Theresa May never intended to wear a £1,000 pair of trousers at the centre of a spat with a senior Tory MP, it has been revealed.
Katie Perrior, who was the Prime Minister’s director of communications until this year’s general election, claimed the screw-up over what became dubbed trousergate was wholly avoidable.
She said the PM had intended to wear her own clothes for the photoshoot until the intervention of her volatile and unpredictable former co-chief of staff, Fiona Hill.
Ms Perrior claimed the row was part of the grim and dysfunctional atmosphere inside Number 10, which she compared to an asylum, during her nine-month spell as Mrs May’s press chief.
The Prime Minister was criticised by former Cabinet minister Nicky Morgan after she posed in a pair of £995 Amanda Wakeley trousers for the Sunday Times photoshoot in December.
Former education secretary Mrs Morgan claimed she had never spent that much on clothing, apart from her wedding dress, and suggested the choice of trousers risked making Mrs May look out of touch with voters.
The row led to Mrs Morgan being banned from a Downing Street meeting by Ms Hill, a series of leaked text messages revealed.
In an article for The Times, Ms Perrior revealed she heard Ms Hill on the phone begging designer Ms Wakeley to send over a vanful of clothes for the Prime Minister.
She wrote: All went well until later, when one of my colleagues popped into my office to tell me that we may have a problem: did I know the outfit the PM finally chose cost two grand?
And there lies the story of the brown leather trousers she was wearing in the shoot. I hit the roof.
This was a PR screw-up that was wholly avoidable. I didn’t even like the bloody trousers – they were the wrong kind of brown, if you know what I mean.
Ms Perrior claimed the Prime Minister allowed Ms Hill and fellow co-chief of staff Nick Timothy, who both resigned after becoming the focus of Tory MPs’ post-election anger, to ruin her premiership by backing them 100 percent.
Describing how even Cabinet ministers refused to stand up to the destructive duo, Ms Perrior added: On reflection, Theresa May is the one who owes me an apology.
I gave up everything for her – even seeing my own kids – and I got nothing in return.
(c) Sky News 2017: PM ‘didn’t want to wear £1k leather trousers’ at centre of spat