Heathrow approached “breaking” point last week, with passengers left so frustrated by delays that they resorted to storming past officials without showing their documents and slow handclapping staff in immigration halls.
Several times last week delays were reported in Terminal Five of up to two hours.
On Saturday BAA, the owner of Heathrow, tried to defuse tensions with a leaflet apologising to passengers for the “very long delays” and saying people entering the country “deserved a warmer welcome”.
The leaflet suggested that passengers should complain to the Home Office.
However, Marc Owen, the director of UK Border Agency operations at Heathrow, told BAA the leaflet was “inappropriate”.