Speaker's cat has been checking parliament for mice ahead of coronation and found 'none', Sir Lindsay Hoyle says

Attlee the cat has swept the Houses of Parliament for mice ahead of the coronation on Saturday.

Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle says his live-in moggy has "been going round" to check for rodents and found "absolutely none".

The declaration comes after Parliament spent more than a million pounds on pest control in the past decade.

Figures released last Friday showed that £1.25m has been spent by authorities since 2012/13 - with 60% coming from the House of Commons budget, and 40% from the Lords as per an existing agreement.

Documents from Parliament say that the bulk of unwelcome furry guests in the Palace of Westminster are house mice and common rats.

So Attlee the Maine Coon will have his work cut out if he is now in charge of clearing the pests from Westminster.

It is a much tougher task than the one undertaken by Larry, the chief mouser in Downing Street, which has a much smaller patch to cover - but has faced down creatures as large as a fox.

Sir Lindsay is a well-known animal lover, with a menagerie of politically-themed pets.

Attlee, named after the post-war prime minister Clement Attlee, joined Sir Lindsay in the summer of last year.

There is also Boris the parrot, who Sir Lindsay says he has been teaching how to sing God Save The King - with the bird apparently "listening very carefully".

This all comes ahead of a reception for the King and Queen Consort taking place on Tuesday.

Sir Lindsay will host the royals alongside Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and the leader of the opposition Sir Keir Starmer in Westminster Hall.

Being invited to the coronation proper on 6 May is a "wonderful privilege" according to the Speaker.

He will be attending in full regalia as he watches the crowning of King Charles III.

The Speaker also talked down any chance of the King interfering with politicians.

"I have never known the monarch to object to what the House of Commons does. I never, ever see that happening. What I see is a grown-up recognition of democracy in this country, that we still have a monarch that plays his part," Sir Lindsay said.

"I've got to say, what a privilege that we've got the sadness of Her Majesty, but we’ve now got the sunrise of a new King coming."