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The Prime Minister was "pretty upset" with the six Tory MPs who voted against a ban on handguns, senior government sources said last night. John Major and Michael Forsyth, the Secretary of State for Scotland, are backing the need for legislation, which they expect to be called for by Lord Cullen in his report on the Dunblane massacre. Mr Forsyth has already circulated a Cabinet paper on proposals for legislation to ban the private ownership of handguns in anticipation of the Cullen report.

"The Prime Minister and Michael Forsyth are both emotionally committed to action. The Prime Minister was pretty upset with the Tory MPs," the source said. Mr Major, now on a fortnight's holiday in the south of France, has asked Lord Cullen to report by the end of September to enable legislation to be introduced in the autumn. Colin Brown