A champion of animal welfare has been sacked from the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).

Tory peer Lord Goldsmith was stripped of his Environment Secretary role by new PM Liz Truss yesterday (Thursday) - despite her office saying that no political roles would be shuffled during the current period of national mourning for the Queen.

Lord Goldsmith has famously close ties with both the ex-Prime Minster Boris Johnson and his wife Carrie.

While the peer has kept his job at the Foreign Office, his removal from Defra could signal a governmental change in attitude to animal welfare.

In April, Lord Goldsmith announced new legislation that upped fines to £5,000 for those who fail to properly care for their pets, zoo animals and livestock.

At the time he said: "The penalty notice measures being introduced today will act as a powerful deterrent, building on measures we have already taken such as increasing prison sentences for cruelty offences."

Last summer, tougher prison sentences for animal cruelty were introduced, raising the maximum prison sentence for animal cruelty from six months to five years.

Lord Goldsmith also oversaw the UK Ivory Act, which enforces a near total ban on elephant ivory sale.

As the leader of the Forestry Commission, he announced millions of pounds worth of funding for creating new woodlands across the country.

The sacking of the long-time environmentalist calls the new Prime Minster's intentions regarding farming, food production and the environment into question.

George Eustice has also been sacked from Defra. He has been replaced by Ranil Jayawardena, who has been the Minister for International Trade since 2020.

Jayawardena studied government at the London School of Economics and Political Science and has worked for the Lloyds Banking Group.