What does Sue Gray report say about Boris Johnson? Summary of findings on prime minister and UK government
‘Senior leadership’ must ‘bear responsibility for a culture that led to the breaking of coronavirus rules
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According to the official investigation into the Partygate scandal, Boris Johnson's Government's "senior leadership" must "bear responsibility" for a Downing Streetculture that led to the violation of coronavirus lockdown restrictions.
But what has the report said about the Prime Minister himself, and what are the more damning revelations to have arisen from its publication?
Here is everything you need to know.
What does Sue Gray’s report say about Boris Johnson?
According to the Sue Gray investigation, Boris Johnson brought the cheese and wine photographed in a garden gathering on 15 May from his own flat.
That’s just one of the revelations to come from the long-awaited report, which was finally published today after months of delay.
“The Prime Minister brought cheese and wine from his flat,” Gray wrote. “The outdoor part of the meeting lasted for 40 minutes to an hour and they were briefly joined by the Prime Minister’s wife, during which time the photograph was taken.”
The report into lockdown parties also revealed the leaving do for No 10 communications chief Lee Cain occurred when "Wine Time Friday" (WTF) in Downing Street would typically have taken place.
Gray claims she was told the event on 13 November 2020 was not arranged in advance and that Johnson stopped by on his way to his Downing Street residence.
The Prime Minister delivered a farewell speech and was seen consuming alcohol during the gathering.
Gray also discovered Johnson and five special advisors met in his Downing Street flat with "food and alcohol" on the evening of Dominic Cummings' departure.
She said that she only gathered "limited" information because she had only started gathering facts when the Metropolitan Police opened an investigation and did not return to it.
She wrote: “Following the announcement of the departure of Dominic Cummings and Lee Cain, a meeting was held in the No 10 flat from some time after 18.00 to discuss the handling of their departure. Five special advisers attended.
“The Prime Minister joined them at about 20.00. Food and alcohol were available. The discussion carried on later into the evening with attendees leaving at various points.”
What has Johnson said?
Making a statement in the House of Commons on the report, Boris Johnson said: “I want to begin today by renewing my apology to the House, to the whole country, for the short lunchtime gathering on 19 June 2020 in the Cabinet Room, during which I stood at my place at the Cabinet table and for which I received a fixed penalty notice.”
Boris Johnson said staff were working “extremely long hours” and “doing their best” to help the country in the pandemic, adding to MPs: “I appreciate this is no mitigation but it’s important to set out.”
Johnson told MPs: “I’m happy to set on the record now that when I came to this House and said, in all sincerity, that the rules and guidance had been followed at all times, it was what I believed to be true.
What else has been revealed?
During a lockdown event where one person was sick and there was a "minor altercation" between two others, the Government's then-ethics chief provided a karaoke machine.
Employees partied from June 18 2020 until the early hours of the morning at the "second phase" of a leaving event for a former No 10 official, according to the report.
Gray said that some attendees at the impromptu gathering indulged in “excessive alcohol consumption”, and that there was even a fight between two people present.
Staff "drank excessively" during the Downing Street Christmas party on 18 December 2020, according to Gray, and a cleaner discovered red wine spilt on a wall the next morning.
The publication stated: “There was food and alcohol available which had been bought and brought in by staff. Some members of staff drank excessively. The event was crowded and noisy such that some people working elsewhere in the No 10 building that evening heard significant levels of noise coming from what they characterised as a ’party’ in the press office.”
According to the report, staff continued to drink into the early hours of the morning during parties on the eve of the Duke of Edinburgh's funeral, with the last individual leaving at 4.20 am.
On 16 April 2021 at about 6.30 pm, aroundt 45 people gathered in the press office to commemorate the departure of communications chief James Slack, with a few attending via the internet. Staff had brought in wine and beer.
A smaller reception for another retiring staff member began about the same time in the basement, with wine and music being played from a laptop computer placed on top of a printer.
The two groups mixed throughout the evening, eventually coming together in the Downing Street garden.
Exit logs showed that some attendees eventually left after midnight, while others left between 1.45am and 2.45am, with two others hanging on later - one not leaving until 3.11am, and another departing at 4.20am.
Staff reported that a child's swing and slide set in the garden had been broken by people leaning on it when they returned in the morning.