Boris Johnson 'does not have a nap' during the day, Downing Street says

January 19, 2021

Boris Johnson does not take naps during the day and claims that the prime minister likes an afternoon snooze are "untrue", Number 10 has said.

Downing Street rejected suggestions Mr Johnson sometimes makes time in his diary for a "power" nap in order to refresh himself for the rest of his working day.

According to a report in The Times on Tuesday, the prime minister's aides are said to be aware of Mr Johnson's fondness of a quick slumber.

"It would not be entirely uncommon in the diary for him to shut the door and have a kip for half an hour or so - a power executive business nap to get him ready for the rest of the day," the newspaper quoted one Downing Street insider as saying.

However, asked about the report at a daily briefing for Westminster journalists, Mr Johnson's press secretary Allegra Stratton dismissed the claims.

"The prime minister does not have a nap. Those reports are untrue," she said.

Asked if there was a gap in the prime minister's diary for naps, Ms Stratton added: "No gap. The prime minister does not have a nap.

"His day is jam-packed from morning til evening."

If Mr Johnson did enjoy an afternoon kip, he would be in good company as an occupant of Number 10.

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Former prime minister Margaret Thatcher - who famously used to rely on just four hours' sleep a night - was revealed to have enjoyed a doze in her official car during journeys.

And Winston Churchill is another former premier who survived on few hours' sleep at night - but he is also said to have napped for at least an hour in the early afternoon.

He once wrote: "Nature had not intended mankind to work from eight in the morning until midnight without the refreshment of blessed oblivion which, even if it only lasts 20 minutes, is sufficient to renew all the vital forces."

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