Boris Johnson to hold in-person Cabinet meeting as pressure grows for Whitehall office return

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 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Boris Johnson is to chair an in-person Cabinet next week after MPs return to Westminster.

The meeting, the first face-to-face this year, is expected to take place in Downing Street under Covid-secure arrangements.

The move will pile pressure on Whitehall departments to encourage thousands more civil servants to return to the office.

Skills minister Gillian Keegan told last month how just 20 to 25 per cent of staff in the Department for Education had returned to the office.

The Government dropped the work from home guidance as lockdown restrictions were ditched.

Ministers have been encouraging a “gradual return” to the workplace over the summer, with trains and the Tube becoming busier during rush hour.

However, the Government has been accused of being slow at getting workers back into Whitehall.

MPs will return to the Commons on Monday, with the hybrid arrangements, which allowed them to take part remotely, having now been abandoned.

Mr Johnson has been away from Downing Street, in the West of England, since Sunday but No10 says he is continuing to work during his break and suggesting he is not on holiday.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab was heavily criticised for staying on holiday while the Afghanistan crisis blew up.

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