Boris Johnson’s chief aide Dominic Cummings’ trip to Barnard Castle “might have been minor breach” of lockdown rules, Durham Police has said, contradicting days of lies and half-truths by the Prime Minister and his cabinet.
In a statement, Durham Police said:
“On 12 April 2020, Mr Cummings drove approximately 26 miles from his father’s property to Barnard Castle with his wife and son. He stated on 25 May 2020 that the purpose of this drive was to test his resilience to drive to London the following day, including whether his eyesight was sufficiently recovered, his period of self-isolation having ended.
“Durham Constabulary have examined the circumstances surrounding the journey to Barnard Castle (including ANPR, witness evidence and a review of Mr Cummings’ press conference on 25 May 2020) and have concluded that there might have been a minor breach of the Regulations that would have warranted police intervention. Durham Constabulary view this as minor because there was no apparent breach of social distancing.
“Had a Durham Constabulary police officer stopped Mr Cummings driving to or from Barnard Castle, the officer would have spoken to him, and, having established the facts, likely advised Mr Cummings to return to the address in Durham, providing advice on the dangers of travelling during the pandemic crisis. Had this advice been accepted by Mr Cummings, no enforcement action would have been taken.”
The police also said that Dominic Cummings’ trip from London to Durham did not constitute a breach of the rules, but other alleged breaches such as going back to Downing Street after his wife fell ill with the symptoms of Covid-19 remain an open question.
Earlier this week it emerged that Durham Police have fined at least two people who travelled to the county from London, after an FOI request by the BBC.