Tory Brexiteer Desmond Swayne appeared to fall asleep in the House of Commons while his colleague, the staunch Remainer Ken Clarke, was speaking about EU citizen rights.

Swayne, the MP for New Forest West, flopped on the benches with his eyes closed for around a minute as Clarke spoke in the largely empty chamber on 16 January.

It is difficult to say whether the Eurosceptic MP had genuinely fallen asleep or was just mocking the ex-chancellor-turned-rebel, whose lengthy pro-EU speeches have become a regular feature in Commons Brexit debates.

Swayne certainly has form: he has frequently been captured sitting behind Clarke pulling tired and exasperated faces as the veteran MP delivers his anti-Brexit diatribes.

MPs were today (16 January) debating the government's flagship EU Withdrawal Bill, which is designed to transpose EU law onto the British statute books in order to avoid any legal black holes when Westminster severs ties with Brussels.

Clarke said the Bill, currently at the report stage in the Commons, would have trouble getting through the House of Lords.

He added: "I hope that the other place [the Lords] will make an enormous number of changes to this Bill.

"The idea that the Bill with all these Henry VIII clauses is going to have an untroubled passage through the House of Lords is an illusion. The House of Lords, I hope, will throw back some of the bizarre extensions of the Henry VIII principle in this Bill but also some of the European things."