Cameron’s long road to Downing St

Steve Dinneen
Follow Steve
Friday 07 May
● 00.30: David Cameron, after comfortably holding his Witney constituency, claimed “the Labour government has lost its mandate to govern our country. The Conservative party is on target to win more seats than we have done at any election for perhaps as long as 80 years.”

● 04.30: Nick Clegg and Gordon Brown reported to have had an angry telephone exchange as the wrangling to form a coalition gets underway.

● 08.00: Clegg says he will talk to the Tories first as he believes the party with the most votes should have the first chance to form the next government, but does not rule out a deal with Labour.

● 10.00: Brown says he welcomes talks with the Lib Dems but accepts they should meet the Tories first.

Saturday 08 May
● 10.30: Clegg meets his MPs to discuss the Lib Dems’ strategy in coalition negotiations.

● 18.00: YouGov poll suggests two thirds of voters think Brown should accept defeat.

● 19.00: Cameron and Clegg engage in crunch negotiations over whether to form a coalition.

Sunday 09 May
● 11.00: Tory and Lib Dem negotiation teams meet for a full day’s negotiations at the cabinet office.

● 15.00: Thousands of protesters campaigning for electoral reform march past Westminster.

Monday 10 May
● 08.00: Talks begin again between Lib Dems and Tories.

● 02.00: Lib Dems and Labour meet to discuss the possibility of a rainbow coalition.

● 17.15: Gordon Brown offers his resignation as leader of the Labour party but says he wants to remain to oversee the transition and reiterates his desire to work with the Lib Dems.

● 18.30: Sources close to David Miliband say he will run for Labour leader.

● 20.30: Lib Dem MP Shirley Williams warns her party against forming a formal coalition with the Tories.

Tuesday 11 May
● 07.45: David Blunkett says the Lib Dems are behaving “like every harlot in history”. He says Labour should not be seeking to form the next government but preparing for opposition.

● 08.45: David Cameron says his MPs “have shown that they are prepared to put aside party interests in the national interest by agreeing to a referendum on electoral reform”. He says it's now “decision time” for the Lib Dems

● 19.20: Brown resigns as Prime Minister, offering Cameron the chance to form a government during a moving speech.

● 19.40: Brown makes the short drive to Buckingham Palace to give up his position as Prime Minister.

● 19.45: Harriet Harman is made caretaker leader of the Labour party.

● 20.15: Cameron tells the Queen he will form a new government.

● 20.45: Cameron arrives at number 10 Downing Street as Prime Minister.