Boris Johnson clear winner in first vote to become Conservative leader and Prime Minister

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Boris Johnson has overwhelmingly topped the first ballot in the Tory leadership contest, putting him in pole position to be the next prime minister, as three rivals saw their dreams of entering Number 10 dashed.

The first round of voting by Conservative MPs saw the crowded field in the race to replace Theresa May whittled down, with Mark Harper, Andrea Leadsom and Esther McVey falling at the first hurdle.

Boris Johnson leaves his home in London

Boris Johnson leaves his home in London

Leadership hopefuls needed at least 17 votes in the secret ballot to go through to the second round, with anyone below that threshold automatically eliminated.

The result of the first round of voting was declared by the backbench 1922 Committee's joint acting chairman, Dame Cheryl Gillan.

Mr Johnson was the clear winner with 114 votes, 71 votes ahead of his nearest rival, Jeremy Hunt.

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Dame Cheryl Gillan with Charles Walker (left) and Bob Blackman (right) reads out the results of the first ballot in the Tory leadership ballot at the Houses of Parliament in Westminster, London.

Dame Cheryl Gillan with Charles Walker (left) and Bob Blackman (right) reads out the results of the first ballot in the Tory leadership ballot at the Houses of Parliament in Westminster, London.

Here are the results:

- Michael Gove: 37 votes

- Matt Hancock: 20 votes

- Mark Harper: 10 votes

- Jeremy Hunt: 43 votes

- Sajid Javid: 23 votes

- Boris Johnson: 114 votes

- Andrea Leadsom: 11 votes

- Esther McVey: 9 votes

- Dominic Raab: 27 votes

- Rory Stewart: 19 votes

The next round of voting will take place on June 18, with contenders needing 33 votes to stay in the race.