AN investigation has been launched into reports of "bullying" and "manhandling" outside the voting lobbies in Westminster on Wednesday night.

Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle said he has asked the Serjeant at Arms and other officials to investigate allegations made about the incidents, which a number of MPs have alleged witnessing.

In a statement to MPs, Hoyle said: “I remind Members that the behaviour code applies to them as well as to other members of our parliamentary community.”

Following Wednesday's key fracking vote, Labour MP Chris Bryant went on Sky News and made allegations of chaotic scenes outside the lobby, claiming one MP had been "physically pulled" into voting with the Government on the motion.

Cabinet ministers Therese Coffey and Jacob Rees-Mogg were among the group of senior Tories accused of bullying Tory MPs into voting against the Labour motion to continue the ban on fracking.

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SNP MP David Linden said he saw Coffey, the Deputy Prime Minister, “practically pick up a hesitant Tory MP and march him into the Government lobby”.

Speaking to Radio 4 the following morning, Bryant (below) said: “It was very aggressive, very angry, there was a lot of shouting, there was a lot of pointing, gesticulating, there was at least one hand on another MP, and to me that was clear bullying, intimidation.”

The National: Chris Bryant

He added: “I saw a whole swathe of MPs effectively pushing one member straight through the door and I’ve seen photographic evidence of one MP’s hand on another.”

Bryant said other Labour and Conservative MPs have said to him that it was “clearly manhandling”.

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Rees-Mogg, the Business Secretary, insisted he had seen no evidence of anyone being manhandled and there had simply been a “normal” discussion among MPs as they prepared to vote.

And Coffey denied the claim, with a source close to her saying: “She didn’t manhandle anyone.”

The Government ultimately won the vote by 326 to 230, although more than 30 Tory MPs were recorded as not taking part amid confusion over whether or not there was a three-line whip.