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Charity could be used for Downing Street revamp

 

A spokesman for Number 10 has refused to deny that a trust funded by wealthy donors could be set up

Boris Johnson is considering setting up a charity funded by Tory donors which could revamp his Downing Street residence.

A No 10 spokesman would not deny reports in the Daily Mail that the prime minister is attempting to set up a charity where benefactors can contribute to the upkeep of Downing Street.

Johnson and his fiancée Carrie Symonds live at 11 Downing Street. It is understood that the fund could be used maintain not just the No 11 flat, but also other parts of Downing Street, including the state rooms, and could therefore be presented as having a wider heritage purpose.

A similar scheme is used at the White House in Washington, where incoming US presidents and their families are allowed to spend $100,000 on redecorating the White House, through the White House Endowment Trust.

The Mail said work on the No 11 flat is believed to have been completed in recent months, after going on for more than a year and facing disruption due to the pandemic.

A No 10 spokesman said: “The Downing Street complex is a working building, as well as containing two ministerial residences. As has been the case under successive administrations, refurbishments and maintenance are made periodically.

“Matters concerning works on the Downing Street estate, including the residences, are covered in the Cabinet Office annual report and accounts.”

 

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