Metropolitan Police Commissioner Dame Cressida Dick has insisted that Boris Johnson did not break the law with his bike ride seven miles from his home.
Johnson has been accused of hypocrisy following reports he went cycling away from his home after imposing sweeping Covid restrictions on others.
The prime minister was seen at the Olympic Park in east London on Sunday afternoon cycling with members of his security detail.
Official regulations brought in by Johnson say that exercise is limited to once a day and you should not leave your local area, in a bid to halt the surge in coronavirus cases.
But Dick insisted it was not against the law, but clarified that staying local means “it should start and end at your front door”.
She told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “I am not going to comment on individual cases. I’m really not.”
Asked if the prime minister is a role model, the police chief said: “The public are looking to all of us as role models, for all of us in public life, if you like.
“What I can say is that it is not against the law. I think that’s implicit.”
It is not clear whether Johnson took the trip on his bike from his front door or whether he was given a lift across London to arrive at the Olympic Park.
“The PM follows Covid-secure guidelines. It does not say in the regulations that driving somewhere to take exercise is a breach of the rules. That is not a comment on the PM’s case but the rules only say remain local,” a Downing Street source said.