Sir Richard Shepherd, MP for Aldridge Brownhills since 1979, is the latest to announce that he intends to stand down at the 2015 General Election.

A former Backbencher of the Year and Parliamentarian of the Year, Sir Richard is also the last of those who lost the whip over Maastricht to leave the Commons. As well as his euroscepticism, he is a long-standing champion of transparency, campaigning to change the law to protect those who blow the whistle in the public interest.

Sir Richard will be 72 next year, so he may just feel the time has come to retire. However, there are still a number of MPs older than him – David Winnick is 81 and apparently intends to contest his seat again next year.

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