Portsmouth MP’s office helps to bring Chinese wife back home

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A PORTSMOUTH MP’s office has stepped in to help bring a woman left stranded in China back to the UK.

Gemma Freeman, senior caseworker for MP Penny Mordaunt, has arranged for UK Border Agency officials to send Grace Ashmore’s British passport abroad so she can return to her home in St Chad’s Avenue, North End, Portsmouth.

As previously reported in The News, Mrs Ashmore, 46, who was born in China, flew to the country on September 6 after her mum Mei Jia Cheng, 84, needed surgery on a stomach tumour.

When she tried to leave the country 12 days later Mrs Ashmore realised she had forgotten an old passport containing her UK permanent residence card at home.

Chinese immigration officials will not let her return until they’ve seen proof of her UK residency. Yesterday afternoon Mrs Ashmore’s husband Paul, 44, dropped off her British passport at Enterprise House, Southsea, so UK Border officials could post it to the British embassy in Shanghai.

The embassy will then issue Mrs Ashmore a British visa stamp so she can return. Mr Ashmore said he still fears how long the matter will drag out for. ‘Though I’m relieved that we’ve got to this stage I still can’t help but think this could take a while,’ he said.

‘I’m incredibly grateful for Penny Mordaunt’s office’s support. This has been the worst month of my life.

‘Every day I wake up feeling anxious and worried about Grace.’