Horsham MP to step down at election

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FRANCIS Maude has announced he is stepping down as Horsham MP.

Mr Maude made the announcement on Sunday (Feburary 1) that he would not be seeking re-election for the constituency which covers Billingshurst, at the general election in May after almost 18 years as the area’s MP.

In a letter to the chairman of the Horsham Conservative Association he said he believed ‘now is the right time to make way for a younger candidate to carry the Conservative flag in Horsham’.

According to a Sunday Times report Mr Maude could be one of many politicians appointed to the House of Lords later this year, as the heads of the three main political parties are drawing up the dissolution honours list for the end of the current parliament.

Mr Maude entered the Commons in 1983 as MP for North Warwickshire and served as a minister under Margaret Thatcher and John Major, before losing his seat in 1992. He returned in 1997.