Tory leadership race timetable: How will the contest work?

The Tory leadership contest is well underway, following Theresa May's resignation as party leader.

Mrs May will stay on as prime minister and acting party leader until her replacement is chosen, likely in the week beginning July 22.

Jeremy Hunt, Michael Gove, Boris Johnson and Sajid Javid remain in the running. Credit: PA

The fiercely competitive race to Number 10 saw a number of candidates drop by the wayside, as new rules mean contenders must have the backing of eight MPs.

Boris Johnson is the current frontrunner, despite cabinet ministers Amber Rudd and Penny Mordaunt backing Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt.

Mark Harper, Andrea Leadsom, and Esther McVey were eliminated in the first round of voting, Matt Hancock dropped out, Dominic Raab did not make the cut in the second round of voting by Tory MPs, while Rory Stewart was axed in the third.

Mr Johnson topped the latest ballot with 143 votes, which puts him over the magic number of 105 that places him, in effect, in the final two.

Currently in the running to be the next prime minister are:

  • Boris Johnson

  • Jeremy Hunt

  • Michael Gove

  • Sajid Javid

Boris Johnson has received the most votes in all the ballots. Credit: PA

So, what happens next and when will we know who the new prime minister is?

Tuesday 18, Wednesday June 19 and Thursday June 20

The pool of candidates will be reduced from six, to the final two, in a series of ballots taking place on June 18, 19 and 20.

The contender who comes last is eliminated until just two candidates remain on the ballot paper.

The final four - Michael Gove, Boris Johnson, Jeremy Hunt, and Sajid Javid - will be reduced to just two, in two separate ballots on Thursday.

Tory MPs will vote the four down to three, and then in a separate ballot just hours later, decide on the final two.

Jeremy Hunt launches his Tory leadership campaign. Credit: PA

Saturday June 22

The final pair of candidates will take part in hustings in front of Conservative Party members.

Members will spend a month deciding on who they want to lead the party and be the next Prime Minister.

The party's 160,000 members will vote by a postal ballot - the final ballot - and the result will be announced in July.

Monday July 22

The result of the membership ballot will be announced the week commencing July 22.

The new Tory leader and the country's new Prime Minister should be in place before the summer parliamentary recess.

Theresa May will visit the Queen to tender her resignation and her successor is expected to be called to Buckingham Palace to form a government.