The attendees of the council which discusses state secrets with intelligence chiefs are Cabinet members Mr Johnson, Sajid Javid, Dominic Raab, Priti Patel, Ben Wallace, Andrea Leadsom, Alok Sharma, Liz Truss and Geoffrey Cox. Mr Gove as Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster is not going to attend despite his predecessor David Lidington doing so when the list of members were last published. The terms of reference are “to consider matters relating to national security, foreign policy, defence, international relations and development, resilience, energy and resource security”.
A source close to Mr Gove has said he does not mind being excluded.
A Downing Street spokesman said: “The membership of committees reflects those departments with the most significant and regular interest in the issues under discussion.
“Unlike the previous Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, Michael Gove has specific responsibility for no deal planning so that will be his focus.”
They also said extra ministers may be invited if their portfolio is relevant to a meeting.
Mr Johnson and Mr Gove will chair a six person strong Brexit committee which will meet twice weekly.
Mrs Leadsom, Business Secretary, will not be part of the committee, despite her predecessor Greg Clark being included in Mrs May Brexit committees.
Theresa Villiers, Environment Secretary, has also been left out, despite her predecessor Mr Gove not being.
A source suggested hardline Brexiteers were concerned by the developments: ”Boris has promised to a few different people that they will be in the war cabinet so there are some pretty p****d off Cabinet ministers who think their departments should be there.”
Mr Gove’s role as Chancellor for the Duchy of Lancaster means he is responsible for administration of the Duchy of Lancaster, a private estate of the Queen.
The minister responsible is not usually involved in day to day running of the Duchy and their official role includes other responsibilities.
The role has previously been held by the likes of Winston Churchill, Baron Beaverbrook, Oswald Mosley, Clement Attlee, Cecil Parkinson, Norman Tebbit, Ken Clarke, Chris Patten and Ed Miliband.