Birmingham Tory says Boris Johnson can 'no longer enjoy his support' after Sue Gray report

Sutton Coldfield MP Andrew Mitchell tells Boris Johnson that he no longer supports him

Boris Johnson has once again faced calls to resign from within his own party after an inquiry into alleged rule-breaking in Number 10.

Sutton Coldfield MP and former Cabinet minister Andrew Mitchell today told the PM that although he has supported him for many years, that he no longer can after Sue Gray's party gate report.

The report condemned a "serious failure" in Downing Street to observe coronavirus standards and said "a number" of gatherings should not have been allowed to take place.

Speaking in the Commons, Mr Mitchell said: "I am deeply concerned by these events and very concerned indeed by some of the things has had said from that dispatch box and has said to the British public and our constituents."

"When he kindly invited me to see him ten days ago, I told him he should think very carefully about what was now in the best interests of our country and of the Conservative Party.

"And I have to tell him, he no longer enjoys my support."

Meanwhile, Newcastle Under Lyme MP Andrew Bell, emotionally told the PM about his grandmothers funeral which he attended in May 2020.

He explained that only ten people were allowed at the funeral and everyone else had to watch online.

He asked: "Does the Prime Minister think I'm a fool?"

However, MP for Stourbridge, Suzanne Webb stated that she believes that "those opposite" have spent "far too much parliamentary time" debating this subject.

She continued by saying she believes the residents of Stourbridge want parliament to "focus on the matters that they care about".

The PM responded to Ms Webb saying it was "vital for the government to make this statement, to learn from Sue Grey's report and to take action."

He continued by saying it's also important "that we get on with the peoples priorities".

Mr Johnson has accepted Sue Grey's findings and apologised, saying he is "sorry for the things we simply didn't get right and also sorry for the way that this matter has been handled".

He said he would "learn from these events and act now" by implementing changes to improve the running of government.

The 12 events being investigated by police:

  • 20 May - Number 10 BYOB garden party

  • 18 June - A Cabinet Office leaving party

  • 19 June - The PM's birthday gathering, where he was presented with cake

  • 13 Nov - A party in the PM's Downing Street flat and a leaving party for a special adviser

  • 17 Dec - Two Cabinet Office parties, one Number 10 leaving party

  • 18 Dec - 10 Downing Street Christmas party

  • 14 January 21 - Leaving party for two private secretaries

  • 16 April 21 - Two Number 10 leaving parties

The Met says it was passed a "bundle of evidence" by Ms Gray's team, which includes 300 pieces of paper, "about a ream and a half", and 300 photographs.

What did the partygate report find?

Ms Gray said the conclusion of her report was that: "A number of these gatherings should not have been allowed to take place or to develop in the way that they did.

"There is significant learning to be drawn from these events which must be addressed immediately across government. This does not need to wait for the police investigations to be concluded."

Ms Gray also criticised the culture in Downing Street as she attacked the "excessive consumption of alcohol" in Downing Street, which she said is "not appropriate in a professional workplace at any time".

"Steps must be taken to ensure that every government department has a clear and robust policy in place covering the consumption of alcohol in the workplace."

She pointed out that some staff wanted to raise concerns about behaviour they witnessed in Downing Street but "felt unable to do so".

Responding to Ms Gray's findings, Mr Johnson said: “I get it, and I will fix it. I want to say to the people of this country I know what the issue is.”

Labour MPs shouted back: “You!”