Tory revolt was led by Thatcherite 'class of 2010'
More than half of the dissident MPs who joined the biggest rebellion on Europe ever suffered by a Tory prime minister were only elected last year.
The scale of the insurgency among the "class of 2010", which is demonstrating greater independence of spirit than any previous group of new MPs from any party, will alarm Downing Street.
David Cameron insisted yesterday there was "no bad blood, no rancour, no bitterness" on his part following Monday night's revolt, in which 81 Tory MPs defied a three-line whip. But the ramifications from the result continued yesterday, as Downing Street confirmed that two ministerial aides, Adam Holloway and Stewart Jackson, who backed a motion calling for a referendum on Europe, had been "removed" – but not "sacked" – from their posts.
David Nuttall, the MP for marginal Bury North, has emerged as the rebel-in-chief. He has an unorthodox, working-class background among Conservatives – he was educated at a comprehensive school, left school at the age of 18 and later obtained a law degree by correspondence.
His hard slog, fighting as a councillor in the Tory-unfriendly territory of south Yorkshire, has given him the doggedness and independence that led to him tabling the motion that caused his leader so much grief.
Other high-profile rebel newcomers include Zac Goldsmith (Richmond Park), Mark Reckless (Rochester and Strood), Priti Patel (Witham), a former spokeswoman for William Hague when he was party leader, and Sarah Wollaston, the GP chosen as the Tory candidate in Totnes following an open primary.
Many of the new Conservative MPs had their political awakening during the Thatcher years, with the result that they share her instincts on Europe, as well as on tax and reining in the public sector.
They also arrived after a wave of public fury over the expenses scandal swept out hundreds of MPs at the last election – and are less likely to share their predecessors' deference to appeals for party loyalty.
Almost 50 of Monday night's rebels were first elected in 2010. They joined forces with traditional members of the Tory awkward squad, such as Douglas Carswell, Philip Davies, Philip Hollobone and Peter Bone, and longer-standing right-wingers instinctively hostile to Mr Cameron's leadership, most notably David Davis, Christopher Chope and Edward Leigh.
Harry Potter actor suffered 'severe flu-like symptoms' on a flight from London to Orlando
First full-length look is finally here
World cities ranked in terms of safety, food security and 'liveability'
- 2 The awkward moment Sarah Palin raised $25,000 for Hillary Clinton's election campaign
- 3 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 4 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
- 5 Baldness could soon be treated using stem cells, scientists hope
Woman falls to her death as she celebrates marriage proposal at the edge of Ibiza cliff
Sex abuse inquiry: 'Victims receive death threats' after MPs release names online
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Teenager brandishing fake gun taken down by police after demanding airtime on Netherlands' NOS TV station
The awkward moment Sarah Palin raised $25,000 for Hillary Clinton's election campaign
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
£28000 - £34000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast growing reinforcing s...
£26000 - £31000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Digital Content Manager is re...
£40000 - £60000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...