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Labour has reiterated its call for an “urgent investigation” into Dominic Cummings’ coronavirus lockdown trip to see his parents 260 miles away in Durham, after it was reported he made a second trip to the city.
According to a joint investigation by The Mirror and The Observer, Boris Johnson’s top aide was seen in woodland near the Durham property he stayed at with his family on April 19, days after he was spotted back in Downing Street on April 14.
Cummings was also spotted visiting a town 30 miles from where he was staying on April 12. A witness told The Observer: “I was a bit gobsmacked to see him, because I know what he looks like.
“And the rest of the family seemed to match - a wife and child. I was pretty convinced it was him and it didn’t seem right because I assumed he would be in London.”
In response to the latest claims, a No 10 spokesperson said: “Yesterday the Mirror and Guardian wrote inaccurate stories about Mr Cummings.
“Today they are writing more inaccurate stories including claims that Mr Cummings returned to Durham after returning to work in Downing Street on 14 April.
“We will not waste our time answering a stream of false allegations about Mr Cummings from campaigning newspapers.”
A number of Cabinet ministers had spent much of Saturday defending Cummings before reports of the second trip and visit were published.
A Labour source said: “If these latest revelations are true, why on earth were Cabinet ministers sent out this afternoon to defend Dominic Cummings?
“We need an urgent investigation by the Cabinet Secretary to get to the bottom of this matter.
“It cannot be right that there is one rule for the Prime Minister’s adviser and another for the British people.”
SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford said the adviser “must” be sacked.
The transport secretary also said restrictions put in place by the government on March 23 should only be followed “to the best of your ability” and that it was “up to the individual” to make decisions on how best to follow them.
From March 23 until the slight easing of the lockdown earlier this month, the government’s advice to the British public has been to stay at home for all but essential journeys such as food shopping or to buy medicines.