Cameron’s youthful, woman-friendly reshuffle is a ‘last-minute worry about votes,’ says Labour

Those tipped for promotion include the Employment minister Esther McVey, the Education minister Liz Truss, and the Treasury minister Nicky Morgan

David Cameron will begin his long-awaited Government reshuffle this evening by sacking a handful of middle-aged or elderly white men so that he can present a younger and more mixed ministerial team for next year’s general election.

Those who are on the way out will not be asked to walk the gauntlet of the cameras waiting in Downing Street. Instead they will either be given the bad news over the phone or will be asked to come and go by the back door. 

Tomorrow, by contrast, there will be a steady stream of younger, mostly women Tory MPs marching up to 10 Downing Street’s famous black door for their brief appointments with the Prime Minister, most likely emerging with happy smiles for the photographers.

It is in this fashion that the Government hopes to keep attention focused on the positive news about the new faces in government rather on than those who have lost their jobs.

Ken Clarke Ken Clarke The likely casualties include Ken Clarke, the longest-serving member of the current Government, and the Chief Whip Sir George Young, who are aged 74 and 72 respectively. But it is thought that the Work and Pension Secretary, Iain Duncan Smith, will keep his job.

The former Defence Secretary Liam Fox, who resigned in October 2011 amid a controversy over his working relationship with his adviser Adam Werritty, is expected to return to government.

But an energetic briefing from Downing Street has emphasised that this is to be principally a woman-friendly reshuffle. There are currently only three women in the 23-strong Cabinet – that number could double.

Nicky Morgan and Esther McVey have impressed David Cameron in junior ministerial roles Those tipped for promotion include the Employment minister Esther McVey, the Education minister Liz Truss, and the Treasury minister Nicky Morgan. Priti Patel is also likely to be forgiven for her past rebellions over Europe. The Shadow Home Secretary, Yvette Cooper, suggested it was too late after four years to dispel the belief that Mr Cameron has what has been called a “woman problem”. “This is going to look really like a last-minute worry about votes because he knows that he has got a real blind spot when it comes to women,” she told Sky News.

The reshuffle coincides with publication of a report on making Parliament more women-friendly, to encourage more women to stand for election.

The report by the All Party Group for Women in Parliament calls for a series of measures, including “zero tolerance” of rudeness and unprofessional behaviour in Parliament, a more regular Parliamentary calendar that will allow mothers to plan better, and an investigation by MPs into sexism in the traditional media and online.

Liz Truss Liz Truss The Tory MP Mary Macleod, who chairs the committee, said: “I believe really strongly that Parliament needs to represent the country it seeks to serve and therefore it should absolutely show that it represents people from every corner of this country, from any background, and certainly there should be more women in it.”

But a report by think-tank the Institute for Government warns Mr Cameron against embarking on a major reshuffle of the junior ministerial ranks. The institute’s senior researcher, Emma Norris, says a study shows that it is the junior ministers who do the “heavy lifting” in getting complex legislation through Parliament. “Too much movement amongst junior ministers with less than 12 months to go might well be ill-advised,” she warned.

News
A Brazilian wandering spider
news

World's most lethal spider found under a bunch of bananas

News
people
Sport
Mario Balotelli pictured in the win over QPR
footballInternet reacts to miss shocker for Liverpool striker
Voices
Sol Campbell near his home in Chelsea
voices
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
News
i100
News
Kimi the fox cub
newsBurberry under fire from animal rights group - and their star, Kimi
Sport
Fans of Palmeiras looks dejected during the match between Palmeiras and Santos
footballPalmeiras fan killed trying to 'ambush' bus full of opposition supporters
Arts and Entertainment
filmsIt's nearly a wrap on Star Wars: Episode 7, producer reveals
Life and Style
fashion
News
i100
News
<p>Jonathan Ross</p>
<p>Jonathan Ross (or Wossy, as he’s affectionately known) has been on television and radio for an extraordinarily long time, working on a seat in the pantheon of British presenters. Hosting Friday Night with Jonathan Ross for nine years, Ross has been in everything from the video game Fable to Phineas and Ferb. So it’s probably not so surprising that Ross studied at Southampton College of Art (since rebranded Southampton Solent), a university known nowadays for its media production courses.</p>
<p>However, after leaving Solent, Ross studied History at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies, now part of the UCL, a move that was somewhat out of keeping with the rest of his career. Ross was made a fellow of the school in 2006 in recognition of his services to broadcasting.</p>
TV

Rumours that the star wants to move on to pastures new

News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
The cast of Downton Abbey indulge in some racing at a Point to Point
tvNew pictures promise a day at the races and a loved-up Lady Rose
News
people

Comedian says he 'never laughed as hard as I have writing with Rik'

Arts and Entertainment
Tim Wonnacott dancing the pasadoble
TVStrictly Come Dancing The Result
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

1st Line Technical Support Engineer

£22000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client based in Thame i...

Graduate Project Manager

£25000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client based in Chelmsf...

PPA Cover Teacher

£110 - £130 per day + Competitive rates of pay: Randstad Education Reading: Pr...

Teaching Assistant Cornwall

£45 - £70 per day: Randstad Education Plymouth: TEACHING ASSISTANTS REQUIRED F...

Day In a Page

Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album
Hugh Bonneville & Peter James: 'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'

How We Met: Hugh Bonneville & Peter James

'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's heavenly crab dishes don't need hours of preparation

Bill Granger's heavenly crab recipes

Scared off by the strain of shelling a crab? Let a fishmonger do the hard work so you can focus on getting the flavours right
Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

After a remarkable conversion from reckless defender to prolific striker, Monaco's ace says he wants to make his loan deal at Old Trafford permanent
Terry Venables: Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England

Terry Venables column

Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England
The Inside Word: Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past

Michael Calvin's Inside Word

Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past