Suella Braverman returns to Cabinet after maternity leave

Suella Braverman, the first Cabinet-level minister to take maternity leave, has attended her first meeting of Boris Johnson’s top team in six months.

Arrangements were made for the Conservative MP for Fareham, who was the attorney general until last March, to join the meeting in Downing Street ahead of her planned return to work next week.

Special legislation had to be passed by Parliament to enable her to take time off from her ministerial duties.

Solicitor General Michael Ellis was made Attorney General while Suella Braverman was on maternity leave (Aaron Chown/PA)

During her absence she was designated Minister on Leave (Attorney General) while her deputy, Solicitor General Michael Ellis, was made Attorney General.

His place was taken by Prisons Minister Lucy Frazer.

The return of Ms Braverman means there will have to be at least a limited reshuffle of those ministers directly affected.

It comes amid persistent speculation that the Prime Minister is preparing a wider reshuffle to clear out underperforming senior ministers.