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Your questions on the PM race answered

PUBLISHED: 13:54 24 May 2019 | UPDATED: 13:58 24 May 2019

The Rotunda at Ickworth House, Suffolk Picture JUSTIN MINNS

The Rotunda at Ickworth House, Suffolk Picture JUSTIN MINNS

© Justin Minns

Theresa May is resigning and the race is on for the country's top job - here we answer your burning questions about the Tory leadership race.

Matt Hancock is the frontrunner of Suffolk MPs for Theresa May's job Picture: PAGEPIXMatt Hancock is the frontrunner of Suffolk MPs for Theresa May's job Picture: PAGEPIX

Will the next prime minster come from Suffolk?

Matt Hancock is the most likely Suffolk MP to throw his hat in the ring. Hancock was briefly the secretary of state for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, spending six months in the job in 2018, and is the current Health Secretary.

He has been a minster in government since 2013 and worked closely with George Osborne as his chief of staff while he was Chancellor of the Exchequer under David Cameron.

The best odds available to bet on Matt Hancock to become the next prime minister are 66/1, with some bookmakers making him as likely as 18/1.

Theresa May visited Ipswich in 2011 as Home Secretary when the government visited the BT offices at Adastral Park Picture: ANDY ABBOTTTheresa May visited Ipswich in 2011 as Home Secretary when the government visited the BT offices at Adastral Park Picture: ANDY ABBOTT

He has tweeted since the resignation speech to say: "Incredibly moving and dignified speech from the Prime Minister. She has given all in service of her country. Thank you Theresa."

Does Suffolk have any connections to previous Prime Ministers?

Ickworth House has a colourful if distant connection to Prime Ministers of the UK.

In the early 19th century, son of the 4th Earl of Bristol, Frederick Hervey, inherited a half-built Ickworth House but none of his father's money, who disapproved of his choice of wife.

Despite a missing inheritance he finished the impressive stately home. For his hard work he was named 1st Marquess of Bristol in 1826 by the Prime Minster - also his brother-in-law - Robert Jenkinson.

How did Theresa May become Prime Minister?

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Mrs May took over from David Cameron after he resigned following the EU referendum vote in 2016.

Margaret Thatcher on the steps of Ipswich Town Hall on the campaign trail in April, 1979 Picture: ARCHANTMargaret Thatcher on the steps of Ipswich Town Hall on the campaign trail in April, 1979 Picture: ARCHANT

She has suffered through a tumultus time at the helm, with a record number of resignations in recent history and some of the worst defeats ever inflicted on a British government.

By setting her departure date as June 7, May will just overtake Gordon Brown in terms of the number of days in office - but her time in office is stil one of the shortest in modern time.

How does Theresa May's time as PM compare to Margaret Thatcher?

May is only the second ever female Prime Minister for the UK after Margaret Thatcher but how do they compare?

She was taken around all the different structures around the docks in Felixtowe while on the campaign trail in 1979 Picture: JOHN KERRShe was taken around all the different structures around the docks in Felixtowe while on the campaign trail in 1979 Picture: JOHN KERR

Thatchers spent 11 years in charge of the country, with four years as leader of the Opposition before that, versus May's three-years in charge.

May watched 36 minsters walk out of the cabinet in her short tenure, against Thatcher's 25.

May had a rate of one resignation a month on average, Thatcher's was about one every six months.

There were just four defeats for Thatcher in the House of Commons in 11 years - May suffered 28 defeats in under three years, one of which was the largest defeat of any party in government ever.

Thatcher also won a majority in her three elections as leader the government, with her biggest majority coming in 1983 when the Conservatives won 188 more seats than Labour.

In Theresa May's 2017 election, she lost the conservative majority David Cameron won in 2015 and had to form a minority government with the DUP of Northern Ireland.

Both May and thatcher did succeed in quelling rebellion in their party though. Thatcher crushed a leadership challenge from Sir Anthony Meyer in 1989, and May stopped a no confidence vote in her party in late 2018, led by the euro-sceptic European Research Group (ERG).

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