Theresa May has ruled out a new referendum on EU membership, or an early general election

Mark Sands
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Brexit secretary David Davis explicitly backed a second referendum when he sought the Tory leadership in 2005. (Source: Getty)

Theresa May has doubled down on her stance of "Brexit means Brexit", explicitly ruling out either a fresh referendum on EU membership, or an early general election.

Earlier this week, Downing Street ruled out a parliamentary vote on the terms of the UK's departure from the EU, and the government has today ruled out seeking a new public mandate.

A spokeswoman for May said that MPs would be given “a say” over the future terms of Britain's relationship with the EU, but stressed no vote would be held.

“The Prime Minister has been very clear about Brexit meaning Brexit,” she said.

Meanwhile, Brexit secretary David Davis is facing questions after Labour leadership candidate Owen Smith highlighted that Davis had previously backed a second referendum.

Read More: A former Manchester United great has slammed Owen Smith's Brexit pledge

In an interview with The Sun as he sought to secure the Tory leadership in November 2005, Davis said the British people would be entitled to two votes on any move to quit the European Union.

"It won't be easy. But we will lay out exactly what we want and hold a referendum to see if people approve. I have no doubt they will,” Davis said.

“We would then go to the negotiating table and, at the end, put the outcome to a second referendum. That would give us the authority to look the European Commission in the eye and say this is the view of the British people.”

A spokesman for the Department for Exiting the European Union did not respond to request for comment on whether this remains Davis' view.

It comes as May summons her ministers to Chequers for a cabinet meeting with Brexit as the first item on the agenda.

Ministers have been asked to prepare positive opportunities for Britain in their respective departments in the aftermath of the seperation from the EU.