Neil Coyle asks police to investigate alleged Covid breach at Downing Street parties

Kit Heren (05 December, 2021)

'The sense of outrage from constituents is palpable'

18677Bermondsey and Old Southwark MP Neil Coyle

Neil Coyle has reported the Prime Minister’s office to the police for allegedly breaching Covid-19 lockdown rules after holding crowded parties at 10 Downing Street last winter.

The Labour MP for Bermondsey and Old Southwark said the “sense of outrage from constituents is palpable” given that they followed the rules, while “those responsible for devising and enforcing them” allegedly broke them.

Coyle and another Labour backbencher, Barry Gardiner, have both asked the Met Police to investigate the alleged breaches. Labour deputy leader Angela Rayner has also written to top civil servant Simon Case to ask if he will be reporting the matter to Scotland Yard.

Londoners were living under strict Covid rules when two big parties were held at Downing Street late last year, according to an article in the Daily Mirror.

One was a leaving event for a senior staff member in November 2020 – when the UK was in its second lockdown – where Prime Minister Boris Johnson gave a speech. The other was in the run-up to Christmas when London was in the strict Tier 3 of Covid restrictions.

At both events between 40 and 50 people were crammed into a room “cheek by jowl”, the paper reported.

Coyle said in a letter to Scotland Yard: “I followed the rules and did not see my own dad last Christmas, and, sadly, it was to be his last.

“Many other constituents followed the Government rules, cancelling family get-togethers in order to minimise risk and protect the NHS.

“The sense of outrage from constituents is palpable that they followed the rules whilst those responsible for devising and enforcing them were breaching them at the top of Government.”

Downing Street maintains that no rules were broken while Johnson himself has refused to apologise for the alleged breaches.

Police said they were looking into the matter.

Scotland Yard said in a statement: “The Metropolitan Police Service is aware of widespread reporting and has received correspondence relating to alleged breaches of the health protection regulations at a government building on two dates in November and December 2020.

“It is our policy not to routinely investigate retrospective breaches of the COVID-19 regulations; we will however consider the correspondence received.”

Contribute
diana says:

Does Neil Coyle own this paper because there are three stories of him moaning away as usual

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