The Prime Minister said goodbye for the last time this morning at 7.30am. Here is Boris Johnson’s leaving speech in full:
“Thank you. Well, this is it, folks. Thank you everybody for coming out so early this morning. In only a couple of hours I will be in Balmoral to see Her Majesty the Queen and the torch will finally be passed to a new Conservative leader.
“The baton will be handed over in what has unexpectedly turned out to be a relay race. They changed the rules halfway through but never mind that now.
“And through that lacquered black door a new prime minister will go to meet a fantastic group of civil servants – the people who got Brexit done, the people who delivered the fastest vaccine rollout in Europe and never forget 70% of the entire population got a dose within six months, faster than any comparable country. That is Government for you. That’s this Conservative Government.
“People who organised those prompt, early supplies of weapons to the heroic Ukrainian armed forces, an action that may very well have helped change the course of the biggest European war for 80 years.
“And because of the speed and urgency of what you did, everybody involved in this government, to get this economy moving again from July last year despite all the opposition, all the naysayers. We have and will continue to have that economic strength to give people the cash they need to get through this energy crisis that has been caused by Putin’s vicious war.
“And I know that Liz Truss and this compassionate Conservative Government will do everything we can to get people through this crisis. And this country will endure it and we will win.
“If Putin thinks he can succeed by blackmailing or bullying the British people then he is utterly deluded.”Boris Johnson
“And the reason we have those funds now and in the future is because we Conservatives understand the vital symmetry between Government action and free market capitalist private sector enterprise.
“We’re delivering on those huge manifesto commitments, making streets safer. Neighbourhood crime down 38% in the last three years, 13,790 more police on the streets, building more hospitals and yes, we will have 50,000 more nurses by the end of the decade and 40 more hospitals by the end – 50,000 nurses by the end of the the Parliament I should say – 40 new hospitals by the end of the decade, putting record funding into our schools and into teachers’ pay. Giving everybody over 18 a lifetime skills guarantee so they can keep upskilling throughout their lives.
“Three new high speed rail lines, three, including Northern Powerhouse Rail, colossal road programmes from the Pennines to Cornwall. The rollout of gigabit broadband up over the last three years, I am proud to say since you were kind enough to elect me, from 7% of our country’s premises having gigabit broadband to 70% today, and we of course providing the short and long-term solutions for our energy needs.
“And not just using more of our own domestic hydrocarbons, but going up by 2030 to 50 gigawatts of wind power – that is half of this country’s energy needs from offshore wind alone – a new nuclear reactor every year.
“And looking at what is happening in the country, the changes that are taking place, that is why private sector investment is flooding in. More private sector, more venture capital investment than China itself.
“More billion pound tech companies sprouting here in the UK, than in France, Germany and Israel combined. And as a result, unemployment, as I leave office, unemployment down to lows not seen since I was about 10 years old and bouncing around on a space hopper, my friends.
“On the subject of bouncing around and future careers, let me say that I am now like one of those booster rockets that has fulfilled its function, and I will now be gently re-entering the atmosphere and splashing down invisibly in some remote and obscure corner of the Pacific.
“Like Cincinnatus, I am returning to my plough. And I will be offering this Government nothing but the most fervent support. I’ll tell you why. This is a tough time for the economy. This is a tough time for families up and down the country. We can and we will get through it and we will come out stronger the other side.
“I say to my fellow Conservatives, it’s time for politics to be over, folks. It’s time for us all to get behind Liz Truss and her team and her programme and deliver for the people of this country.”Boris Johnson
“Because that is what the people of this country want, that’s what they need and that’s what they deserve. I’m proud to have discharged the promises I made to my party when you were kind enough to choose me. Winning the biggest majority since 1987, the biggest share of the vote since 1979. Delivering Brexit, delivering our manifesto commitments, including, by the way, social care, reforming social care, helping people up and down the country, ensuring that Britain is once again standing tall in the world.
“Speaking with clarity and authority from Ukraine to the Aukus pact with America and Australia. We are one whole and entire United Kingdom, whose diplomats, security services and armed forces are so globally admired.
“And, by the way, as I leave I believe our union is so strong that those who want to break it up, they’ll keep trying, but they will never, ever succeed.
“Thank you to everybody behind me in this building. Thank you to all of you in government. Thank you everybody who’s helped look after me and my family over the last three years, including Dilyn the dog. And I just say to my party if Dilyn and Larry can put behind them their occasional difficulties then so can the Conservative party.
“Above all thanks to you, the British people, to the voters for giving me the chance to serve.
“All of you who worked so tirelessly together to beat Covid, to put us where we are today. Together, we have laid foundations that will stand the test of time, whether by taking back control of our laws, of putting in vital new infrastructure. Great, solid masonry on which we will continue to build together. Paving, paving the path of prosperity now and for future generations. And I will be supporting Liz Truss and the new government every step of the way.
“Thank you all very much. Thank you and goodbye. Thank you.”