AFTER 32 years as North Oxfordshire’s MP, Sir Tony Baldry has taken his final constituency surgery.
The MP will stand down at the coming General Election in May and on Saturday closed the doors on his constituency surgeries.
Sir Tony said: “It will seem strange not doing regular constituency surgeries. Being easily accessible to constituents is an important part of an MP’s life.
“As far as I am concerned, for 90,000 constituents I am their Member of Parliament, and they have an MP just like they have a GP. To be an advocate and champion of individual constituents is an important part of an MPs work.”
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Elected in 1983, the Conservative MP has seen an estimated 8,000 people over the years at surgeries where constituents can raise local issues or concerns.
Tony Baldry and wife Christine with Sir Neil Marten after his victory in 1983.
He said: “I hope that over the years I have been able to help solve many of the problems that have been put to me, although I recognise that sometimes there are problems that, for a whole number of reasons, can be somewhat insoluble.”
Linda Maxwell, from Churchill Road, Bicester was the last constituent to visit Sir Tony at his surgery in the town.
She said: “Sir Tony has known me since he became MP back in 1983. He has always been very supportive, particularly of the disabled and carers, and anything I have brought to him he has helped me with.”
The MP has helped Mrs Maxwell, 65, with a number of issues, especially regarding social services and her severely disabled 35-yearold son who is cared for at a home in Steeple Aston.
She added: “Goodness knows where my son and the rest of the family would be without Sir Tony.
He never lets you down.”
Sir Tony said: “I am sure I will miss a lot of things, the comradery of Westminster and daily contact with constituents. I am very pleased the last constituent was Mrs Maxwell as I have seen her now for nearly 30 years as she has some complex issues with her son, which I hope I have somewhat helped with.”
On Friday, Sir Tony also closed his Banbury constituency surgery at Alexandra House, Church Passage.
The closures come in anticipation of parliament being dissolved on March 30 when Sir Tony will cease to be MP for North Oxfordshire.
In the General Election on May 7, Victoria Prentis will now stand as the Conservative candidate for the seat