Emotional May sets out timetable to leave Downing Street

Britain's embattled leader Theresa May resigns premiership amid Brexit deadlock

- How the contest to replace her will work | Leadership rivals pay tribute

Theresa May's turbulent leadership of the Conservative Party will end on June 7, paving the way for a new prime minister to lead the Brexit process.

A tearful Prime Minister said she had "done my best" to get her Withdrawal Agreement through Parliament and take the UK out of the European Union but acknowledged she had failed.

"It is and will always remain a matter of deep regret to me that I have not been able to deliver Brexit," she said in Downing Street.

Watched by husband Philip and her closest aides, an emotional Mrs May said it was in the "best interests of the country for a new prime minister to lead that effort".

Announcing her departure from a job she loved, Mrs May said: "I am today announcing that I will resign as leader of the Conservative and Unionist Party on Friday 7th June so that a successor can be chosen."

Concluding her resignation statement, Mrs May broke down as she said it had been "the honour of my life" to serve "the country that I love".

Earlier, in a sign that the leadership race to replace Mrs May is already under way, Helen Grant quit as Conservative vice chair for communities to "actively and openly" support Dominic Raab.

She quit her Tory party role to avoid any "perception of a conflict" between Mr Raab's campaign and Conservative HQ".

Ms Grant said the former Brexit secretary "has an inspiring vision for a fairer Britain and I think he is undoubtedly the best person to unite the Conservative Party and our country".

Theresa May's legacy will be defined by Brexit chaos:

Theresa May's legacy as Prime Minister will be defined by her fateful decision to call a snap election – and the Brexit chaos that followed.

She arrived in Downing Street on July 13 2016 faced with the task of bringing together party and country after the traumas of the EU referendum.

She will be leaving with her party fractured and the country still divided over Europe.

Her premiership has been dominated by tortuous negotiations in Brussels and vicious infighting within Tory ranks over the terms on which the UK would leave.

Mrs May, 62, marked her arrival with an impassioned promise on the steps of Number 10 to tackle the "burning injustices" which hold back the poor, ethnic minorities, women and the working classes in modern British society.

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Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May announces her resignation outside 10 Downing street in central London on May 24, 2019. - Beleaguered British Prime Minister Theresa May announced on Friday that she will resign on June 7, 2019 following a Conservative Party mutiny over her remaining in power. (Photo by Tolga AKMEN / AFP) (Photo credit should read TOLGA AKMEN/AFP/Getty Images)
The Prime Minister had faced calls to resign after a backlash against her new Brexit deal.
Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May reacts as she announces her resignation outside 10 Downing street in central London on May 24, 2019. - Beleaguered British Prime Minister Theresa May announced on Friday that she will resign on June 7, 2019 following a Conservative Party mutiny over her remaining in power. (Photo by Daniel LEAL-OLIVAS / AFP) (Photo credit should read DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images)
British Prime Minister Theresa May leaves the back of Downing Street, in London, Britain, May 24, 2019. REUTERS/Toby Melville
LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 24: Prime Minister, Theresa May makes a statement outside 10 Downing Street on May 24, 2019 in London, England. The prime minister has announced that she will resign on Friday, June 7, 2019 (Photo by Peter Summers/Getty Images)
File photo dated 30/09/2007 of the then Shadow Leader of House of Commons Theresa May addressing the Conservative Party conference in Blackpool wearing wellington boots. The Prime Minister is expected to announce details later today of her timetable for leaving Downing Street.
File photo dated 07/10/2009 of the then Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions and Shadow Minister for Women Theresa May addresses delegates at the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester. The Prime Minister is expected to announce details later today of her timetable for leaving Downing Street.
File photo dated 19/05/2011 of the then Home Secretary Theresa May arriving at the Asian Women of Achievement Awards in Central London. The Prime Minister is expected to announce details later today of her timetable for leaving Downing Street.
File photo dated 22/11/2011 of the then Home Secretary Theresa May walking towards Downing Street after a Ceremonial Welcome for Turkey's President Abdullah Gul on Horse Guards Parade, in central London. The Prime Minister is expected to announce details later today of her timetable for leaving Downing Street.
File photo dated 02/05/17 of Prime Minister Theresa May having some chips while on a walkabout during a election campaign stop in Mevagissey, Cornwall. The Prime Minister is expected to announce details later today of her timetable for leaving Downing Street.
File photo dated 13/07/16 of Prime Minister Theresa May and her husband Philip John outside 10 Downing Street, London, after meeting Queen Elizabeth II and accepting her invitation to become Prime Minister and form a new government. The Prime Minister is expected to announce details later today of her timetable for leaving Downing Street.
File photo dated 07/07/17 of Prime Minister Theresa May and German Chancellor Angela Merkel attending the G20 summit in Hamburg. The Prime Minister is expected to announce details later today of her timetable for leaving Downing Street.
La Première ministre britannique Theresa May, le 21 mai 2019 à Londres
File photo dated 03/10/18 of Prime Minister Theresa May dancing as she arrives on stage to make her keynote speech at the Conservative Party annual conference. The Prime Minister is expected to announce details later today of her timetable for leaving Downing Street.
File photo dated 15/06/1999 of Conservative MP Theresa May leaving Conservative Central Office in London, after being appointed shadow Education and Employment secretary in a Shadow Cabinet reshuffle announced by Tory leader William Hague. The Prime Minister is expected to announce details later today of her timetable for leaving Downing Street. (PA)
Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May is seen outside Downing Street, as uncertainty over Brexit continues, in London, Britain May 22, 2019. REUTERS/Toby Melville
Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May leaves after giving a speech on Brexit in Westminster in London, Britain, May 21, 2019. REUTERS/Hannah Mckay
Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May delivers a speech on Brexit in London, Britain May 21, 2019. Kirsty Wigglesworth/Pool via REUTERS
Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May arrives to give a speech on Brexit in Westminster in London, Britain, May 21, 2019. REUTERS/Hannah Mckay
Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May and her husband Philip May leave church near High Wycombe, Britain May 19, 2019. REUTERS/Henry Nicholls
Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May arrives to give a speech on Brexit in Westminster in London, Britain, May 21, 2019. REUTERS/Hannah Mckay
Britain's Prime Minster Theresa May looks on during a EU election campaign event in Bristol, Britain May 17, 2019. REUTERS/Toby Melville/Pool
Prime Minister Theresa May dancing with students and staff at I.D. Mkize Secondary School in Cape Town, which is twinned with Whitby High School in Yorkshire. The two schools are part of a British Council funded teacher exchange scheme called 'Connected Classrooms'. The prime minister is on day one of her trip to South Africa, Nigeria and Kenya on a trade mission designed to bolster the UK's post-Brexit fortunes.
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But her disasterous decision the following year to hold a snap election deprived her of her slim majority in the House of Commons, leaving her dependent on the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP).

From that point on, she was engaged in a day-by-day battle to force her agenda through and maintain the fragile unity of her Government.

She lost more than 30 ministers – most of them quitting over her Brexit plans – saw her keynote policy defeated by a record-breaking 230 votes and suffered the indignity of having her Government found in contempt of Parliament.

It all looked so different when Leave-backing leadership rival Andrea Leadsom dropped out of the contest to succeed David Cameron, clearing the way for former Remainer Mrs May to take office without a vote of Tory members.

Hailed by some commentators as a "new Iron Lady", the vicar's daughter hardened by six years as home secretary immediately showed her ruthless streak, sacking both Michael Gove and chancellor George Osborne, with whom she had clashed in Cabinet.

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In her first speech to Conservative conference, she shocked many by setting out "red lines" for withdrawal which put Britain on track for a hard Brexit.

She dismissed her critics as people who saw themselves as "citizens of the world" but were in fact "citizens of nowhere".

Determined to show she was taking the UK into a new global role, she rushed to be the first world leader to meet Donald Trump at the White House after his inauguration in January 2017.

But footage of her holding hands with the US president exposed her to ridicule and raised questions about her closeness to a man whose unpredictability was already causing concern in capitals around the world.

The decision to call an early election in the hope of securing the comfortable majority she needed to implement her Brexit plans was taken on an Easter walking holiday in Snowdonia with husband Philip.

A poorly received manifesto and hastily withdrawn social care policy, coupled with a robotic campaigning style and a surprise outbreak of Corbynmania, saw her squander a 20-point lead in the polls and lose 13 MPs.

When the dust had settled her Tory majority had been wiped out and a visibly distraught Mrs May had to turn to the DUP to prop her up in Parliament, with £1 billion in extra Government funds going to Northern Ireland in return.

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