George Osborne and Boris Johnson
George Osborne has leapfrogged Boris Johnson as the favourite to succeed David CameronGetty

Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne is the most popular candidate for Tory leader after Prime Minister David Cameron steps down, according to a poll.

He is backed by 31% of over 700 party members surveyed by the website Conservative Home, an increase of nine percentage points from the same poll conducted last month.

It is the first time Osborne has led the poll, which was dominated by Home Secretary Theresa May and London Mayor Boris Johnson in the run up to the general election.

Johnson came in at the third place in the latest survey with 17% of support, down six percentage points from last month, while May was at fifth with only 13%.

Business Secretary Sajid Javid came second with 19%, 12 percentage points behind Osborne.

Johnson and Javid had jointly led the poll last month with 23% of support respectively.

The results were "one of the clearest signals of party members' reinvigorated enthusiasm for [Osborne]", Conservative Home's Peter Hoskin said.

Osborne unveiled the first all-Tory Budget in nearly 20 years on 8 July, in which the National Living Wage, starting at £7.20 and rising to £9 an hour by 2020, replaced the £6.50 minimum wage.

In March, Cameron told the BBC he would not seek a third term as prime minister and tipped May, Osborne and Johnson as potential replacements.

"Terms are like shredded wheat – two are wonderful but three might just be too many," he said.

"There definitely comes a time where a fresh pair of eyes and fresh leadership would be good, and the Conservative party has got some great people coming up.

"You know, there's plenty of talent there. I'm surrounded by very good people."