politics

BREAKING Downing Street apologise to Buckingham Palace for party the night before Philip's funeral


A No10 spokesman said it was ‘deeply regrettable that this took place at a time of national mourning’ and it’s understood officials have phoned royal courtiers

Boris Johnson's officials have conveyed an apology to the Queen (file photo)
Boris Johnson’s officials have conveyed an apology to the Queen (file photo)

Humiliated Downing Street officials have apologised to Buckingham Palace over a boozy party in No10 the night before Prince Philip ’s funeral.

The PM’s deputy official spokesman said: “It’s deeply regrettable that this took place at a time of national mourning, and No10 has apologised to the Palace.

“You’ve heard from the Prime Minister this week, he’s recognised No10 should be held to the highest standards and take responsibility for the things we did not get right.

“We have apologised to the Palace.”

No10 did not deny bombshell claims that staff wheeled in a suitcase of wine and broke a swing belonging to the PM’s one-year-old son.

The spokesman said “we acknowledge the significant public anger”, adding: “Misjudgements have been made and it’s right people apologise.”







Boris Johnson in the No10 garden (file photo)
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Image:

POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

It’s understood the apology happened through official channels over the phone, rather than the PM speaking to the Queen directly or it being put in writing.

The spokesman said he was not aware of any recent conversations between Mr Johnson and the Monarch apart from their weekly audience, which is usually held on a Wednesday.

The spokesman refused to say when the PM found out the party took place, saying: “I’m not going to get into internal discussions here in No10.”

However, he denied the PM was invited to either of the leaving dos, and said he was not aware the gatherings were to take place before he left for Chequers.

The PM’s spokesman could not say exactly when he arrived at his country retreat but insisted: “He was in Chequers on the 16th.”

The spokesman said no staff have yet resigned this morning in light of the latest story, and “I honestly don’t know” when the PM last spoke to James Slack.

Asked what the PM thought about his son’s swing being broken, the spokesman replied: “I haven’t asked him that.”

The deputy official spokesman also refused to say if he was personally at either of the parties, saying: “It would be inappropriate to comment further while Sue Gray’s investigation is ongoing.”

Asked if these were the last parties in Downing Street the public would find out about, he refused to say yes or no.

This breaking news story is being updated.

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