Stephen Hammond Says Decision to Step Down 'Incredibly Tough'

Wimbledon MP explains why he won't contest next election

Stephen Hammond to Hold Public Meeting on Crime
Stephen Hammond MP

September 25, 2023

The current MP for Wimbledon has said that it was an ‘incredibly tough decision’ to not contest the next election. He called the opportunity to represent the constituency as ‘the privilege of my life’.

Stephen Hammond said in a letter to his local constituency association that he would not seek the nomination for the seat which he has held for the Conservatives since 2005. The decision was formally announced at the association’s AGM on 14 September.

He said, “This is the right decision for Sally and me, In recent years we have both been stretched by increased caring responsibilities for our elderly parents and this is unlikely to change in the coming years.”

He is one of more than 40 sitting Conservative MPs who have confirmed they will not be running again.

Mr Hammond served in several ministerial roles, including Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport and Minister of State in the Department of Health and Social Care.

He said in his letter that he believed, ‘despite the national picture’ that the Conservatives could retain the seat. However, he won by a narrow margin over the Liberal Democrats in 2019 and the Electoral Calculus web site is currently predicting a 77% chance that it will be retaken by Labour.

In September 2019, he was one of 21 MPs stripped of the whip by Boris Johnson for their efforts to block a no deal Brexit. The constituency has consistently been one of the most opposed to leaving the EU in the country.

Cllr Paul Kohler, who was the Libderal Democrat who came second at the last General Election and is set to contest the seat next time out, said, “Although we have ‘crossed swords’ politically on many occasions I have always respected Stephen Hammond as a constituency MP. I would like to place on record my thanks to him for his work in Parliament over the last 18 years."

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