PM to announce Cabinet reshuffle after shock General Election results

The former front bencher went on to blank questions on Theresa May's future before running inside

Theresa May has brought Michael Gove back to the cabinet to fill the role of Environment Secretary and Boris Johnson is doing his best to make him feel welcome.

Gove returned to the front benches as environment secretary, despite having a very public falling out with May less than a year ago.

Martin Harper, global conservation director of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB), welcomed the appointment, tweeting: "Congratulations michaelgove - RSPB looks forward to working with new Environment SoS to take forward manifesto commitments".

A long-term ally, he has known May since their time at the University of Oxford in the late in 1970s and both top Tories campaigned for a Remain vote at the European Union referendum.

Given his chequered past regarding environmental policy (voting against moves to have the Green Investment Bank support carbon emission reduction targets and to require environmental permits for hydraulic fracturing activities and supporting the privatisation of the UK's forests), it is no surprise that his appointment has not been universally welcomed.

May faces a crucial test on Monday when she addresses Conservative party MPs at a meeting of the powerful 1922 Committee but it appears that she will pursue a softer approach to Britain's departure from the EU.

Damian Green, who was the work and pensions secretary, becomes First Secretary of State - a title held by William Hague under David Cameron - as well as Minister for the Cabinet Office.

Responding to the appointment, Ian Wright, director general of the Food and Drink Federation, which represents food and soft drink manufacturers operating in the United Kingdom, said: "It is a big boost that the Prime Minister has appointed one of the Cabinet's heaviest hitters to a ministry so significantly at the heart of Brexit".

"Fundamentally, I think there is a great opportunity to create an global brand based on the best animal health and welfare standards in the world", he told Pig World.

Ms Leadsom, who also stood for leadership against Mrs May, was also given a promotion to the leader of the House of Commons.

Asked about this, Mr Gove said ministers had to "reflect on what the election result told us about the way that people want to see the economy managed in the future".

The former Justice and Education Secretary admitted the Conservatives need to reach out to other parties over the terms of Brexit.

In 2013, in his role as Education Secretary, Mr Gove was accused of trying to "airbrush" climate change from the national curriculum.

The return to the Cabinet of Mr Gove will be seen as an attempt to head off any challenge from the Brexiteer wing of the party.

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