By Political Reporter
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has just told MPs that Southend-on-Sea will be given city status – a long-running campaign of Sir David Amess – as he led tributes to the killed MP.
Mr Johnson remembered Sir David as kind and generous, and said the world needs more people like him.
And he also remembered the Southend West MP’s enduring efforts to secure city status for his constituency, which were a frequent feature of his interventions in the Commons.
“He never once witnessed any achievement by any resident of Southend that could not, somehow, be cited in his bid to secure city status for that distinguished town,” Mr Johnson said.
“Highlights of that bulging folder included a world record for playing most triangles being played at once; a group of stilt-walkers travelling non-stop from the Essex coast to Downing Street; and a visiting foreign dignitary allegedly flouting protocol by saying he liked Southend more than Cleethorpes.
“A compelling case, and as it is only a short time since Sir David last put that case to me in this chamber, I am happy to announce that Her Majesty has agreed that Southend will be accorded the city status it so clearly deserves.”
He added: “This country needs people like Sir David, this House needs people like Sir David, our politics needs people like Sir David.
“Dedicated, passionate, firm in his beliefs but never anything less than respectful for those who thought differently.”
Prior to the tributes from MPs, a minute’s silence was held in honour of Sir David in both the House of Commons and House of Lords.