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Wednesday, 23 July 2014

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Workington MP Sir Tony Cunningham to step down

Sir Tony Cunningham has revealed that he will step down as Workington MP next year.

In a shock move, the 61-year-old father-of-four said he wanted to devote more time to his family but said he had not ruled out continuing in public service.

He announced his intention at a Workington Constituency Labour Party meeting last Friday.

The Labour Party will now find a new candidate to field in the May 2015 General Election.

The selection process will begin on Tuesday and it will take between 10 and 12 weeks to identify a candidate.

People who put their names forward will be interviewed by regional party members, who will compile a long list and then a shortlist for Labour Party members to vote on their preferred choice.

It is possible that the Workington constituency will be a women-only seat, but Denise Rollo, secretary of Workington Constituency Labour Party, said that was a decision for the party at a national level.

Sir Tony said: “It is simply the right time for me to go. I firmly believe Labour still has a strong chance and great backing by voters in the Workington constituency.

“It is a personal decision for me. I have been getting more tired as the last couple of years have passed.

“If I was elected next year, I don’t think I could continue for another four years.

“It was a difficult decision but not the hardest decision I've ever made.”

He would not be drawn on his future plans but dismissed the idea of becoming a lord, like his predecessor Dale Campbell-Savours.

He said: “It would put me in the same position I am now, travelling down to London four days a week.

“I am getting too tired for that and I'd prefer to be in my community, doing work in West Cumbria.”

  • Read the full story in the Times & Star, on sale now
Have your say

At the back end of last year this local paper ran a story about how this MP was going to help the employees of Indorama who were facing redundancy in Feb get jobs on Sellafield, what a joke, to this day not one of the shopfloor workers has been offered a job there, all it was about was getting Tony Cunningham and Sellafield some good press, i know that all my ex colleagues there will be glad to see the back of him as a local MP. So Tata employees if he comes bearing gifts to you guys, take it with a pinch of salt.In our case we found both Tony Cunningham and Sellafield to be a total waste of time, the only local company that has been of any real help to us has been Walkers of Cockermouth, it's those that deserve the headlines.

Posted by XIndorama on 4 July 2014 at 12:43

Lost faith in MP's years ago and Mr Cunningham is no exception.

You only see them in your area when it's voting time and they want your vote.

My opinion of MP's is, they are there for what they can get out of it themselves.

Posted by V Meldrew on 4 July 2014 at 08:27

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