Inside the booze-fuelled Downing Street leaving bash: Pizzas, karaoke, vomit and fighting

Sue Gray's report reveals the party ended after 3am and was attended by over 25 people at its height

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A party for a departing Downing Street official on June 18, 2020, whilst the nation was in the midst of Covid restrictions, became a booze-fuelled karaoke extravaganza complete with pizzas, fighting and one member of staff being sick.

Sue Gray's report, published today, has revealed that No 10 staff indulged themselves with "excessive alcohol consumption", "brought pizza and prosecco".

They also set up a "karaoke machine" to give a No 10 official a send-off.


Images of another gathering in the Sue Gray report
Images of another gathering in the Sue Gray report

The event took place as England moved to "step 2 of the Government's roadmap" in which restrictions on leaving your home were removed.

The rules, as reported in Sue Gray's report, said that "gatherings of two or more persons indoors and more than six outdoors were prohibited."

"An exception permitted gatherings that are reasonable necessary for 'work purposes'."

"Work places were required to maintain 2m social distancing wherever possible", the report said.

"Including when arriving at and departing from work, while in work, and when travelling between sites."

Images of another gathering in the Sue Gray report
Images of another gathering in the Sue Gray report

According to Ms Gray's report "over 25 people gathered for the first formal part of the leaving event with speeches which took place in the Cabinet Room, including No 10 official (1), Dominic Cummings and Simon Case, the Permanent Secretary for Covid and the Pandemic Response in No 10.

"Alcohol was available and Stuart Glassborow, Deputy Principal Private Secretary to the Prime Minister, gave a speech."

Ms Gray's report then moves on to the second part of the report, in which the party for the official ramps up.

"At around 19.40, at the conclusion of the event in the Cabinet Room a number of staff moved through from No 10 into 70 Whitehall using the link door between the two buildings.

A Whatsapp exchange between staff read:

"[No 10 official (4)] 'Where is everyone?'"

Images of another gathering in the Sue Gray report
Images of another gathering in the Sue Gray report

"[No 10 official (4) ] 'The pizzas are here.'"

"[No 10 official (1)] 'We're moving to cab sec office.'"

"[No 10 official (1)] 'We're in outer office of cab sec with pizza'"

The report continues to note that staff brought in food and alcohol to mark the event.

"Some brought pizza and prosecco and they were followed by others, over the next couple of hours", the report says.

"Helen MacNamara, Deputy Cabinet Secretary, attended for part of the evening and provided a karaoke machine which was set up in an adjoining office to the waiting room."

The report goes on: "The event lasted for a number of hours. There was excessive alcohol consumption by some individuals.

"One individual was sick.

"There was a minor altercation between two other individuals. The event broke up in stages with a few members of staff leaving from around 21.00 and the last member of staff, who stayed to tidy up, leaving at 03.13."