Paddy McGuinness has mocked government aide Dominic Cummings with a spoof cover of chart hit (Is This The Way To) Amarillo.
The Phoenix Nights star shared a clip on social media of him singing (Is This The Way To) Barnard Castle, a reference to Cummings’ claim that he made a 30-mile trip with his family to Durham beauty spot Barnard Castle during lockdown to test his eyesight.
McGuinness, 46, wrote on Instagram: “I was asked to do this by one of you lot 😄 If anyone can put the backing track on that’d be lovely! #isthisthewaytobarnardcastle.”
The Top Gear presenter changed the lyrics of the Tony Christie hit to: “Is this the way to Barnard Castle? / You see my vision’s a bit of a hassle / Is this the way to Barnard Castle / Where sweet Mary waits for me.
“Sha-la-la-la load of bulls*** / Sha-la-la-la load of bulls*** / Sha-la-la-la load of bulls*** / It was Mary’s birthday treat.”
Cummings’ family’s trip to the castle took place on the birthday of his journalist wife Mary Wakefield.
Amarillo was a No 1 hit for McGuinness’s Phoenix Nights co-star Peter Kay in 2005, released to raise money for charity Comic Relief.
McGuinness’s new version has already had 2.9 million views on Twitter.
Cummings has come under public scrutiny after it emerged he drove 260 miles from London to his parents’ home in Durham during lockdown, breaking the government’s own rules.
Confirming reports he had been spotted at Barnard Castle, he claimed the trip was in order to test his eyesight before he made the long drive back to London.
Cummings said he stopped the car so his child could go to the toilet and play in some woods with his wife. He added that he also got out when he felt ill for “15 minutes”, sitting about 15 metres from his car. He said at no time did he break social distancing guidelines.
Lockdown rules at the time said you should only leave the house for essential reasons, like shopping or exercise.