Nick Timothy, a former top aide to Theresa May, said police were playing a ‘purely ceremonial role for politically correct causes’ by attending Birmingham Pride celebratons
A former Downing Street adviser has been slammed for mocking senior police officers for attending Pride celebrations.
Nick Timothy, who was one of Theresa May’s Joint Chiefs of Staff, used Twitter to criticise a senior West Midlands Police officer for taking part in the parade celebrating LGBT rights in Birmingham.
He retweeted a short video showing the force’s Chief Constable Dave Thompson and West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner Simon Foster in attendance at the parade wishing people a ‘happy Pride’.
Mr Timothy said: “In Birmingham I’m proud to report that the complete eradication of crime means the police now play a purely ceremonial role for politically correct causes.”
His comments attracted ire from across the political spectrum, and sparked calls for his role as a board member of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games to be reconsidered.
In response, the chief constable wrote: “Nick, I am disappointed at this response. I am proud to walk with my @WMPLGBTNetwork colleagues in @BirminghamPride on our day off work.
“This is the diverse city we love and will promote in @birminghamcg22.”
An official Birmingham Police Twitter feed briefly posted “Are you OK, hun?” to Mr Timothy.
But it was taken down as Mr Thompson, who said it was inappropriate.
Tory MP Michael Fabricant tweeted: “Nick: I am surprised at you. Given the recent homophobic attacks in Birmingham, the action of the @WMPolice here are good to see. Showing support AND crime prevention/detection are, of course, NOT mutually exclusive.”
Mr Timothy responded: “I’m obviously not against Pride, Michael. My comment was about police resources and that alone.”
The comments are also said to have caused embarrassment among the Commonwealth Games organisers.
One employee told BirminghamLive: “We are so frustrated by this. It undermines so much we are trying to achieve.”
The official Twitter account posted yesterday: “We’re proud of our city and proud to be part of @BirminghamPride.
“Thank you to our entire Birmingham 2022 team and to everyone who celebrated with us.
“You were magnificent! Enjoy the rest of Pride weekend.”
Mr Timothy was one of Theresa May’s trusted aides when she was Home Secretary, and he returned to work for her when she ran to be Tory leader in 2016.
He resigned in 2017 following the Conservatives’ disastrous snap election result, where Ms May lost her Commons majority and was forced to sign a deal with the DUP.
Some Tory MPs blamed Mr Timothy and Fiona Hill, the other No10 Joint Chief of Staff, for the result.