Prime minister repeats mantra of strong and stable leadership from tiny community hall where live coverage was impossible.
Theresa May has fuelled accusations from Labour she has been “hiding from the public” during the general election campaign after she held her latest rally in a tiny community hall in Aberdeenshire with such poor phone reception that live coverage of the event was impossible.
About 200 Conservative campaigners crammed into Crathes hall, Banchory, a tin-roofed single-storey building at the heart of a swath of woodland in rural north-east Scotland, from where journalists were unable to tweet or broadcast.
The shadow chancellor, John McDonnell, was quick to make political capital of the event on Twitter:
The prime minister has come under fire in recent days for supposedly dodging any chance of unscripted encounters with members of the public.
After she delivered a speech in a community centre in Leeds to a select group of supporters rather than the users of the building on Friday, Jeremy Corbyn accused her of hiding from the public.
“She won’t take part in TV debates and she won’t talk to voters,” Corbyn said. “Refusing to debate Labour in this election isn’t a sign of strength, it’s a sign of weakness. What is she afraid of? Voters deserve to know what political parties are offering.”
When journalists were eventually able to report on May’s speech it emerged she had told her supporters that she was the only leader capable of providing “strong and stable leadership” for Britain as the country headed towards Brexit.