Former Ukip MP Douglas Carswell has ruled out seeking re-election in June

Mark Sands
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Carswell quit Ukip last month and is currently sitting as an independent MP. (Source: Getty)

Former Ukip MP Douglas Carswell has ruled out running for re-election in the upcoming June vote.

Carswell was voted in as a Ukip MP in 2015, but quit the party last month, claiming that the party had succeeded in its goals in the aftermath of the Brexit referendum.

In a statement announcing his decision, Carswell said he would back the Conservatives in his former seat of Clacton.

"Having been an MP for about half my adult life, I believe that it is time for me to move on to other things. I look forward to being able to read newspapers without appearing in them," he said.

Read More: Carswell explains why he's quitting Ukip

Carswell's departure from Ukip last month sparked a fresh row with former party leader Nigel Farage, who claimed that the party's sole MP had "jumped before he was pushed".

And earlier this week former Ukip backer and Farage ally Arron Banks declared that he would seek to defeat Carswell in Clacton.

Read more: Nigel Farage accuses Douglas Carswell of trying to split Ukip

Eurosceptic Carswell has sat in parliament since 2005, and was one of two Conservative MPs to defect to Ukip in 2014.

He played a leading role in the Vote Leave campaign ahead of last summer's Brexit decision. His fellow Brexiteer and Vote Leave chair Labour's Gisela Stuart revealed yesterday that she would also leave parliament this summer.

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