UK general election: Which MPs are stepping down? The key SNP, Tory and Labour MPs who are not standing

A host of senior figures have already announced they’ll be departing at the next election.

Britain is expected to go to the polls later this year, with the Prime Minister indicating the poll was likely to be held in the autumn.

UK general elections have to be held no more than five years apart, and while the next vote isn’t due until January 2025, it is widely expected to take place before then.

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That date represents five years from the day this Parliament first met – December 17, 2019 – plus the time required for an election campaign.

However, a host of big beasts from across the political spectrum have already announced they won’t be standing at the next election.

Here we look at the key MPs, from the SNP to the Tories and Labour, who have said they won’t stand again.

The former SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford announced on June 6 he would not be running again, saying he’d thought “long and hard” about the decision.

The Ross, Skye & Lochaber since 2015, Mr Blackford’s decision is understood to have come about ahead of the SNP general election candidate selection process.

He said: “It has been an enormous privilege to serve as the MP for Ross, Skye & Lochaber since 2015. I am grateful to the SNP membership for selecting me – and I remain privileged and humbled that people across my home constituency have put their trust in me at three elections.

“Serving as the local MP for this vast and cherished Highland and Island area has always been my priority. I was also honoured to lead the SNP Westminster group for more than five years between 2017 and 2022. There were many highlights during that period, including leading the group into the 2019 election and increasing our representation from 35 to 48 seats."

Peter Grant, who represents Glenrothes and Central Fife, announced in late June he would not seek re-selection as the SNP candidate.

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First elected in 2015, Mr Grant pointed to his age as he explained why he would be departing.

He said: “Depending on the timing of the election, the next Parliament is likely to run until I am 68 or possibly 69 years old. I owe it to everyone to ask myself whether I will be able to cope with the physical and mental demands of the job when I reach that age.”

Douglas Chapman, SNP

The former SNP national treasurer Douglas Chapman announced he will stand down at the general election this month.

The MP for Dunfermline and West Fife resigned as party treasurer in May 2021, claiming he was not given enough information to do his job, amid the police investigation into missing funds.

He said: "I intend to work hard for my constituents for the remainder of this Parliament.

"I will continue to work towards our national mission to see Scotland become a confident, prosperous and happy independent nation."

Angela Crawley, SNP

Angela Crawley is another SNP MP standing down, and has represented Lanark and Hamilton East since taking the seat from Labour in 2015.

In an open letter to her constituents, Mrs Crawley she had spent her time as an MP “dedicated to championing equality, tackling poverty, and challenging the excesses of a hard right Tory UK Government”.

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She continued: “Serving my community has always been my number one priority. This has, however, come at a personal cost and required many difficult compromises.

“The unpredictability of Westminster can be challenging with a young family. It is now time to put my partner and our young family at the centre of my daily life. They deserve my full love, attention, and dedication.

“With them in mind, I have made the decision not to offer myself as a candidate at the next general election.”

Stewart Hosie, SNP

Stewart Hosie is the fifth SNP MP to announce he will stand down at the next UK general election, confirming the decision on Wednesday.

Representing Dundee East for nearly 20 years, Mr Hosie has been serving as the party's treasury spokesperson.

He said: “It has been the greatest privilege of my life to represent the constituency I was born and grew up in.

“I will, of course, remain an active member of the SNP and find other ways in which I can help further the cause of Scottish independence”.

Alister Jack, Conservative

The Scottish secretary confirmed in May he would be standing down, amid rumours he’d been offered a peerage in Boris Johnson's resignation honours list.

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First elected to the Commons in 2017, Mr Jack took up his existing Government role in July 2019, succeeding David Mundell as Scottish secretary.

Serving multiple prime ministers, Mr Jack also repeatedly insisted he would not leave via a by-election. He has also been a principal antagonist in several moves by the UK Government to block Scottish Parliament legislation, including the use of a section 35 order to veto the Gender Recognition Reform (Scotland) Bill and restricting the scope of the planned deposit return scheme.

Mr Jack said: “I’ve been very clear in saying that I will not be standing at the next general election. I said that to Boris Johnson, I’ve said that to [his successor] Liz Truss when she appointed me as secretary of state for Scotland. And I said it to Rishi Sunak when he also appointed me as Secretary of State for Scotland.

“At each reshuffle I’ve said ‘I want to be honest with you, I’m not standing at the next general election’. But they’ve factored that in and given me the privilege of continuing to serve.”

Douglas Ross, Conservative

The Scottish Tory leader will stand down as the MP for Moray at the next election, but not leave politics, having already been elected as an MSP in Holyrood. He has served as Member of Parliament for Moray since 2017.

Matt Hancock, Conservative

The former health secretary is already well on his way to leaving Parliament, swapping Cabinet jobs for TikTok posts, reality television and podcast appearances.

Writing a book about his experiences during the pandemic, Mr Hancock will likely appear at the Covid inquiry and as a pundit to discuss the pandemic.

Losing the whip for his lucrative appearance on I’m a Celebrity, his local constituency chairman in West Sussex said he was “not fit to represent this constituency”.

Dominic Raab, Conservative

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Dominic Raab announced he would stand down as an MP at the next general election, weeks after he quit Rishi Sunak’s Cabinet over bullying claims.

Once regarded as a potential future leader of the Conservative party, the former deputy prime minister was facing a difficult political future after a report on allegations of bullying found he had been “unreasonably aggressive”.

His Esher and Walton constituency is now a serious target for the Liberal Democrat party, with the party confident they could have won it if Mr Raab had stayed.

Theresa May, Conservative

Theresa May has said she will not fight the next general election, bringing a 27-year career in Parliament to an end.

The 67-year-old former prime minister has revealed her decision to stand down as MP for Maidenhead, saying she would focus on championing causes including the fight against modern slavery.

“These causes have been taking an increasing amount of my time," she said. “Because of this, after much careful thought and consideration, I have realised that, looking ahead, I would no longer be able to do my job as an MP in the way I believe is right and my constituents deserve.”

Harriet Harman, Labour

The veteran Labour MP Harriet Harman announced, way back in 2021, she would stand down at the next general election,

She revealed her decision in an email to her local party in Camberwell and Peckham, and will leave having spent more than 40 years as their MP. First elected in 1982, Ms Harman has held a series of posts, including two brief stints as Labour leader after Gordon Brown and Ed Miliband stepped down.

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She is the chair of the Privileges Committee, which recently produced the report banning Mr Johnson from the Commons.

Caroline Lucas, Green

The Green Party's former leader and only MP, Caroline Lucas has confirmed she will stand down at the next general election.

Elected for Brighton Pavilion in 2010, she was the first Green MP, and has increased her majority at every election since.

In an open letter, she said: "I have always been a different kind of politician – as those who witnessed my arrest, court case and acquittal over peaceful protest at the fracking site in Balcombe nearly ten years ago will recall.

"And the truth is, as these threats to our precious planet become ever more urgent, I have struggled to spend the time I want on these accelerating crises. I have therefore decided not to stand again as your MP at the next election."

Sajid Javid, Conservative

Sajid Javid confirmed to the chair of his constituency party in Bromsgrove he will not stand at the next general election, ending a political career that saw him hold the position of chancellor, health secretary and business secretary.

He said: "It has been a decision I have wrestled with for some time, but I have ultimately concluded not to stand again for what would be my fifth election.

"Being the local MP and serving in Government has been the privilege of my life and I am immensely grateful for the opportunity to serve. I always sought to make decisions in the national interest, and in line with my values, and I can only hope my best was sufficient."

George Eustice, Conservative

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The former environment secretary George Eustice is standing down after 15 years as the MP for Camborne and Redruth.

Now hoping for a career outside of politics, the senior Tory was secretary of state under Mr Johnson for two years. He said: "By the time of the next election, I will have been in politics for 25 years, including almost 15 years as a Member of Parliament.

"I will also be 53 and I want the opportunity to do a final career outside politics, so have decided not to seek re-election. This has been a difficult decision for me."

His seat is expected to be taken by the Liberal Democrats.

Dame Margaret Hodge, Labour

The MP for Barking in East London since 1994, Dame Margaret Hodge described the decision to leave as "really tough".

A prominent critic of the former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, she served in a Labour Government in roles across education, work and pensions, and culture.

Ben Wallace, Conservative

A close Mr Johnson ally, Ben Wallace was defence secretary from 2019 to 2023. Despite long-standing rumours of a run for leader, and great popularity with the membership, he never ran for the top job. After leaving the Cabinet last summer, Mr Wallace has now confirmed he will not be seeking re-election.

Kwasi Kwarteng, Conservative

Former Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng stands down with quite the legacy, with his mini-budget burned into political infamy. Mr Kwarteng announced he will be standing down in February 2024, on the same day his close friend Liz Truss launched her new Popular Conservatism movement pushing for rightwing policies. 

Graham Brady, Conservative

The long-serving chair of the 1922 committee, Graham Brady has been a name multiple prime ministers have had nightmares about for the past few years. Announcing he’d be standing down in 2023, the MP for Altrincham and Sale West said it was time to “bring this fascinating and fulfilling chapter of my life to a close”. 

Margaret Beckett, Labour

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First elected an MP in 1974, Margaret Beckett is a titan of the Labour movement. When she first entered the Commons, just 27 MPs were women. She went on to become the UK’s first female foreign secretary, and Labour’s first female acting leader.

Tracey Crouch, Conservative

Tracey Crouch announced she will stand down at the next election after her "life-affirming experience" of having cancer and "coming out the other side".

A former sports minister, Ms Crouch has represented Chatham and Aylesford since 2010, and was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2020, aged 44. In a letter to her constituents, the Spurs fan insisted her reasons for standing down were "entirely personal and positive".

Mike Freer, Conservative

Mike Freer said he would be standing down as an MP at the next general election over fears for his personal safety. An MP for the London constituency of Finchley and Golders Green, the justice minister has faced a series of death threats and was targeted by Ali Harbi Ali - the man who stabbed Southend West MP Sir David Amess to death in 2021.

Mr Freer explained the "final straw" was an arson attack on his constituency office in December 2023.

Nick Gibb, Conservative

Nick Gibb, the MP for Bognor Regis and Littlehampton, announced in 2023 he would not be standing again in the seat he has held for 26 years.

Also stepping down as a schools minister, Mr Gibb expressed concerns that "growing cynicism and hostility" towards politicians was "damaging our ability to come together to solve problems". He also revealed he was "honoured" to instead be taking up a diplomatic role, which has yet to be announced.



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