FEMALE MPs are refusing to take part in Prime ­Minister's Questions in the Commons because it has become so raucous, Speaker John Bercow has revealed.

He said the UK Parliament was "spray painting its own shop window" by appearing to generate higher decibel levels than the band Deep Purple, adding that seasoned politicians were among those boycotting the event.

Mr Bercow told Radio 4's PM members with a lot to contribute were "reluctant to engage in the chamber because they think that the histrionics and cacophony of noise are so damaging as to cause them to look elsewhere.

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He added: "I'm sorry if some of those people are lost to the chamber because they think, 'I'm not going to take part in that atmosphere'."

He has sent a letter to the party leaders about their MPs' behaviour.