Midlothian MP David Hamilton has announced he will stand down at the general election on May 7.
In a letter to local party members, the former miner and ex-local councillor said he had made the decision “after much soul searching” and “with considerable regret.”
Mr Hamilton (64), a Labour whip who has represented Midlothian in the Commons for almost 15 years, said in his letter: “I believe that it is the right time for me to stand aside to allow the Party in Midlothian to select a younger member, with fresh ideas and the hunger to meet the challenges of this changed landscape.
“It is vital that Midlothian returns Labour representatives in both the General Election in 2015 and the Holyrood elections the following year.
“I realise that some may consider that my standing down harms that prospect, however, all my married life I have spent long periods of time away from home, either on Union or Political business. Now - at 64 - I owe it to my wife, my children and my grandchildren, who have always supported me, to give them the time that they deserve.
“I have enjoyed the role as your MP, even though it was not a position I sought or expected to get. I have been immensely proud to serve in a Labour Government that significantly changed how we live and part of the wider Labour movement since my youth, having served as Monktonhall Pit Delegate, Councillor for Woodburn and MP for Midlothian since 2001”
The local Labour Party will, according to Mr Hamilton, vote to select its preferred candidate to stand at the general election in a few weeks time.