2015 will be the end, in politics at least, of the iron chancellor. Gordon Brown is to stand down as an MP at the next election.
According to friends of the ex-Prime Minister, Brown is planning to focus on philanthropic work after a career in politics.
Brown believes that after his successful role in the Scottish independence referendum he can go out on a high, the Sunday Mirror reports. He is already a United Nations special envoy for global education, a role he has occupied since 2010.
The paper quotes an ally as saying:
He wants to go out on a high after effectively salvaging the campaign to keep the UK together in September. He will focus on his charity work.
Before leaving Downing Street in 2010, Brown was Prime Minister for around three years and chancellor between 1997 and 2007.
At the time of his managing the national coffers Brown won wide acclaim, but his reputation was dashed against the rocks the sank the UK's economy. It was left to Vince Cable to sum up his demise:
However, Brown won wide acclaim for his role in the better together campaign, making a prominent last-minute intervention and drawing up a list of devolution proposals accepted by the three main Westminster parties. He will, perhaps, be hoping that his role in Scotland will be a kinder political epitaph.
Brown also made some important decisions while chancellor - keeping the UK from joining the euro and therefore shielded it from the very worst of the economic crisis. He may not have seen the hurricane approaching, but then not many did.
When the storm hit, despite notable overspending, the UK's public debt was only 28 per cent of GDP, lower than that of the US, which was at 48 per cent. Because the UK wasn't in the Eurozone, it had the freedom to lower interest rates and fight back.
He made mistakes, and he may not have saved the world, but his passing is a huge moment for British politics.