From heaven to Hull: Family kicked out of Bermuda after 20 years as UK overseas territory clamps down on immigrants from Britain Stephen Tomlinson and his family ordered to leave British Overseas Territory after his workplace burned down Island's government is now only granting permits to highly-skilled workers in bid to reduce unemployment among Bermudans A British family who lived in the overseas territory of Bermuda for 20 years were ordered to leave because its government is clamping down on immigrants from the UK. Stephen and Kirsty Tomlinson and their two children were given barely a month to get off the North Atlantic island after his workplace burned down. Now the couple have swapped sandy beaches and sunshine for concrete and drizzle after returning to Mr Tomlinsons home town of Hull, east Yorkshire. They were ordered to leave despite their daughter Holly, 12 and son Joseph, six, being born in Bermuda, a British overseas territory in the North Atlantic. Dream over: Stephen Tomlinson, with his wife Kirsty and children Holly, 12, and and Joseph, six, near their new home in Hull. The couple were ordered leave Bermuda last month after Mr Tomlinson's business burned down Mr Tomlinson had worked as a spray painter, while his 41-year-old wife ran a beauty therapy business and had clients including Catherine Zeta Jones and Michael Douglas. Mr Tomlinson, 45, said: My daughter is crying herself to sleep at night and the kids ask When are we going home, Daddy? GOVERNMENT STRAINING AGAINST PUBLIC SUPPORT FOR UK RULE Bermuda is the oldest of Britain's Overseas Territories. Its Parliament first met in 1620, making it the oldest Commonwealth legislature outside the British Isles. Though Bermuda exercises a great deal of autonomy over its own affairs, the UK Government remains responsible for its external relations, defence and internal security. The question remains of whether the territory should cut its links with Britain, but the last time a referendum was held - in 1995 - only a quarter of the 58 per cent turnout voted for independence. Its current government, led by premier Paula Cox and her Progressive Labour Party, is in favour of independence - but the most recent opinion polls have consistently shown large majorities against it. I dont understand how they could do this to us after wed been there so long. We had to sell all our belongings and get out, despite having worked hard and paid our way. Stephen had friends fight for their right to stay but the Bermudan Government refused to be swayed. He fears more ex-pats could be ordered to leave Bermuda as its government tightens up immigration and has called on the Foreign Office to intervene . While Bermuda has granted permanent residency to Britons living on the island since 1989, the couple missed the cut-off point by just two years. In 2010, the Government announced it would make it harder to gain and renew work permits in a bid to boost employment among citizens of the island. Only highly-trained foreigners with particular skills are being granted work permits. Painters and beauticians are among occupations that are among those professions that are 'proscribed'. The territory has even provided tax relief to those firms who employ previously jobless Bermudans, who accuse British and other immigrants of marginalising them. The Foreign Office says it is unable to stop the islands Government forcing Britons to give up their jobs and sending them back to the UK. Mr Tomlinson said: There are still people from Hull out there and more Britons will be sent home. You build a life up only to get kicked out.' Happier times: The Tomlinsons and their children playing on the beach near their former home in Bermuda Idyllic: The family sit beside a plam tree near their cottage on the paradise island in the North Atlantic Enlarge Bad tidings: The letter the Tomlinsons were sent by the Bermudan government that gave them less than a months to settle up and leave He was 24 when he moved to the group of islands in the North Atlantic Ocean from Garden Village in east Hull in 1991. He met Kirsty, of Goole, who was also on a work permit and the two later married. Mrs Tomlinson said: Stephens heart was in Bermuda and it is a lovely country. My roots are in England and I class it as my home but Ive learnt so much on the island. The couples dream life came crashing down when Stephens place of work burnt to the ground last year. Mr Tomlinson said: We were all made redundant but the local paper ran a story saying people were prepared to help us find work. Luckily, I still had job offer and I decided to take work at a Mercedes dealership.I applied for my annual work permit and it was declined. We didnt know what to do and everyone said it would be sorted but it wasnt. Stephen was sent a letter from the Department of Immigration, which advised him to settle his affairs, giving him a deadline of less than a month to leave the island. The letter stated: The Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, after having reviewed the request, has refused the application. 'You are now being advised to settle your affairs, together with your family and leave Bermuda. The family are being backed by Conservative MP Andrew Percy, who is vowing to take their case to ministers. However, they know it is very unlikely they will be able to return. Mr Percy said: Although Bermuda is a British colony, it has control over its own immigration system. Its completely unjust that the Tomlinson family should be cheated in this way when they have lived there for so long. I will do everything I can to help them.