Live updates


Clarke warns May over post-Brexit 'wonderland' fantasy

Remain-backing Tory MP Ken Clarke compared Theresa May to Alice in Wonderland during his speech in Parliament.

Dripping sarcasm, he said Britain may well tumble down the rabbit hole “and emerge in a wonderland” where suddenly countries are “queuing up” for trade.

He added: “Nice men like President Trump and [Turkish] President Erdogan are just impatient to abandon their normal protectionism.”

He also called both campaigns in the referendum "pathetic" and said he’s merely enforcing what has been Tory policy for decades.

He said his colleagues have had a “Road to Damascus” style conversion, but he said: “I’m afraid that light has been denied me!”

Clarke hails Cameron's wit and urges him to stay as MP

Ken Clarke has asked David Cameron his final question as prime minister at PMQs.

He paid tribute to David Cameron's "wit and humour" and urged him to remain an "active participant".

Cameron joked that Clarke's first act as chancellor was to fire him as a special adviser.

He said Clarke had demonstrated "great wisdom, thoughtfulness and balance" during his time in the coalition government.

Actor found not guilty over Kenneth Clarke grope claim

An actor has been cleared of perverting the course of justice over his claim that he was molested by former chancellor Kenneth Clarke during a cash-for-questions TV sting 20 years ago.

Former chancellor Kenneth Clarke Credit: PA

Ben Fellows, 40, from Birmingham, alleged that the leading politician had plied him with alcohol and carried out the sexual assault in the office of a lobbyist while he was working undercover for ITV's Cook Report in 1994.

Mr Clarke insisted he had never in his life "had the compulsion" to grope another man as he dismissed the claim as "preposterous", "off the Richter scale" and "like Martians landing".

Actor Ben Fellows

After eight hours of deliberations the jury at the Old Bailey found Fellows, of Redstone Farm Road, Olton, Solihull, not guilty of perverting the course of justice between November 14 2012 and December 1 2012.

Speaking outside court, Fellows thanked his "friends, family and supporters" who he said "kept me going throughout the ordeal of the last two years".

He described his trial at the Old Bailey as an "intense and terrifying experience", and added that he was "completely out of my depth".

As far as I'm concerned the next few weeks and months are about rebuilding my life and moving on. I shall make no further comment now or in the future about Mr Clarke and the events of 1994.

– Ben Fellows


Baroness Warsi: Gaza policy is 'morally indefensible'

In her letter of resignation Baroness Warsi says that the Government's policy on Gaza is "morally indefensible".

My view has been that our policy in relation to the Middle East Peace Process generally but more recently our approach and language during the current crisis in Gaza is morally indefensible, is not in Britain's national interest and will have a long term detrimental impact on our reputation internationally and domestically.

– Baroness Warsi's letter of resignation

Particularly as the Minister with responsibility for the United Nations, The International Criminal Court and Human Rights I believe our approach in relation to the current conflict is neither consistent with our values, specifically our commitment to the rule of law and our long history of support for International Justice. In many ways the absence of the experience and expertise of colleagues like Ken Clarke and Dominic Grieve has over the last few weeks become very apparent.

– Baroness Warsi's letter of resignation

Tory press team 'tried to keep Clarke off Question Time'

Ken Clarke has claimed the Tory press office tried to keep him away from the television cameras during his time in government, even attempting to prevent him from going on Question Time.

Ken Clarke retired from government during last week's reshuffle. Credit: PA

"I had a great row with them [Conservative press officers] when they told the producer of Question Time that I was ill and they were able to provide a replacement," Clarke said during an interview with the Observer.

" It never occurred to them that I could ring up the producer. She said: 'I'm told you are ill.' After that, I got even more freelance."

The former minister admitted there was "constant friction" between himself and David Cameron, saying his views sometimes "didn't coincide with No 10's".

Clarke: Economic recovery is unbalanced and still fragile

Former Tory Cabinet minister Ken Clarke has questioned the strength of the recovery, claiming the economy is still "fragile".

Mr Clarke, who retired from the government in the reshuffle, said the economy is "not firmly enough rooted" in a balance between manufacturing and services, leaving it prone to shocks.

Ken Clarke said there is still a long way to go before the economic recovery is complete. Credit: PA

The former minister did however declare himself a "great fan" of Chancellor George Osborne and said the Conservatives had saved the country from calamity by reining in spending.

Clarke, 74, told the Observer that the economy still has a "long, long way" to go before sustainable levels of growth could be maintained.

The former chancellor added that Britain must break out of the "ludicrous cycle" of house price booms followed by crashes.

Load more updates