Ex-chancellor Alistair Darling retires from House of Lords

Former Edinburgh South West MP to leave parliament entirely after five years as a life peer.

Former chancellor Alistair Darling has retired from the House of Lords just five years after being appointed a life peer.

Deputy Speaker Lord Lexden thanked Lord Darling of Roulanish for his “much valued service to the House” at the start of proceedings in the chamber.

Tory former minister Baroness Neville-Rolfe said it was a “great sadness” to hear of Lord Darling’s retirement.

Lord Darling, 66, served as an Edinburgh-based Labour MP from 1987 to 2015, most recently for the Edinburgh South West constituency.

He also served as Chancellor during the financial crisis of 2008 and held a number of other Cabinet jobs before that, including Scottish secretary.

Later, he was chairman of the Better Together campaign from 2012 to 2014 during the independence referendum campaign.

Darling took part in two televised debates near the end of the campaign against then-first minister Alex Salmond.

His retirement comes amid moves to try to reduce the membership of the Lords, which currently stands at nearly 800.

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