Race to succeed shamed MP under way
Labour has fired the starting gun for the race to succeed disgraced MP Eric Illsley, who has been convicted of fiddling his expenses.
The party triggered the by-election in his Barnsley Central seat, expected to be on March 3, after it was confirmed that he had resigned as an MP.
The Treasury confirmed that he had been granted the ceremonial post of Crown Steward and Bailiff of the three Chiltern Hundreds of Stoke, Desborough and Burnham - the traditional way of resigning from Parliament.
Labour chief whip Rosie Winterton officially moved the writ in the Commons to trigger the contest.