Boris Johnson news: Tory hardliners 'plotting to force no-deal', as Brexit recession warning issued and pound tumbles
UK faces 'one in three chance of recession' after EU departure, says Bank of England
Britain has a one-in-three chance of a recession even if there is an orderly exit from the EU, the Bank of England has warned as sterling fell to a new two-and-a-half year low against the dollar amid Brexit uncertainty.
It came as the newly appointed chief secretary to the Treasury, Rishi Sunak, cast doubt over the government's Brexit deadline, as he said Britain would "hopefully" leave the EU by 31 October.
Voters are also heading to the polls in the Brecon and Radnorshire by-election that could see Boris Johnson's working majority in the Commons cut to just one if the Tories fail to hold on to the seat. The result is expected in the early hours of Friday morning.
This live article has now ended. Recap on how developments unfolded below
Welcome to The Independent's live politics coverage. This morning the newly-appointed cabinet minister Rishi Sunak cast doubt over the government's Brexit deadline, as he told the BBC Radio 4 Today programme the government would "hopefully" leave the EU by the end of the October.
Offering a noticeably more caveated comment on the Brexit deadline, he said: "A lot of the money we are spending is going to go on things that would need to spend anyway because we are leaving the European Union, that means we're going to be leaving the single market and the customs union, so of course that does mean changes to how we trade with Europe."
In a subsequent interview, the chief secretary to the Treasury clarified his remarks, telling LBC: "The government is crystal clear, we are leaving the EU - no ifs no buts - at the end of October."
It seems Mr Sunak noticed his mistake, or someone noticed it for him.
Gary Cohn - a former chief economic adviser to Donald Trump - has said a no-deal Brexit would be better than "the state we're in right now".
Speaking on BBC Radio 4's Today programme, Mr Cohn claimed: "Any forward progress at this point is good.
"This is another one of those economic geopolitical situations that has to be solved. And if it's hard, soft, it has to be solved.
"And countries are more resilient than people think, and if you end up at the hard Brexit and say 'We're out, no-deal, we'll be out on this day' things will tend to happen, things will fall into place. You'll have to get certain things done to make sure it works and then it will evolve over time.
"But it's better than the state we're in right now, where every month or every six weeks there's a new drama and we just kick the can down the road."
Voters are preparing to head to the polls in the Brecon and Radnorshire by-election that could see Boris Johnson’s majority in the House of Commons cut to just one.
The Liberal Democrats are expected to gain the Welsh seat in the election, which was triggered after a successful recall petition against Conservative MP Chris Davies, who was convicted of making a false expenses claim.
Mr Davies is standing again for the Conservatives but is expected to lose his seat to Liberal Democrat challenger Jane Dodds, a former social worker.
"The Labour Party needs to talk about … Boris," writes The Independent's political commentator Andrew Grice in his new column. "Surprisingly, it seemed unprepared for Boris Johnson taking power, even though it was hardly a surprise when he won the Tory leadership. I see little evidence of a Labour strategy on Boris."
Jacob Rees-Mogg, the newly-appointed House of Commons leader, who also attends cabinet, has said the EU should realise the new government would not be "browbeaten" by Brussels.
In his ConservativeHome podcast he said: "They should believe us because of our new leader. The new Prime Minister is somebody of considerable force of personality who is not going to be browbeaten by them.
"They should believe us because of the appointment of Dominic Cummings, which seems to me to be exceptionally important as a statement as to what is going to happen.
"That ought to make the EU realise that it is not business as usual. It isn't a sort of wet establishment that will go along with Brino (Brexit in name only).
"It is a tough-minded, clear-sighted Government that will accept a decent deal, a fair deal, but will not accept a bad deal and isn't frightened of leaving."
Disposable plastic bag use in England’s main supermarkets has fallen by more than 90 per cent since the introduction of a 5p charge in 2015, according to new figures.
The average English shopper now uses just 10 bags a year, compared to 140 before the charge came in.
Government data suggests that more than 25 billion fewer single-use bags have been issued by the seven biggest food retailers in the three and a half years of the charge than if use had continued at previous rates of 7.6 billion a year.
A Conservative MP suffered whiplash and a concussion after she fell off her chair during a meeting. Andrea Jenkyns, a prominent Brexiteer backbencher, said she had been swinging back on the chair when she slipped off and hit her head on a radiator.
Mr Field, who chairs the Commons work and pensions committee, will make the announcement at noon tomorrow at Birkenhead Town Hall.