South Northants MP Andrea Leadsom stands as Tory leader while Banbury MP opts for May

Andrea Leadsom who is standing for leadership of the Tory Party
Andrea Leadsom who is standing for leadership of the Tory Party

South Northants MP Andrea Leadsom laid out her bid to become Prime Minister this week after a successful campaign as one of the major players in the Leave EU campaign.

Meanwhile Banbury MP Victoria Prentis has given her backing for the top spot in the Conservative Party to Home Secretary Theresa May.

Mrs Leadsom launched her campaign to run for leadership of the Tories with a low-key Youtube video.

In a cameraphone video taken outside the Houses of Parliament, she made her first official announcement having posted her nomination papers.

She said: “I am delighted to say that I have put in my nomination papers for Conservative leadership today.

“I have seen a huge opportunity from the result of the referendum. Britain, the UK can be so much better in the world.”

Mrs Leadsom pointed out she has experience of being in government, whereas David Cameron had no experience when he was elected leader.

And she said her business experience was another qualification for the top job.

“I’ve had 25 years’ business experience in the financial sector, running businesses. I’ve started up charities and campaigns. So I have a lot of real-world experience,” she said.

Mrs Prentis declared her support for Theresa May today (Tuesday).

She said: “We have an exceptionally strong field of candidates in the Conservative Party leadership election, all of whom have different skills and experience. It is important to remember that we are not just choosing a leader, but also a Prime Minister and it is with this in mind that I have decided to vote for Theresa May.

“Brexit is going to happen. Theresa May has the right combination of principled toughness and attention to detail which makes her the best choice to steer us through complex negotiations and get a good deal for the UK. Her experience, temperament and negotiating skills are what we need.

“I have worked with Theresa May over many years, both as a Government lawyer and now as a Member of Parliament. I trust and respect her.”

Conservative MPs voted on Tuesday in the first ballot. A second ballot will take place on Thursday. Subsequent votes will take place on successive Tuesdays and Thursdays until an exhaustive ballot has reduced the number of candidates to two. Party members then vote on the final two candidates in July and August. The new leader will be announced on Friday, September 9.