But home secretary Amber Rudd and first secretary of state Damian Green countered overnight news of the list, throwing their weight behind May’s leadership.
Shapps said there were up to 30 MPs on the list, which included five former Cabinet ministers, one former minister and “quite a lot of the backbenchers”.
“We think May is a decent person doing her best,” he told Sky News. “But she led us into an election with that result.” He added that "one or two" Cabinet ministers "privately" agree with calls for the PM's resignation.
Green said it was “nonsense” to suggest that May should go after struggling through her closing speech at the Conservative Party conference on Wednesday.
She will carry on and she will make a success of this government.
Meanwhile, Rudd told the Daily Telegraph that the government wants to “set out a better path, one that actually leads to a prosperous, secure and united country”.
“We can do that and we will under her leadership,” said Rudd.