Oscar, Grammy and Nobel Prize-winners will be among those able to get visas to live and work in the UK more easily under point-based immigration reforms.

The Home Office has announced its decision to “fast track” the process for those winning coveted arts awards.

It is part of the government’s bid to attract the “best and brightest” from around the world.

International stars who have won Bafta, Brit, Mobo, Tony or Golden Globe awards will also be eligible.

Previously the visa application process, known as the Global Talent route, meant artists and producers had to receive an endorsement from one of six bodies.

But from Wednesday, new post-Brexit rules allow people who hold a qualifying prize to make a simpler single visa application.

‘So much to offer the UK’

Stars eligible for a fast track UK visa now include the winners of best international male or female at the Brit Awards, best international act at the Mobos or the lifetime achievement award at the Grammys.

The best film actress, actor or director at the Baftas would also qualify, as well as anyone collecting the Nobel Prize for literature, some sciences and medicine, and/or the Turing Award.

Actress Frances McDormand and director Chloe Zhao recently won Oscars for their film Nomadland
Image caption,The 93rd Oscars took place last weekend, with actress Frances McDormand and director Chloe Zhao among the winners

Professionals who have been rewarded for their expertise in fields such as sciences, engineering and technology, as well as dance, theatre, architecture and fashion will also be eligible.

The list of qualifying awards will be kept under review.

Home secretary Priti Patel said recipients of such accolades had “reached the pinnacle of their career” and as such “have so much to offer the UK”.

“These important changes will give them the freedom to come and work in our world leading arts, sciences, music, and film industries as we build back better,” she added.

“This is exactly what our new point-based immigration system was designed for – attracting the best and brightest based on the skills and talent they have, not where they’ve come from.”

Presentational grey line

The eligible prize winners include:

  • Film, TV and theatre: Various Academy Award (Oscars) and Golden Globe categories; Bafta – best film actress/actor/director; various Tony Awards and Olivier Awards
  • Music: Brit Award – international male/female; Mobo – best international act; Grammys – lifetime achievement award
  • Arts & literature: Dorothy and Lillian Gish Prize; Hugo Boss Prize; Nobel Prize – Literature
  • Science, technology, engineering and maths: Nobel Prize winners in Physics, Chemistry, Economic Science and Medicine; Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering; Fields Medal; Turing Award

The full list is available on the Home Office website

The move comes as part of the UK’s overhaul to its rules around who is and who isn’t allowed into the country, in the wake of Brexit.

The new system for the approval of visas is based on points.

In March, Ms Patel set out what she has called a “fair but firm” overhaul to the way people applying for asylum in the UK are treated.

She said that, for the first time, people seeking protection as refugees would have their claim assessed based on how they arrive in the UK.

Also that ministers would crack down on people smugglers because “enough is enough”.

Labour said the plans lacked compassion and competence.