The Liz line! Tory faithful queue around party conference venue for embattled PM Truss’s closing speech despite fears of empty seats for keynote address after a brutal week for the fracturing party

  • There were fears of a poor turnout as many delegates headed home on Tuesday
  • Many left early to avoid rail strikes after dismal event marked by infighting on tax
  • But snake of people seen threading through International Convention Centre 

Conservative Party members started queueing for Liz Truss’s leader’s address hours in advance today despite fears of empty seats after a brutal few weeks for the Prime Minister.

Many Tory MPs stayed away from the Birmingham gathering altogether and there were fears of a poor turnout as many delegates headed home on Tuesday to avoid rail strikes crippling the network today.

But a snake of people was seen threading around the International Convention Centre early this morning, with the PM expected on stage at 11am. 

Conservative Party members started queueing for Liz Truss’s leader’s address hours in advance today despite fears of empty seats after a brutal few weeks for the Prime Minister.

Many Tory MPs stayed away from the Birmingham gathering altogether and there were fears of a poor turnout as many delegates headed home on Tuesday to avoid rail strikes crippling the network today.

After a gathering in Birmingham blighted by splits over tax rates and benefits, the PM will plead for her troops to get behind her vision of ‘a new Britain for a new era’.

A snake of people was seen threading around the International Convention Centre early this morning, with the PM expected on stage at 11am.

After a gathering in Birmingham blighted by splits over tax rates and benefits, the PM will plead for her troops to get behind her vision of ‘a new Britain for a new era’.

She will insist they should ignore the noise of those who do not agree with her policies, saying that ‘whenever there is change, there is disruption’.

‘Not everyone will be in favour,’ she will say. ‘But everyone will benefit from the result – a growing economy and a better future.’

However, the message comes against the backdrop of one of the most chaotic Tory conferences in memory, where Cabinet collective responsibility has almost completely crumbled. The mood has been darkened by a series of polls showing Labour on track for a landslide win at an election.

Ms Truss and her Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng robustly defended axing the 45p top rate of tax on Sunday, despite the mini-Budget triggering mayhem on markets.

But within 24 hours they had been forced to U-turn and drop the idea, following a revolt headed by Michael Gove.

Then there was a meltdown over the plan to impose a real-terms cut on benefits, with Commons Leader Penny Mordaunt openly stating that she wanted to see handouts raised in line with inflation.

Home Secretary Suella Braverman hit back at Mr Gove for attempting a ‘coup’, and swiped that she was ‘disappointed’ that Ms Truss had abandoned her intention of scrapping the 45p rate.

Ms Braverman also told a fringe event last night that she wanted to pull Britain out of the European Convention on Human Rights – something that drew a slapdown from No10 pointing out it is not government policy.

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