costing a total of £2,639.52 on 11 April last year for a visit on 8 May.

At the time, the department was being criticised over allegations of wrongly deporting Windrush generation immigrants – which prompted the resignation of then home secretary Amber Rudd on 29 April.

The department has moved to stress the team-building trip was unrelated to the scrutiny it faced over the scandal.

Read on...

The FOI response, seen by PA, said: “This was a team-building event for a team which had undergone significant recent restructuring and recruitment.

“The Crystal Maze event afforded an opportunity to rebuild team cohesion in an environment away from distractions of the office.”

The Home Office would not comment on whether more money was spent on travel and food for staff during the trip.

We know everyone is suffering under the Tories - but the Canary is a vital weapon in our fight back, and we need your support

The Canary Workers’ Co-op knows life is hard. The Tories are waging a class war against us we’re all having to fight. But like trade unions and community organising, truly independent working-class media is a vital weapon in our armoury.

The Canary doesn’t have the budget of the corporate media. In fact, our income is over 1,000 times less than the Guardian’s. What we do have is a radical agenda that disrupts power and amplifies marginalised communities. But we can only do this with our readers’ support.

So please, help us continue to spread messages of resistance and hope. Even the smallest donation would mean the world to us.

Support us