Boris Johnson 'hid in bedroom' to avoid grilling on Brexit stance days before becoming PM
- Credit: PA
Boris Johnson allegedly "hid in his bedroom" to avoid questions on Brexit days before he was set to become prime minister in July 2019.
Former Tory adviser Peter Cardwell claimed in his new book The Secret Life of Special Advisers that Johnson and his team ran upstairs to his bedroom to escape questions from Iain Duncan Smith (IDS).
The book, released on Wednesday, looks at the prime minister's turbulent relationship with backbench MPs, including the former chair of his leadership campaign, IDS.
Cardwell was sacked in February but had spent years in close contact with a number of cabinet ministers.
His book recounts the "farcical scene" in the days before Johnson took over from his predecessor Theresa May.
You may also want to watch:
IDS had been brought into by Johnson to help convince other Tory MPs about his stance on Brexit.
“IDS attempted to ring him several times to suggest they have a strategy discussion at the campaign’s headquarters at the home of Andrew Griffith, a Sky executive who later worked in Downing Street and became an MP in December 2019," Cardwell describes in the book.
- 1 Why don't Brexiteers like to talk about Brexit any more?
- 2 Brexit: British 'expats' in Spain facing deportation over residency
- 3 Michael O'Leary: My hope for the future over Brexit
- 4 Five years of Brexit summed up by Cold War Steve
- 5 When Eton took on a team of miners at football
- 6 Is the Sun setting on Murdoch's global media empire?
- 7 Did Donald Trump really wear his trousers backwards at Republicans' North Carolina rally?
- 8 English to be temporarily replaced by French as EU's 'working language' in 2022
- 9 Major disaster: How Tories' 1992 victory sowed seeds of Brexit
- 10 Priti Patel urged to publish promised assessment on impact of ending freedom of movement
However, Johnson "ignored both calls and texts until finally IDS texted to say he was on his way round".
The book continues: "With IDS en route, Boris quickly ordered his entire team to race up the stairs to the first floor of the house and, well, hide from their alleged campaign chairman as he rapped on the door of the building, demanding to be let in.
"Eventually, IDS gave up knocking on the door and ringing the bell, and the Johnson team gingerly made their way downstairs again to their makeshift offices to resume their work."
A senior Tory Party source told The Sun the event was "work of fiction" while others allegedly present have disputed the claim.
Cardwell told the paper: "That's what we in the trade would describe as not a denial".
IDS reportedly declined to comment when approached.
Become a Supporter
The New European is proud of its journalism and we hope you are proud of it too. We believe our voice is important - both in representing the pro-EU perspective and also to help rebalance the right wing extremes of much of the UK national press. If you value what we are doing, you can help us by making a contribution to the cost of our journalism.