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By Peter Hoskin
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JEIt has just
been announced that the Conservative Party’s Jonathan Evans — who won the seat
of Cardiff North in 2010, after being the MP for Brecon and Radnorshire between
1992 and 1997 — is to stand down at the next election. We at ConservativeHome
wish him all the best for the future. Here is the statement he made to his
local constituency association:

“It is now 40 years since I was first selected at the age
of 22 as a Conservative parliamentary candidate against the late Michael Foot.
Twenty one years ago I was first elected to the House of Commons and I have
altogether fought nine parliamentary election campaigns at Westminster and
European elections since 1974. By the time of the next election in 2015 I will
have served for two decades in the House of Commons and in the European
Parliament in Brussels.

I have been honoured by the support I have received from
voters in Cardiff North, Brecon & Radnor and throughout Wales during the
course of my political career. This outstanding support has given me the
opportunity to serve in Parliament, in government, as Leader of the
Conservatives in Europe, and as Head of the European Parliament’s relations
with the United States Congress.

It is a difficult decision to stand down from public
life, but with the introduction of fixed term parliaments, we now know that the
next Parliamentary term is likely to run until 2020, and that is a commitment
which is I believe is too lengthy for me to make.

I want to assure my constituents that I will continue to
work hard for them through to the next General Election in 2015.”

And here is the tribute paid to him by David Jones,
Secretary of State for Wales:

“Jonathan Evans has been a dedicated Member of Parliament
to his constituency of Cardiff North and I know that as the Welsh MP with the
highest parliamentary attendance he will continue to serve them up until the
general election in 2015.

He has had a fantastic career serving in both the House
of Commons and the European Parliament, as well as being a minister in the DTI,
Lord Chancellor’s Department and the then Welsh Office. I understand his
reasons for standing down in 2015 and wish him well with all his future
endeavours."

And by the Chairman of the Welsh Conservative Party, Cllr Jeff
James:

"Jonathan has devoted much of his adult life to public
service and has spent a great deal of this time representing the people of
Wales as an MP, MEP and Government Minister. Jonathan’s retirement at the next
election will be a loss to the world of politics, and whilst I and many others
will be disappointed that Jonathan will not be a candidate for our Party at the
General Election in 2015, I fully appreciate that he considers that this is the
right time for him to step down from the House of Commons.

As Chairman of the Welsh Conservative Party I would like
to thank Jonathan on behalf of all our members for his years of service and
commitment to the Party.”

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