Downing St handed Sue Gray’s full report on lockdown-busting parties as PM plans apology

25 May 2022, 09:42 | Updated: 25 May 2022, 10:31

  • Sue Gray’s full report into Downing Street lockdown parties set to be published
  • Senior civil servant to name officials and possibly include photos
  • Her report is expected to heavily criticise the culture at No10 that saw repeat breaches of Covid rules
  • Boris Johnson expected to address the nation in a press conference later this afternoon
  • Ms Gray’s interim report published in January criticised ‘failures of leadership’
Boris Johnson has been given Sue Gray’s full report
Boris Johnson has been given Sue Gray’s full report. Picture: Alamy

By Asher McShane

Sue Gray's final report into parties in and around Downing Street during the pandemic is expected to be published later after being presented to No10.

It is thought senior civil servant Ms Gray will name officials who attended gatherings and possibly include photos in her widely anticipated full report into the scandal.

Boris Johnson is expected to address the nation later this afternoon after PMQs and following the release of the full report. It is expected he will deliver another apology over his presence at drinks gatherings at No10 during lockdown.

Ms Gray's report is expected to be heavily critical of the culture in No 10, which led to the repeated violations of Covid restrictions.

Read more: Sunak to unveil 'cost-of-living rescue package' the day after Sue Gray publishes report

Potentially damaging further details, including the names of some of those who attended gatherings, are also due to be published.

Officials impacted by the Gray inquiry, including those to be named, were written to ahead of its publication, allowing them to have a chance to respond before it was finalised.

It is believed the report could be published today, however there are reports the decision over its publication date will be left up to No 10.

A Downing Street press conference is expected to be held after her findings are made public.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson is scheduled to address the 1922 Committee of backbench Tories on Wednesday. He is also due to address the Commons.

According to an earlier, shortened version published in January, Ms Gray's investigation analysed events from May 15 2020 to April 16 2021.

The full publication into the parties was sidelined as the Metropolitan Police conducted its own partygate probe, dubbed Operation Hillman.

The force concluded its investigation on May 19, with 126 fines being issued in total to 83 people.

Mr Johnson received one for an event held on his 56th birthday and was told he would face no further action over other gatherings covered by the inquiry.

Earlier this week, two new photographs apparently depicting separate gatherings at Downing Street were published.

Images obtained by ITV appeared to show Mr Johnson raising a toast and drinking wine at a gathering held to mark the departure of former spin doctor Lee Cain on November 13 2020.

The Mirror meanwhile published a picture showing a man standing at a table with nine bottles of wine and prosecco, which was claimed to have been taken at a gathering to mark the final press briefing Mr Johnson's former official spokesman James Slack on November 17 2020.

On Tuesday evening, the BBC broadcast a Panorama programme which featured three anonymous individuals describing in detail what they witnessed at regular rule-breaking events during coronavirus restrictions.

They said events were "every week", with invitations for press office drinks listed in the diary as "Wine-Time Friday".

On Tuesday, Mayor of London Sadiq Khan wrote to the acting head of the Metropolitan Police Sir Stephen House to explain the force's decisions over partygate after pictures emerged of Mr Johnson drinking at a gathering for which he was not fined.