As imagined by Brian Beacom

YES, it’s time. I’m leaving behind the bunker of political opprobrium to make my way naked in the world, except perhaps for a multi-million-pound series of public speaking engagements, memoir deals, financially generous newspaper columns and lunches with my new bestie, President Zelenskyy.

Do I have regrets? Yes, of course I do. That flock wallpaper cost £800 a roll, and God knows we’ve tried a steamer, but it just won’t come off.

Ah, but you mean the fact I leave behind a divided party, bitterness and rancour, and found myself stabbed in the back by those I’d nurtured and loved, such as Cummings and Sunak?

Well, I would say no. Look at what I’ve achieved in Ukraine. I’m not saying I Rambo’d up and wore a vest and smeared Stallone grease on my face and machine-gunned invading Russians. But in a way I did, because you try appearing before the international press

pack while trying to milk a convenient association with Zelenskyy while rabid dogs are trying to ask you about misleading parliament. Doesn’t that deserve a medal?

And don’t forget, I did Get It Done. I sold the idea of Brexit to Red Wallers who put curry sauce on their chips and think Strictly is a fair representation of dance skills and love the idea of sending Johnny Foreigner back to France on their paddle boats.

And yes, our subsequent trade deals are worth less than a bin-man’s real wages. And the Northern Ireland Protocol hopes fade faster than David Beckham’s tattoos. But the important thing is the illusion that I’ve achieved a success.

Now, I know some have said to me “Boris, your decisions have been so egregious – the support of Chris Pincher, Owen Paterson, for example, you clearly need your brain tested.” But my reply has always been “I don’t have a doctor. I’ve never signed up for a GP – so how can it be possible that I even have a brain?”

And yes, the fact that I once offered to have Chris Whitty inject me with the Covid virus live on television and hid in a fridge and lied to the Queen does suggests that I am an Oxford-educated clown.

But remember this; I virtually invented the Covid vaccine. And when I played Richard III at Eton and made up my own lines and clowned around it made complete sense; I was able to run the script to suit my twin intents; to f***y around and capture all the attention. Is that not clever?

Now, you may say it’s cost me my job, but watch this space. Blunderbuss Truss will take over and this is wondrous because is there a person more likely to create havoc than I could? I’ll give it a year and the Tory membership will be remembering that 80-seat majority I brought with a nostalgic tear in their eye.

So, it’s not goodbye at all. Once the memoir and the speaking

tours are over it’s “Hasta la vista, baby.”