Rishi Sunak could be the first Prime Minister to shun living at 10 Downing Street, a report has claimed. During his final months as Chancellor, Mr Sunak, wife Akshata Murty and the couple’s two daughters choose to live in a Kensington townhouse rather than at Downing Street.
As a result, Mr Sunak split his time between his Downing Street flat and his family home, an arrangement he could continue now he has landed the top job.
However, having previously lived in Downing Street, there will be no novelty factor in living on Britain’s most famous street.
The Sunaks will have to decide if moving their daughters and their labrador, Nova, back to Downing Street will be too disruptive.
When Ms Murty and the couple’s two girls moved out in April there was speculation that they had done so to avoid media attention in relation to Ms Murty’s non-domiciled tax status, which she later relinquished.
At the time, Mr Sunak denied that the move was related to the controversy about his wife.
He said: “The decision was nothing to do with what had happened.
“It was everything to do with the fact that our eldest daughter was in her last term of primary school and wanted to be able to walk to school by herself every day.”
A spokesman for the Conservative Party was unwilling to speculate about where the Sunaks might live.
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However, he pointed out that Mr Sunak had told an interviewer during the last leadership contest that his family had been happy living in Downing Street and would expect to move back if he became Prime Minister
The Sunaks’ youngest daughter Anoushka attends a £22,000-a-year private school in West London but Krishna started boarding school in September so her time at Downing Street is likely to be limited if the family move back.
According to The Daily Telegraph, after resigning in July, Mr Sunak told fathers in the school playground that he was enjoying spending more time with his daughters and doing the school run.
Becoming Prime Minister is likely to severely restrict his ability to do that, although the Richmond MP will still be able to spend weekends at Chequers, Kensington or his constituency home in North Yorkshire.
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However, the Metropolitan Police, who are responsible for the safety of the Prime Minister, are likely to urge Mr Sunak to move his family into the secure environment of Downing Street.
With a fortune of £730million, it is possible that the Sunaks could foot the security bill needed at their Kensington property themselves.
Mr Sunak will also have to decide if he will draw his full Prime Ministerial salary of £164,080 or take a voluntary pay cut as David Cameron did as a symbolic gesture during the ongoing cost of living crisis.