Tory politicians from across the North East have spoken out following Liz Truss’ resignation, with one leading figure slamming the situation as a “total mess”.

Truss was forced to step down on Thursday (October 20) afternoon, making her the UK’s shortest serving Prime Minister in history, after just 44 days in office.

She was forced to admit she “cannot deliver the mandate” Tory members gave her a little over six weeks ago.

Read more: Liz Truss resigns as Prime Minister and Conservative party leader in Downing Street statement

Reacting to the news, leading Conservative politicians from across the North East have branded the current situation a “total mess” and “fiasco”.

The Northern Echo: Ben Houchen.Ben Houchen.

Tees Valley Mayor and prominent Conservative Ben Houchen welcomed Liz Truss’s resignation, saying she “has done the right thing”.

Mr Houchen said: “The whole thing is a total mess.

“It’s no secret that Liz wasn’t the candidate I chose and she’s done the right thing to stand down.

“We need to see a new leader appointed quickly that will get on with tackling the challenges we face as a country, making swift progress on putting more money in the pockets of people across Teesside, Darlington and Hartlepool, and urgently addressing their concerns on energy bills this winter.

“As always, I’ll be focused on continuing to deliver for people across Teesside, Darlington and Hartlepool and not party politics.

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“As it was clear this couldn’t go on and was going to end soon I came to London today to make sure that plans and projects we’re progressing stay on track to deliver for local people and I’ll be meeting ministers later today.”

The Northern Echo: Matt VickersMatt Vickers

Stockton South Matt Vickers MP added he felt ‘it is only right’ Liz Truss resigned, to 'draw a line under this fiasco'.

He said: "The people of this country are looking to this government and our party for leadership in these dark times. Unfortunately, the Prime Minister could not provide that. Many in my constituency are struggling just to keep the lights on. The last thing they wanted was a civil war spurred on by a divisive economic agenda.

"It is only right that she resigned and drawn a line under this fiasco.

"For my part, I will continue to represent the interests of my constituents to the best of my ability. Since I was elected in 2019, we have seen unprecedented investment to level up our area and create tens of thousands of skilled, high-quality jobs."

Read more: Bookies favourites on who could become Prime Minister as Liz Truss resigns

Meanwhile a spokesperson for North West Durham Tory MP Richard Holden, who backed Rishi Sunak but was appointed a PPS under Liz Truss’s government, praised her decision as ‘statesmanlike’.

The Northern Echo: Richard HoldenRichard Holden

They said: “Richard had been wishing Liz Truss well and hoping she would be the person to take us to the next election but it is probably the right decision she has made in resigning. She has been very statesmanlike."

Pressed on who Mr Holden will be supporting going into the leadership contenst, his spokesperson added: "Richard spent the summer backing Rishi because he thinks he is the right person for the job, because of his experience with the economy and being a unity candidate.

"Rishi hasn't said he's going to run yet but if he does he is the most probable candidate to have Richard's support."

However Bishop Auckland MP and Levelling Up Minister Dehenna Davison said she was 'saddened' by Liz Truss's resignation, after backing her in this summer's Tory leadership race.

The Northern Echo: Dehenna in an embrace with Liz Truss at the Darlington hustings in August.Dehenna in an embrace with Liz Truss at the Darlington hustings in August. (Image: CHRIS BOOTH)

Ms Davison said: "I’m saddened by the Prime Minister’s resignation. She had an ambitious vision for our country and, with more time, would have delivered a more prosperous and fair country, meaning better life chances for kids growing up in the North East.

"However, mistakes were made which the Prime Minister has acknowledged. And sadly there were many who never fully got behind Liz, who was elected by the party precisely because of her bold vision for growth. Ultimately, the country needs unity. I hope that we can now find some, as the next leader tackles the huge global and domestic challenges we face.

"As ever, I’ll continue to focus on delivering the best I can for my constituency, and as Levelling Up Minister, making sure no matter where people grow up and live, they can get on in life."

The Northern Echo has contacted all of the region's Conservative MPs for comment.

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