Boris Johnson’s Downing Street staff hosted two events on the night before Prince Philip’s socially distanced funeral, the Telegraph reported, the newest in an inventory of at the least a dozen lockdown-busting bashes that the British prime minister and his staff are accused of getting attended.
On April 17, 2021, the Queen attended her husband’s funeral alone whereas mourners had been informed to not depart flowers to keep away from COVID-19 infections. But on the night before, the environment in Downing Street was a lot much less somber.
Witnesses informed the Telegraph there have been initially two separate farewell events: one in the Downing Street basement, which included dancing to music performed by a particular adviser, and one in the backyard, the place the departing director of communications James Slack — now a senior editor at the Solar newspaper — gave a farewell speech.
Slack apologized Friday morning for the “anger and damage” the social gathering had prompted. He mentioned he took “full accountability” and was “deeply sorry.”
In an emailed assertion issued by the Solar’s writer, Information UK, he added: “This occasion shouldn’t have occurred at the time that it did.”
One staffer reportedly wheeled in a suitcase stuffed with booze that night. Later each teams conjoined in the backyard, the place the social gathering of round 30 folks went on effectively past midnight. An attendee broke the swing of Boris Johnson’s one-year-old son Wilf, the Telegraph reported.
A spokesperson for Johnson mentioned he was not current at the events and had left for his nation residence Chequers the night before.
“The Queen sat alone in mourning like so many did at the time with private trauma & sacrifice to maintain to the guidelines in the nationwide curiosity. I’ve no phrases for the tradition & behaviours at quantity 10 and the buck stops with the PM,” Deputy Labour chief Angela Rayner mentioned on Twitter.
Liberal Democrat chief Ed Davey renewed requires Johnson’s resignation. “The Queen sitting alone, mourning the lack of her husband, was the defining picture of lockdown. Not as a result of she is the Queen, however as a result of she was simply one other particular person, mourning alone like too many others. While she mourned, Quantity 10 partied. Johnson should go,” he wrote on Twitter.
Allegations of lockdown-breaching events are being investigated internally by Sue Grey, a civil servant.
This text has been up to date.