Carrie Symonds

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Carrie Symonds
Partner of the Prime Minister
of the United Kingdom
Assumed role
24 July 2019
SpouseMarina Wheeler
Preceded byPhilip May (as Spouse)
Personal details
Born (1988-03-17) 17 March 1988 (age 31)
London, England
Political partyConservative (2009–2018)[1]
Domestic partnerBoris Johnson (2019–present)[2]
RelationsJohn Beavan, Baron Ardwick (grandfather)
ParentsMatthew Symonds (father)
Residence10 Downing Street
Alma materUniversity of Warwick

Carrie Symonds (born 17 March 1988) is a British conservationist and public relations specialist who is the current partner of the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Boris Johnson.[3][4] She is the first unmarried partner of a prime minister to reside in 10 Downing Street.[5]

Early life and education[edit]

Symonds was born on 17 March 1988 to Matthew Symonds, co-founder of The Independent, and Josephine Mcaffee, a lawyer working for the paper.[6] Both she and her father were born out of wedlock. Her paternal grandfather was John Beavan, Baron Ardwick, who was a Labour Party MEP in the 1970s and an editor of left-wing newspapers. His mother Emily Beaven was a Labour councillor in Manchester and served as chair of the Co-operative Women's Guild.[7] She may be the great-grandaughter of former Liberal Prime Minister H. H. Asquith, though this is subject to some speculation.

Symonds grew up in South West London, and between 1999 and 2006 attended Godolphin School. She went on to Warwick University, where she studied art history and theatre studies and completed her degree in 2009.[2]


In 2009, Symonds joined the Conservative Party as a press officer.[8] She worked at Conservative Campaign Headquarters,[1] and later campaigned for Boris Johnson in the 2010 London Conservative Party mayoral selection. She has also worked for Conservative MPs Sajid Javid (as a media special adviser) and John Whittingdale.[6]

Symonds became the Conservative Party's head of communications in 2018, but left in August 2019 in order to work in public relations for the Oceana project.[9][6]

Public life[edit]

In July 2019, Boris Johnson became prime minister and Symonds officially moved into 10 Downing Street.[10][11] The following month, she was barred from entering the United States as her visa application was rejected due to her previous visit to Somaliland.[12] On 16 August 2019, she made her first public appearance since entering 10 Downing Street, when she addressed what she called the "gigantic" climate crisis.[13][14]

Personal life[edit]

In 2007, aged 19, Symonds was driven home from a King's Road nightclub by taxi-driver John Worboys, who in 2009 was convicted of multiple sexual assaults on his passengers. She later recalled being offered champagne and vodka, which she believed was spiked, and after returning home "vomiting and laughing hysterically before passing out until 3pm the next day". During his trial, she was one of fourteen women who testified against him, subsequently telling The Telegraph that he was "a sad, wicked man who is a danger to society. I feel so angry that he pleaded not guilty and made us go through the pain of giving evidence in court".[15]


  1. ^ a b Rushton, Simon (24 July 2019). "Who is Carrie Symonds? Boris Johnson's girlfriend and Tory PR guru, set to join new prime minister in 10 Downing Street". Retrieved 24 July 2019.
  2. ^ a b Bostock, Bill. "Here's everything you need to know about Boris Johnson's partner Carrie Symonds, who is set to become the only 'first girlfriend' in British history". Business Insider.
  3. ^ "Boris Johnson becomes UK's new prime minister". 24 July 2019. Retrieved 24 July 2019.
  4. ^ Perkins, Anne (1 August 2019). "Why Carrie Symonds is the embodiment of the Boris Johnson brand". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 28 August 2019.
  5. ^ "Who is Carrie Symonds? Boris Johnson's partner could make history by moving into 10 Downing Street". Washington Post.
  6. ^ a b c Gillett, Francesca; Webster, Lucy (16 August 2019). "What role will Carrie Symonds play in Downing Street?" – via
  7. ^ Killelea, Amanda (26 July 2019). "Carrie Symonds' great-gran Emily Beavan was a working class Labour activist". Mirror Online. Retrieved 29 August 2019.
  8. ^ "Carrie Symonds: who is Boris Johnson's live-in girlfriend?". The Week UK.
  9. ^ ELLE, Team (30 July 2019). "Who Is Carrie Symonds?". ELLE.
  10. ^ Mason, Rowena (29 July 2019). "Boris Johnson and Carrie Symonds move into Downing Street" – via
  11. ^ Spratt, Vicky. "The Women Who Stay With Problematic Men". Retrieved 28 August 2019.
  12. ^ "Boris' girlfriend barred from the US". NewsComAu. 21 August 2019.
  13. ^ Horton, Helena; Hope, Christopher (14 August 2019). "Carrie Symonds to carry out first solo event since Boris Johnson became PM at 'birdwatchers' Glastonbury'" – via
  14. ^ Media, P. A. (16 August 2019). "Carrie Symonds warns politicians of 'gigantic' climate crisis responsibility". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 28 August 2019.
  15. ^ Gammell, Caroline (13 March 2009). "John Worboys: Victim Carrie Symonds' story". ISSN 0307-1235. Retrieved 24 July 2019.
Unofficial roles
Preceded by
Philip May (as Spouse)
Partner of the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
Served alongside: Marina Wheeler (as Spouse)