Coventry & Warwickshire

Bob Ainsworth rules himself out of shadow cabinet role

Former Defence Secretary Bob Ainsworth
Image caption Mr Ainsworth was the former defence secretary

Former defence secretary Bob Ainsworth has ruled himself out of a role in the shadow cabinet.

Mr Ainsworth, Labour MP for Coventry North East, has said he wants to concentrate on his duties for the city and constituents.

He spent 15 years on the front bench holding various ministerial posts.

But, he has said that once the Labour leadership election is resolved next month then he would prefer to remain on the back benches.

He said he had not had the freedom to raise the issues that he would have raised as an individual in the House of Commons.

"Of course, I have been part of a team.

"I have done some jobs that I am grateful to have had the opportunity to do," he said.

"But, there are a new set of Labour MPs coming in now and it is great to give them a chance, to get behind them and to support them."

Mr Ainsworth became minister for the armed forces in 2007, a position given to him by the then Prime Minister Gordon Brown. In 2009 he became the secretary of state for defence.

Other roles he held include treasurer of the household and the deputy chief whip of the House of Commons.

He has been an MP for Coventry for 18 years.

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