Windsor MP backs Johnson as party before Duke’s funeral revealed

The MP for Windsor has continued to back Boris Johnson after it emerged parties were held in Number 10 the day before the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral last year.

Two gatherings reportedly took place at Downing Street, with the Prime Minister’s former director of communications James Slack apologising for the “anger and hurt” one of the events – a leaving do held for him – had caused.

The Prime Minister’s spokesman said Boris Johnson was at his country residence Chequers on April 16 and had not been invited to the events.

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Windsor MP Adam Afriyie said: “People are rightly concerned about all the rumours about parties and the Prime Minister was right to explain and apologise.

“We must now wait for the report into the facts so we know what actually happened.

“With regards to reports of the 16th of April, I thought that the Prime Minister was at Chequers not Downing Street that night.

“He has done wonders for this country with our vaccine rollout and keeping people in work and he has my full support in levelling up our country.”

The day after the events on April 16 2021, the Queen attended her husband Philip’s funeral wearing a face mask and socially distanced from her family at Windsor Castle, in line with Covid restrictions.

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Asked why No 10 had apologised rather than Mr Johnson himself, his spokesman said: “Well, again, the Prime Minister said earlier misjudgments have been made and it’s right people apologise, as the PM did earlier this week.

“It remains the case that I can’t prejudge the inquiry, which you know is ongoing, which has been led by Sue Gray, but we acknowledge the significant public anger, it was regrettable this took place at a time of national mourning.”

Labour leader, Sir Keir Starmer, said Mr Johnson should also be offering the Queen his resignation.

He said: “The Conservatives have let Britain down. An apology isn’t the only thing the Prime Minister should be offering the palace today.

“Boris Johnson should do the decent thing and resign.”

Royal Borough Observer | Windsor