Leading Labour MP Iain Wright is standing down

The Hartlepool MP was chair of the Business Select Committee, which savaged Sir Philip Green over the sale of BHS

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Prominent Labour MP and Select Committee chair Iain Wright has confirmed he will not stand again in his Hartlepool seat.

Mr Wright was elected in 2004 and held the seat with a majority of 3,024 at the 2015 general election.

He said: "It has been an enormous privilege to serve my home town in Parliament. I have now been an MP for nearly a third of my life. I would like to do other things and now is a good opportunity to do so.

"I would like to thank my constituents for giving me the honour of allowing me to be their Member of Parliament since 2004."

In his role as chair of the Business Select Committee, he was a key figure in the investigation into Sir Philip Green and the sale of BHS, which eventually led to the businessman making a £363m payment into the company’s empty pension pot.

Mr Wright was an Education Minister in the Gordon Brown government, and spent five years on the opposition front bench under Ed Miliband. But like many promising MPs of the Miliband and Brown years, Wright opted for the chairmanship of the Business Select Committee rather than serve under Jeremy Corbyn.

Prior to Ian Wright, Hartlepool was represented by Lord Peter Mandelson. If Labour were to lose the seat on June 8th, the consequences for the party would be disastrous.