A minister has resigned from the Government for ‘purely personal reasons’.
The Minister of State for Regional Growth and Local Government Simon Clarke said he was standing down from his position after considering the ‘balance of his own life against the demands of office.’
The website Guido Fawkes reported that the MP Luke Hall will replace Mr Clarke, while minister Kelly Tolhurst moves from the Department of Transport to the Local Government Department, with Robert Courts being appointed a minister at Transport.
In his letter to the Prime Minister, the MP for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland Mr Clarke said: ‘My decision has been prompted by purely personal reasons; like all of us, I have to balance my own life against the demands of the office. I would not have made this decision unless I believed it was of the utmost importance.’
He did not elaborate on the specific personal reasons.
The letter continued by praising Boris Johnson, who he said he admired ‘very deeply’.
Mr Clarke added: ‘I hope that in time, I might have the opportunity to serve in your Government again.
‘Whatever the future holds, you can be assured of my deepest loyalty, affection and friendship from the backbenches.’
In response to him publishing the letter, Kate Hollern, Labour’s Shadow Minister for Local Government, tweeted: ‘Simon, we may not have always agreed with each other but I appreciate the collaborative spirit that you’ve approached the concerns I have raised with you in the not so distant past.
‘I wish you and your family all the best.’
The political commentator Tom Newton-Dunn tweeted: ‘Friends of Simon Clarke say he is stepping back for a bit to deal with some family matters, and hopes one day to return to the frontbench.’
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