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28th Apr 2016

Watch this civil servant try to wriggle himself out of saying ‘Boaty McBoatface’ in Parliament

Go on, just say it

Matt Tate

The democratic will of the people probably won’t be enough to actually name a research ship Boaty McBoatface, because killjoy politicians are likely to block it.

Still, there’s still plenty of life in one of 2016’s standout news stories, evidenced by this video clip of civil servant Martin Donnelly being cornered into saying the name out loud in Parliament, despite his best efforts to evade doing so.

Donnelly, who reportedly earns £160,000 a year, had to be asked four times by Tory MP Richard Bacon to say the winning entry of an online contest that let the public choose a £200m Royal Research Ship’s name.


We know that Boaty McBoatface absolutely steamrolled the competition, with 120,000 votes in its favour, but the powers that be are boringly reluctant to let it stick.

Still, it’s good to know ol’ Boaty is still causing a stir.

When Donnelly did finally let the name slip, the jubilant Bacon’s response was: “I just wanted you to say that on the record. And you did.”

He certainly did, and it will remain in the Parliamentary record Hansard forever. Long live Boaty McBoatface.