Sydney to Manchester. The flight was via Beijing and Amsterdam. When the flight arrived an official pointed my self and several other passengers to a corner took our passports and motioned for us to stay there. We were quite worried and had no idea what was happening. 15 minutes later he came back with stamped passports and pointed us towards some steps. With difficulty we worked out which direction we were supposed to be heading. On the way back a similar situation took place. This time about a dozen of us has about an hour to get from one plane to another our passports were taken and only at this point were boarding passes issued. One lady was arguing with the airport attendant who had taken her passport then lost it. It took several other passengers to point out that she had taken the ladies passport. After running to get to the plane going to Australia it set off 30 mins late due to other passenger not being able to get there on time. I will never take this route again.