Tory donor made life peer and appointed as government minister

Malcolm Offord, who has donated almost £150,000 to the Conservatives, sent to the Lords and becomes minister in Scotland Office A financier who has donated almost £150,000 to the Conservatives has been made a life peer and given a ministerial job, Downing Street has announced. Malcolm Offord, founder and chair of an Edinburgh-based “boutique investment” […]

Lubaina Himid: Tories should not meddle with museum boards

Turner prize-winning artist says independent thought and debate is vital at cultural institutions The Turner prize-winning artist Lubaina Himid has cautioned the government against meddling in the membership of museum and gallery boards, saying independent thought and debate was vital. Himid was at 11 Downing Street to be named as the latest artist to be […]

European lorry drivers ‘will not want to come to UK’, warn haulage chiefs

Emergency visa plan will not resolve Britain’s road transport crisis, says industry as majority blame Brexit in poll The government’s emergency programme to issue temporary visas to thousands of lorry drivers is far too little to resolve Britain’s supply-chain crisis and is unlikely to attract them to the UK, haulage chiefs have warned. Downing Street […]

Boris Johnson talks up ‘solid steps’ on US trade as lamb deal agreed

PM says in Washington he has ‘every confidence a great deal is there to be done’ on transatlantic trade The US will start to allow imports of UK lamb for the first time in decades, Boris Johnson has said, as he used his trip to Washington to talk up what he termed “solid incremental steps” […]

BBC chair defends Jess Brammar recruitment process

Richard Sharp stands by ‘free communication’ within board after claims member with government links tried to block appointment The BBC chair has defended its recruitment process after a board member with government links reportedly tried to block an appointment, while the corporation’s director general emphasised that “impartiality is sacrosanct”. The BBC chair, Richard Sharp, insisted […]

Coronavirus: plans to end free rapid tests in England ‘reckless’

Mayors, teaching unions and health chiefs say decision will speed up spread of virus and deepen health inequalities Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage England’s coronavirus testing strategy has been been criticised as “reckless” amid plans to end the free provision of rapid tests and relax the monitoring of cases from abroad. […]

Dominic Cummings criticised for failure to seek approval over paid-for blog

Former officials must inform watchdog over new work after leaving government Dominic Cummings has been criticised by a watchdog for failing to seek approval before setting up his paid-for blog, which he uses to make revelations about his time as the prime minister’s chief adviser. Cummings, who was ordered by Boris Johnson to leave Downing […]

Paul Dacre ‘should be banned from reapplying’ as Ofcom chair, says Tory MP

Ministers restarted interview process for Ofcom job after former editor considered ‘unappointable’ Paul Dacre should be banned from reapplying to be chair of media regulator Ofcom because he failed the interview process on the first attempt, according to the Conservative MP who runs an influential select committee. Downing Street has been trying to appoint the […]

Who’s paying for the government’s plan to fix social care?

The government’s plan to fix the ailing social care system passed into law this week. But who will benefit most and who will pick up the bill? Last week Boris Johnson outlined what Downing Street is billing as a once-in-a-generation shake-up of adult social care and how it is funded. It is an attempt to […]

‘A very cruel exit’: UK’s aid cuts risk rapid return of treatable diseases

£200m project to eliminate avoidable blindness and disfigurement in Africa ends after funding is prematurely axed A chandelier sparkling in the background, the grandeur of Downing Street gleaming behind him, Boris Johnson looks into the camera and speaks with solemnity. He is marking World Neglected Tropical Diseases Day, he says, to raise awareness of these […]

Johnson backs Dick staying as Met chief despite backlash

Term in office expected to be extended, despite calls for her to go from those who have won apologies from Met Downing Street has come out in strong support of the embattled Metropolitan police commissioner, Cressida Dick, after a backlash to the government’s decision to extend her time in office. The formal announcement to extend […]

Cressida Dick offered two-year extension as Met police chief

Extension said to have been granted because those most likely to replace her are not yet seen as suitable The government has offered the Metropolitan police commissioner, Cressida Dick, a two-year extension to her term in office. The decision was made by the home secretary, Priti Patel, in consultation with the London mayor, Sadiq Khan, […]

Priti Patel meets French minister over migrant crossings

Tory MPs urge home secretary to send arrivals back to France after influx of boats this week Priti Patel has met with the French interior minister, Gérald Darmanin, after a tense exchange between the two countries over the number of migrants crossing the Channel to the UK. The talks broke up on Wednesday afternoon and […]

Tory MPs irked by No 10 drinks reception request for proof of Covid status

Backbenchers take issue with request, pointing out proof was not needed for 1922 Committee drinks on Monday Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Boris Johnson has left some Conservative MPs bristling, after they were told to bring proof of their Covid vaccine or test status along to a drinks reception in Downing […]

What has Boris Johnson announced in his social care plan?

The PM has revealed the first outlines of a shake-up also intended to help the NHS recover from Covid Politics live: Boris Johnson confirms rise in national insurance Boris Johnson has given the first outlines of what Downing Street is billing as a once-in-a-generation shake-up of adult social care and how it is funded, which […]

The Guardian view on Tory election bill: rigging polls to win | Editorial

MPs have a choice – to fight for voting rights or fight against them In a democracy, it is vital that elections are both secure and open to all. Voters must trust the result and know that it has not been fraudulently obtained. Polls suggest that they do: public confidence in elections is the highest […]

‘Chaos’ in No 10 as Johnson finalises social care funding plan

Growing backlash from cabinet ministers and MPs after leaks about plan for national insurance rise Boris Johnson is expected to make a final decision over the weekend about whether to press ahead with his controversial social care funding plan, in the face of a growing backlash from cabinet ministers and backbench MPs. One government source […]

Ministers struggle to find people to interview Paul Dacre for Ofcom job

Exclusive: Second attempt to make former Daily Mail editor chair of media regulator hits stumbling block Downing Street’s second attempt to appoint Paul Dacre as chair of the media regulator Ofcom has hit another snag, with ministers struggling to find people willing to interview the former Daily Mail editor for the job. No 10 has […]

Boris Johnson’s West Country visit not a holiday, No 10 says

Spokesman says PM ‘continuing to work’ after he was criticised for earlier break during Afghan crisis Afghanistan latest news – live Boris Johnson returned to the West Country on Sunday to spend several days with his family but Downing Street has said it is not a holiday and that he is “continuing to work”. In […]

No 10 denies Boris Johnson intervened in Afghan animal evacuation

Ally of Pen Farthing claims PM’s wife influenced him to assist removal of hundreds of cats and dogs from Kabul Downing Street has denied fresh claims that Boris Johnson and his wife intervened to ensure the evacuation of a Kabul animal sanctuary founder and hundreds of cats and dogs. Paul “Pen” Farthing, a former Royal […]

Downing Street hints pensions triple lock will be watered down

Boris Johnson’s spokesperson has said there are concerns about tying state pensions rise to earnings Downing Street has given its strongest signal yet that the pensions triple lock will be watered down because of the recent surge in average earnings, which under current rules would deliver a rise of more than 8% for pensioners next […]

Is young Rishi about to shunt an ageing Boris into the role of wicked queen? | Marina Hyde

As Gina Gershon put it in Showgirls, there’s always someone younger and hungrier coming down the stairs after you Bloodcurdling shrieks from Downing Street, where Boris Johnson recently beheld a most enraging sight in his magic mirror (bespoke handcrafted rattan, Soane, price on application). Instead of responding to his daily question “Who is the most […]

170 words per minute: rediscover drum’n’bass novel Junglist

Andrew Green and Eddie Otchere were teenage ravers who turned early-90s jungle into mutant modernism prose. In his foreword to a reissued edition, Sukhdev Sandhu explains its power, alongside photos from the era by Otchere Andrew Green and Eddie Otchere – AKA Two Fingas and James T Kirk, whose extraordinary collaborative novel Junglist is reissued […]

Anger as Boris Johnson does not isolate after staffer’s positive Covid test

Exclusive: PM continued tour of Scotland despite at times being ‘side-by-side’ with official, source says Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Boris Johnson is facing mounting anger after it emerged he continued with a tour of Scotland and decided not to isolate despite a member of his team testing positive for Covid-19 […]

No 10 refuses stay of execution for alpaca Geronimo who tested positive for bovine TB

Helen Macdonald says she is prepared to be arrested as she awaits animal’s ‘kill window’ Downing Street has refused to grant a stay of execution to an alpaca that faces the prospect of being killed after twice testing positive for bovine tuberculosis. The farmer who owns Geronimo, the stud animal, says she fears authorities will […]

The Guardian view on Channel migrants: people, not political props | Editorial

The RNLI has moral justice on its side when reasserting its humanitarian mission to provide sea rescue without discrimination Viewed from Downing Street, the problem of migrant boats crossing the Channel involves a conflict between a humanitarian obligation and political pressure for closed borders. But at sea level there is no dilemma. Once people have […]

The Guardian view on a crime blitz: Boris Johnson won’t make you feel safer | Editorial

Many voters think the government handles crime badly. Unworkable but tough-sounding punishments won’t change their minds. Boris Johnson was a journalist who wanted to be prime minister. Now in Downing Street, he appears happiest when supplying headlines for the rightwing press. On Sunday, his plan to “blitz crime” was on the front page of the […]

Sucks to be him! How Henry the vacuum cleaner became an accidental design icon

Henry is a fixture in millions of homes – including 10 Downing Street – despite almost no advertising. Meet the man behind a curiously British success story In March this year, photos of the government’s glitzy new briefing room, where Boris Johnson’s new media chief was set to host daily press conferences, leaked to the […]

Two years after winning with Dominic Cummings, Johnson looks rudderless

Analysis: attacks by PM’s former adviser echoed by Tory insiders who say No 10 operation is chaotic Two years ago Dominic Cummings became the most powerful man in Downing Street – apart, perhaps, from the prime minister himself. And this week he marked that anniversary with what one former colleague described as a “jihad on […]

Isolate if ‘pinged’ by NHS Covid app, says No 10, despite minister’s claims

Firms and staff told to follow app’s instructions even though they are not legally enforceable Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Downing Street has urged people to isolate if they are “pinged” by the NHS app, after the business minister, Paul Scully, suggested individuals and employers could choose to ignore the instructions. […]