The Calais Jungle has been closed over health and safety concerns
Local officials issued a decree on Monday in a bid to stop wanderers – notably returning and newly arrived UK-bound immigrants – from accessing the former tent camp.
The decree, which is valid until the end of 2017, concerns the former shanty town's north and south zone: the south zone belongs to the state, but the north zone belongs to the coastal conservatory.
Calais chiefs said that what used to be known as the 'Jungle' had been closed to the public because the wasteland had become "unsafe and insalubrious".
A spokesperson for the mayor's office said: "There are not enough police officers to protect the area. It is a lawless and dangerous place.
"What's more, the site is littered with hazardous waste, including rusting metal cans, broken glass and bits of barbed wire."
The notorious 'Jungle' camp – long considered a magnet for UK-bound migrants due to its close proximity to the Franco-British border – was razed to the ground in October and its more than 7,000 residents, a mixed bag of refugees and illegals, were rehoused in reception centres dotted across France.
French authorities have stopped people from entering the former refugee camp
But while hundreds of immigrants are said to have fled their temporary homes in a bid to pursue their UK dream; France-bound refugees have seized this opportunity to start afresh.
There are not enough police officers to protect the area
Spokesperson for Mayor
Mamadou – a political activist who escaped poverty-stricken Equatorial Guinea in 2016 after being threatened with death and who now lives in a migrant shelter in Issoudun, a town in central France – told the daily newspaper France Bleu that he was "lucky" to live in France.
He said: "I spent one month sleeping rough on the streets before coming here. And I'm slowing starting to feel at home.
"I'm a Muslim, but last week I went to church with some locals. I want to be a 'regular guy'.
Calais Jungle Camp: Before and After
Fri, November 11, 2016
Extraordinary photographs show life in the last days of the Calais 'Jungle' refugee camp at the end of October, alongside the current scene as it stands today.
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The camp was popular with refugees hoping to cross into the UK
"I want to be French. I want to find a job. I don't want to spend the rest of my life on state benefits."
But Mohamed Lounadi, a charity worker who works with asylum seekers at the Issoudun reception centre, says that more must be done to help migrants, and has "urged" locals to "hang out" with Mamadou and his friends in a bid to help them integrate into society.
He told France Bleu: "They deserve a chance to have a good life. It would be great if locals came to visit them at the centre – to have a drink and a chat – or if they offered to workout with them once or twice a week.
"Most refugees have fled war-ravaged countries and suffer from PTSD, and exercise really helps them forget their pain and suffering."