No10 tweets reminder that Britons should ‘keep 6ft apart from people you don’t live with’… sparking explosion of memes, ridicule and fury online
- Government facing backlash after PM backed top aide for travelling in lockdown
- Today No10 reminded people to keep distance following last night’s briefing
- People responded by suggesting the rules do not apply to Dominic Cummings
- Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19
Number 10 has sparked fury and ridicule online after tweeting a reminder that Britons should ‘keep 6ft apart from people you don’t live with’.
The Government shared the advice on social distancing amid the coronavirus pandemic this morning.
But Twitter users have responded by mocking the Prime Minister after he defended top aide Dominic Cummings for travelling from London to Durham during lockdown.
It comes as the Prime Minister last night claimed that Cummings had acted responsibly and as any father would by driving up to his parents’ home while he and his wife were symptomatic to guarantee that they would have childcare.
Memes mocking the Government include one reading: ‘Rules do NOT apply to Tory MPs or their advisors.’
Another mocked up a poster resembling a stand-up comedy tour with Cummings photoshopped into the picture.
One suggested that the advisor was telling the public to adhere to guidelines while he and the Government do ‘whatever the f*** we like’.
At a dramatic press conference in Downing Street, the Prime Minister claimed his chief aide had acted ‘responsibly, legally and with integrity’ while making a controversial 260-mile trip from London to Durham during lockdown.
Mr Johnson insisted Mr Cummings had ‘followed the instincts of every father’ by driving to his parents’ farm after his wife developed symptoms of coronavirus.
But he refused to deny that while in the North East, Mr Cummings had also driven 30 miles to go for a walk in the countryside in an apparent second lockdown breach.
And he failed to say whether he had given Mr Cummings permission for the Durham trip – or offer any apology for his most senior aide’s behaviour.
The PM decided to throw a protective arm around Mr Cummings after crisis talks with his mercurial adviser, in Number.
Attempting to draw a line under the affair, the PM said Mr Cummings had acted ‘with the overwhelming aim of stopping the spread of the virus and saving lives’.
Mr Johnson said his adviser had ‘followed the instincts of every father and every parent’ in travelling to a place where he could get help caring for his four-year-old son if he and wife came down with the virus at the same time.
Before Dominic Cummings took his first trip to Durham, Deputy Chief Medical Officer Jenny Harries acknowledged that parents who become symptomatic may face ‘exceptional’ circumstances in terms of childcare.