Former Conservative treasurer Lord Ashcroft resigns from the House of Lords

The Tory donor has re-invented himself as a pollster in recent years

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Indy Politics

Former Conservative party treasurer Lord Ashcroft has resigned from the House of Lords, he has announced.

In a statement on his personal website, the Tory peer said he did not have time to meaningfully contribute to debates in Parliament’s upper chamber because of his other activities.

He said he agreed that peers – of which there are around 800 – who did not contribute to debates had a duty to retire.

“Earlier this year Baroness D’Souza, the Lord Speaker, said that any Member of the House of Lords who can “no longer contribute meaningfully” should retire,” he wrote.

“She added that since the House has close to 800 members, 'retirement at the right time should be seen as a condition of membership of the House of Lords – a duty as well as a right'.

“I agree with the Speaker, and have concluded that my other activities do not permit me to devote the time that membership of the Lords properly requires.”


“Accordingly, I have today written to the Clerk of the Parliaments giving notice of my resignation from the House of Lords with immediate effect, pursuant to Section 1(1) of the House of Lords Reform Act 2014.”

Lord Ashcroft said he would continue his involvement in politics through his polling enterprise, Lord Ashcroft Polls, and his political publishing interests: Conservative Home, Biteback Publishing and Dods.

He tweeted: "Retired Lords keep their title and can use the facilities of the House should they wish to."

The peer provided significant sums to fund Tory campaigns in marginal seats at the 2010 election.

He has since reinvented himself as a pollster, commissioning detailed political surveys on individual constituency battles.