10 Downing Street had a BYOB garden party in May 2020. No, UK Covid curbs didn't apply to them

An email leak has revealed that UK's 10 Downing Street was having a BYOB party back in May 2020, while the rest of the country had strict Covid curbs in place. Here is what happened.

 |  4-minute read |   11-01-2022
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Remember when you were making dalgona coffee and baking every single dessert you could find in 2020? A leaked email has revealed that back on May 20, 2020, 30-40 members of staff at 10 Downing Street including UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his wife Carrie met up for a garden party for drinks and food from 6 pm. (see, and you thought our government didn't care for us, lol)

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Photo: Getty ImagesUK Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Photo: Getty Images 

This party occured when only two people were allowed to socialise outside while two metres apart under a national Covid curb. The email reveals that attendees were asked to bring their own booze. Reportedly, 100 people had been invited to this party. 

As per ITV News, the leaked email was sent by Johnson’s principal private secretary, Martin Reynolds, and read, "Hi all. After what has been an incredibly busy period it would be nice to make the most of the lovely weather and have some socially distanced drinks in the No 10 garden this evening. Please join us from 6 pm and bring your own booze!" 

On the same day, Cabinet minister Oliver Dowden addressed the public and said at a live news conference,"You can meet one person outside your household in an outdoor, public place, provided that you stay two metres apart."

On May 20, 2020, the Metropolitan Police reminded the public on its 'social media feed that they were permitted to enjoy the weather, but that they must do so on your own, with people you live with, or just you and one other person'.

The Daily Mail reported that the Scotland Yard is now 'in contact with the Cabinet Office' over reports of the drinks party. Labour Party leader Sir Keir Starmer tweeted, "Boris Johnson, your deflections and distractions are absurd. Not only did you know about the parties in Downing Street, you attended them. Stop lying to the British public. It’s time to finally come clean."

Former Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson told the BBC the 'PM did not need to wait for an inquiry to answer whether he attended'. She added, "I can't understand if the Prime Minister attended why on earth he thought that was the right thing to do. People are furious about this, what they gave up, how difficult it was, what happened to their own lives, and to think that this was going on? It is indefensible, it cannot be defended." 

HOW JOHNSON REACTED: Boris Johnson has been doging questions, refusing to say anything about whether he attended a lockdown breaking party at Downing Street in 2020. When asked on January 10 if Johnson had attended the party, he said, "All that, as you know, is the subject of a proper investigation by Sue Gray."

For those who don't know, Sue Gray is the senior official who is in the process of investigating the endemic parties across Whitehall during coronavirus restrictions and has begun conducting an independent investigation to determine whether this party occured. She is already conducting an investigation into the No 10 Downing Street 'wine and cheese' party that occured in December 2020 and was revealed in December 2021. (READ MORE HERE: UK PM Boris Johnson partied in 2020 lockdown. Ryanair won't forgive or forget)

As for the public's opinion, it can be best described with this meme: 


Ishita Srivastava Ishita Srivastava @ishitassrivas

Ishita Srivastava is passionate about writing on Politics, Business, Lifestyle and Entertainment. She is a Sub editor at DailyO.

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