Kettering MP forced to resign from police special constable role

Kettering MP Philip Hollobone has been forced to quit as a special constable with British Transport Police

Kettering MP Philip Hollobone has been forced to quit as a special constable with British Transport Police

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Kettering’s MP has been forced to quit as a police special constable.

Philip Hollobone is one of two MPs to have been asked by British Transport Police (BTP) to step down.

Conservative Mr Hollobone quit as a special constable with the force, which manages the railway system in England, Scotland and Wales, on Monday, January 5, after six years’ service.

Fellow Tory David Davies, MP for Monmouth, has also been told to resign.

BTP, which has thanked Mr Hollobone and Mr Davies, said it was following guidelines saying that serving officers should not play an active political role.

Mr Hollobone told the Northants Telegraph: “It’s been a huge privilege to serve for six years as a special constable.

“I have had a really valuable insight into front-line policing at the level of police officers on the beat interacting with the public and I am able to use that experience in the chamber of the House of Commons to better hold the Government to account on policing matters.

“I would like to have continued as a special constable but there will be new challenges.”

Wiltshire MP Dr Andrew Murrison, a Royal Navy reservist, said the decision was wrong.

On Twitter, he wrote: “Two MPs told can’t stay as Special PCs. But we need ‘real’, connected people as MPs, not geeks, hacks and anoraks.”

A spokesman for BTP said: “As a force we are committed to adhering to the Code of Ethics as set down by the College of Policing.

“It states that ‘police officers must not take any active part in politics’. Unfortunately this means we have had to take the difficult step of asking two of our special constables, who are also members of Parliament, to step down from their roles with BTP.

“This decision is in no way a reflection of the valuable role they have both played in helping keep the travelling public safe and secure and we would like to thank them for their many hours of unpaid service.”

Read more Kettering news here.