Frank Field told the House he had “always bought his houses” and “never inherited them” in a dig at Mr Benn, which left other Labour MPs in a state of shock.

As Mr Benn, chair of the Exiting the Select Committee, outstretched his arms in dismay, former Labour minister David Lammy opened his mouth in shock before shaking his head.

Mr Field said: “I’ve always bought my houses, never inherited them.”

But the MP for Leeds Central batted away the claims and said they were not true.

He said: “I didn’t, I bought mine too.”

Mr Field, chair of the Work and Pensions Select Committee, then withdrew his comment.

He said: “Mr Chairman, I’ve been corrected and I withdraw it.”

It came as the MP for Birkenhead fought against Labour Remainer MPs during the debate.

Mr Field said: “I am a reluctant Brexiteer. I’m too old to feel that I was born to bring us out of Europe but I’ve not had one of those evangelical revivals that somehow life began again once we entered into the Common Market and my aim and purpose and being and everything I breath was to get us out of that organisation. That’s not so.

“In my own constituency and the small amount of work I did nationally, I stressed it was on a balance that we actually had to make a decision about Europe and that we didn’t need more facts about Europe.

“We needed to draw on our very natures all that we had been taught in our culture, in our very being. 

“From where we feel we stand in this country to make that decision on whether we wish to leave or not.”

Theresa May is facing a in the Commons.

Both Labour members and rebel Tories are gearing up to inflict a number of defeats on Mrs May as they go over the fine print of the EU (Withdrawal) Bill.

The start of the committee stage this afternoon kicks off eight days of line-by-line scrutiny of the Brexit legislation in the run-up to Christmas. 

It begins with four hours of debate on the timing of when the UK leaves the EU.

That will be followed by another marathon four-hour debate on whether the Scottish and Welsh governments should get a bigger say in the process.

Daily Express

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