Two more Conservative MPs have announced that they will not stand at the next general election.
Dehenna Davison, 29, a minister on the rise, is considered one of the rising stars of the Tory party, so the news of her intention to step aside will come as a surprise.
“Throughout my adult life I have dedicated the vast majority of my time to politics and helping to make people’s lives better,” the MP for Bishop Auckland said in a statement to the Northern Echo.
“But to be honest, it’s meant I haven’t had anything like a normal life for a 20-year-old.”
Ms Davison’s announcement came shortly after Sir Gary Streeter said he would not stand again in the South West Devon constituency, which he has held comfortably since its conception in 1997.
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In his resignation statement, the former frontbencher said he believes Rishi Sunak, the prime minister, “will recover strongly from recent challenges”.
Two others, William Wragg, 34, and Chloe Smith, 40, confirmed earlier this week that they would also not contest their seats.
The relatively young age of Tories who have announced they will stand aside will raise concerns about a potential loss of young talent in the party.
Ms Davison had been brought into the government by former prime minister Liz Truss and was retained in the role when Rishi Sunak took over, with her prospects in the party seemingly high.
She is also a prominent figure in the so-called red wall of former Labor strongholds that Boris Johnson managed to capture for the Tories in the last general election.
In 2019, Ms Davison won Bishop Auckland with a majority of 7,962 – despite the constituency always voting Labor since 1935.
After becoming the eighth Tory MP to say they will not stand for re-election, the party is braced for a growing exodus as opinion polls suggest the Conservatives face an almighty challenge to regain their popularity.
In his announcement, Sir Gary said a local replacement in the constituency must be elected “to give us the best chance of keeping this seat”, hinting at some doubts.
He won the seat by 21,430 votes over second-placed Labor in the 2019 general election.
“It has been an honor and a privilege to represent this constituency for over 30 years, but the time has come for me to step down and let a younger person take over,” the 67-year-old said.