Residents controversially quarantined in the Comis Hotel during the first Covid lockdown can now apply for a refund of the charges they had to pay.

The Council of Ministers has approved the measure in response to a recommendation in the Independent Covid Review report carried out by Kate Brunner KC.

One of the defining images of the pandemic was of the first group of returning residents being taken under police escort to the Comis Hotel in Santon, where they spent the next 14 days in quarantine in secure accommodation.

Each had to pay a means-tested contribution, capped at £1,000, towards the cost of transport, accommodation and three meals a day during their time in quarantine.

Following public outcry the police escort was abandoned for subsequent returnees.

Many quarantined at the Comis complained about feeling abandoned and treated like criminals, having been forced to spend 23 hours a day in their hotel rooms, with a security alarm on the door, and supervised by security on the walk down to do their daily exercise.

Kate Brunner’s review, which was published in April this year, concluded that the decision to quarantine residents in the hotel was ‘awful’ for everyone involved but lawful and ‘proportionate in the circumstances’.

Recommendation 14 of her report stated the ‘government should refund the charges imposed on returning residents at the Comis and acknowledge that they went through a very difficult experience, which was for the good of the island’. Refunds are available to residents who returned to the Isle of Man by ferry on April 15, 22, 29 and May 6, 2020 and were required to stay at the Comis Hotel between April 15 and May 13 that year under the Emergency Powers (Potentially Infectious Persons) Regulations 2020.

To find out how to apply for a refund, visit, email [email protected] or call 01624 686608.