Did Boris Johnson actually get on the wrong train to Manchester to the Tory Party conference?

When the Conservative Party’s official Twitter account posted a photo of Boris Johnson at a train station on his way to conference, social media sleuths pounced.

The photo showed Boris Johnson holding a bag and briefcase while marching down a train platform alongside a LNER (London North Eastern Railway) train with the caption “we’re on the way to Manchester”.

So far, so uncontroversial. So what was the problem?

Well, LNER trains do not go to Manchester. So if Johnson was trying to get up North from London on this train, he would have ended up in Newcastle, Leeds, York or a number of places that (crucially) are not Manchester.

Sign up to our free Indy100 weekly newsletter

So, Johnson was promptly called out by numerous people including Labour’s Angela Rayner and Andy Burnham, though Andy’s comment may have been a metaphor…

But all, as it always is, may not be as it seems. Some people pointed out that he had been visiting a hospital in Leeds earlier in the day, alongside Health Secretary Sajid Javid, and the photo may have been taken ahead of that visit. He would have then travelled to Manchester from Leeds on a different service.

Recently, Johnson was accused of observing a minute’s silence at the wrong time only for it to be explained that he had likely set his watch a few minutes fast to ensure punctuality. This seems like another similar moment.

Indy100 has contacted the Conservative Party to find out more.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here