No 10 admit to 'nasty, misogynist culture' during Boris Johnson's premiership

ITV News UK Editor Paul Brand reports on the misogynistic culture during Boris Johnson's time in office

Downing Street has admitted that there was a "nasty, misogynist culture" under Boris Johnson's premiership.

Responding to an ITV documentary containing fresh revelations about his leadership, No 10 Director of Communications Guto Harri claimed that Boris Johnson had "carried the can for the bad behaviour of others."

Harri also blamed former aides for the culture at Number 10.

"Previous aides who have devoted their lives to bringing down the PM did indeed preside over a nasty, misogynist culture", the spokesman said.

"Downing Street has been a much better place without them."

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In Tonight: Boris Johnson: The Rise and Fall, which airs at 8:30pm on ITV, a source who worked in No 10 alleges that Boris Johnson's arrival in Downing Street brought with it "a very masculine culture...you know, lads down the pub."

They added, "If you were a female in that sort of zone, it's actually quite uncomfortable to work in."

Responding, Guto Harri also told the programme: "The vast majority of the press office are women, roughly half the private office and indeed most of the main teams in No10."

'Boris Johnson brought a very masculine culture to No 10...lads down the pub'

The former aides ITV Tonight approached about these claims declined to comment.

The source - who worked closely with the PM for a number of years - also claimed that Boris Johnson "was completely disorganised. He would never read his notes."

He claimed, "First thing in the morning Boris Johnson would turn up two hours late. His hair would be wet. He'd have like his zip undone or his shirt hanging out. He'd be just a complete mess all the time."

The PM on his birthday in the Cabinet Room on June 19, 2020 when Covid restrictions were in place. Credit: Handout

Speaking anonymously, the former staffer told Tonight there "were way more" parties inside No 10 during lockdown than were revealed during the partygate scandal.

"I think the prime minister himself had a few more than what has been reported, privately in his flat as well."

'It felt like an island different from the rest of the country where the same rules were not being applied'

In an explosive statement, in response to the programme, Guto Harri told ITV: "The Metropolitan Police carried out a thorough investigation into parties at No10 issuing the PM with only one FPN. He has - to a large extent therefore - carried the can for the bad behaviour of others - including some of his most fierce and shameless opponents."

No specific aides were mentioned in the claims but former chief adviser to the Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Dominic Cummings, tonight responded to the story on Twitter.

Tonight: Boris Johnson: The Rise & Fall, presented by Paul Brand will air at 8:30pm on ITV.