KEIR Starmer did not rule out handing peerages and government positions to Tony Blair and Gordon Brown when questioned on reports that he is planning on stacking the Lords with Labour figures if he becomes prime minister.

The Labour leader was appearing on Times Radio on Thursday when he was quizzed on briefings from senior figures within his own party that he was planning to fill the House of Lords with “dozens” of new peers – despite previous pledges to abolish the chamber altogether.

One shadow cabinet minister even told The Times it would be necessary to put unelected peers into government positions because there were only around 10 Labour MPs capable of being ministers.

READ MORE: Keir Starmer's U-turn on 'abolish the Lords' pledge panned across political spectrum

Asked if his policy was to both pack the House of Lords with new peers and abolish it, Starmer said: “Look, there is a mismatch at the moment. We’ve got far less peers than the Conservatives and obviously we need to get the business of government through. But this is not some developed plan. I literally have not discussed it with anyone.”

Starmer was then asked: “Is it time to say to Tony Blair, Gordon Brown, ‘get off the subs bench, get in the House of Lords, do your bit’? Do you want to bring back some big beasts of the Labour party to serve in your government?”

Starmer (below) did not rule out offering either of the former Labour prime ministers a peerage, instead saying that he would “want to talk” to them.

The National: Sir Keir Starmer

He told Times Radio: “Look, what I do want to do is take advice from people who know what they’re talking about. And what I’m trying to do is to get the Labour Party from a terrible election defeat in 2019, what will be 13 or 14 years of opposition, into government.

“So do I want to talk to Tony Blair or Gordon Brown, who were the last leaders that achieved that switch from opposition into government for a Labour party, of course I do. Not actually about the substance of particular policies, but more about the framework, the approach, the pace.

“So much has changed in 25 years that a policy discussion wouldn’t be the right one, but it is about understanding, how does a party go from years in opposition into power, hopefully, and into government.”

Starmer has brought Brown into the Labour backrooms to discuss how the party can look at revamping the British constitution if it comes to power.

One of the ideas put forward involved scrapping the House of Lords in favour of an elected upper chamber.

In December, Starmer told Sky News that he wanted to abolish the Lords within his first term as prime minister.

On Wednesday, his official spokesperson insisted that that was still Labour policy, and that any peers the party created would also be asked to support abolishing the chamber in which they sit.