Boris Johnson’s long-awaited resignation honours list was published on Friday, with the British former leader rewarding his key Brexit allies and a hairdresser — but not his father.
Rumours earlier this year that Stanley Johnson was in line for a knighthood, to make him “Sir Stanley”, sparked outrage, and fresh claims of cronyism.
But Johnson senior’s name was conspicuously left off the list.
British prime ministers routinely name close political associates and aides for honours when they leave office, and make appointments to the unelected upper chamber House of Lords.
Johnson’s delayed list comes after he was forced out last July by a series of scandals, including Covid lockdown-breaking parties at Downing Street, and finally left in September.
The highest award was to Bill Cash, who will become a companion of honour, which recognises “a major contribution to the arts, science, medicine or government… over a long period of time”.
Cash, 83, has been a Conservative MP since 1984 and in that time has seen his once fringe view of leaving the European Union become mainstream Tory policy and the key issue in British politics since 2016.
He was recognised for “political and public service”.
Johnson’s fellow Brexit traveller Priti Patel, a former home secretary, becomes a dame while Jacob Rees-Mogg, head of a group of arch eurosceptic Tory MPs, becomes a “sir”.
Long-time parliamentary hairdresser Kelly Dodge was on the list of awards for advisers, speech writers and personal assistants, as well as Martin Reynolds, Johnson’s former principal private secretary.
Civil servant Reynolds was embroiled in the damaging “Partygate” scandal in which Johnson and Downing Street officials flouted Covid laws the government set, leading to police fines.
Shaun Bailey, a former Tory candidate for London mayor, who was also accused of breaching social distancing rules, was one of those elevated to the House of Lords.
The main opposition Labour Party’s deputy leader, Angela Rayner, attacked Prime Minister Rishi Sunak for signing off on the honours, describing the list as a “carousel of cronies”.
Absent though, despite fevered speculation, were Johnson’s former culture secretary Nadine Dorries and his UN climate change conference chairman Alok Sharma.
They were tipped to go into the Lords, which would have forced tricky by-elections as they would have had to resign as MPs in the lower House of Commons.
Dorries, however, announced she was stepping down with immediate effect, handing Sunak a difficult electoral test at a time of falling support for the Conservatives after 13 years in power.