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Neighbours of Cabinet Minister Robert Jenrick's parents say they had ALREADY been delivering essentials to the couple as he defends ignoring his own lockdown advice to drop-off medicine at their home

Neighbours of Cabinet Minister Robert Jenrick's parents say they had ALREADY been delivering essentials to the couple as he defends ignoring his own lockdown advice to drop-off medicine at their home
  • Robert Jenrick repeatedly appealed to members of the public to avoid unnecessary travel during lockdown
  • But he left London on March 29 to head to his mansion in Herefordshire where his wife and three children live
  • He then drove 40 miles to travel to his mother and father at their home in Shropshire on April 4 or April 5
  • Mr Jenrick said he was bringing his mother and father food and medication and did not enter their property
  • But one No 10 source called his behaviour 'idiotic' when he has been urging millions not to leave the house
Under-fire minister Robert Jenrick has claimed the £1.1million Grade I listed country mansion he drove 150 miles to during the coronavirus lockdown is his family home - but his official website says the opposite, MailOnline can reveal today.
The Housing Secretary is also facing calls to quit unless he can offer a 'very good explanation' about a 40 mile trip to drop supplies at his parents' house in Shropshire last weekend when neighbours said they were already delivering essentials.
Mr Jenrick, a key player in the Government's response to the pandemic that has claimed 7,978 lives in Britain, has repeatedly told the public to stay at home and not make unnecessary journeys to stop the spread of coronavirus, including travelling to any second homes.  
But today it emerged he stayed in his £2.5million London home for the first six days of the lockdown until March 29 when he travelled 150 miles to his country house in Herefordshire to be with his wife Michal and their three daughters. Mr Jenrick, who has a £2,000-a-month taxpayer funded third home in his Newark constituency, said last night he considers the Herefordshire property to be the family home - but his official Conservative website says different.
It fails to mention his 17th-century Grade I listed country house, and instead says the family 'live in Southwell near Newark, and in London'. The couple are understood to spend most of the week in the capital because of Mr Jenrick's ministerial work and his wife's job as a partner for a major US law firm in the City.
Under the lockdown rules he has been promoted any travel to second homes is banned - and Scotland's chief medical officer, Catherine Calderwood, was forced to resign at the weekend after visiting her second home twice. In Australia, New South Wales Arts Minister Don Harwin resigned after leaving his Sydney apartment to stay at his Central Coast holiday home and was caught by police.
Mr Jenrick has also been criticised after he drove to visit his parents in Shropshire with supplies last weekend, despite urging others to stay at home for 'all bar the most essential activities'.
The minister tweeted last night: 'For clarity - my parents asked me to deliver some essentials - including medicines. They are both self-isolating due to age and my father's medical condition and I respected social distancing rules'.
But the couple's neighbours told the Guardian that they had already been dropping off supplies at Mr Jenrick's parents' house during the lockdown. This was not denied, though a source close to Mr Jenrick said he had been asked to collect and deliver medication to them too. 
Commenting on Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick visiting his elderly parents, the Prime Minister's official spokesman said: 'The Secretary of State has set out in two different statements the reasons for the journeys which he made. We're confident that he complied with the social distancing rules.'
The spokesman said Mr Jenrick has said himself that his wife and children consider their home in Herefordshire to be their family home.
Asked about Cabinet ministers commuting to and from London, the spokesman said: 'Like everybody else, ministers have been told to work from home wherever possible, and not make unnecessary journeys.
'As part of the coronavirus response there will be occasions when ministers have no option but to work from Whitehall. In the event this is required, and the rest of their household is living elsewhere, it's not an unnecessary journey for them to travel to rejoin their family.'  '  
Cabinet minister Robert Jenrick, pictured in Downing Street on March 29, has defended driving 150 miles last weekend to visit his parents in Shropshire despite the Covid-19 lockdown as he was delivering food and medication to his mother and father who are self isolating
Cabinet minister Robert Jenrick, pictured in Downing Street on March 29, has defended driving 150 miles last weekend to visit his parents in Shropshire despite the Covid-19 lockdown as he was delivering food and medication to his mother and father who are self isolating 
Robert Jenrick home in Herefordshire, which he claims is his family home despite having a property in London and his constituency for his work as an MP
Robert Jenrick home in Herefordshire, which he claims is his family home despite having a property in London and his constituency for his work as an MP
His official Conservative website fails to mention his Grade I listed country house, which says: 'Robert is married to Michal, and together they have three young daughters. They live in Southwell near Newark, and in London'
His official Conservative website fails to mention his Grade I listed country house, which says: 'Robert is married to Michal, and together they have three young daughters. They live in Southwell near Newark, and in London'
Mr Jenrick, pictured with his London lawyer wife Michal Berkner, defended driving to his parents claiming he was dropping off medication and  food - both of which are allowed under current guidelines
Mr Jenrick, pictured with his London lawyer wife Michal Berkner, defended driving to his parents claiming he was dropping off medication and  food - both of which are allowed under current guidelines
Mr Jenrick moved  his family from London to his Grade I-listed Herefordshire mansion before the lockdown. He then delivered food and medicine to his parents in Shropshire , 40 miles away, He has a third home in his constituency, 106 miles from his Herefordshire house he claims is the family home
Mr Jenrick moved  his family from London to his Grade I-listed Herefordshire mansion before the lockdown. He then delivered food and medicine to his parents in Shropshire , 40 miles away, He has a third home in his constituency, 106 miles from his Herefordshire house he claims is the family home

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