The Daily Telegraph

Johnson to ‘hole up and finish his memoir’ in time for Christmas

PM to use borrowed home to write book, says friend, as wife releases picture of final entrance at No10

- By Christophe­r Hope ASSOCIATE EDITOR

BORIS JOHNSON could finish a memoir of his time in Downing Street by Christmas, as he prepares to move into a borrowed house in central London, his friends say.

Removal vans were seen last month in Downing Street as Mr Johnson and his wife Carrie packed up their belongings in the flat above 11 Downing Street.

He is now set to move his family into a house in the middle of the capital for the next six months while he gets used to his new life as a backbench MP.

One idea is for him to go to America to make speeches to capitalise on his global leadership over the Covid vaccine and the West’s response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Perhaps aware of the need to curate his own legacy in office, there is widespread speculatio­n in Westminste­r that he has started work on his memoirs and could publish them by Christmas.

One friend said the December deadline was not beyond him. “He is capable of doing that, he could do it pretty quickly, he is a first-rate writer,” one friend said. One Tory MP – who is close to Mr Johnson – said: “It would be a cracking read.”

Mr Johnson would be aware of the attraction of publishing a swift account of his time in No10. Any memoir could attract an advance running to hundreds of thousands of pounds.

The journalist in Mr Johnson will also know that a speedy memoir will ensure his account of his time in politics is still relevant to the modern day fast-moving political environmen­t.

He will want to avoid the fate of David Cameron who quit as prime minister in 2016 but only published his account of his time in office over three years later, largely to a collective shrug from the Westminste­r village.

Mr Cameron’s memoir, For The Record, was based on 53 hours of conversati­ons with Lord Finkelstei­n, the Times columnist and close friend, detailing his responses to events as they happened.

Despite repeated rumours that the Johnsons have bought a house in Herne Hill, south-east London, the friend said Mr Johnson had been lent a house by a supporter for six months.

The friend said: “He is planning to keep his head down. He is not planning to go abroad. He has got a house sorted out – he has got a place in central London for six months which has been lent to him. It gives him a base to sort himself out. He needs to get some hay in the loft, he needs to make some money.”

Yesterday, Mrs Johnson took to Instagram to wish Liz Truss well. “I expect Wilf and Romy won’t remember it but they’ve had an incredibly happy start to their lives growing up here,” she wrote.

Mr Johnson – who published a wellreceiv­ed account of Winston Churchill in 2014 – also has a half-finished biography to complete, Shakespear­e: The Riddle of Genius, for which he received an an advance of at least £88,000 in 2015.

Once his books are published, Mr Johnson will then be able to capitalise on his time in office by promoting his book and joining the lucrative internatio­nal speakers circuit.

Washington Speakers’ Bureau, which markets speeches around the world by Mr Cameron and Theresa May, his two predecesso­rs, is also understood to have approached Mr Johnson.

The Daily Telegraph understand­s that US bank JP Morgan has offered Mr Johnson a deal in the region of £2million to make six speeches over the next two years. Making speeches has proved to be very lucrative for Mrs May who has declared £2 million in outside earnings in the three years since quitting as prime minister.

A spokesman for Mr Johnson did not return repeated requests for comment from The Telegraph about his future plans. JP Morgan declined to comment but sources played down speculatio­n that it was lining up a deal to pay Mr Johnson for speeches.

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 ?? ?? The Johnson family, right, going through the No 10 door together for the last time in a snap posted by Mrs Johnson. Below, a removal van in the rear of Downing Street yesterday
The Johnson family, right, going through the No 10 door together for the last time in a snap posted by Mrs Johnson. Below, a removal van in the rear of Downing Street yesterday

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