‘Remarkable’ Theresa May will remain an MP, says constituency chairman
Richard Kellaway paid tribute to the Prime Minister, who he has known since she was first elected in 1997.
Theresa May will not resign her seat in Parliament when she leaves 10 Downing Street next month, her constituency chairman said.
The Prime Minister rang Richard Kellaway, the Conservative constituency chairman in Maidenhead, before her statement on Friday morning.
“The main concern for us as her association is that she’s not going to resign her seat,” he said.
“She will carry on as a Member of Parliament, which is welcomed by us.”
Mr Kellaway has known the Prime Minister for more than 20 years, since she was elected as Conservative MP for Maidenhead in 1997.
He often meets the Prime Minister while campaigning, and is a friend of her “wonderful” husband Philip.
He described Mrs May as a “remarkable” constituency MP who canvassed every fortnight.
Asked what the Prime Minister would do at the next general election, Mr Kellaway suggested that Mrs May could become a peer.
“I would assume she would consider what she wants to do,” he said.
“As the Prime Minister, she could go to the House of Lords if she wants to go that route and carry on, or she could stay a Member of Parliament.”
Mr Kellaway saw Mrs May and her husband Philip in the village of Bray in her constituency on Thursday afternoon, where they were canvassing for the European elections.
“She decided to come out and walk the streets, and she was her usual healthy self, leaping from house to house, talking to people,” he said.
“I would say a bit circumspect, to be honest, but you can understand that.”
He did not know that she intended to resign until Friday morning.
Mr Kellaway compared the Prime Minister’s emotional speech to a eulogy, and said she had spoken “extremely well”.
“It’s like any speech at a funeral or a wedding, even,” he said.
“You get through it. She spoke extremely well I thought, it was really just at the end when she got a bit emotional.
“It’s highly understandable that giving up a high office like that is stressful and very, very sad.”
While Mr Kellaway said there were candidates that Conservatives in Maidenhead were more likely to back in the upcoming leadership election, he would not be drawn on which he would support.