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Tory reshuffle: Who’s in and who’s out as Rishi Sunak reworks his cabinet

David Cameron has been confirmed as the new foreign secretary as Rishi Sunak begins a dramatic reshuffle of his top team by sacking Suella Braverman.

The former PM walked inside No 10 shortly before 9am as Mr Sunak seeks to create a “united” frontbench before next year’s crunch election.

James Cleverly replaces Ms Braverman as home secretarty after she was fired over her accusation that police had shown bias towards pro-Palestinian activists by letting the demo on Armistice Day go ahead.

Giving way to mounting pressure to fire her, a No 10 source said the prime minister “asked Suella Braverman to leave government and she has accepted”.

In a sign that this will be a wide ranging reshuffle, ministers have also left the education and health departments.

Rishi Sunak sacked Suella Braverman after days of mounting pressure (AP)
Rishi Sunak sacked Suella Braverman after days of mounting pressure (AP)

The Conservatives said Mr Sunak was carrying out a wider reshuffle which “strengthens his team in government to deliver long-term decisions for a brighter future”.

But sacking one of the leading figures on the Tory right could pose difficulties for the prime minister, as some Tory MPs told him to “prepare for war” with Ms Braverman’s backers.

In a short statement on Monday morning, Mrs Braverman said: “It has been the greatest privilege of my life to serve as home secretary.” Ominously for Mr Sunak, she added: “I will have more to say in due course.”

Who is in?

David Cameron was seen walking into No10 on Monday morning (REUTERS)
David Cameron was seen walking into No10 on Monday morning (REUTERS)

Foreign secretary, David Cameron

In a move that raised eyebrows in Westminster, former prime minister David Cameron has been confirmed as foreign secretary. Making a dramatic return to government, he has been made a life peer in the House of Lords as he is no longer a sitting MP.

Speaking after his appointment, Lord Cameron said that while “I may have disagreed with some individual decisions” made by Mr Sunak, he “is a strong and capable prime minister, who is showing exemplary leadership at a difficult time”.

Home secretary, James Cleverly

Mr Cleverly moves from foreign secretary from home secretary. A notice from No10 read: “The King has been pleased to approve the appointment of the Rt Hon James Cleverly MP as Secretary of State for the Home Department. This follows the departure from government of the Rt Hon Suella Braverman KC MP.”

Newly appointed home secretary James Cleverly leaving Downing Street on Monday (PA)
Newly appointed home secretary James Cleverly leaving Downing Street on Monday (PA)

Health secretary, Victoria Atkins

Ms Atkins, former financial secretary to the Treasury, takes over as health secretary from Steve Barclay, who is moving to become environment secretary. The loyal Sunak ally has been MP for Louth and Horncastle since May 2015. Ongoing strikes and record-high waiting lists are just two of the challenges facing the new cabinet minister.

Chancellor, Jeremy Hunt

Jeremy Hunt can breathe a sigh of relief as Downing Street confirmed he is staying in post after speculation that Mr Sunak wanted to replace him with a close ally. He is due to deliver the government’s Autumn Statement on 22 November.

Environment secretary, Steve Barclay

Mr Barclay has been demoted from health secretary to environment secretary, replacing Therese Coffey. The senior Tory figure is thought to have been at odds with Mr Sunak at certain points during the NHS strikes of the past 12 months. Mr Barclay reportedly urged unions to help him make the case for pay rises in January.

‘Common sense’ minister, Esther McVey

Ms McVey, a right-wing GB News host, has been appointed minister without portfolio in the Cabinet Office. It is understood that she will attend cabinet as the PM’s “common sense” minister to tackle “woke” politics across Whitehall.

Esther McVey is back in cabinet and will lead ‘anti-woke’ mission (PA Archive)
Esther McVey is back in cabinet and will lead ‘anti-woke’ mission (PA Archive)

Tory chairman, Richard Holden

Mr Holden, who had been a junior transport minister, has been named the new Conservative chairman, replacing Greg Hands. The combative MP for North West Durham may help shore up some support from some of the more right-wing “red wall” MPs in the north of England, after Ms Braverman’s exit.

Junior health minister, Andrea Leadsom

Ms Leadsom has been brought back into the fold as a junior minister in the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC). Mr Sunak will be hoping that the return of the right-wing Brexiteer – formerly business secretary – will placate those angry at Ms Braverman’s exit.

Sunak has also brought Laura Farris and Bim Afolami into the government as a minister in the Home Office and Ministry of Justice, and economic secretary to the Treasury, respectively. Simon Hoare was appointed to the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, meaning the Northern Ireland Affairs Committee will need to find a new chair.

Damian Hinds has been moved from prisons minister to a junior role at the Department for Education. Nigel Huddleston is in as financial secretary to the Treasury. Andrew Griffith as a minister in the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology. Jo Churchill has a role at the Department for Work and Pensions. And Andrew Stephenson is in at DHSC.

Laura Trott

Ms Trott has been a junior minister in the Department for Work and Pensions since Mr Sunak became prime minister last October. The Sevenoaks MP, elected in 2019, has now been appointed chief secretary to the Treasury and will replace John Glen.

John Glen

Mr Glen has been demoted from chief secretary to the Treasury to paymaster general in the Cabinet Office, having been replaced by Ms Trott.

His ousting from the Treasury comes just five days after he said he was “alarmed” at how high the tax burden is under Mr Sunak and Mr Hunt. Mr Glen said he understood the “discomfort” of fellow Tory MPs about the historic levels of taxation.

Greg Hands was sacked as Tory chairman (Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire)
Greg Hands was sacked as Tory chairman (Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire)

Greg Hands

The loyal ally of Mr Sunak has been sacked as Tory party chairman after the disastrous recent local election and by-election results, replaced by Richard Holden. He has instead been handed a role as a junior minister in the Department for Business and Trade. It is the fourth time he has been appointed minister of state for trade.

Lee Rowley

Mr Rowley is the new housing minister at the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities after the controversial exit of Rachel Maclean. He becomes the 16th to hold the role since 2010, a change branded “frankly shambolic” as part of the “revolving door of housing ministers” by campaigners.

Who is out?

Suella Braverman

The home secretary’s sacking comes as little surprise after a week in which she defied Mr Sunak’s authority and accused the police of bias.

She has also been sacked just days before a crucial court ruling on the government’s flagship Rwanda policy. She has so far not said much about her sacking but vowed: “I will have more to say in due course.”

Suella Braverman leaving her home in London before Monday’s reshuffle (REUTERS)
Suella Braverman leaving her home in London before Monday’s reshuffle (REUTERS)

Therese Coffey

The Tory MP for Suffolk Coastal has has left her role as environment secretary. A close friend of Liz Truss, she briefly served as deputy prime minister and health secretary during Ms Truss’ short stint as PM.

Speaking after leaving her post, she said she was “proud to have delivered for people, the planet and prosperity throughout that time”.

In a letter to the prime minister, she said: “Turning ambition into action and delivery has been the hallmark of my service. I want to thank the many dedicated civil servants, ministers and special advisers who have helped me achieve that.”

Therese Coffey at Downing Street with Larry the cat, as she prepares to be sacked (REUTERS)
Therese Coffey at Downing Street with Larry the cat, as she prepares to be sacked (REUTERS)

Nick Gibb

The long-time schools minister said he had left the government and would not stand at the next general election.

“Over the last few weeks I have been discussing taking up a diplomatic role after the general election,” he said. “To enable me to do so I have asked the prime minister if I can step down from the government at the reshuffle and he has agreed.” He said he remained an “enthusiastic supporter” of Mr Sunak.

Neil O’Brien

Health minister Neil O’Brien, who was due to play a key role in delivering the PM’s new smoking ban for the younger generation, has also left his post. He said he had asked “to go to back benches” to focus on his constituency and see more of his small children.

Jeremy Quin

The cabinet office minister and paymaster general said he was quitting his post to forcus on projects in his Horsham constituency.

In his resignation letter, he said it had been an honour to served in government. adding: “It has been a pleasure to support you consistently and I look forward to doing so again in future.”

Jesse Norman

Transport minister Jesse Norman was made a junior transport minister by Mr Sunak the day after he became PM last October. He had previously served in junior roles in the foreign office and the Treasury.

He played a key role in the development of the zero emission vehicle (ZEV) mandate, which sets a target for car manufacturers to move away from petrol and diesel models. He also worked on regulations for self-driving cars.

Mr Norman said he made his intention to return to the backbenches known “months ago” and was “looking forward to more freedom to campaign” in his constituency.

Rachel Maclean

Ms Maclean said she was “disappointed” after being sacked as housing minister. In a post on X, formerly Twitter, she said: “I’ve been asked to step down from my role as housing minister. Disappointed and was looking forward to introducing the Renters Reform Bill to committee tomorrow and later the Leasehold and Freehold Bill.”

In what will be seen as thinly veiled criticism of one part of the reshuffle, business secretary Kemi Badenoch tweeted that she was “very sorry” to see Ms Maclean leave government.

Will Quince

Mr Quince quit as minister in the Department of Health and Social Care, saying he was standing down at the next election.

He said he would now focus on his training as a specialist reserve officer in the army and his work as a constituency MP.

George Freeman

Mr Freeman has quit as science minister, saying it is “time to focus on my health, family wellbeing and life beyond the front bench”.

The Mid Norfolk MP said he has championed science and technology since he was elected 13 years ago, holding five ministerial posts under four prime ministers.