A TEESSIDE MP last night announced he will stand down at the next General Election.

Alex Cunningham has represented Stockton North with the Labour Party since 2010 during a 30 year career in public life.

Originally from Scotland, Mr Cunningham grew up in Darlington and trained as a newspaper journalist in the town.

The married father-of-two worked on the Darlington and Stockton Times and Hartlepool Mail before joining Radio Tees and then becoming a press officer for British Gas, and later Transco.

Mr Cunningham was previously a member of Cleveland County Council and Stockton Borough Council prior to his election to parliament.

He said: “It has been the privilege of my life to represent the people of Stockton North as the Labour Member of Parliament for nearly 12 years – and I am grateful for the support from my friends across my community and the Party throughout that time.

“After more than 30 years in public life as first a local councillor, I’ve decided the next general election would be the right time for me to retire and hopefully do many of the other things I’ve never been able to fit in.

“Whilst I regret I was never given the opportunity to serve in a Labour Government, I will very much treasure my roles in Parliament, be that as a Shadow Minister in several guises, a champion for industry or as an advocate for the people of our area trying hard to represent them and address their individual problems.

“The service my team has provided over the years has been outstanding, and I am very proud of them knowing they have had to tackle some of the most difficult and often traumatic cases often providing not just action but genuine care for the people I represent. Without them, I couldn’t have done my job.

“It does however look as though I won’t be retiring anytime soon given the polls and rest assured, I will continue with the same energy and enthusiasm I always show doing the best job in the world.”