Johnson apologises to Queen for party on eve of Duke's funeral

Downing Street has apologised to the Queen and the Royal Family after fresh claims emerged that two parties were held in the night before the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral.

Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

A spokesman for Boris Johnson said it was “deeply regrettable that this took place at a time of national mourning".

“No 10 has apologised to the Palace.”

According to British newspaper The Telegraph, the parties were leaving dos attended by 30 advisers and civil servants on the night of April 16, 2021 when social mixing indoors was banned in England.

“Eye witnesses have talked to The Telegraph about what happened. It is alleged that excessive booze was drunk, while at points, guests danced along to music,” the paper said.

The article cited a No 10 spokesperson as saying Johnson was not in that day and said to have been at Chequers.

British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss, viewed as a potential successor to Johnson, said she was concerned by the revelations of the week but urged the public to move on.

“I completely understand people’s anger and dismay .. the prime minister apologised on Wednesday.”

“What people want is, they want to see us working to deliver for the people of the United Kingdom."

But there is growing outrage and division with many Tory MPs who are calling for Johnson to resign.

The paper’s allegations come in the same week the prime minister apologised and admitted he attended a bring your own booze gathering at No 10 – but he claimed it was a work event.

From cheese and wine in the Downing St garden in April 2020, to that “work event”, from the Christmas quiz, to jokes about socially-distanced drinks and now gatherings the night before the Duke of Edinburgh's funeral, these awkward moments almost span a whole year.

Opposition parties say they’ve had enough.

“This is a culture that’s been set by the Prime Minister which is said that we break the we’ve made and we don’t have to follow them,” Labour’s deputy leader Angela Rayner said.

“It is absolutely devastating”

In April 2021, Prince Philip died aged 99. His funeral at Windsor Castle was scaled down due, in part, to Covid-19 restrictions. At the time, the Queen sat alone in a face mask socially distanced from loved ones.