Children's Minister Beverley Hughes to stand down as MP

02 JUN 2009

Children's Minister Beverley Hughes announced today that she will step down as an MP at the next General Election for "personal reasons" and she stressed it was unrelated to the Parliamentary expenses furore.

The MP for Stretford and Urmston also said she would be leaving the Government at a reshuffle, expected on Monday after the European and local elections.

In a letter to Prime Minister Gordon Brown, Ms Hughes said: "I would not have chosen the current appalling climate to announce my decision when so many Members are resigning for reasons to do with their Parliamentary allowances.

"I want to make it absolutely clear that this has nothing whatsoever to do with my decision or the reason for making it public now."

Ms Hughes entered Parliament following the 1997 general election having previously been the Leader of Trafford Council. She is married and has three grown-up children.

In her letter to Mr Brown, she stressed that her decision to leave Parliament and Government was purely for family reasons.

"I know you are already aware of some of the family circumstances that lie behind my decision and I appreciate very much the personal interest you have shown in this," she said.

"However there are, in fact, a number of personal and family issues which, taken together, are such that I cannot make the commitment to be in Parliament and away from home for a further five years beyond the next General Election.

"I now want to be at home much more than being a minister or MP will ever allow."

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