Allegra Stratton's resignation statement in full

Allegra Stratton outside her Islington home today after the Downing Street Christmas party furore – Tim Clarke for The Telegraph

Allegra Stratton has quit her role as the Prime Minister's spokeswoman for Cop26 as a row over her joking about a Christmas party at Downing Street reached fever pitch.

A leaked video of a mock press briefing showed Ms Stratton quipping “I went home” in response to a hypothetical question over the alleged gathering in lockdown, in which she referred amid giggles to a “fictitious party” that was “not socially distanced”.

On Wednesday afternoon, as outcry across the political spectrum piled pressure on Boris Johnson, a tearful Ms Stratton delivered a resignation statement to reporters outside her home in Islington, north London.

Statement in full

I've become a distraction in that fight. My remarks seemed to make light of the rules, rules that people were doing everything to obey.

That was never my intention, I will regret those remarks for the rest of my days and my profound apologies to all of you at home for them.

Working in government is an immense privilege. I tried to do right by you all, to behave with civility and decency and act to the high standards you rightly expect of Number 10.

I will always be proud of what was achieved at Cop26 in Glasgow and the progress that was made on coal, cars, cash and trees.

This country and the Prime Minister's leadership on climate change and on nature will make a lasting difference to the whole world. It has been an honour to play a part in that.

I understand the anger and frustration that people feel.

To all of you who lost loved ones, who endured intolerable loneliness and who struggled with your businesses, I am truly sorry and this afternoon I am offering my resignation to the Prime Minister. Thanks for your time.

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