British Parliament buildings
File photo: Palace of Westminster where the Parliament meets in the United KingdomNIKLAS HALLE'N/AFP/Getty Images

Conservative and DUP MPs have defeated Labour's bid to end the cap on public sector pay rises in the first House of Commons vote since the general election.

The proposal to scrap the 1% annual pay rise for workers including firefighters, nurses and police officers was voted down by 323 to 309. The vote was the first test for Theresa May's new £1bn DUP-backed minority government, with all the MPs from the Northern Ireland party voting against the amendment.

Pay rises for public sector workers saw a two-year freeze in 2010 and was followed by the 1% annual increase cap. The cap is due to remain in place until 2019/20.

There had been some confusion before the vote as it was suggested that the Tories may scrap the pay cap. The rumours were dismissed by May's spokesperson, adding "the policy has not changed".

The mix-up resulted in shadow chancellor John McDonald calling the treasury a "shambles", with outgoing Lib Dem leader Tim Farron saying the Tories are in "utter chaos".

Following the House of Commons vote, which saw the amendment voted down by a majority of 14, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said: "The Conservatives had the opportunity to end cuts to our police and fire service and lift the Public Sector Pay Cap.

"Although government ministers said they had learned the lessons of the General Election and were listening to voters, it is clear that nothing has changed.

"Tory austerity is business as usual. While the money is there when the Conservatives need it to keep themselves and Theresa May in office, the rest of the country now face more devastating cuts to our emergency and other vital services."

Unite union general secretary Len McCluskey added: "Now we can see exactly what this Bung Parliament will mean for working people.

"How dare the Tories ever again praise our emergency heroes, or look the people who teach our children, clean our streets or tend to our sick in the eye. This vote shows exactly who is on the side of working people - and it is not the Tories."

Full list of MPs who voted to keep public sector pay cap