Boris Johnson has sacked Cabinet rival Michael Gove and rejected calls to quit as support for his leadership collapsed at Westminster.

Some 30 MPs have quit their roles in Mr Johnson's Government today, while dozens of backbenchers publicly withdrew their support on a day of high political drama.

Mr Gove was thought to have told the Prime Minister on Wednesday morning that it was time for him to quit.

A No 10 source told the BBC: "You can't have a snake who is not with you on any of the big arguments who then gleefully tells the press the leader has to go."

Michael Gove has served in a strong of high-level posts, starting from when he was appointed Education Secretary in 2010 appointment.

He has been Chief Whip, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, Justice Secretary and Environment Secretary.

He was appointed the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities in September 2021.

Mr Johnson's relationship with Mr Gove has long been troubled, with the Prime Minister's leadership campaign in 2016 derailed when his rival withdrew support and decided to run himself.

But it was not only Mr Gove who sought to persuade Mr Johnson that his time in No 10 should end.

Home Secretary Priti Patel, Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps, Northern Ireland Secretary Brandon Lewis and Welsh Secretary Simon Hart were among the Cabinet ministers telling Mr Johnson to stand down.

The PA news agency understands that Ms Patel spoke to the Prime Minister to convey the "overwhelming view" of the parliamentary party.

Mr Shapps is thought to have told Mr Johnson that he stood little chance of winning another confidence vote and should instead set out a timetable for a departure on his own terms.

Nadhim Zahawi, who was only appointed Chancellor on Tuesday, was also thought to be among those taking part in the showdown with Mr Johnson.

But Mr Johnson rejected suggestions he should seek a "more dignified exit" and will instead fight for his political future - something which could trigger further Cabinet resignations.

A source close to the Prime Minister said he told his colleagues there would be "chaos" if he quit and the party would almost certainly lose the next election.

The source said Mr Johnson was "continuing to focus on delivering for the public" and addressing the "hugely important issues facing the country".

Neither Mr Shapps nor Mr Zahawi are expected to resign, despite the Prime Minister's refusal to go.

Allies including Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries and Brexit Opportunities Minister Jacob Rees-Mogg all remained supportive of Mr Johnson.

Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab also remained loyal to Mr Johnson and defended him at a session of the backbench 1922 Committee.