Labour MP has resigned from the House of Commons with immediate effect, sparking a by-election in the “Red Wall”.
Hartlepool Labour MP Mike Hill has stood down from the seat he has held since 2017.
A spokesperson said: “Mike Hill has resigned as Member of Parliament for Hartlepool with immediate effect.”
The Conservatives are expected to seize the moment to try and strengthen their grip on former Labour strongholds they took in the 2019 snap December election.
Mr Hill held onto his seat at the General Election with a majority of 3,595 ahead of his Tory rival Stefan Houghton after who gained 11,869 votes.
However the former Brexit Party chairman Richard Tice took more than 10,000 votes, which means the seat could swing to the Tories in the forthcoming by-election election.