Sir Hugo Swire has announced that he will not stand at the next general election – ending his 18-year reign as MP for East Devon.
Conservative Sir Hugo, first voted into the seat in 2001 and a veteran of five successful election campaigns, revealed the bombshell news tonight (Thursday).
He vowed to continue to support Prime Minister Boris Johnson and the Government in delivering Brexit ‘in challenging political times’.
Sir Hugo said it had always been his intention to stand down at the general election in 2022.
Brexit uncertainty means the nation is expected to go to the polls in the coming months.
Sir Hugo said in a statement released on Twitter : “At a meeting earlier this evening of the Executive East Devon Conservative Association, I announced that I would not be standing for re-election as the Member of Parliament.
“It was my original intention to stand down in 2022 when the next general election was scheduled to be held.
“I was first selected as the Parliamentary candidate for East Devon in 2000 and have fought five subsequent general elections.
“I served in a number of different roles in Opposition, including in the Shadow Cabinet as Shadow Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport.
“In Government, I was first appointed as Minister of State in the Northern Ireland Office and then Minister of State in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
“Whilst I was honoured to have been appointed to these roles, my greatest privilege has been to serve my constituents, regardless of their political allegiance.
“I am truly grateful to them for consistently returning me at elections and will continue to serve them to the best of my ability until an election is called.
“We live in challenging political times, but I remain convinced that to being the country back together, we need to deliver on Brexit and I shall continue to support the Prime Minister and the Government in their endeavours.”
Attached is a statement concerning the next general election in which I will not be standing. I remain a supporter of @BorisJohnson and what he is trying to achieve and will continue to support his endeavours. pic.twitter.com/pwAQjpPrpw
— Hugo Swire (@HugoSwire) September 12, 2019