Which Tory MPs have resigned? As record number of Conservatives step down

The General Election is set for July 4  (PA Wire)
The General Election is set for July 4 (PA Wire)

A record number of Conservative ministers have election.  At least 77 ministers have publicly revealed they’re not seeking re-election, with many fearing a Tory defeat on July 4.

Some made these announcements months ago, while others, such as Andrea Leadsom and Michael Gove confirmed their departures just this week.

Despite dismal local election results and even worse polling rates, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak appeared optimistic about his party’s chances even as many loyal members cut their ties.

The 77 Conservatives are joined by 28 Labour MPs, nine SNP members and three Sinn Fein politicians quitting or retiring ahead of this summer’s election.

Mr Sunak’s party has faced a number of high-profile resignations over the last few years as politicians grappled with in-fighting and political controversies. Throughout his time at the helm of the Conservatives, Mr Sunak has also faced repeated calls for a general election, which he had rejected until recently. 

With campaigning for the general election well underway, here are some of the top Conservatives preparing to clear out their desks in May — alongside some who left even earlier.

Michael Gove

Michael Gove will not stand at the upcoming General Election (Lucy North/PA) (PA Wire)
Michael Gove will not stand at the upcoming General Election (Lucy North/PA) (PA Wire)

Michael Gove, a Brexit campaigner and a close ally of Mr Sunak is one of the most

Mr Gove has been in politics since 2005, however, he may have been at risk of losing his Surrey Heath seat to the Lib Dems in July.

In his resignation statement, he called on a new generation to lead, while maintaining he was proud of his influence in the Vote Leave campaign.

"The chance to serve is wonderful. but there comes a time when you know that it is time to leave. That a new generation should lead," he said.

Mr Gove added: "I am proud to have led the Vote Leave campaign alongside Boris Johnson and Gisela Stuart - which secured the largest mandate in modern British history for a vote to leave the European Union and take back control of our political destiny.”

Theresa May

Former Prime Minister Theresa May (Hannah McKay /PA) (PA Archive)
Former Prime Minister Theresa May (Hannah McKay /PA) (PA Archive)

In March 2024, Theresa May confirmed she wouldn’t be seeking re-election as the MP for Maidenhead in the upcoming election.

This week, she had the chance to say farewell to the government and reflect on the time she served as the party’s leader.

During her speech in the commons, Ms May urged her remaining colleagues to fight for democracy over personal gain.

She said: “I ask only that they remember the importance of our democracy, that they can be a voice for the voiceless and that their job here is not to advance themselves but to serve the people who elected them.”

Andrea Leadsom

Conservative minister Dame Andrea Leadsom said trade friction with the EU was the ‘price’ the UK was paying for being ‘sovereign again’ (Stefan Rousseau/PA) (PA Archive)
Conservative minister Dame Andrea Leadsom said trade friction with the EU was the ‘price’ the UK was paying for being ‘sovereign again’ (Stefan Rousseau/PA) (PA Archive)

The former leader of the House of Commons confirmed that she won’t be seeking re-election but will continue to support the Conservative party. In her resignation letter, she talked about her support for Brexit and other moments from her 14-year political career.

Andrea Leadsom was previously in the running for PM but eventually withdrew from the leadership race that eventually elected Theresa May.

While she didn’t give a reason for her departure, Ms Leadsom maintained that the Tories were best aligned with her values and had her support in the future.

"I will continue to support the Conservative Party through this general election and in the future as the party best aligned with the ideals and values of the people of the United Kingdom," she said in the letter.

Kwasi Kwarteng


Kwasi Kwarteng’s legacy will likely always be his role in Lizz Truss’ shocking mini-budget, which threw the UK economy into a meltdown.

Earlier this year, he confirmed he was stepping down at the next general election as the MP for Spelthorne, in Surrey,

He wrote at the time: “It has been an honour to serve the residents of Spelthorne since 2010, and I shall continue to do so for the remainder of my time in Parliament.”

Matt Hancock

Matt Hancock also gave his final speech in the Commons this week, saying he ‘tried his hardest’ but would be departing this year.

Mr Hancock had his whip removed over a year ago after appearing as a contestant on I’m A Celebrity. However, it seems that he was forgiven by the Tories just before his departure, writing on social media: “I’m proud to leave Parliament as a Conservative MP after two decades serving my country in opposition and in government.”

In his speech this week, he said: “It is impossible to win unless you truly want to serve your country. I believe that everybody comes into this place wanting to make their country a better place.

“I’ve tried my hardest to do that for 14 years, to reach out, to try to do things differently and to try to embrace the future. It’s been an honour and a privilege and I thank you.”

Robert Jenrick

Robert Jenrick resigned as immigration minister in December 2023 (PA Wire)
Robert Jenrick resigned as immigration minister in December 2023 (PA Wire)

Robert Jenrick resigned as immigration minister in December 2023 amid "strong disagreements" with the Government over the Rwanda policy.

The MP for Newark stated that he did not think Mr Sunak's emergency legislation returning to the controversial asylum plan would "end the merry-go-round of legal challenges" that have so far delayed the scheme.

Mr Sunak described the resignation as "disappointing". He said he feared the minister's departure was "based on a fundamental misunderstanding of the situation", and that it was "our experience that gives us confidence that this will work".

Boris Johnson

Boris Johnson resigned as an MP in June 2023 (Jonathan Brady / PA Wire)
Boris Johnson resigned as an MP in June 2023 (Jonathan Brady / PA Wire)

The former prime minister said in June 2023 that the Privileges Committee’s investigation over the Partygate report was “making it clear, much to my amazement, that they are determined to use the proceedings against me to drive me out of Parliament”.

He added: “I am very sorry to leave my wonderful constituency. It has been a huge honour to serve them, both as mayor and MP.”

Nadine Dorries

Nadine Dorries’ resignation was sealed in August 2023 (Kirsty O’Connor / PA)
Nadine Dorries’ resignation was sealed in August 2023 (Kirsty O’Connor / PA)

Nadine Dorries announced her intention to resign in June 2023, although it didn't officially go through until August 26, 2023.

The former culture secretary then triggered a by-election in her Mid Bedfordshire constituency.

Her resignation came before the publication of Mr Johnson’s resignation honours list. Ms Dorries missed out on this after expecting to be included.

She explained her reason for stepping down on TalkTV, citing her workload. Ms Dorries said she had struggled to manage her MP duties while writing her Daily Mail column and presenting her TalkTV show.

Nigel Adams

Nigel Adams resigned in June 2023 (PA)
Nigel Adams resigned in June 2023 (PA)

Nigel Adams was the third MP to resign within three days in June, triggering a by-election in his Selby and Ainsty constituency.

Mr Adams announced his resignation on X, formerly Twitter, saying: “Yesterday, Selby Conservatives selected an excellent new parliamentary candidate.

“I’ve today informed the chief whip that I will be standing down as a Member of Parliament with immediate effect.

“It has been an honour to represent the area where I was raised (and) educated.”

Mr Adams was also expected to be named in Mr Johnson’s resignation honours list but was not included like Ms Dorries.

Here is the list of Tory MPs standing down after the next general election.

Full list of this year’s Tory resignations

Adam Afriyie, Windsor (MP since 2005; majority 20,079)

Nickie Aiken, Cities of London & Westminster (MP since 2019; majority 3,953)

Stuart Andrew, Pudsey (MP since 2010; majority 3,517)

Richard Bacon, South Norfolk (MP since 2001; majority 21,275)

John Baron, Basildon & Billericay (MP since 2001; majority 20,412)

Sir Paul Beresford, Mole Valley (MP since 1997; majority 12,041)

Sir Graham Brady, Altrincham & Sale West (MP since 1997; majority 6,139)

Steve Brine, Winchester (MP since 2010; majority 985)

Lisa Cameron, East Kilbride, Strathaven & Lesmahagow (elected as SNP MP in 2015; majority 13,322; defected to Conservatives in 2023)

Andy Carter, Warrington South (MP since 2019; majority 2,010)

Sir Bill Cash, Stone (previously MP for Stafford 1984-97, then Stone since 1997; majority 19,945)

Jo Churchill, Bury St Edmunds (MP since 2015; majority 24,988)

Greg Clark, Tunbridge Wells (MP since 2005; majority 14,645)

Chris Clarkson, Heywood & Middleton (MP since 2019; majority 663)

Dame Tracey Crouch, Chatham & Aylesford (MP since 2010; majority 18,540)

Dehenna Davison, Bishop Auckland (MP since 2019; majority 7,962)

Jonathan Djanogly, Huntingdon (MP since 2001; majority 19,383)

Sir James Duddridge, Rochford & Southend East (MP since 2005; majority 12,286)

Philip Dunne, Ludlow (MP since 2005; majority 23,648)

Sir Michael Ellis, Northampton North (MP since 2010; majority 5,507)

George Eustice, Camborne & Redruth (MP since 2010; majority 8,700)

Sir David Evennett, Bexleyheath & Crayford (MP since 2005; majority 13,103)

Mike Freer, Finchley & Golders Green (MP since 2010; majority 6,562)

Nick Gibb, Bognor Regis & Littlehampton (MP since 1997; majority 22,503)

Jo Gideon, Stoke-on-Trent Central (MP since 2019; majority 670)

Sir Robert Goodwill, Scarborough & Whitby (MP since 2005; majority 10,270)

Michael Gove, Surrey Heath (MP since 2005; majority 18,349)

Chris Grayling, Epsom & Ewell (MP since 2001; majority 17,873)

James Grundy, Leigh (MP since 2019; majority 1,965)

Robert Halfon, Harlow (MP since 2010; majority 14,063)

Stephen Hammond, Wimbledon (MP since 2005; majority 628)

Matt Hancock, West Suffolk (MP since 2010; majority 23,194)

Trudy Harrison, Copeland (MP since 2017; majority 5,842)

Sir Oliver Heald, North East Hertfordshire (MP since 1992; majority 18,189)

James Heappey, Wells (MP since 2015; majority 9,991)

Chris Heaton-Harris, Daventry (MP since 2010; majority 26,080)

Gordon Henderson, Sittingbourne & Sheppey (MP since 2010; majority 24,479)

John Howell, Henley (MP since 2008; majority 14,053)

Alister Jack, Dumfries & Galloway (MP since 2017; majority 1,805)

Sir Sajid Javid, Bromsgrove (MP since 2010; majority 23,106)

David Jones, Clwyd West (MP since 2005; majority 6,747)

Sir Greg Knight, East Yorkshire (previously MP for Derby North 1983-97, then East Yorkshire since 2001; majority 22,787)

Kwasi Kwarteng, Spelthorne (MP since 2010; majority 18,393)

Dame Eleanor Laing, Epping Forest (MP since 1997; majority 22,173)

Pauline Latham, Mid Derbyshire (MP since 2010; majority 15,385)

Dame Andrea Leadsom, South Northamptonshire (MP since 2010, majority 27,761)

Sir Brandon Lewis, Great Yarmouth (MP since 2010; majority 17,663)

Tim Loughton, East Worthing & Shoreham (MP since 1997; majority 7,474)

Craig Mackinlay, South Thanet (MP since 2015; majority 10,587)

Theresa May, Maidenhead (MP since 1997; majority 18,846)

Stephen McPartland, Stevenage (MP since 2010; majority 8,562)

Huw Merriman, Bexhill & Battle (MP since 2015; majority 26,059)

Kieran Mullan, Crewe & Nantwich (MP since 2019; majority 8,508)

Sir Bob Neill, Bromley & Chislehurst (MP since 2006; majority 10,891)

Matthew Offord, Hendon (MP since 2010; majority 4,230)

Mark Pawsey, Rugby (MP since 2010; majority 13,447)

Sir Mike Penning, Hemel Hempstead (MP since 2005; majority 14,563)

Andrew Percy, Brigg & Goole (MP since 2010; majority 21,941)

Will Quince, Colchester (MP since 2015; majority 9,423)

Dominic Raab, Esher & Walton (MP since 2010; majority 2,743)

Sir John Redwood, Wokingham (MP since 1987; majority 7,383)

Nicola Richards, West Bromwich East (MP since 2019; majority 1,593)

Douglas Ross, Moray (MP since 2017; majority 513)

Paul Scully, Sutton & Cheam (MP since 2015; majority 8,351)

Sir Alok Sharma, Reading West (MP since 2010; majority 4,117)

Chloe Smith, Norwich North (MP since 2009; majority 4,738)

Henry Smith, Crawley (MP since 2010; majority 8,360)

Royston Smith, Southampton Itchen (MP since 2015; majority 4,498)

Bob Stewart, Beckenham (MP since 2010; majority 14,258)

Sir Gary Streeter, Devon South West (previously MP for Plymouth Sutton 1992-97, then Devon South West since 1997; majority 21,430)

Edward Timpson, Eddisbury (previously MP for Crewe & Nantwich 2008-2017, then Eddisbury since 2019; majority 18,443)

Sir Charles Walker, Broxbourne (MP since 2005; majority 19,807)

Robin Walker, Worcester (MP since 2010; majority 6,758)

Ben Wallace, Wyre & Preston North (previously MP for Lancaster & Wyre 2005-10, then Wyre & Preston North since 2010; majority 16,781)

Jamie Wallis, Bridgend (MP since 2019; majority 1,157)

Craig Whittaker, Calder Valley (MP since 2010; majority 5,774)

Nadhim Zahawi, Stratford-on-Avon (MP since 2010; majority 19,972)