Well That Was A Mad Week Of UK News – Here's What The Hell Just Happened

Infernal heat, a new prime minister, and melting hamsters...

Wow, what a week. If you weren’t sweating over who was going to be the new PM, you were just sweating.

All eyes were either on the race between Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt or the mercury as it slowly nudged up to potentially record-breaking highs.

Here’s how it all went down...

Monday 22nd

Heatwave watch

A balmy 27C – nothing us Brits can’t handle.

The race for Number 10

On Monday, it was still very much Boris Johsnon v Jeremy Hunt – although no one really believed the former Mayor of London was going to be beaten to the Tory leadership.

In preparation, a number of Tories threatened to jump the good ship Conservative if/when he won.

Chancellor Philip Hammond and Justice Secretary David Gauke had already confirmed they would quit rather than be sacked by Johnson over the weekend, and on Monday night International Development Secretary Rory Stewart confirmed he would stand down too.

Junior minister Sir Alan Duncan also resigned from the Foreign Office.

So, it was all going swimmingly then...


A former NSPCC volunteer who lied about being abused by a murderous VIP Westminster paedophile ring was facing a lengthy jail sentence after he was convicted of perverting the course of justice and fraud.

Tuesday 23rd

Heatwave watch

A toasty 33C – it was possibly a bit too hot, but Public Health England had our backs.

The race for Number 10

The race was over. Johnson was declared winner and will be the UK’s new PM on Wednesday.

Speaking after his victory was announced, Johnson told supporters he would “deliver Brexit, unite the country and defeat Jeremy Corbyn... and energise Britain”.

Then, as a nation cringed, he pointed out that if you shoehorn these words in way that no one who didn’t go to Eton would ever think of doing, you get the acronym DUDE.

If you can bear it, you can watch the clip here, but be warned, it’s only Tuesday and we’ve got a lot more to get through.

Actually, just go with this version from Have I Got News For You.


Just days after posting racist tweets targeting four congresswomen, Donald Trump accused them of being racist.

Continuing his attack on the self-described “squad” of four Democrats, the president said they were a “very Racist group of troublemakers who are young, inexperienced, and not very smart”.

Wednesday 24th

Heatwave watch

Slightly cooler but still a sweaty 32C. The biggest issue was trying to sleep.

The new PM

Undaunted by the wave of resignations that met his victory, Johnson set about installing his new cabinet after being formally appointed as prime minister by The Queen.

So, who did he pick? Well, here are a few choice highlights...

  • Gavin Williamson, who less than three months ago was fired from defence over suspicions he leaked details of Huawei discussions from the National Security Council, is the new Education Secretary.
  • Priti Patel, who in 2017 was effectively forced to quit the cabinet after it came to light she had held unauthorised meetings with Israeli politicians, including prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, is now home secretary.
  • Jacob Rees-Mogg, who for his whole life has been Jacob Rees-Mogg, is now leader of the Commons.
  • Jo Johnson, who just happens to be Boris Johnson’s brother, is now a minister at the Business Department and at the Department for Education.

Oh, and a majority of the cabinet went to private school and a significant number have less than favourable views on gay marriage.


Robert Mueller told a congressional hearing that Donald Trump’s claims he was “totally exonerated” by the special counsel report are not true.

Appearing at a highly-anticipated congressional hearing on Wednesday, the former special counsel said he could not clear the president of obstruction of justice.

“The president was not exculpated for the acts that he allegedly committed,” Mueller said at the opening of the hearings into his investigation of Russian interference to help Trump win the 2016 election.

Mueller’s comments mean Trump’s repeated claims of “NO OBSTRUCTION”, the latest made just today, are wide of the mark.

Thursday 25th

Heatwave watch

It wasn’t quite the hottest day on record but it wasn’t far off – 38.1C (100.5F) in Cambridge.

The new PM

Perhaps fittingly, Johnson’s first full day in office was marked with a rebuke from Europe.

The EU would not remove the Northern Ireland backstop from the withdrawal agreement, Michel Barnier warned, adding to rising fears of a no-deal Brexit under Boris Johnson’s government.

In a message to EU member states on Thursday, the EU’s chief negotiator dubbed the new PM’s plan to ditch the controversial backstop – designed to avoid a hard border between Ireland and Northern Ireland – “unacceptable”.

And there was more bad news – senior Brexiteer Steve Baker said he had rejected a ministerial job in the first sign of dissent aimed at the new PM.


Well, you can’t really blame her.

Friday 26th

Heatwave watch

It’s finally over and no one was happier than Clive the Cat who could finally go outside. Well, a little bit anyway.

The new PM

Marking a monumental weak of soaring temperatures and and a new PM, The Sun celebrated by merging the two.

But in possibly the biggest news of the week, it was revealed on Friday that Downing Street is getting a dog.

An insider cautioned that “no decision had been made” on a pooch and “It would have to get along with Larry”, the Downing Street cat and chief mouser to the Cabinet Office.


The UK is now 30 times more likely to be hit by a heatwave than it was before the industrial revolution, the Met Office warned on Friday.

So what does this mean? Heatwaves, just like Boris Johnson, will be around to make you sweat for a while yet.