Downing Street has released Boris and Carrie Johnson’s official Christmas card which features a photo of their dog Dilyn – but not their infant son – for the second year running.
No10 today released images of the Prime Minister and wife Carrie’s festive greeting card that will be sent to world leaders, embassies and other influential groups.
The card’s front cover features an image of their Jack Russell cross playing in the snow in the Downing Street garden.
Dilyn also had the honour of featuring on last year’s card, then pictured donning green tinsel around his neck as he gazed into the distance outside No10’s famous black door.
The reverse side of this year’s card features an artwork by a student at a school in Mr Johnson’s West London constituency.
Downing Street have released Boris and Carrie Johnson’s official Christmas card which features a photo of their dog Dilyn – but not their infant son – for the second year running
Over 7,000 of the cards have been issued to be sent to world leaders, embassies and other influential groups
But neither the Prime Minister, his wife, nor his son Wilfred, now 19 months old, are pictured in the personalised card.
And little Wilfred’s name was not included alongside his parents’ signatures inside the card.
Mr Johnson’s choice for 2021 and last year contrasted to many of his predecessors, including Tony Blair and David Cameron, who put themselves and their – human – loved ones in the spotlight.
The Camerons’ card in 2008 featured David and Samantha with their children Nancy, four, Arthur, two, and six-year-old Ivan, who tragically died the following year.
Dilyn was also the star of last year’s Christmas card, after Mr Johnson appeared to choose his dog over his new baby son Wilfred to front the greeting. Previous Prime Ministers have traditionally used family photos on their card covers
Wilfred, the Prime Minister’s 19-month-old son, was noticeably absent from the personalised card for the second year in a row. Mr Johnson and Ms Symonds are believed to be determined to avoid making their newborn into a ‘public figure’. Pictured: Boris Johnson and son Wilfred at Peppa Pig World
In 1998, Tony and Cherie Blair’s card featured Euan, 14, Nicky, 13, and Katherine, 10.
Mr Johnson and Ms Symonds are believed to be determined to avoid making their newborn into a ‘public figure’.
The image of Dilyn on the card’s cover is believed to be part of a set from a controversial photoshoot earlier this year.
The image was taken back in cold February weather by Pippa Fowles, one of Downing St’s three photographers, as part of a ‘Instagram-style’ photoshoot for Dilyn.
At the time this raised questions about the work of No10’s press operation as a personal vanity project being funded by the taxpayer.
Mr Johnson’s choice for 2021 and last year contrast to many of his predecessors. Pictured: 1998 – Tony and Cherie Blair’s card, including their children Euan (left), 14, Nicky (right), 13, and Kathryn (front), 10
2008 – David and Samantha Cameron’s Christmas card, showing their children Nancy, Arthur and Ivan, who tragically died
The government was forced to defend the photos by saying the photographers took photos ‘not just of the PM but the whole of the Cabinet’.
Ms Fowles, who is understood to be on secondment from the Ministry of Defence, works alongside The PM’s personal photographer, Andrew Parsons, who is employed as a Special Advisor part-time on the equivalent of £100,000 a year.
Just a day before the photo was released, another of No10’s photographers published a candid shot he had taken of Larry the cat, Downing Street’s chief mouser, on a bookcase below a portrait of The Queen.
Deputy Labour leader Angela Rayner criticised the photoshoots, saying: ‘The public will be rightly questioning why there is apparently no limit on the money that can be found to pay for a coterie of vanity photographers for the Prime Minister.’
The photoshoot of Dilyn the dog in February raised questions about the work of No10’s press operation, which has been described as a personal vanity project
The image on the card is believed to have been taken back in cold February weather by Pippa Fowles, one of Downing St’s three photographers, as part of a ‘Instagram-style’ photoshoot for Dilyn (pictured, another of the images taken in February)
The reverse design of this year’s card features a design by student Tejinder Virdee from Uxbridge College in Mr Johnson’s West London constituency.
Tejinder’s watercolour and acrylic artwork of the No10 front door was chosen out of 15 designs submitted by Art, Design & Media students at the college.
A No10 spokesperson said the designs ‘aimed to reflect the college’s wide diversity and commitment to British values’.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: ‘Many thanks to the students at Uxbridge College for their brilliant art work for the Downing Street Christmas card.
‘I want to say thank you to Tejinder and all the students who participated for their wonderful designs.’
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