Latest Cabinet reshuffle news: Penny Mordaunt down and John Whittingdale out

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·27 min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

Boris Johnson's Cabinet reshuffle is continuing today, with a further two big names losing their posts after yesterday's shake-up.

Penny Mordaunt has been demoted from Paymaster General and co-chair of the joint committee on EU negotiations, to become a trade minister.

"Thank you to Cabinet Office colleagues and partners for the last 20 months and all we achieved," she wrote. "Good luck to my successor and… look after the cats!"

John Whittingdale has been sacked as culture minister, tweeting that he was "sorry to be stepping down".

Mr Whittingdale's departure leaves Boris Johnson with several mid-level roles yet to fill, alongside vaccines minister, vacated by Nadhim Zahawi as he rises to Education Secretary, and schools minister, vacated by Nick Gibb, who joins Gavin Williamson on the backbenches.

Ms Mordaunt's shoes have been filled by Michael Ellis - but his old role of solicitor general is yet to be filled. Greg Hands, the former trade minister, has been appointed as an energy minister.

Follow the latest updates below.

01:02 PM

Have your say: Has Boris Johnson built himself an A-Team?

Boris Johnson's reshuffle is far from over but the contours are pretty clear.

Michael Gove will take charge of the Union and levelling up agenda, as well as the planning reforms that were promised in the manifesto. Dominic Raab has been demoted, but Liz Truss joins the top team, while Priti Patel stays put.

Oliver Dowden has been handed a more prominent role as Party chairman, while Nadhim Zahawi has been rewarded for his vaccines work by taking ejected Gavin Williamson's education brief.

So, does all this mean the PM has built himself an A-Team - or has he bungled it? Have your say in the poll below.

12:40 PM

Reshuffle: Which jobs are left to fill?

Boris Johnsons's shake-up of the Government has been put on pause while he deals with the fallout from the new Aukus pact, as well as welcoming Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi to Downing Street.

But there are plenty of roles that need to be filled - and that means more changes are likely to trickle through for the rest of the day.

Here's some of what is left to fill as things stand:

  • Vaccines minister - role vacated by Nadhim Zahawi, who moves up to Education Secretary

  • Schools standards minister - role vacated by Nick Gibb, who has been sacked

  • Media minister - role vacated by John Whittingdale, who has been sacked

  • Solicitor general - role vacated by Michael Ellis, who has moved up to Paymaster General

  • Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury - role vacated by Kemi Badenoch, who has moved up to become minister for levelling up

We could also see a new security minister, with James Brokenshire not making a return to the role after his cancer treatment. Currently the portfolio has been subsumed into the Home Secretary's brief.

12:18 PM

Reshuffle latest: Is Michael Gove's new department getting a rebrand?

The Sun's political editor Harry Cole seems to think Michael Gove's new home - the uninspiringly-named Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) is getting a rebrand.

Mr Gove has responsibility for the Union and levelling up, as well as the rest of the sizeable portfolio.

The rebrand goes someway to explaining why the former Cabinet Office minister and Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster was willing to take on what appeared to be a demotion.

But plans appear to have hit a linguistic barrier...

12:14 PM

Lobby latest: No 10 shrugs off criticism of privilege in Cabinet

Downing Street said the Cabinet make-up was now one of the "most diverse in history" following the reshuffle, despite almost half of Boris Johnson's new Cabinet attending Oxbridge and nearly two-thirds educated at private schools.

The Prime Minister's official spokesman said: "It is factual to say it is one of the most diverse cabinets in history."

Asked about Nadhim Zahawi, who was educated at the private Ibstock Place and Kings College School, the spokesman stressed he had "initially" studied at "the comprehensive Holland Park School" and highlighted his early years as a Kurdish refugee from Saddam Hussein's Iraq.

The new Education Secretary "has talked very personally about his own background and how he has been able to rise to this important position from a family of immigrants, coming in at a young age," the spokesman said.

12:01 PM

Lobby latest: Dominic Raab will play 'vital' role in Government

Brave face: Dominic Raab made a speedy exit from No 10 yesterday - Anadolu Agency
Brave face: Dominic Raab made a speedy exit from No 10 yesterday - Anadolu Agency

Dominic Raab will have a "vital" role to play in Government, despite the move being seen as a demotion, Boris Johnson's spokesman has said.

"Dealing with criminal justice is one of the key functions of Government and that's why the Prime Minister has sought to move Dominic Raab into this position, given his background and expertise in this area."

The spokesman also sought to downplay suggestions made in Robert Buckland's resignation letter that the justice system had suffered from underfunding.

"The Government has invested significant resources to tackle court backlogs from the pandemic, put more criminals behind bars and provide better support for victims," he told reporters. "It has seen an extra quarter-of-a-billion in the last financial year for speedier justice, in addition to the £1 billion court reform programme, £85 million for the CPS to manage caseloads, for example."

11:51 AM

Lobby latest: Boris Johnson 'planned' to formalise Dominic Raab's deputy status

Returning to the reshuffle, and Number 10 has insisted that making Dominic Raab deputy prime minister was a "planned move".

It has been reported that the minister negotiated the additional title during his lengthy meeting with Boris Johnson yesterday when he was demoted to Justice Secretary.

The Prime Minister's official spokesman told reporters: "Look, I'm not going to get into individual conversations that take place. I think it is right they remain private...[but] I'm happy to confirm this was a planned move."

The title "formalises" his position as the Prime Minister's deputy, the spokesman added. "It demonstrates his seniority within Government and the trust the Prime Minister places with him."

Asked what the difference was between being first secretary and deputy prime minister, the spokesman added: "You can expect him to be involved in cross-governmental work when that is necessitated.

"I'm not going to be prescriptive while we are still in the midst of this process. It is clear he will play an important senior role in Government."

11:47 AM

Grant Shapps hails 'golden' opportunity to cut red tape

Lord Frost said Grant Shapps would set out plans to shake-up transport legislation shortly - and he was not wrong.

The Transport Secretary has just announced via Twitter, as is usual these days, his plans to "shake off the bureaucracy, invest in our future, and realise our potential with world-leading transport that benefits all of Britain".

Those plans include digital drivers' licences and " bringing MOTs into the modern age", a shake-up of aviation rules "to cut through unnecessary red tape" and plans to trial new road and air technologies.

The Government will also "peel away layers of EU-focussed regulation to reclaim our nation’s proud seafaring heritage," he adds.

11:41 AM

UK to adopt 'one in, two out' system towards new laws

Lord Frost has given a glimpse of some of the changes coming down the line, which will "unleash Britain's future".

He says the Government will look to use a "one in, two out system" to cut back on onerous legislation.

The Brexit minister says the UK will adopt a "pro growth trusted data rights regime" which will be "more proportionate and less burdensome than the EU's GDPR regime".

The Government will also review the "inherited approach to genetically modified organisations, which is too restrictive and not based on sound science", with George Eustice, the Environment Secretary will "shortly set out plans to reform the legislation of gene-edited organisms".

Grant Shapps, the Transport Secretary, will also set out "ambitious plans" to modernise "outdated EU vehicle standards, unlocking a full range of technologies".

11:33 AM

Tigger report: Lord Frost updates peers on post-Brexit opportunities

Lord Frost has told peers that Brexit has rescued the UK from "the legislative sausage machine" of the EU.

In a statement to the House of Lords about the opportunities, the Brexit minister says he has been considering the "mammoth task". Iain Duncan Smith has delivered a "Tigger report", which Rishi Sunak, Lord Frost and others have spent the last few months considering.

Firstly, the Government will remove the special status of retained EU law, to avoid "giving undue precedence to EU laws over laws made properly by this Parliament".

Secondly there will be a substantive review of which laws are retained, in particularly financial services legislation, with a plan to "amend, replace or repeal" anything that is "not right for the UK".

11:11 AM

Lobby latest: Aukus pact will bring post-Brexit benefits to UK, says No 10

Downing Street has said there will be "extensive work carried out in the UK" after a pact was signed with the US and Australia to co-operate on nuclear-powered submarines.

The Prime Minister's official spokesman said: "You will appreciate this is in the early stages, the Prime Minister set out there is now an 18-month process where we consider the technical and practical issues of the project.

"It's fair to say there will be extensive work carried out in the UK, as well as the United States and Australia. It will create hundreds of jobs over the lifetime of the project and we can expect investment to be in the tens of billions."

Asked if the alliance was a benefit of Brexit, the spokesman said: "I wouldn't dispute the fact that we're able to move in this way now we're not a part of the European Union and that is to the benefit of the British people."

11:04 AM

Reshuffle was high noon for ministers who fell short of expectations

After weeks of rampant speculation, it was just before midday that word finally reached the Cabinet: the reshuffle was on.

The rumours began to circulate among political journalists shortly after 9am, with government officials signalling that Boris Johnson was preparing to rejig his top team after Prime Minister’s Questions.

A non-denial from Downing Street followed soon after, prompting ministers across Whitehall to begin cancelling meetings and clearing their diaries.

At 11.30am, one Cabinet minister, glued to their mobile phone, was overheard asking: “They’re saying it’s on? Is it on? People are saying it’s on.” Half an hour later, Number 10 gave them their answer.

Read Harry Yorke's reconstruction of the key events here.

10:51 AM

SNP MPs would not need face masks if 'they worked a bit harder', says Jacob Rees-Mogg

Jacob Rees-Mogg has suggested SNP MPs would not have to wear face masks in Westminster "if they came a bit more, if they worked a bit harder".

The Commons Leader said face masks were only required in crowded settings with people you don't normally meet.

He suggested SNP MPs "dont normally meet other MPs - perhaps this is because they are not very assiduous in their attendance of the House." Conservative MPs, meanwhile are "rigorous and regularly in attendance", therefore do not need their face masks.

"Is it not a pity that some people don't like to come to Parliament, and if they came a bit more, if they worked a bit harder and if they put their elbow... to the wheel they might not need to wear face coverings either, because they would meet Members of Parliament more regularly."

10:47 AM

Jacob Rees-Mogg slams 'Countess Moanalot' MP

Jacob Rees-Mogg has told an SNP MP he is "competing with Countess Moanalot herself".

Pete Wishart, the MP for Perth and North Perthshire, had complained about the Commons Leader's repeated references to "obscure" battles between Scotland and England that the former invariably had lost.

He told the minister that the current battle was being "fought with ideas", saying: "He can stuff his battles of Flodden and Falkirk where his top hat don't shine because this battle of Scotland will be won by its people."

Mr Rees-Mogg said "if that is the battle of ideas, it is ideas of gloom and doom and lugubriousness".

10:40 AM

Jacob Rees-Mogg hints at May election - but which year?

Jacob Rees-Mogg has further fuelled suggestions that Number 10 is beginning to gear up for an election campaign, telling Commons "the date has already been set" for when the current term would end.

Responding to a question about when the public inquiry into the Government's Covid response would take place, the Commons Leader reiterated that it would begin during this parliamentary session.

"This parliamentary session will run, as usual since the reforms in 2010, until around May so the date has already been set out," he added.

However, he did not stipulate which year - and as my colleagues note here, the country could be going to the polls in 2023.

10:29 AM

Brussels blindsided on Aukus pact

During Boris Johnson's Commons statement just now he sought to stress the UK's relationship with France is "rock solid" and that we "stand shoulder-to-shoulder with the French" militarily.

Perhaps that's because the pact announced overnight appears to have blindsided some of our European allies...

10:25 AM

Gavin Williamson has been told to 'shut up and go away', jokes Labour frontbencher

Thangam Debbonaire, the shadow leader of the Commons, teases her counterpart about the reshuffle - and gets another jibe in about Gavin Williamson.

The Labour frontbencher says she is pleased to see that Jacob Rees-Mogg still in his role as "there had been rumours" that Mr Williamson would take his brief.

But the former education secretary has been told to "shut up and go away", she adds - a reference to his comments towards Russia as defence secretary.

She continues: "I am relieved therefore I don't have to spend time today explaining that I am the member for Bristol West and not the member for Ealing Central and Acton."

This appears to be an allusion to another of Mr Williamson's gaffes - confusing Marcus Rashford with rugby player Maro Itoje.

10:12 AM

'No prospect' of breaking non-proliferation treaty with Ausuk

SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford sought a "cast-iron guarantee" that the Aukus pact can "never be used as a stepping stone to nuclear weaponry" for any future Australia administration.

Mr Johnson replied: "There's no prospect of it breaking the nuclear non-proliferation treaty."

10:11 AM

Ausuk pact 'fantastic - but not revolutionary', says Boris Johnson

Conservative Tobias Ellwood, chairman of the Defence Select Committee, said: "We must work with but stand up to China. This is about a more co-ordinated, long-term strategy in challenging China's increasing hostile dominance in the South China Sea.

"But as the Prime Minister says, it's also a reminder of how we must work with alliances, rekindle an appetite to robustly defend international standards. So we cannot gloss over how bruised Nato now feels after the withdrawal from Afghanistan."

Boris Johnson replied: "It's true that this is a huge increase in the levels of trust between the US, the UK and Australia. It's a fantastic defence technology partnership that we're building.

"But for the perspective of our friends and partners around the world, it is not actually revolutionary. We have already been co-operating over, for instance, the Collins-class submarines in Australia."

09:56 AM

Boris Johnson: 'Our strong advice' to Beijing is do not invade Taiwan

Boris Johnson and the frontbench   - AFP
Boris Johnson and the frontbench - AFP

Back to the Commons, where Theresa May asks about the implication of the pact "should China attempt to invade Taiwan".

Boris Johnson says the UK "remains determined to defend international law and that is the strong advice we would give to our friends across the world, and the strong advice we would give to the government in Beijing".

09:51 AM

Reshuffle: John Whittingdale sacked as media minister

John Whittingdale has confirmed that he has been sacked as media minister - a genuine surprise to many in Westminster as he was part-way through some fairly major projects including driving the privatisation of Channel 4.

A former culture secretary and one-time member of the DCMS committee, his departure leaves a big hole in the team.

But I'm told it won't have any bearing on plans for C4.

09:46 AM

Aukus pact 'not adversarial' towards China, says Boris Johnson

Boris Johnson has stressed the new pact with Australia and the US "is not intended to be adversarial with any power", in response to questions about China.

Aukus demonstrates "the sheer level of trust between us", which enables the three countries to share nuclear technology, in a move he describes as "extraordinary".

They also have a shared interest in promoting democracy and freedom of trade around the world, the Prime Minister says.

The commitment to Nato is "unshakeable", he adds.

09:44 AM

Labour backs new Aukus pact

Sir Keir Starmer says Labour backs the new Aukus pact as it "makes the world safer".

The withdrawal from Afghanistan shows "how precarious stability can be", he adds, noting that sharing resources with Australia and America "makes them safer, makes Britain safer and makes the world safer".

He calls for more detail on what it means in practice, particularly in relation to China whose "assertiveness does pose risks".

09:41 AM

New Aukus pact 'shows what Indo-Pacific tilt means in reality'

Boris Johnson tells MPs that the 'Aukus' pact shows what the "tilt towards the Indo-Pacific means in reality".

This had been highlighted as a crucial part of the Integrated Review set out in the spring, but the new pact is an additional "pillar of our strategy", he adds.

It is a "generational commitment to the security of the Indo-Pacific" and will "help one of our oldest friends to preserve regional stability".

It will create jobs at home and reinforce the UK's standing in the world, he adds.

09:37 AM

UK will become 'inseparable partners' with US and Australia for decades

Boris Johnson and his newly-promoted Foreign Secretary Liz Truss - AFP
Boris Johnson and his newly-promoted Foreign Secretary Liz Truss - AFP

We will take a short break from reshuffle news as the Prime Minister is giving a statement to the Commons about the pact struck with the US and Australia, announced last night.

Flanked by his new Foreign Secretary, Liz Truss, and Ben Wallace, the Defence Secretary, Boris Johnson tells MPs he has "no hesitation about trusting Australia, a fellow maritime democracy joined to us by blood and history, which stood by Britain through two world wars at immense sacrifice".

He adds that today the two countries "defend the same interests, promote the same values, and face the same threats".

The UK and Australia are "as closely aligned as any two countries in the world". The trio will become "inseparable partners in a project that will last for decades", he adds.

09:30 AM

Reshuffle: Has John Whittingdale been sacked as media minister?

Don't think that day two of the reshuffle won't bring its own surprises.

John Whittingdale, the media minister, is rumoured to be out of his job, according to Sky News' Joe Pike.

Mr Whittingdale has been spearheading plans to privatise Channel 4 so his role will be closely watched by those in the sector - and beyond - who are fighting it.

09:17 AM

Get ready for a general election, says Oliver Dowden

Oliver Dowden has hit the ground running - Anadolu Agency
Oliver Dowden has hit the ground running - Anadolu Agency

Conservative party staff were told by Oliver Dowden, the new co-chairman, on Wednesday night to start preparing for a general election which could be in as little as 20 months’ time.

Oliver Dowden, who was moved from Culture Secretary in the reshuffle, walked into Tory HQ on Matthew Parker Street in Westminster shortly after leaving Downing Street, and addressed party staff.

“You can’t fatten a pig on market day,” he said, days after MPs started debating a law to scrap a requirement to hold elections every five years. “It’s time to go to our offices and prepare for the next election.”

Read more from our chief political correspondent Chris Hope here.

09:07 AM

Analysis: What does Boris Johnson's reshuffle tell us?

At the start of yesterday's reshuffle, Number 10 made it clear that the Prime Minister's key priorities were levelling up and the post-pandemic recovery.

That was reinforced this morning by Ben Wallace, who highlighted the number of promotions for women, and the importance of representation in the top jobs.

But beyond that, Boris Johnson looks to have been sending a message that incompetence won't be ignored. Gavin Williamson's demotion was not unexpected, but his total removal from the Government was - although I'm told he is considered "damaged goods" and therefore not a threat on the outside.

The same is true of Robert Jenrick, who despite having a personal relationship with the PM, had failed to deliver on planning reform.

"That's what did for him," says one insider. "Shows the PM is ruthless... he's in charge."

Loyalty still plays a massive factor, however, as can be seen by keeping Priti Patel as Home Secretary and promoting Nadine Dorries to Culture Secretary.

08:54 AM

Jess Brammar will 'do a great job', says BBC director-general

Director-general Tim Davie said the BBC ran a "completely open process" in the recruitment of Jess Brammar as the corporation's executive news editor of news channels.

Confirmation of Brammar's appointment this week was preceded by headlines, with Labour calling for Sir Robbie Gibb to be sacked from the board of the BBC after claims that he tried to block the hiring on political grounds.

Speaking at the Royal Television Society's Cambridge convention, Mr Davie said the corporation is in "dangerous territory if previous political positions, tweets, goodness knows what else rule you out from BBC jobs - we're hiring from all walks of life".

He said that, as leader of the corporation, he has an expectation "for anyone joining our organisation, and that's to leave your politics at the door".

He added that Brammar, who will oversee the BBC's two 24-hour news channels - BBC World News and the BBC News Channel - is a "great hire and she'll do a great job".

Brammar, who is the former editor-in-chief of HuffPost UK and was also previously acting editor of Newsnight, made headlines after historic tweets emerged in which she was critical of Brexit and Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

08:39 AM

UK-US-Aus pact not an act of aggression towards China, insists Defence Secretary

China would be wrong to interpret the new military pact formed between Britain, the US and Australia as an act of aggression, the Defence Secretary has said.

Ben Wallace told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "I think they're wrong. I mean, China invested in our civil nuclear power system here and no-one called that an act of the Cold War.

"In the Cold War everyone was stuck behind fences and didn't really communicate with each other and certainly didn't engage in global trade, and I think it's probably a Cold War view to describe it as a Cold War."

The Prime Minister has also tweeted about the agreement announced late last night:

08:36 AM

BBC director-general 'not distracted' by criticism from new Culture Secretary

The BBC's director-general has said it is "too early to make too many conclusions" about the appointment of Nadine Dorries as Culture Secretary.

Speaking to new ITN chief executive Deborah Turness at the RTS Cambridge Convention 2021, Tim Davie said: "We are yet to make contact but I'm really looking forward to meeting her."

He added: "I think it's too early to make too many conclusions. We need a really serious, grown-up dialogue with Government, it's an incredibly important topic. There will always be a bit of theatre but we will sit down and have a proper dialogue around the BBC, and I look forward to it."

Mrs Dorries has previously been highly critical of the BBC, but he said: "I wouldn't get too distracted by it; it's all about sitting down with the ministers and the teams and really getting into it, I'm not distracted by it.

"I think we have got a strong case for investment in the BBC."

See 8:17am for more.

08:26 AM

Ministers were not sacked for incompetence, Defence Secretary insists

Boris Johnson did not sack MPs from Cabinet because of their incompetence, Ben Wallace has said.

The Defence Secretary, who kept his brief during yesterday's reshuffle, said characterisations of Gavin Williamson, who was sacked as education secretary, have been "unfair".

He told BBC Breakfast: "He has removed people from Government not because they're incompetent, not because they weren't loyal enough et cetera, which are often the narratives you see, but often he has to refresh his team and move people out the way."

07:48 AM

Greg Hands reshuffled to energy minister

The trade minister Greg Hands has been appointed as an energy minister in the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, he has announced.

Mr Hands, who was first elected to the Chelsea and Fulham constituency in 2010, replaces Anne-Marie Trevelyan, who has been appointed International Trade Secretary.

Here is his tweet:

07:26 AM

Whoops! We didn't meant to upset the French, says Wallace

The Defence Secretary has said the Government has "no intention of doing anything to antagonise the French" after its new submarine contract with Australia sparked anger from Paris.

Mr Wallace said it had been a decision for Australia to replace their submarines from diesel/electric models to nuclear.

Last night France said it regretted a new security partnership between the UK, US and Australia, and accused the countries of a "lack of coherence".

"[The decision to] push aside a European ally and partner like France from a structural partnership with Australia at a time we are facing unprecedented challenges in the Indo-Pacific region ... shows a lack of coherence that France can only acknowledge and regret," said one French minister.

France had been expected to produce new diesel submarines for Australia at a cost of $35bn, but that deal has been cancelled.

Mr Wallace said the decision to change submarines was for Australia.

"We have no intention of doing anything to antagonise the French, he said.

"The French are some of our closest military allies in Europe. We are sizeable and comparable forces, and we do things together in West Africa.

"We are all together - we are providing Chinook squadrons to help them in their counter-terrorism fight, I get on extremely well with my French counterpart.

"Only recently myself and the foreign secretary, went to visit them in Paris, and we will continue to work where we have common interests, both in the Pacific and here at home."

07:17 AM

New Culture Secretary opposes 'crackpot' Left-wing TV

Mr Wallace also used his broadcast round to fire a warning shot across the bows of the BBC - that Left-wing television programmes are not a good way to spend the licence fee.

Ben Wallace said Nadine Dorries does not think that taxpayer's money should be spent on "crackpot schemes".

"What's great about Nadine Dorries is that she produces culture that people buy and actually want to see, rather than some of the more crackpot schemes we've seen being funded in the past by taxpayers money," he said.

"One was on a programme, not so long ago, something about 9/11.

"And I think she'll bring realism to it. But she's also from my part of the world, from the northwest. She's a she's a great, solid and competent, capable minister.

Mr Wallace added that Ms Dorries is a bestselling author.

"I couldn't even begin to write a chapter, let alone a book, but she took herself off when she was an MP and decided she was going to be an author and she's sold thousands and thousands of books," he said.

It is unclear which BBC programme Mr Wallace was referring to.

07:05 AM

Boris Johnson's reshuffle is all about gender equality, says Ben Wallace

Liz Truss, Boris Johnson's new Foreign Secretary - DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP
Liz Truss, Boris Johnson's new Foreign Secretary - DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP

The Defence Secretary is on the broadcast round this morning, and has inevitably has been asked about yesterday's reshuffle.

Asked what the purpose of the clear-out is, Mr Wallace said: "The Prime Minister wanted to bring forward a number of women MPs.

"He is determined to both level up, not only in the country but also in my party's representation around the Cabinet table, and I think it's really important you bring on talent.

"I think he was determined to do that and we had some fantastic people on our back benches who needed time in government and I think that is important."

The major female winners in yesterday's reshuffle were:

  • Liz Truss, moving from International Trade Secretary to Foreign Secretary

  • Nadine Dorries, moving from health minister to Culture Secretary

  • Anne-Marie Trevelyan, promoted from business minister to International Trade Secretary

06:56 AM

Good morning

Who's next? Nadine Dorries shrugs at reporters on her way to be appointed as Culture Secretary - JULIAN SIMMONDS
Who's next? Nadine Dorries shrugs at reporters on her way to be appointed as Culture Secretary - JULIAN SIMMONDS

Westminster is reeling from the impact of Boris Johnson's Cabinet reshuffle this morning, after ministers spent yesterday afternoon parading along Downing Street to be demoted, promoted or sacked.

But the shakeup is not over yet: Penny Mordaunt announced this morning that she is leaving the Government, but it is not yet clear whether she has been given another job.

Nick Gibb, the schools minister, announced late last night he was leaving the Department for Education, where he has been a minister for some time.

We will be bringing you all the latest in this live blog throughout the day.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting