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No 10 parties as Queen mourned

Downing Street is embroiled in a fresh party controversy. The Telegraph can reveal that staff drank alcohol into the early hours at two leaving events the night before Prince Philip’s socially-distanced funeral

Some attendees played music in the basement and danced as a senior No 10 adviser acted as DJ, a witness said. It is also alleged that one person present went to a nearby Co-op with a suitcase to collect bottles of wine. 

The next day, the Queen sat alone at the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral in St George’s Chapel because of Covid-19 restrictions. Political Correspondent Tony Diver has the full revelations

Speaking to today’s Chopper’s Politics podcast, Andrew Bridgen becomes the fifth Tory MP to call for Mr Johnson to resign, confirming he has submitted a letter of no confidence to the 1922 Committee. 

And Sir Keir Starmer was branded an “absolute hypocrite” for drinking beer with staff in lockdown.

Meanwhile, the co-founder of Downing Street’s “Nudge Unit” has suggested scare tactics were misused during the pandemic to get the public to follow lockdown.

Simon Ruda, a behavioural scientist, said he feared the “most egregious and far-reaching mistake” made during the Covid crisis was the “level of fear willingly conveyed on the public”. 

While defending behavioural science for driving improvements in policy, he warned the trend could have unintended consequences.

Duke of York exiled from royal life as he loses HRH title

And so, in just 49 words, the Duke of York’s royal career was over – with no going back. He was stripped of all military titles and patronages by the Queen and agreed no longer to use his HRH title, in an attempt to protect the Royal family from the fallout of his sexual abuse case. The announcement was made after the Duke, 61, was summoned to Windsor Castle for a 45-minute meeting with his mother amid increasing speculation that he will have to pay off his accuser, Virginia Roberts Giuffre. But he insisted that he would continue to defend the civil case as a “private citizen”. Overnight, Ms Giuffre said that she was glad “I will have the chance to continue to expose the truth”. Buckingham Palace made clear that Prince Andrew’s titles will never be returned regardless of the outcome of any future legal proceedings. Associate Editor Camilla Tominey says that cutting ties with royal life was the Duke’s only option.

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