- 336 migrants tried to cross Channel in August, more than 297 in total in 2018
- Yesterday 66 people from Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan and Kuwait caught off coast
- One of the four vessels was carrying staggering 27 adults and eight children
A record-breaking 336 migrants have been caught crossing the English Channel in August - more than the whole of 2018.
Border Force intercepted a total of 66 men, women and children in small boats along the Kent Coast yesterday.
One of the four vessels alone was carrying 27 adults and eight children, according to the Home Office.
August's figures exceed the whole of last year put together, when 297 people were caught trying to enter Britain illegally across the Channel.
This makes it the month with the highest number of attempted illegal entries on record, reports the BBC.
Another boat reached Kingsdown in Kent yesterday where eight men were passed on to immigration officers after being held by police.
In addition to the 66 people picked up, a dinghy with 13 men on board was returned to Calais after being spotted by a French navy helicopter.
UK Border Force officials said they were first alerted to a small boat travelling across the Channel at about 5.35am on Saturday.
Border Force deployed HMC Seeker and coastal patrol vessel (CPV) Speedwell to intercept the boat, which was taken to the port of Dover.
The boat had 35 migrants on board - 27 adults and eight children - made up of 29 males and six females, who told officials they were Iranian, Iraqi, Afghan, Syrian and Kuwaiti nationals.
The group were transferred to immigration officials to be interviewed.
At around the same time the French authorities made Border Force aware of a second vessel heading towards Kent.
Rescue teams were sent from Folkestone and Deal to help with the operation.
Kent Police and the South East Ambulance Service also assisted with the operation.
Their spokesman said crews were concerned with 'rescuing those in trouble and bringing them safely back to shore, where they will be handed over to the relevant partner emergency services or authorities'.
They added: 'HM Coastguard has been coordinating a search and rescue response to a number of incidents on the Kent coast, working with Border Force, Kent Police and other partners.'
As of yesterday, more than 270 migrants, including at least 40 children, have been intercepted by UK and French authorities since Thursday last week.
Home Secretary Priti Patel said on Friday that urgent action was needed to tackle the Channel's migrant crisis, adding that plans were being drawn up 'immediately' to deal with the problem.
Her comments came after a meeting with French interior minister Christophe Castaner in Paris, during which the pair agreed to allocate more resources to intercept and stop the wave of crossings.
The prospect of British financial support for efforts to stem the flow of crossings from France was discussed at the meeting, according to the French AFP news agency.
Mr Castaner said that money from London would 'reinforce patrols and improve effectiveness'.
Last week, Prime Minister Boris Johnson warned migrants that they would be sent back if they risked crossing the Channel.
He said: 'If you are an illegal immigrant, I'm afraid the law will treat you as such.'
In June, eight boats with 74 people on board, including at least one child, landed on a stretch of coast between Dover in Kent and Winchelsea Beach in East Sussex over the course of a single morning.
Last year, 539 people attempted to travel to Britain on small boats, of whom 434 made their crossings in the last three months of the year, according to official figures.
The Home Office said: 'Crossing the Channel in a small boat is a huge risk.
'The criminal gangs who perpetuate this are ruthless and do not care about loss of life.
'We are working closely at all levels with the French authorities to tackle this dangerous and illegal activity.
'In addition, Border Force cutters are patrolling the Channel and we have already deployed equipment including drones, CCTV and night-vision goggles.'
The total number of migrants who have made it across the Dover Strait - the world's busiest shipping lane - has exceed 1,000 already this year, despite millions being spent on security measures to prevent crossings.
Since January, some 1,450 migrants have been rescued either by British or French coastguards - more than double the number who tried to cross the busy shipping lane in the whole of 2018, according to official French figures released Monday.
France has attributed the increase to good summer weather, which has emboldened more migrants to make the journey.
But such crossings are dangerous given the heavy maritime traffic in the Channel as well as strong currents and cold water.
The body of an Iraqi migrant who tried to swim across the Channel to Britain was found off Belgium's coast earlier this week, wearing a makeshift life jacket made of empty plastic bottles.
Officials believe the 48-year-old drowned after setting off from a beach in northern France, with currents dragging him into Belgian waters.