John Prescott marks 21 years since he punched a protester in the street

John Prescott marks 21 years since he punched a protester in the street
New statue of Margaret Thatcher egged

John Prescott may have been the UK deputy prime minister for over a decade (1997-2007) and a Labour MP for 40 years, but he also provided one of the most infamous moments in British politics.

And today, it has been 21 years since the time he got egged on the street by a protester and responded by punching the culprit in the face.

Prescott was walking to a Labour Party election rally at the Little Theatre in Rhyl, North Wales ahead of the 2001 general election when the incident occurred - in fact, it was the same day the Labour manifesto was launched.

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Agricultural worker Craig Evans who threw the egg got more than he bargained for when Prescott threw a left-handed jab at his face which then caused a scuffle between the two of them.

In a tweet to his 251,000 followers, Prescott - who is now 83 - marked the memorable day by resharing the clip and wrote: "21 years ago today," along with some apt fox, egg and face punch emojis.

People on Twitter also took a trip down memory lane, including Karl Turner, Labour MP for East Hull who tweeted: "@johnprescott doesn't mess about, does he!? Happy anniversary #PrescottJab."

Prescott's punch even got a mention from Nessa in a Gavin and Stacey episode (Series 2, episode 6).

Alastair Campbell who was the Downing Street Director of Communications at the time under Tony Blair previously shared the story of a phone he received from Prescott after the punch occurred, on Twitter he wrote how Prescot rang him up and said: "Hiya … I’ve just thumped a bloke."

"I said 'what sort of bloke?'

"Just a bloke."

"Why did you hit him?" Campbell asked.

"He was a prat," Prescott replied.

"John, if we punched everyone we thought was a prat…"

“I know, I know. Anyway, I’m not resigning," the then-deputy prime minister said.

Despite Campbell urging him to apologise, Prescott refused but in the end he ultimately kept his job and the incident didn't affect their standings in the polls as Labour went on to win the 2001 general election.

Neither Prescott nor Evans were charged with any criminal offence as a result of the incident.

Prescott is not the only politician who has had literal egg on their face, as French president Emmanuel Macron also struck with one last year, other political figures who can relate to getting things lobbed at them include Boris Johnson, Jeremy Corbyn, Nigel Farage, and Donald Trump.

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