Belfast Telegraph

Crunch time: Boris Johnson backs 'wonderful' Brexit deal on flying visit to Tayto Castle

Prime Minister Boris Johnson helps quality control workers during a general election campaign visit to the Tayto Castle crisp factory in County Armagh, Northern Ireland, on November 7, 2019. (Photo by Daniel LEAL-OLIVAS / POOL / AFP) (Photo by DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Prime Minister Boris Johnson helps quality control workers during a general election campaign visit to the Tayto Castle crisp factory in County Armagh, Northern Ireland, on November 7, 2019. (Photo by Daniel LEAL-OLIVAS / POOL / AFP) (Photo by DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon.Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle crisp factory, Tandragee, County Armagh, while on the General Election campaign trail. PA Photo. Picture date: Thursday November 7, 2019. See PA story POLITICS Election. Photo credit should read: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire
Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle crisp factory, Tandragee, County Armagh, while on the General Election campaign trail. PA Photo. Picture date: Thursday November 7, 2019. See PA story POLITICS Election. Photo credit should read: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

By Jonathan Bell and Ralph Hewitt

Prime Minister Boris Johnson defended his Brexit deal as he hit the election campaign trail in Northern Ireland.

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Mr Johnson paid a whistle-stop visit the Tayto crisp factory in Tandragee as part of a three-nation tour designed to show his commitment to the Union and to emphasise his message on delivering Brexit before the end of January.

However, the DUP vehemently oppose his Brexit deal which effectively puts a border down the Irish Sea.

Boris Johnson told the press at Tayto Castle: "We have done a deal that enables Northern Ireland to have completed unfettered access to the single market - no border with the south.

"Fine that is great.

"We have also got a deal that keeps - look at it, read it - unfettered access from Northern Ireland to GB. And the only way in which there will be checks for goods coming from GB to NI where if those goods were going on to the EU."

He added: “This is a wonderful thing for NI because it allows the whole of the UK to leave while making sure there is not any border at all between Northern Ireland and the south, but also, and this is a very important point to get across, no friction at all west-east or east-west.

“There has been a lot of misunderstanding about the deal and perhaps one of the things that I wish we could have spent a bit more time explaining it because there won’t be any checks on stuff coming from Northern Ireland to Great Britain, we won’t be implementing, we are the Government of the UK, we won’t be implementing any checks, of course not.”

The PM was put to work in the Tayto factory. He helped sort potatoes, ate some crisps and boxed up packets of crisps in the noisy factory and also posed for photos with staff.

Sinn Fein’s Mickey Brady accused the Prime Minister of attempting to avoid public scrutiny over Brexit by "sneaking" into Northern Ireland on a "clandestine" and unannounced visit.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson with Tayto Chairman Stephen Hutchinson. (Photo by Daniel LEAL-OLIVAS / POOL / AFP) (Photo by DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Prime Minister Boris Johnson with Tayto Chairman Stephen Hutchinson. (Photo by Daniel LEAL-OLIVAS / POOL / AFP) (Photo by DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Prime Minister Boris Johnson helps quality control workers during a general election campaign visit to the Tayto Castle crisp factory in County Armagh, Northern Ireland, on November 7, 2019. (Photo by Daniel LEAL-OLIVAS / POOL / AFP) (Photo by DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon.Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 7/11/19 Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle crisp factory, Tandragee, County Armagh, while on the General Election campaign trail. PA Photo. Picture date: Thursday November 7, 2019. See PA story POLITICS Election. Photo credit should read: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

"I'm sure the business community, the farmers, the agri-food producers, retailers, cross-border workers, young people and many others would have welcomed the opportunity to confront Boris Johnson about the impact of Brexit," the outgoing MP said.

Boris Johnson said he "meant no disrespect to the honourable who does not take his seat".

He said he was "devoted" to Stormont and getting it back up and running.

"It is important everyone works together to get Stormont up and running," he told the Belfast Telegraph.

"It is for Dublin, London and the local parties to work together.

"All of the social issues discussed at the moment should be discussed by Stormont."

Asked why he chose Tandragee and the famous Tayto Castle as the venue for the Northern Ireland stop on his one-day tour, he said it was because he "loved the crisps".

Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Tayto Castle in County Armagh Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker

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