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People are now sharing their heartbreaking Christmas 2020 memories after reports surfaced of a 'fictional' Downing Street Christmas party that allegedly took place in December last year despite Covid-19 restrictions.
At the time the party is said to have happened, gatherings had been banned under government restrictions and London was in Tier 3.
Yesterday evening, a video of Boris Johnson's then press secretary, Allegra Stratton, was released online, showing senior Downing Street staff joking about the 'party'.
In the video, taken on 22nd December, Downing Street employees can be seen rehearsing for a news conference.
"I've just seen reports on Twitter that there was a Downing Street Christmas party on Friday night," one asked.
Laughing, Allegra says: "I went home, hold on, hold on, err..."
"It wasn't a party it was cheese and wine," said another.
Allegra responded: "Is cheese and wine alright? It was a business meeting... This fictional party was a business meeting [laughs]... and it was not socially distanced."
The video has shocked and angered members of the public, many of whom were abided by the rules and spent Christmas away from their loved ones to protect themselves and others from Covid-19.
One Twitter user shared his experience of spending last Christmas apart from his dad, who was in a care home. "My Dad spent his last ever Christmas in solitary confinement in his care home room. I couldn’t travel to Norfolk, he couldn’t leave the home to be with family who lived nearby.
"He later died alone. We couldn’t have a funeral. Whilst they had a 'cheese and wine business meeting'”.
Campaigner Gina Martin also shared a saddening story about not being able to see her dad after his mum passed away from Covid. "I couldn’t hold my dad for the first time since his mum died of Covid last Christmas, and spent it alone in my flat with my fiancé but I’m glad Alexander Boris De Pffefel Johnson and his mates had a nice party.
"The lack of morality and integrity is astonishing."
A third Twitter user revealed their dad had to spend his last Christmas alone. "My Dad spent last Christmas alone and died New Year’s Day alone due to this government’s rules whilst they was having a party #govermentparty @BorisJohnson absolutely shameful #Disgraceful."
Another person told how their elderly mum spent Christmas alone in response to news of the alleged party. "Last Christmas I worked from the 24th to the 27th, every day.
"I couldn't go to visit my mum before (or after Christmas) as it wasn't safe, I wouldn't want to put her at risk. My elderly mum spent Christmas day alone, because we were told it was safer."
During Prime Minister's Questions (PMQs) on Wednesday, Boris Johnson apologised for the video. "I share the anger of the public," he said in response to the controversial clip.
"I was also furious to see that clip. I apologise unreservedly."
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