conor burns
A Conservative MP's claim that Boris Johnson was "ambushed with a cake" at his birthday gathering held in Downing Street during lockdown has gone down a treat on social media after yet another day of high political drama.

Northern Ireland minister Conor Burns, a long-standing ally of the prime minister, told Channel 4 News on Tuesday evening that the gathering was not a "premeditated" party and that Johnson was working in the room before staff came in and presented him with a birthday cake.

"It was not a premeditated, organised party," he said. "He was, in a sense, ambushed with a cake."

The MP for Bournemouth West added: "They came to his office with a cake, they sang happy birthday, he was there for 10 minutes - I don't think most people looking at that at home would characterise that as a party."

Social media erupted with mockery at Burns' remarks. Nigella Lawson tweeted that the term "ambushed by cake" would make the perfect title for a recipe book.

Comment: And by that token, Bojo was also ambushed with cocktails and hors d'oeuvres at the other lockdown parties.

In response, the minister said Lawson was more than welcome to use the name if she included his "Granny's Christmas cake recipe".

Lawson was unimpressed, responding: "This is too meta. Plus, you think it's a joke? Says it all."

Elsewhere on Twitter, people poked fun at Burns' comments.

One user shared a 2011 video of former deputy prime minister John Prescott sticking his fingers in a BBC cake being offered to celebrate the first anniversary of the coalition government.

Another edited footage from the Jurassic Park film to show the game warden being ambushed by a birthday cake.

The historian Greg Jenner was poised with a series of cake puns featuring military figures ambushed by cake.

One person envisioned scenes from the Cabinet Office, which has played a pivotal role in the Metropolitan police's decision to formally investigate alleged parties at Downing Street and Whitehall.

And the campaigner and food writer Jack Monroe shared a photo of a Peppa Pig cake, perhaps in reference to the PM's infamous praise of Peppa Pig World.