THERESA May has brushed aside questions about her ability to survive in No 10, saying how her whole focus was on getting a Brexit deal through Parliament.

On the local election campaign trail in Pendle, Lancashire, the Prime Minister was asked if she would put a date on her departure in light of the Conservative 1922 Committee's call for her to set out a “roadmap” to her departure and replied: "Of course I listen to the party.

"What many in the party are saying to me, and what many in the public are saying to me, is actually they want us to focus on delivering Brexit, and that's what I am doing."

Andrea Leadsom, the Commons Leader, did not announce the introduction of the Government’s Withdrawal Agreement Bill[WAB] for next week’s business. The legislation is crucial in ratifying the UK-EU deal.

While it is not impossible for the bill to be introduced next week, one senior ministerial source suggested it would happen after the May 2 local elections in England when the Tories are expected to take a major hit.

Although the WAB is expected to have “lots of bells and whistles” to win over some Labour MPs, by, for example, guaranteeing workers’ rights, it still seems likely that Mrs May will once again fail to convince enough MPs to secure its safe passage.

One Tory MP told The Herald: “If she can’t get WAB through, she’ll go; there will be no alternative.” He suggested that in such a scenario that the new PM would, come the autumn and before the new Brexit deadline of Hallowe’en, face exactly the same problem Mrs May has been struggling with.

At Westminster, the attempt by Tory backbenchers to change party rules to oust Mrs May early only narrowly failed. The executive of the 1922 Committee voted nine to seven against any rule change, which could have meant the PM leaving office in June.

Ardent Brexiteer and 1922 Committee member Sir Bill Cash tweeted: "On the procedure for the removal of the PM in the executive of the 1922 Committee, 9 to 7 (with 2 abstentions) was just not enough. But make no mistake, legally it is accepted the rules can be changed - even if not yet."