Beergate: Keir Starmer and Angela Rayner receive questionnaires

·2-min read
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer and deputy leader Angela Rayner (PA Wire)
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer and deputy leader Angela Rayner (PA Wire)

Sir Keir Starmer and Angela Rayner have received their questionnaires from Durham Constabulary over beergate.

Beergate refers to the footage of Mr Starmer having a drink and a takeaway curry with party colleagues in Durham in April 2021.

At the time, households were banned mixing indoors apart from working under the Covid guidelines.

Both Mr Starmer and Ms Rayner have said they would resign from their positions if they are found to have broken the Covid lockdown rules.

A Labour Party spokesperson said: “Keir Starmer and Angela Rayner have received questionnaires from Durham Constabulary.”

Durham Constabulary are investigating a gathering in party offices in April last year.

Earlier on Tuesday, the deputy Labour leader insisted she had not broken the rules after a team had spent a day campaigning for the local elections in Durham in April 2021.

Asked if she would still resign if Durham Police found she had broken the rules, she told ITV’s Loose Women: “100% because integrity matters. This is why I’m so confident about it. I didn’t see my granddaughter through that period. I had two relatives that died. We all suffered our own personal stories around it.

“The bar is for me… We, as MPs, we said ‘these are the rules, this is what you have to stick by’. If you break those rules, and you get a fixed penalty notice, you can’t be in office. I can’t be in office if I do that. It’s not OK.

“I couldn’t literally be on this show and sat here if I thought I broke the rules. I could not defend it. Absolutely not. I couldn’t look my friends in the eye who had their own personal sacrifice.”

It comes as Boris Johnson comes under pressure amid the partygate scandal.

The Prime Minister could be in “real trouble” and could face a confidence vote as early as next week, Lord William Hague said.

The former Tory leader said “respected” Conservative backbenchers had begun turning their backs on Boris Johnson after the publication of the damning Sue Gray report.

“I think Boris Johnson is in real trouble here,” Lord Hague told Times Radio.

“A lot of people misread the events of last week as meaning the trouble is over, Boris is free,” he said.

“And that’s actually not the mood in the Conservative Party which is very, very troubled about the contents of that report.