Ricky Gervais says No 10 parties have shown him how ‘naive’ he’s been: ‘Of course we shouldn’t trust them’

Comedian said he understood anger at government ‘breaking the rules, having these parties in their lovely gardens’

Isobel Lewis
Wednesday 12 January 2022 09:32
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Ricky Gervais says No 10 parties have shown him how ‘naive’ he’s been

Ricky Gervais has said that he “totally gets” why the public are angry at the Conservative government for having parties during the spring 2020 lockdown.

On Monday (10 January), it was reported that a “bring your own booze” party was held at the Downing Street gardens on 20 May 2020 with more than 100 people invited.

At the time, restrictions on social gatherings had just been eased to allow outdoor mixing with one member of another household, which could only take place in public open spaces rather than private gardens.

Discussing the party, Gervais said that he understood the anger at the Tories when “myself and everyone kept to the rules”.

“I totally get the anger with these parties that the government – the people in charge – were breaking the rules, having these parties in their lovely gardens,” Gervais told ITV News.

“I think I’ve been naive all my life. It’s not until now [that] I just go, “Why do we trust them? Of course we shouldn’t trust the people in charge – that’s how they’re in charge. They shouldn’t be trusted.”

The 20 May 2020 party is the latest in a long list of parties and gatherings to have allegedly been held by the government when the rest of the country was in lockdown.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson refused to say if he was present at the party, despite reports that he and his wife Carrie were among around 30 people to attend at a time when such gatherings were banned.

The Prime Minister has said it is a matter for Sue Gray, the senior civil servant who is investigating a series of reported parties in Downing Street and elsewhere in Whitehall in the course of 2020.

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Johnson is scheduled to appear at Prime Minister’s Questions today amid growing pressure on him to resign,

Sources told The Independent that No 10 staff have been told to “clean up” their phones by removing incriminating messages about potential parties.

Follow The Independent’s live blog here.

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