Market Rasen’s long-serving MP has announced he intends to stand for Speaker of the House of Commons when the position becomes available.
MP Sir Edward Leigh made the announcement on his Twitter page saying: “When a vacancy occurs I intend to stand for the office of Speaker.
“I would be a traditional speaker who does not speak much.
“Like a judge I would, by my conduct and dress, submerge my personality into the office.
“I would prioritise serious debate.
“This may mean time limits of not less than five minutes in debates. Urgent questions should be held when needed: when there is something urgent and important to be discussed.
“I oppose the costly, unnecessary, and environmentally unsound demolition of Richmond House and the creation of a replica chamber.
“When a decant becomes necessary, it should be as short as possible into a temporary chamber. [A plan is being developed to relocate MPs to a temporary debating chamber Richmond House in Whitehall while the Palace of Westminster undergoes refurbishment - is understood this could involve the demolition of the majority of Grade II-listed Richmond House].
“I would be rigidly impartial.
“I oppose any move against the present Speaker who must be allowed to retire at a time of his choosing.
“In order to protect the office of Speaker, this issue must not be politicised.”
Sir Edward’s announcement received 1,131 ‘likes’ from his followers.
Conservative Sir Edward has served as an MP since 1983 and was knighted in the Queen’s 2013 Birthday Honours for ‘public and political service’.
Back in January, it was announced Sir Edward had been appointed to the prestigious Queen’s Privy Council - a formal body of advisers to the Queen made up of mainly senior politicians.
Sir Edward said he was ‘humbled’ by the appointment and believed the honour was tied to his years of work with the National Audit Office and the Controller and Auditor General, after several years serving as chairman of the Public Accounts Committee and the Public Accounts Commission.
John Bercow is the current Speaker of the House, having been elected to office in June 2009.