David Warburton leaves parliament

Yesterday (19 June) David Warburton was officially appointed to “the Manor of Northstead in the County of York.” The Manor of Northstead is technically a paid office of the Crown. Appointment to the Manor, being incompatible with being an MP is a method by which an MP can resign. Technically no MP can resign once elected. However by taking a paid (it isn;t really) position from the Crown, he/she is disqualified from sitting as an MP.

So effective yesterday, Mr Warburton is no longer MP for Somerton & Frome.

The language is rather beautiful if archaic. Quoting directly from Hansard: “Ordered that the Speaker do Issue his Warrant to the Clerk of the Crown to make a new writ for the electing of a Member to serve in this present parliament for the County Constituency of Somerton and Frome in the room of David Warburton who since his election to the said County Constituency has been appointed to the Office of Steward and Bailiff of His Majesty’s Manor of Northstead in the County of York.”

During the next 24 hours we expect confirmation of the date of the by-election. It has to be between 21 and 27 working days from the issue of the writ. Assuming the election will be, as is traditional, on a Thursday that should make 20 July the likely candidate.

Two have already been set for 20 July and it is expected that Somerton & Frome will be put forward for the same date.


  • I would agree, on behalf of Mr Warburton’s constituents, is that waiting 15 months for a “no result” ie resignation is unacceptable. Shows either archaic methods to investigate miscreants or so many (mainly) Tory MPs on the serious naughty step. In this case a serious number of contributory factors for being an outcast of the Tory party. Initial media stories in Times and Mail? So no smoke without fire – we have been left to ponder for 15 months!

    • Disgraceful behaviour from start to finish. His recent tell-all in the Mail had several miss-truths (the lady with the oven tray his cocaine is pictured on is not the “Russian speaker” as he says, for example). I wonder how much of that drivel was to cover up something to his constituents and how much was to provide mitigating circumstances to his wife.

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