A Labour motion that would have forced a vote on a bill to ban fracking has been defeated in the Commons.

230 MPs voted in favour of the motion, while 326 were against it, a government majority of 96.

There are suggestions that the chief whip Wendy Morton has resigned, according to Sky’s political editor Beth Rigby.

Ahead of the Commons showdown, many Conservative MPs expressed disquiet about Ms Truss’s plan to return to fracking where there is “local consent”.

Chris Skidmore, the MP and governmental net-zero tsar, said he would not be voting with the government and was “prepared to face the consequences of my decision”.

A moratorium on fracking was imposed in 2019 after a series of tremors, and the Tory manifesto that year said they would not support it “unless the science shows categorically that it can be done safely”.

A government-commissioned report by the British Geological Survey (BGS) at the time suggested more data was needed, but despite the lack of scientific progress, Ms Truss’s administration has torn up the commitment.

More from Politics

Labour used an opposition day debate on Wednesday to put forward a motion which, if passed, would guarantee time in the Commons for a bill to ban the controversial gas extraction technique for good.

The government responded by saying it was not a motion on fracking, but a confidence motion in the government – and imposed a hard three-line whip.