In Brief

British prime ministers on holiday - in pictures

Theresa May’s latest holiday snaps are branded even more boring than Brexit talks

With Brexit negotiations still in deadlock, the British PM can’t even go on holiday without attracting some form of criticism.

Snaps of Theresa May and her husband, Philip, strolling around Italy’s Lake Garda were described as “even more boring than the mutual recognition of goods standards post-Brexit” by the Daily Mirror’s political reporter Dan Bloom.

The photos of the couple in Desenzano del Garda are “more anodyne” than the walk she took last year, in exactly the same town, says Bloom.

“Not wanting to disappoint her fans, this time the PM threw in a couple of hand gestures,” he adds. 

DESENZANO DEL GARDA, ITALY - JULY 29:British Prime Minister Theresa May, walks with her husband Philip whilst on vacation in Italy, July 29, 2018 in Desenzano del Garda, Italy.(Photo by Pier


2018 Getty Images

A previous photograph of the PM on holiday in Switzerland in 2016 was described by the Mirror as “one of the most tedious images in political history”. 

British Prime Minister Theresa May (L) walks in a forest with her husband Philip (R) at the start of a summer holiday in the Alps in Switzerland on August 12, 2016./ AFP / POOL / MARCO BERTOR


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Images of her predecessor David Cameron on holiday were certainly more entertaining, but often because of the efforts to make the stage-managed shots look as natural as possible.

Here, he and Samantha Cameron sit at a cafe in Montevarchi near Siena, Italy, in 2011. 

And here, they casually point at fish at a market in Aljezur, Portugal, in 2013. 

ALJEZUR. PORTUGAL - JULY 26: British Prime Minister David Cameron and his wife Samantha Cameron look at fish in the market of Aljezur on July 26 in Aljezur, Portugal. The Prime Minister is sp


2013 Getty Images

Photographs of prime ministers on holiday are something of a British tradition. Below, Tony Blair holds his son Leo after mass at a church in Venerque, France. Blair, his wife Cherie and their family were on a trip in nearby Le Vernet in 2002. 

VENERQUE, FRANCE - AUGUST 18: British Prime Minister Tony Blair, holding his son Leo, departs Saint-Pierre de Venerquechurch after mass August 18, 2002 in Venerque, southwestern France. Tony


2002 Getty Images

May has been likened to Margaret Thatcher for their shared love of Switzerland. The former Tory prime minister is pictured below skiing near Zurich in 1962. But she apparently found holidays tiresome to organise and said they got in the way of her work.

“For Margaret Thatcher, it seems, downtime was not an option,” says the Financial Times. Her few holidays were always packed with appointments and meetings. 

Conservative Party politician Margaret Thatcher skiing in Tgantreri, 1962. Printed following her appointment as new leader of the Conservative Party in 1975. (Photo by Keystone Features/Hulto


2015 Getty Images

On the other hand, Harold Wilson – the first PM to show his knees – used his holiday snaps to “reinforce the idea of himself as the first demotic prime minister,” says The Guardian, “happy to show himself off to photographers in shorts and sandals, eating ice cream, strolling on the beach, holding alfresco press conferences in the sand dunes”. 

10th August 1965:British Labour politician and Prime Minister Harold Wilson (1916 - 1995) sitting quietly smoking his pipe on a rock, during his holiday to the Scilly Isles.(Photo by Peter Ki


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