You may or may not recognise the Cabinet Room from TV film recreations like The Crown…
Less than a week ago, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson confirmed that he has tested positive for COVID-19. Despite the unsettling news, the Conservative leader has revealed that he will continue to work from home while self-isolating at his home at No. 10, Downing Street.
Unlike his predecessors David Cameron and Tony Blair, who lived in the larger No. 11 to accommodate their families, Boris Johnson opted for the four-bedroom flat where he resides with his fiancée Carrie Symonds.
We have already been seeing more of his residence on social media ever since the coronavirus pandemic started – evidence of the Prime Minister heeding his own advice to the nation to #StayAtHome. But now that he is completely quarantined, more sneak peeks inside the official residence can be anticipated by the day.
Follow us along a virtual tour of 10 Downing Street below.
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On behalf of the whole country, I want to thank all the incredible nurses, doctors, NHS support staff & carers who are working flat out to fight #coronavirus 👏 #ClapForOurCarers #ClapForNHS To help them, and protect the NHS, we need everyone to stay at home #StayHomeSaveLives #ThankYouNHS
Where do we begin? Why, at the iconic black-door entrance that many are familiar with but few have had the privilege to walk through, of course. Boris Johnson recently posted a photo on Instagram alongside fellow Conservative and Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak as part of the #ClapforOurCarers initiative, thanking “incredible nurses, doctors, NHS support staff & carers who are working flat out to fight coronavirus”.
If you take a closer look on Google’s Street View, you’ll notice a black iron knocker in the form of a lion’s head. For safety reasons, the door cannot be opened from the outside, but there will always be someone to open the door from the inside – no keys required of the Prime Minister.
Prior to his self-isolation, Boris Johnson had guided visitors young and old alike along the spacious hallways of his home-office. A printed cream rug lines the wooden floors and portraits of either artworks or previous prime ministers adorn the walls.
Now this is where we can observe the UK Prime Minister getting down to business. Notice with mahogany furniture, cream walls and matching curtains, a larger-than-life gold-frame mirror and Union Jack flags completing the traditional interiors whilst he takes full advantage of modern tech to run the country.
On the first floor, there’s the Cabinet Room, which you may or may not recognise the Cabinet Room from TV film recreations like The Crown. This is where the Prime Minister holds weekly meetings with (no points for guessing) the Cabinet.
The room features a long meridian green table, two bookcases, green velvet curtains, a fireplace and a large gold chandelier. It is also reportedly soundproof, to protect confidential information discussed during meetings.
Due to his self-isolation, the Cabinet has temporarily moved its meetings online for the first time, as Boris Johnson revealed last week.
Largest of the three drawing rooms in the residence is the Pillard Room, typically reserved for large receptions. Elaborate furniture, a glistening chandelier and a sizeable Persian rug highlight the hall, as well as a portrait of Queen Elizabeth I hanging above a fireplace.
White Drawing Room
Originally designed to be a private space for the Prime Minister until the 1940s, the White Drawing Room is now commonly used for meetings with other world leaders.
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Today I met with Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission. When we leave the EU on January 31st, we will negotiate a new free trade agreement with our European partners and continue to work together as friends and sovereign equals to tackle the world’s greatest challenges.
The most iconic part of the room: the grand fireplace engraved with a mythological face and fruit motifs, above which hangs a painting by English Romanticist, Joseph Mallord William Turner.
It’s where Boris Johnson has been frequently pictured sitting on one of the two armchairs positioned neatly in front of the fireplace (usually on the right, for some reason) across his distinguished guest.
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Explore 10 Downing Street for yourself via Google Arts & Culture here.