UK govt’s lockdown-breaching party sparks ‘WTF?’ reaction — Analysis
Round 100 individuals had been invited to a “deliver your personal booze” occasion in Downing Avenue’s backyard in the course of the first Covid lockdown
Former Scottish Conservative chief Ruth Davidson has blasted the UK authorities for holding a drinks occasion within the Downing Avenue backyard in the course of the first lockdown, declaring, “what tf had been any of those individuals considering?”
The prime minister’s principal non-public secretary, Martin Reynolds, despatched an e-mail to over 100 workers at Downing Avenue, inviting them to a gathering in Quantity 10’s backyard in the course of the first lockdown, in keeping with an e-mail reported by ITV Information.
The message to employees, marked “OFFICIAL-SENSITIVE-No10 ONLY,” was titled “Socially Distanced Drinks” and urged individuals to reach from 6pm and “deliver your personal booze.” It’s believed that round 40 employees finally attended the occasion that night, with Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his spouse, Carrie, displaying up, in keeping with eyewitness experiences.
The gathering’s begin time got here lower than an hour after the UK’s then-culture secretary, Oliver Dowden, used a televised press convention to inform individuals to keep away from gatherings and scale back contacts to assembly just one particular person outdoors their family outdoor.
The celebration, on Could 20, 2020, got here in the course of the first UK nationwide lockdown. The principles had been relaxed barely 12 days later, permitting teams of as much as six individuals to fulfill outdoor.
Well being Minister Edward Argar accepted that there can be public “anger, unhappiness and upset” in response to the experiences of the celebration, however claimed it was “vital” to attend for the completion of an investigation into lockdown gatherings at Downing Avenue.
Davidson slammed Argar’s excuse, stating that “no one wants an official to inform them in the event that they had been at a boozy shindig in their very own backyard.” In a direct assault on the federal government, the previous Scottish politician requested, “what tf had been any of those individuals considering?”
“The Metropolitan Police Service is conscious of widespread reporting referring to alleged breaches of the Well being Safety Rules at Downing Avenue on Could 20 2020 and is involved with the Cupboard Workplace,” a spokesperson for Scotland Yard confirmed to media.
Senior civil servant Sue Grey is at the moment investigating different alleged lockdown breaches by the federal government, together with a Could 15 gathering within the Downing Avenue backyard. Johnson and Downing Avenue haven’t issued a remark to this point.
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