Dominic Cummings hit back at accusations those working in Number 10 during the pandemic had no real-world experience, citing his days working at a Durham nightclub once branded Europe’s worst.

The former advisor to Boris Johnson - who famously journeyed to Barnard Castle at the height of lockdown in April 2020 and went on a drive to test his eyesight – hit back at the claims at the Covid inquiry on Wednesday (November 1).

Helen MacNamara, the former deputy cabinet secretary, was giving evidence at the ongoing inquiry when she raised concerns about lack of real-world experience of those in No 10 during the pandemic.

The Northern Echo: Helen MacNamara giving evidence on Wednesday.Helen MacNamara giving evidence on Wednesday. (Image: PA)

The former top civil servant who provided the karaoke machine for a lockdown-busting leaving-do in June of 2020, claimed there was a “narrow perspective” at the heart of government during the pandemic.

“I found myself explaining that even people who were lucky enough to have a back garden might not have a separate outside loo,” she said.

Read more: Boris Johnson said Cummings was 'total and utter liar' over Barnard Castle trip

“There wasn’t enough thinking about the overall experience of children who might not have quite the same privileges as the people who are in rooms in Whitehall taking decisions.”

The Northern Echo: Dominic Cummings.Dominic Cummings. (Image: PA)

But Dominic Cummings, who gave evidence on Tuesday (October 31) hit back citing his ‘real-world’ CV.

Cummings took to X, formerly Twitter, to say: “Nothing is more ‘real world’ than Klute nightclub, as anybody there in the 80s/90s knows.”

Klute, just off Elvet Bridge in the city, was once named the worst nightclub in Europe.

The Northern Echo: Klute in Durham.Klute in Durham.

It had been awarded the title of second worst by FHM magazine until the venue in first place reportedly burned down leaving Klute in the top slot.

His uncle owned the club - a favourite with students known for its sticky floors, cheesy music and strong drink – while Cummings worked the door.

He also changed his bio on the Elon Musk-owned social media platform to say, “worked @ klute nightclub (sic)”.

Cummings told the inquiry on Tuesday that Downing Street’s handling of the fallout from his Barnard Castle trip was an “absolute car crash”.

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But he maintained his trip to County Durham was “completely reasonable”.

He added: “In terms of my actual actions in going north and then coming back down, I acted entirely reasonably and legally and did not break any rules.”

Durham Police previously said officers had concluded “there might have been a minor breach of the regulations that would have warranted police intervention” but did not intend to take “retrospective action”.

In an extraordinary press conference in the 10 Downing Street garden in May of the same year, he said his journey to Durham was justified as he sought to protect his family’s health.