Theresa May unveils 'bold' Cabinet appointments

Posted On: 
14th July 2016

Theresa May has continued making major changes to the top ranks of government in what No 10 is describing as a “bold” reshuffle. 

Prime Minister Theresa May outside No 10 Downing Street
Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

Michael Gove, George Osborne and Nicky Morgan have all been sacked from the Government as part of the changes, which have seen just four senior secretaries of state keep their posts.

Liz Truss, Justine Greening and Priti Patel are among the ministers to receive promotions today, while Damian Green and James Brokenshire – both former Home Office colleagues of Ms May – join the Cabinet for the first time.

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The appointments of Ms Truss and Ms Greening , as well as Patrick McLoughlin becoming Conservative party chairman, were cited by Downing Street of the “commitment of the Prime Minister to putting social reform at the heart of her Government”.

As part of a departmental shake-up, Ms Greening will lead a beefed-up Department for Education, which takes control of further and higher education, apprenticeships and skills.

Greg Clark heads the newly-created Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, formed from BIS and DECC.

Michael Fallon, Jeremy Hunt, David Mundell and Alun Cairns are the only secretaries of state to stay in charge of their departments, while Jeremy Wright will continue to attend Cabinet as Attorney General.

As well as the sackings, Stephen Crabb, Mark Harper and Theresa Villiers all resigned from their Cabinet-level jobs.

Chris Grayling, who chaired Ms May’s short-lived leadership campaign, was rewarded with the job of Transport Secretary, and he is replaced as Leader of the House by long-serving Europe Minister David Lidington.

Andrea Leadsom, Ms May’s leadership rival, takes up the role of Environment Secretary. 

The Prime Minister’s spokeswoman also hailed the appointments made yesterday, which saw Boris Johnson, Philip Hammond and Amber Rudd take control of the Great Offices of State.

“This is a bold Cabinet that is hitting the ground running already,” Ms May’s spokeswoman said.

There will be no more ministerial appointments this evening, and a full list of the moves so far can be read here.


Labour has accused the Prime Minister of failing to live up to her claims that she wanted social justice to be at the heart of her Government.

“We had warm words from the Prime Minister yesterday on the need for her Government to stand up for more than just a privileged few,” said Shadow Minister without Portfolio Jon Ashworth.

“But Theresa May's appointments are completely out of kilter with her words on the steps of Downing Street yesterday.

“It’s difficult to see this new-look Cabinet as anything other than a sharp shift to the right by the Tories. The test now is to demonstrate that all members of the Tory Government are wholly committed to the priorities Theresa May set out yesterday.”

The SNP’s Westminster leader Angus Robertson described Ms May’s top team as “one of the most right-wing Cabinets in the modern era”.

“The new Prime Minister may have used her maiden speech outside Downing Street to speak of social justice but the mask has already slipped – and the reality is we are witnessing a sharp turn to the right in UK politics,” Mr Robertson added.