Plans to move asylum seekers onto a giant barge on the Dorset coast have been beset by delays.

For the past two days, asylum seekers currently staying in hotels have been informed they would be moving onto the Bibby Stockholm on Tuesday August 1 and Wednesday August 2.

Facing questions on Sky News, transport minister Richard Holden said he "can't put a timeframe" on when migrants will board the Bibby Stockholm in Portland.

The Home Office was due to send the first group of people to the accommodation on Tuesday, but, according to The Times, there were serious fire safety concerns about the facility.

The Guardian later reported that the arrival date had been pushed back to Wednesday to give more time for final inspections.

The Fire Brigades Union (FBU) said it is planning to write to the Home Office about overcrowding and access to fire exits on the vessel.

The health and safety officials’ intervention had already led to the postponement of the arrival of the first men who were due to stay on the 222-bedroom Bibby Stockholm in Portland, Dorset.

But Government sources later suggested that it may not be until next week to avoid new services beginning close to the weekend as working practices for port workers have to be signed off for the Health and Safety Executive.

Downing Street said final preparations are underway this week.

Speaking at a beer festival in west London, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak told broadcasters: "All migrant accommodation has to go through a series of checks and inspections to make sure it complies with regulation, that's what's happening in this case."