Despite calls for her to resign, Theresa May hit back and said that what the country needs is her “calm leadership” and the full support of her Cabinet.

May, who visited a charity event in her constituency of Maidenhead, said: “What the country needs is calm leadership and that is what I’m providing with the full support of my Cabinet. Next week I will be updating MPs on my Florence speech which has given real momentum to the Brexit talks and I will also be introducing a draft bill to cap energy prices which will stop ordinary, working families from being ripped off.”

“Kamikaze” attempts against May

Conservative Grant Shapps and four other Cabinet ministers were revealed to be part of the dark circle of kamikaze rebels who wanted to get rid of the PM. In a series of interviews, Shapps said this morning that two or three Tory MPs “privately agree” with him that May should resign. He also accused members of the party for revealing his identity and of those who plotted against May. He claimed that Tory chiefs have asked him before the Tory conference to avoid any action against May. He stated: “We can’t just carry on when things are not working out. The solution isn’t to bury our heads in the sand and just hope things will get better. It never worked out for Brown or Major and I don’t think it is going to work out here either.”

He referred to May as a “very decent woman” but questioned her position after the general election. He said that the party was in a “bad position” and this was damaging the leadership.

Another Tory MP, described how the situation cannot possibly carry on like this and that it was a matter of time for her to go: “People are very worried. There is an awful lot of personal sympathy for her but that is tempered with a feeling that we simply can’t carry on like this.”

In a similar manner, another MP said: “She has probably got one more crisis to finish her off. She is fatally wounded and has lost all authority. She should go.”

The Environment Secretary Michael Gove, however, claimed today that the Cabinet wanted May to stay and carry on because she “showed an amazing degree of resilience and courage this week.”

Amber Rudd, the home secretary, has also spoken out in defence of May. Despite rumours that she is eyeing May’s throne, Rudd, in an article for the Daily Telegraph, wrote: “We, Theresa May's Government, want to ... set out a better path, one that actually leads to a prosperous, secure and united country. We can do that, and we will under her leadership. She should stay. Do not doubt that the Prime Minister's absolute commitment to tackling the injustices is a real one. And as the Prime Minister also said this week, we are at a turning point for the nation. Trust that it is us who will take Britain in the right direction.”

To trigger a vote of no confidence in May, 48 MPs would have to vote against her.