Moment guests listen to Boris Johnson in same room as Nadine Dorries

Coronavirus at No10: Moment dozens of guests listen to Boris Johnson’s International Women’s Day speech in same room as Nadine Dorries… 24 hours before symptoms of deadly bug started to show

  • Dozens of women and girls heard Prime Minister’s speech at No10 last Thursday
  • Health Minister Nadine Dorries fell ill the following day and is now in isolation
  • Children from schools in Blackburn and Bournemouth also said to have attended 
  • ** Were you at the event at Downing Street last Thursday? Please email [email protected] or [email protected] or call 020 3615 1838 ** 

This is the moment guests listened to Boris Johnson speak in the same room as Nadine Dorries one day before she started to show coronavirus symptoms.

Dozens of women and girls were present to hear the Prime Minister’s speech on International Women’s Day 10 at Downing Street in London last Thursday.

Health Minister Mrs Dorries fell ill the following day, before tests confirmed last night that she had the virus. The former nurse is now in isolation and recovering.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks at 10 Downing Street in London last Thursday, in an event attended by Nadine Dorries, as well as International Trade Secretary Liz Truss (in red next to the podium) and Olympian Kelly Holmes (in a black suit, two places to Ms Truss’s left)

MailOnline has pieced together Mrs Dorries’s movements in the 14-day period before she fell ill – and the events that have followed her diagnosis yesterday, which saw her office sealed

Those attending on Thursday also included Mr Johnson’s pregnant fiancée Carrie Symonds, International Trade Secretary Liz Truss and athlete Dame Kelly Holmes.

Children from schools in Blackburn and Bournemouth were also believed to have attended, with MailOnline having contacted staff today to confirm whether they did.

The day at Downing Street also featured a discussion with Mr Johnson, Dame Kelly and Stemettes chief Anne-Marie Imafidon, hosted by Grazia editor Hattie Brett. 

Constituents who met 62-year-old Mrs Dorries last week face being contacted by health officials due to the MP testing positive for the infection.

The day at Downing Street last Thursday also featured a discussion with Dame Kelly Holmes (left), Stemettes chief executive Anne-Marie Imafidon (centre) and Boris Johnson (right)

Mr Johnson’s fiancée Carrie Symonds speaks to two young women at last Thursday’s event

She held a surgery in her Mid Bedfordshire constituency on Friday morning which was attended by up to 12 people, according to Steven Dixon, chair of the Mid Bedfordshire Conservative Association.

Who has Nadine Dorries had contact with while carrying coronavirus and before she fell ill? 

Nadine Dorries, a health minister responsible for Patient Safety, Suicide Prevention and Mental Health, is likely to have been in contact with hundreds of people in the up to two weeks she may have been carrying the illness before she began showing symptoms.

This is what we know about her movements: 

February 25 – Keeping Safe Conference, Westminster’s Abbey  Centre (pictured)

February 29 – celebrates her mother’s 84th birthday at a party in a restaurant 

March 4 – Spoke in the House of Commons 

March 5 – Downing Street event to mark International Women’s Day. PM Boris Johnson also attended Earlier in the day she met Labour MP Rachael Maskell, who is now also in self-isolation.

March 6 – Held surgery at the Flitwick Club in her Mid-Bedfordshire constituency where 12 people attended. She had a pub lunch afterwards with Steve Dixon, from the Mid Bedfordshire Conservative Association.

March 7 and 8 –  She experienced the ‘classic symptoms’ of the disease – a dry cough, high temperature and ‘vice-like’ pain in her chest.

March 10 – Nadine Dorries tests positive for coronavirus

March 11 – The MP confirms a member of her staff has also tested positive and pictures of her offices in Parliament, sealed off, emerge 

He said it took place at The Flitwick Club, a private members’ club, which is now undergoing a deep clean as a precaution.

Mr Dixon said Mrs Dorries would likely have had one of her staff members with her for the surgery.

‘There were probably… I’m going to say 10, maybe 11, 12 people that came to see her in total,’ Mr Dixon said.

He said the details of all those who attended the surgery have been passed to the NHS.

Paul Copperwheat, interim manager at The Flitwick Club, said the constituency surgery took place in a private meeting room before the club opened.

‘She came and went without any incident,’ he said. Mr Copperwheat said it was the first time Mrs Dorries held a surgery at the venue.

He said there have been no reports of staff or members feeling ill.

Public Health England (PHE) said it had assessed the risk of Mrs Dorries’s individual close contacts and only those with symptoms need to self-isolate.

If a person tests positive for coronavirus, PHE works to identify and assess anyone who has had close contact with them during the time they are considered to be infectious.

This might include family members, colleagues or those they have had meetings with.

Advice is given based on an assessment of the individual’s risk, and if PHE believes a contact is at higher risk of infection, they may be asked to remain in their home and stay away from work, school or public places.

Those most at risk will receive daily follow-ups from PHE.

If someone being monitored does develop symptoms, they would be tested and provided with specialist care.

Meanwhile, a Conservative MP confirmed that Mrs Dorries had sent a message to the Tory WhatsApp group saying that a member of her staff is ill.

As a former nurse, Mrs Dorries has played a key role in drawing up plans to tackle the virus.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Nadine Dorries are pictured together in November last year

Nadine Dorries was last on the floor of the Commons last Wednesday (pictured) and is likely to have been carrying coronavirus then and didn’t know it

She met hundreds of people last week, including a large number of MPs, and attended a conference outside Westminster.

What happens now to Parliament after Nadine Dorries’s diagnosis?

What happens now to Parliament?

Following Mrs Dorries’ diagnosis, a Parliament spokesman said there were still ‘no plans to suspend Parliament’, following guidance from Public Health England.

What extra measures are being taken?

A Parliament spokesman said the extra measures implemented by the Palace of Westminster are in line with recommendations for the general public and include ‘placing information posters across the parliamentary estate encouraging thorough handwashing’.

Further measures that could be taken range from a total ban on palace visitors to shutting down Parliament for three months.

Who will be tested?

All health ministers, including Health Secretary Matt Hancock, could now be tested for the virus, as well as any other officials who have recently come into contact with Mrs Dorries.  

She started feeling ill on Friday as she was signing a statutory instrument that declared coronavirus to be a ‘notifiable disease’, enabling companies to obtain insurance cover.

Over the weekend she experienced the ‘classic symptoms’ of the disease – a dry cough, high temperature and ‘vice-like’ pain in her chest.

Mrs Dorries, who is a mother of three, said: ‘I can confirm I have tested positive for coronavirus. As soon as I was informed I took all the advised precautions and have been self-isolating at home.

‘Public Health England has started detailed contact tracing and the department and my parliamentary office are closely following their advice.

‘I would like to thank PHE and the wonderful NHS staff who have provided me with advice and support.’

She added on social media: ‘It’s been pretty rubbish but I hope I’m over the worst of it now. More worried about my 84-year-old mum who is staying with me and began with the cough today. She is being tested tomorrow. Keep safe and keep washing those hands, everyone.’

Matt Hancock, who as Health Secretary is her boss, was last night understood to be fit and well and not showing any symptoms.

The news will raise fears that Parliament may have to be closed or that restrictions will have to be placed on visitors.

** Were you at the event at Downing Street last Thursday? Please email [email protected] or [email protected] or call 020 3615 1838 ** 

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