Michael Gove confronted by angry woman delayed for 30 hours at airport

·3-min read
Ms Jones challenges Mr Gove on his part in Brexit (Iris Arvanitakis)
Ms Jones challenges Mr Gove on his part in Brexit (Iris Arvanitakis)

Michael Gove was confronted by an anti-Brexit holidaymaker over after being caught up in huge queues at a Greek airport.

Candida Jones, a former Labour councillor who works for a Labour peer, challenged the former cabinet minister while facing a 30-hour delay which she said was “compounded” by Brexit.

A “tanned” Mr Gove was pictured standing alone in the same queue, but it is thought he was not on the same flight to Gatwick.

Ms Jones, from South London, was due to return to Gatwick on Saturday, but easyJet postponed her flight to 10.35pm on Sunday due to disruption at airports.

Ms Jones tweeted yesterday: “Almost 30hr delay to our easyJet flight now. I’m told the problem’s a lack of staff due to the pandemic compounded, in the case of the UK, by #Brexit.

“So it’s at least some consolation to find arch Brexiteer Michael Gove caught up in the same sh**show #BrexitChaos #BrexitShambles.”

The 50-year-old told The Mirror that she debated with Mr Gove for 15 minutes in the bag drop queue at Athens International Airport.

She described the politician as “polite but very passive-aggressive” as he insisted the delays had nothing to do with Brexit.

She also said she asked him to name the “opportunities” from leaving the EU, to which he responded, the vaccine rollout and agricultural reforms.

Ms Jones told The Mirror: “I said, ‘Come on, this is just ridiculous. There’s nothing about being an EU member that in any way impeded us from doing the vaccine rollout sooner’.

“I said ‘you are a smart guy and know what you are telling me is not true, and you have got to stop treating the British people as if we’re stupid’.”

Mr Gove told her he was on holiday and didn’t think it was an “appropriate place” for the conversation, she added.

Ms Jones tells The Independent that Mr Gove then tried to steer the conversation on to education, at which point her daughter Iris took up the debate.

“She’s 17 and waiting for her AS results. She also ‘confronted’ Gove when he tried to deflect the conversation from Brexit onto what he thought was safer ground- his educational reforms,” she adds.

“She’s the generation that Gove’s ‘reforms’ have messed with. She’s also the generation who will miss out most because of Brexit; her grandfather is Greek, her uncle Italian, her year abroad was all planned - learning Greek and Italian with her relatives.

“She can’t do that now. She feels those restrictions on her freedom of movement bitterly,” said Ms Jones.

The debate comes after months of disruptions around travel hubs across the UK, which experts say have been made worse by Brexit, although other factors have contributed.