Sir, It is incorrect and misleading to suggest that “the UK has always practised a ‘British if born in Britain’ policy” (Letters, January 14). The position in law is that since January 1 1983, under section 1 of the British Nationality Act 1981, only those children born in the UK in circumstances where one of their parents is either a British citizen or classified as “settled” under immigration law automatically acquire British citizenship by birth.
Additionally, as a result of a recent amendment to the law, children born in the UK to serving members of the armed forces will be treated in the same way. Similarly, the law does in many situations provide for automatic transmission of British citizenship to those born outside of the UK where either parent is a British citizen at the time of birth.
Legal Policy Director