‘Loved-up’ Boris sets his divorce in motion
He behaves like a puppy around his new partner, say friends
BORIS JOHNSON has started divorce proceedings and is in a ‘serious relationship’ with girlfriend Carrie Symonds, according to friends.
The former Foreign Secretary’s formal split from second wife Marina began four months ago – despite reports yesterday that divorce proceedings had yet to begin.
Mr Johnson, 54, has been dating former Tory spin doctor Ms Symonds, 30, since the summer.
The couple are reportedly so much in love that she was recently spotted cheekily tweaking his bottom as they arrived at a flat in South-East London.
She is even said to have a picture of a smiling Mr Johnson as her phone screensaver.
The couple were still ‘in the honeymoon period and can’t seem to keep their hands off one another’, a friend said.
They are understood to have met one another’s closest friends, with Boris’s dad Stanley said to think she was ‘wonderful’.
But friends poured cold water on reports that Mr Johnson planned to go public on his new relationship at a Tory Party function towards the end of next month.
A friend of Mr Johnson told The Mail on Sunday his divorce proceedings ‘actually began in September’, adding: ‘Boris and Carrie are in a serious relationship.’
The friend added that despite the huge interest in their love life from friends and political rivals, the couple were trying to stay tight-lipped over their relationship. However, it emerged last week that the couple enjoyed a romantic break over the New Year in a villa on Greece’s Pelion peninsula.
They were recognised by expat Chris Wicks as they dined out in a taverna in Lafkos.
Mr Johnson is said to be so in love that he behaves ‘like a puppy dog around her’. A friend said: ‘He wants to get engaged. He’s completely in thrall to Carrie. Totally loved-up.’
It emerged in September that Boris and his wife Marina were planning to divorce after 25 years of marriage. It came amid reports that father-of-four Mr Johnson had begun a relationship with Ms Symonds, a former Tory Party communications chief who is now an adviser to financial firm Bloomberg. Another ally of Mr Johnson was quoted yesterday as saying Ms Symonds seems to makes him ‘very happy’. The friend added: ‘Carrie has been the perfect girlfriend. He and Marina split in March, so it shouldn’t be a surprise that this relationship is serious by now.’ The friend said the couple had been trying to ‘keep things discreet’, adding: ‘Nobody wants to see Marina humiliated by public displays.’
It is understood Ms Symonds has yet to meet Mr Johnson’s children.
In September, when they announced they were to divorce, Mr Johnson and his wife stressed that ‘as friends, we will continue to support our four children in the years ahead’. The couple had been living at his £20million grace-andfavour home in Carlton Gardens, the official residence of the Foreign Secretary, until July.
They own a £4million townhouse in Islington as well as a country home in Oxfordshire. Boris married first wife Allegra MostynOwen in 1987. He married Marina, a QC, in 1993. But a string of affairs followed and Marina kicked him out twice, only to take him back.
The first time was in 2004 over his affair with writer Petronella Wyatt. The second came six years later, when he was suspected of having a love-child with art consultant Helen Macintyre.
‘PERFECT’: Carrie Symonds. Top right: The pair together last year