From the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office –
Latest update: Entry requirements section (Visas) – you may be asked to provide your previous passport in support of your visa application
British nationals need a visa to enter mainland China, but not Hong Kong or Macao. For mainland China, you must get a visa prior to arrival, including for Hainan Island, although some exemptions may be available for tour groups travelling to certain parts of the country. For details of entry requirements to China contact the Chinese Embassy or the China Visa Application Service Centre well before your proposed trip. You may be asked to provide your previous passport in support of your visa application.
Check your visa validity carefully. Don’t overstay your visa or work illegally. The authorities conduct regular checks and you may be fined or detained for not complying with the conditions of your visa or work permit. If you remain in China longer than 6 months, you may need to get a Residence Permit.
from Travel Advice Summary, which can be found at: http://ift.tt/104fB54
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