I wanted to be a rock star – Boris Johnson
The Prime Minister harboured ambitions to be a rock star and a supermarket tycoon, he has revealed.
A different career path could also have seen Boris Johnson as a kitchen tile designer, a plan he admitted was a “total flop”.
Mr Johnson on Friday shared his early ambitions with a group of budding young journalists during a question and answer session, which also saw him disclose that he misses cycling, and managed to give his security guards the slip on a few occasions during his time as foreign secretary.
The Prime Minister was asked if he always wanted to lead the country, and replied: “I had various ambitions.
“I briefly thought I could be a musician, a rock star, but that didn’t get very far.
“Then I thought I would own a chain of multi-brand supermarkets and be a tycoon, but that didn’t get very far.”
Then came a plan to make tiles, he said, adding: “I wanted to make kitchen tiles and that was a total flop.”
“It goes to show you’ve got to try a lot of things first,” the Prime Minister said.
In response to a later question he referred back to his rock star ambitions, saying he had learned the opening chords to Deep Purple’s Smoke On The Water.
The youngsters, aged nine to 14, all of whom are interested in journalism and politics, had been invited to Downing Street, and asked Mr Johnson questions on a range of topics from the NHS to Hogwarts.
One youngster asked the Prime Minister, a well-known cyclist, if he stills gets to cycle now that he is in Number 10.
“I don’t, unfortunately my bicycle is locked in Parliament. I haven’t used my bicycle for ages. I do miss it,” he replied.
This is not because he is “a danger to the public” Mr Johnson added, but because there is a risk that “somebody may try to attack me”.
Mr Johnson said he cycled “everywhere” as mayor of London, with no security, and “nobody ever tried to knock me off my bike”.
Later he was asked about his security detail as Prime Minister, and whether guards follow him every day.
“They do, it’s absolutely true, they do,” he replied.
“I have to say, when I was foreign secretary I did manage to evade them a few times, but I perhaps shouldn’t go into that.”
Another boy, who said he had personal experience of the NHS, asked the Prime Minister to promise not to privatise the NHS.
“I promise not to privatise it,” he said. “I’ve told (US President) Donald Trump it is not up for sale or on the table for any negotiation of any kind.”
Mr Johnson also demonstrated his knowledge of Harry Potter, or lack thereof, when he was asked which Hogwarts house he thought he would belong to.
He asked another student which house she would be, before giving the same answer, saying: “OK, I’d be Ravenclaw.”
“I’m not as good on Harry Potter as I should be,” he added.