Boris Johnson: Downing Street apologises to the Queen for Number 10 lockdown parties held on eve of Prince Philip’s funeral

Number 10 has apologised to the Queen over two parties held in Downing Street on the eve of Prince Philip’s funeral.

The prime minister’s spokesperson said it was “deeply regrettable that this took place at a time of national mourning”.

The events on 16 April 2021 – which according to the original report in The Telegraph included people drinking and dancing to music and one attendee being sent shopping with a suitcase to fill with bottles of wine – occurred the night before the Queen was forced to sit by herself at her husband’s funeral at St George’s Chapel in Windsor.

Earlier on Friday, the prime minister’s former director of communications apologised “unreservedly” for one of the parties which was held to mark his departure from Downing Street.

James Slack said he wanted to “apologise unreservedly for the anger and hurt caused” by the gathering, which is said to have involved 30 Downing Street staff partying into the early hours at Number 10 at a time when indoor mixing was banned.

“This event should not have happened at the time that it did. I am deeply sorry, and take full responsibility,” Mr Slack, who last year left Downing Street to become deputy editor-in-chief at The Sun newspaper, said.

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