Jacob Rees Mogg has today blasted neighbours who called the police on Boris Johnson and his girlfriend as ‘Corbynista curtain twitchers’.
The Tory MP also hit out at anarchists who set up camp outside PM hopeful Johnson’s South London home after a recording of the couple’s late night row was leaked.
Mr Rees Mogg branded the protest by anti establishment group Class War as ‘absolutely dreadful’ forcing the Tory leadership favourite, 55, and partner Carrie Symonds, 31, to flee their home.
The ERG chief , who was also targeted by the same anarchist group in September last year, when they barked insults at his children outside his London home, said the events are ‘not a good place for politics to be.’
Anarchists staged a protest today outside the flat where police were called following a row between Boris Johnson and his girlfriend. Leading the group was Ian Bone (front right), a veteran protester who is known for previously accosting Jacob Rees-Mogg’s children
Mr Rees Mogg today branded the protest by anti establishment group Class War as ‘absolutely dreadful’ forcing the Tory leadership favourite, 55, and partner Carrie Symonds, 31, to flee.
Mr Rees Mogg (pictured holding one of his children, was also targeted by the same anarchist group in September last year (pictured)
It comes as Boris and Carrie were spotted looking smitten with friends saying they are still ‘very much in love.’ The couple went into hiding after their neighbours Eve Leigh and Tom Penn recorded their angry row and gave it to the press over the weekend.
Mr Rogg told LBC today: ‘I think it is absolutely dreadful, I really do.
‘I think the idea that snooping neighbours are recording what is going on for political advantage and then class war protesters are coming to politician’s front door, which happened to me as well, is not a good place for politics to be.
‘I think that politicians should feel safe and unmolested in their own homes. I think that that is a reasonable thing to ask for. I think peaceful protest is absolutely right and part of a free society.
‘But the aggression of the hard left is really appalling and not how British politics has normally been carried out, and snoopers are always unattractive.
The Tory MP hit out at anarchists who set up camp outside PM hopeful Johnson’s South London home (pictured) after a recording of the couple’s late night row was leaked
The left-wing activists were seen waving ‘F*** Boris’ banners that read: ‘We must devastate the avenues where the wealthy live’ and plastering the couple’s front door with offensive stickers
Mr Bone, pictured at the scene, who last year told Jacob Rees-Mogg’s children their ‘daddy is a horrible person’, said neither Boris nor Miss Symonds were ‘welcome in the area’
‘Curtain twitchers, Corbynista curtain twitchers are not attractive.’
In September 2018, activists told Mr Rees-Mogg’s children – including his six-year-old son – that their daddy is a ‘totally horrible person’ in a protest outside their home.
Activist Ian Bone, wearing a flat cap and leaning on a stick, was filmed shouting: ‘Your daddy won’t answer the question. Your daddy is a totally horrible person.
‘A lot of people don’t like your daddy, you know that. No he’s probably not told you about that.’
At the time Mr Rees-Mogg appeared unconcerned about the attack and told Mail Online: ‘It was a small protest by anarchists which not surprisingly was disorganised, unpunctual and short lived.’
Meanwhile Boris Johnson and Carrie Symonds have broken cover and looked happy and were holding hands in the Sussex countryside on Sunday, pictured
An onlooker said Boris and Carrie looked smitten after a bust-up on Friday that saw the police called to the south London flat they’ve now been forced to flee after anarchists camped outside
He later sought to play down the incident, insisting his children were ‘absolutely fine’, despite the barracking.
Mr Bone is currently at Mr Johnson’s flat, saying the couple ‘weren’t welcome in the area.’
The couple who recorded the row and shared it with The Guardian newspaper – Eve Leigh (pictured) and Tom Penn – were also not home yesterday. Pictured: Eve leaving her Camberwell home a week before the recording was released
The veteran campaigner, 71, was joined by colleagues who waved banners and placards reading ‘F*** Boris’ and ‘We must devastate the avenues where the wealthy live’, while they also plastered the couple’s front door with offensive stickers.
When asked whether his actions may drive a 31-year-old woman out of her flat, Mr Bone said: ‘I don’t think she will come back – they will regret moving here and not Notting Hill or somewhere like that.
‘She’s not welcome here or any other working class area – and neither is he.’
Meanwhile Mr Johnson and Miss Symonds were pictured hand-in-hand and smiling in the Sussex countryside yesterday afternoon, undermining claims their relationship is in crisis.
A friend of the couple has told MailOnline that claims they splitting up are smears and revealed the Tory leadership favourite, 55, intends to marry his girlfriend ‘as soon as the time is right’ after his divorce from second wife Marina goes through.
Friends of the former foreign secretary say it may be impossible for him to return to the £700,000 property in Camberwell, south London.
One said the couple had spent the weekend together and their ‘loving and doting’ relationship was ‘stronger than ever’.
Mr Johnson is refusing to break his silence on the domestic incident in the early hours of Friday that saw police officers called.
Jeremy Hunt raised the pressure on his Tory leadership rival by saying ‘someone who wants to be prime minister should answer questions on everything’.
As MPs who are backing Mr Johnson also called for him to reveal what happened:
- It emerged that Miss Symonds was accused by a Johnson aide of helping his rival Sajid Javid;
- Supporters of Mr Johnson privately voiced concerns about his relationship with her;
- Pictures emerged of Mr Johnson buying the wine that spilled on Miss Symonds sofa, apparently sparking the row;
- His allies claimed he would call the bluff of rebel Conservative MPs threatening to bring down the Government to stop a No Deal Brexit;
- Liz Truss, a Cabinet rank ally of Mr Johnson, warned it was not inevitable that he would be crowned Tory leader.
Under fire: Tom Penn and Eve Leigh, who live in the same block as Carrie Symonds in Camberwell, south London, said he heard screaming, banging and then silence in the early hours of Friday morning, which caused him to call the police
Six members of the anti-establishment group – including veteran protester Ian Bone, once described as ‘The Most Dangerous Man in Britain’ – turned up outside the Grade II Listed building just before 2pm today. One protester held up a scrawled upon pillow case which read ‘Camberwell welcomes migrants not Boris’
Ian Bone, the lifelong anarchist who has advocated violence and ‘hates the rich’
Veteran activist and grandfather Ian Bone, 71, was once dubbed Britain’s most dangerous man after the Class War newspaper he launched in 1982 became so incendiary it featured pictures of beaten up policemen.
The full-time anarchist – who’s been on state benefits since leaving university – now walks with a stick thanks to Parkinson’s disease.
Bone has been protesting since the 1980s and is a publisher with class activist publications, Class War and The Bristolian.
Class War became a class movement as well as a newspaper, which at its height sold 15,000 copies weekly and supported striking miners, dockers, print workers and demos including the Brixton Riots of 1981, before the publication was launched.
Bone went on Bash the Rich marches (Bash the Rich is also the title of his autobiography). Just a decade ago he advocated violence to overthrow the state.
While still a weekly paper, Class War dubbed itself ‘Britain’s most unruly tabloid’.
Bone admits to having a working class hatred for the rich as his own father was a butler.
He lived in Grenfell from 1983-1986 and knew several residents who were caught up in the fire there where 72 people died.
He went on to protest outside The Shard when Grenfell residents weren’t being re-housed as there were 10 £50m empty luxury flats inside the state-of-the-art tower.
Bone was taken to the High Court by Qatari royal family, owner of The Shard, last year to stop his protests against them before their lawyers withdrew their threat of an injunction.
Yesterday, anarchists perched themselves on the steps of Miss Symonds’ flat to protest against her lover and his party’s policies. Six Class War supporters shouted abuse and held up posters reading ‘f*** Boris, f*** the government’.
Camberwell residents have also shown their distaste at having Mr Johnson as their neighbour and posters mocking him were put up before Friday’s altercation.
He stayed out of the spotlight yesterday as his campaign team held talks on how to deal with the crisis.
A friend of Mr Johnson and Miss Symonds told the Mail: ‘They’ve spent the weekend together after being driven out of their home in Camberwell and actually the events of the past few days have made them stronger than ever but they really shouldn’t have to put up with this nonsense. They’re in a very loving and stable relationship. They totally dote on one another.’
The domestic dispute was recorded by a neighbour and reported to police.
Neighbours claimed Miss Symonds could be heard screaming and telling Mr Johnson to ‘get off me’ and ‘get out of my flat’.
Sources last night claimed that in recent weeks there had been tensions between Miss Symonds and members of Mr Johnson’s leadership campaign team. In a sign of the acrimony, one aide who is working for Mr Johnson told friends they believed she had been helping Mr Javid, the Home Secretary, with his failed leadership bid.
A MP who is backing Mr Johnson said it was ‘probably best’ for the couple to decide whether or not to get married. ‘A decision needs to be made,’ the MP added.
A source involved in Mr Johnson’s leadership campaign said: ‘The bigger worry is that this brings his personal life into play more generally. Things that might previously have been seen as ‘not relevant’ or ‘not in scope’ suddenly become fair game.
‘Some MPs have been worried about Carrie, but I think she’s politically savvy enough to know how to play things without causing damage to Boris.’
Asked if Johnson is fit to be Prime Minister, Bone said: ‘He certainly ain’t – he ain’t even fit to be a Pie Minister.’
Boris is pictured last seen leaving his home last Tuesday on the second day of Tory leadership voting
Anarchist circus at Boris’ flat: Protesters urge PM hopeful to move to a posher part of the capital as marijuana-smoking neighbour defends him as ‘cool-guy’
By Jim Norton, Jemma Carr and Jemma Buckley for the Daily Mail
The street outside Boris Johnson’s love nest descended into a circus at the weekend as campaigners swooped in.
Simmering discontent among residents at their new neighbour exploded into the open after news broke of Mr Johnson’s angry row with his girlfriend Carrie Symonds.
Posters were plastered across railings opposite the South London flat mocking the Tory leadership contender, with one urging him to move back to a swankier part of the capital.
Anarchists stood on the steps of the building carrying posters and shouting. Seemingly using the incident as an excuse to protest against the Conservative party, one veteran warned the couple would ‘regret’ moving to the area.
Mr Johnson and Miss Symonds, 31, have not been seen at the Grade II listed building since police were called in the early hours of Friday.
Local Kirstie Lamont stood outside Miss Symonds’s flat yesterday holding a poster with a picture. When asked whether she thought the posters would make Miss Symonds feel uncomfortable living in her flat Ms Lamont said: ‘Well, move’
The couple who recorded the row and shared it with The Guardian newspaper – Eve Leigh and Tom Penn – were also not home yesterday. Miss Leigh has admitted making an offensive gesture at Mr Johnson when they met on the steps of their building last week.
But neighbour Wayne Moseley, 47, defended the politician, saying he was a ‘cool guy’ who would chat on the steps while Mr Moseley smoked cannabis.
The film director – who goes by the name Yuppie Wayne – even criticised his neighbours for recording the argument.
Describing Mr Penn as a ‘peaceful guy’, he added: ‘I’ll be honest with you, neighbour to neighbour, no I don’t think it was very fair.
‘We all have domestic arguments with our partners.’ Describing how he would see Mr Johnson ‘all the time’, he said ‘I’ve met him on the doorstep, when I’m smoking my marijuana out here. I thought he was a cool guy.’
Boris Johnson and his girlfriend Carrie Symonds (pictured) have fled their home following the bust-up that has dented his hopes of becoming prime minister
He said Mr Johnson had never said anything regarding him smoking cannabis and that he had never offered him any.
He said that Miss Symonds was a ‘nice girl, a pretty girl’. Mr Moseley recently sparked a police response after shooting a scene involving two fake guns with a millionaire former Big Brother housemate.
The retired health worker was once arrested for public disorder after protesting outside a previous address of Mr Johnson in North London in 2016.
Another protester, who gave her name as Sorcha, has lived in the area nearly thirty years and said: ‘Refugees and migrants are welcome, Boris isn’t.’ Residents along the leafy street have also shown their distaste at having Mr Johnson as a neighbour.
Class War tweeted a picture of Ms Symonds’s front door plastered in ‘F*** Boris’ stickers the day before her row with Johnson
Kirstie Lamont, 48, said: ‘This area is just not hostile. We probably wouldn’t throw yoghurt on him if he walked by. But we wouldn’t be inviting him around for dinner.’
When asked if the posters could make Miss Symonds feel unwelcome, she said: ‘Well, move. Sorry, that does sound very aggressive. Kensington and Chelsea, that’s more the area that he belongs.’
Another local resident – who was attending a dog show on the green opposite – said: ‘This is a pretty gentrified area, we’re all liberal here, so he doesn’t really fit in. I understand he’s just going to his girlfriend’s house, but the posters show he’s not exactly welcome.’
Class war anarchists descend on Boris and Carrie’s flat as it emerges she’s ‘too afraid to return’ after anti-Brexit neighbours called police on them and handed row recording to newspaper
By Bridie Pearson-Jones and Isabella Nikolic for the MailOnline
Anarchists staged a protest today outside the flat of Boris Johnson’s girlfriend Carrie Symonds after the 31-year-old said she is ‘too scared to return home’ following the furore that erupted over her row with him.
The protesters were from Class War and included Ian Bone, 71, who was once described as ‘the most dangerous man in Britain’ and recently faced criticism after accosting Jacob Rees-Mogg’s children.
It comes after a recording of the couple having a ‘plate smashing screaming row’ was handed to the police and the Guardian newspaper by their ardent Remainer neighbours Eve Leigh, 34, and Tom Penn, 30.
The group from Class War arrived at the apartment and held up signs that read ‘F**k Boris. F**k the government’.
Today, Ms Symonds described the recordings, which hear her telling the Tory frontrunner, 55, ‘get off me’ and ‘get out of my flat’, as a as a ‘political stitch-up’.
Signs up in the South London neighbour read ‘We’d rather endure him as our neighbour than our Prime Minster’ urged people stop Boris from getting the keys to 10 Downing Street
Members of the anti-establishment group – including veteran protester Bone turned up outside the Grade II Listed building just before 2pm today.
Bone who walks with a stick, garnered media attention last year when he told Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg’s young children ‘your daddy’s a horrible person’.
Two people stood on the steps outside Ms Symonds’s £750,000 Camberwell flat holding up a banner that read: ‘We must devastate the avenues where the wealthy live.’
The banner was emblazoned with the logo of anarchist group Class War – an organisation that originally started as a paper in 1982 but expanded into a political movement.
Quoting radical socialist Lucy Parsons, the poster seemed designed to intimidate – featuring a large skull and crossbones and two anarchy symbols.
One of the Class War mob – holding a sign that read ‘Camberwell welcomes migrants not Boris’ – said she would be happy for the Tory leadership candidate to ‘leave the planet’.
‘I want Boris out of Camberwell’ she said.
‘We don’t need old middle class white men telling us what to do.
‘Go back to Eton or Highgate or wherever it is white middle class men come from.
‘I’m not asking for segregation, I’m asking Boris to f*** off out of Camberwell.’
She added: ‘People who preach hate speech are not welcome in our community.
Speaking at a hustings in Birmingham on Saturday, Boris Johnson did not mention the issue in his opening comments, insisting: ‘We need to get Brexit done… and I am the right man’
Carrie Symonds (pictured at his leadership launch earlier this month) is struggling after receiving hate mail at her flat in Camberwell, south London
‘The policies he’s going to put in are racist policies.
‘I’m not angry with Boris for what he’s says, I’m angry at Boris because he exists: the fact that the likes of him tell us what to do and how to do it.’
Leader of the group Bone added: ‘No more old Etonians, no more feudal aristocracy.
‘Come on out Boris! We know you’re hiding under your f***ing chaise lounge.
‘We’ve had enough of old Etonians, f*** off!’
He added: ‘Boris, when you look out of your window we’ll be there.
Local Jordana Leighton designed the posters which have been plastered around Camberwell Green that say ‘We’d rather endure him as our neighbour than our Prime Minister’
‘When you look down the street, we’ll be there.’
Coming down from the steps outside the flat, and repeating his disregard for so-called toffs Bone continued: ‘We’ve had enough of old Etonians running the country.
‘They’re all a cabinet of old Etonians. Why we put up with it I don’t know.
Tory MPs fear Boris could be ousted on first day at No. 10
A Boris Johnson government could be toppled on his very first day in Downing Street, senior Tory figures have warned.
If the former London Mayor wins the leadership contest, No 10 expects Jeremy Corbyn to call an immediate no-confidence vote in the Commons in an effort to bring down his embryonic administration.
Conservative Party chairman Brandon Lewis and members of the backbench 1922 Committee are understood to have expressed the fear that Mr Johnson would lose the vote, given that the party has a working majority of just four MPs and remains hopelessly split over Brexit.
If a new government, either Tory or Labour, cannot subsequently be formed within 14 days, then a General Election would be triggered.
No 10 has warned party whips that the no-confidence vote could be called as soon as Theresa May leaves office, which is expected to be on July 24. But the party’s factions show no signs of coming together if Mr Johnson takes over.
‘On the day Boris is declared Prime Minister there’ll be a blockade at Downing Street to stop him getting in or round to see the Queen..’
Asked if Johnson is fit to be Prime Minister, Bone said: ‘He certainly ain’t – he ain’t even fit to be a Pie Minister.’
The protesters moved on after about 20 minutes.
Class War tweeted a picture of Ms Symonds’s front door plastered in ‘F*** Boris’ stickers the day before her row with Johnson.
Alongside the picture they wrote: ‘Oh dear, someone’s stuck CW stickers all over Boris’ front door!’
Johnson and Ms Symonds have not been seen at the flat since police were called there in the early hours of Friday.
In September last year Bone faced criticism for accosting Jacob Rees-Mogg’s children.
He told them: ‘Your daddy’s a horrible person.
‘A lot of people don’t like your daddy, you know that. No he’s probably not told you about that.’
The father-of-five added: ‘A lot of people hate him.’
Bone refused to apologise or answer whether he would have felt he had been hassled by someone if they had done the same thing to him when his children were young.
Local Kirstie Lamont, stood outside Miss Symonds’s flat yesterday holding up the posters that have been plastered around Camberwell Green.
One was even placed on Johnson’s car, next to two parking tickets.
The posters, emblazoned with stars from the EU flag and a picture of Johnson’s face, read: ‘We’d rather endure him as our neighbour than our Prime Minister’.
Speaking yesterday Ms Lamont said: ‘Labour could all be dead and we’d still vote for them.’
When asked whether she thought the posters would make Ms Symonds feel uncomfortable living in her flat Ms Lamont said: ‘Well, move. Kensington and Chelsea is much more their kind of place.’
Last night, a friend of Johnson and Ms Symonds told the Mail on Sunday: ‘Carrie really doesn’t feel safe in her own home anymore with anti-Boris leaflets and posters stuck up on the road, hand-delivered hate mail and now her private conversations being taped through the walls.’
It came as:
- Boris refused to respond to questions about the incident at a Tory hustings in Birmingham
- Jeremy Hunt’s allies claimed Mr Johnson’s personal life was a ‘security risk’
- Tory MPs fear Boris could be ousted on his first day at No.10 if Jeremy Corbyn calls for a vote of no confidence
- Polls have shown he is still 22 points clear of Hunt among grass-root Tories but behind his rival among all voters
Not only did the couple record the altercation, it also emerged yesterday they took the trouble to record police officers at the scene – and take down the registration numbers of their cars, all of which they passed to the Guardian.
Bone, 71, who walks with a stick, said: ‘I’m not angry with Boris for what he’s says, I’m angry at Boris because he exists: the fact that the likes of him tell us what to do and how to do it’
According to the Sun, a member of Johnson’s camp said: ‘She and Boris will not be going back there as they are too worried about the hostility they faced.
‘Carrie is now really frightened and cannot believe this has happened over such a minor matter.’
Johnson has not yet made any public comment over the recording, and bluntly refused to answer questions at Tory hustings,earlier this week.
The former London Mayor is facing off against Jeremy Hunt to become Tory leader and Prime Minister.
Today, Hunt insisted he was ‘auditioning to be PM’ and had to answer questions on ‘everything’.
Interviewed on Sky News as he campaigned in Scotland today, Hunt said: ‘What Boris needs to do is engage properly in this leadership debate…
‘This is an audition to be PM of the UK and Boris needs to show he is prepared to answer difficult questions.’
He added: ‘I think someone who wants to be PM should answer questions on everything.’
Bone (pictured outside Ms Symonds front door, back right) said: ‘Come on out Boris! We know you’re hiding under your f***ing chaise lounge. ‘We’ve had enough of old Etonians, f*** off!’
Mr Hunt insisted he would not comment on Mr Johnson’s private life, but complained he was ‘refusing to have serious debate… refusing to be scrutinised’.
Team Hunt also turned the screw on Mr Johnson in the wake of the extraordinary episode at the flat owned by girlfriend Carrie Symonds, 31 – suggesting he could be open to manipulation and even blackmail.
The backlash came as a survey found his standing among Tory activists has taken a serious hit, with four weeks to go until the successor to Theresa May is declared.
Trade Secretary Liam Fox – a supporter of Mr Hunt – said it would be ‘easier’ if he spoke frankly on the issue.
Asked about the bust-up, Dr Fox said the focus should be on policy, but told the BBC’s Andrew Marr show: ‘It’s always easier to just give an explanation.’
Former foreign secretary Malcolm Rifkind also waded into the row, saying Mr Johnson risked looking like he had something to hide.
He told BBC Radio 5 Live: ‘If you are a candidate to be prime minister and the police have been called to your house – fairly or unfairly – the fact is there was a police visit. You don’t just say ‘no comment’. That implies you may have something you don’t want to disclose.
‘All he could have said, quite reasonably, would have been that in all relationships there are occasionally outbursts of anger and disagreement.’
Guardianista neighbours in £720,000 flat next to Carrie Symonds’
Remain-backing playwrights Eve Leigh and Tom Penn do not look out of place in trendy Camberwell, but last night they were branded ‘neighbours from hell’ by a Johnson-supporting Tory MP.
After the pair admitted their role in briefing The Guardian about Carrie Symonds’ and Boris Johnson’s nocturnal activities, allies and friends of Mr Johnson and Miss Symonds pointed to their neighbours’ anti-Brexit sentiment and ‘hatred’ of the Tory Party.
Ms Leigh is the daughter of multi-millionaire musical theatre producer Mitch Leigh. A successful writer, she was the star of a theatre project called Brexit Stage Left, which received financial backing from Eurodram, a cultural campaign funded with Brussels cash.
Eurodram’s website reveals it is ‘co-funded by the Creative European Programme of the European Union’.
The event in January described itself as a ‘festival of staged readings of provocative cutting-edge plays from across the EU’. The former palm-reader bought her luxurious flat above Carrie Symonds’ apartment for £720,000 in April last year.
In March this year, she married her partner Tom.
Last night he confirmed that he had backed Remain in the EU referendum, but insisted that had nothing to do with the weekend’s events.
Ms Leigh was described by one interviewer as an ‘American Leftist Buddhist Jewish playwright.’
Her religious outlook influenced the theme of her most recent play, The Trick, which tackles the topics of ageing and coping with grief. However, it received mixed reviews from critics.
The Evening Standard called it ‘a mystifying muddle’ and said ‘it’s all increasingly wearisome’.
The Guardian gave it two stars and said it was ‘overbearing in its manipulative attempts to make us feel sad’.
Other work by the playwright includes ‘a documentary audio piece about childhood, told through the prism of a Bulgarian borstal’.
Mr Penn has yet to match his wife’s levels of fame or critical attention in the theatre world.