History will judge Theresa May more kindly, claims former de facto deputy

Former prime minister Theresa May walks with other MPs through the Commons Members Lobby to hear the

Former prime minister Theresa May walks with other MPs through the Commons Members Lobby to hear the state opening of parliament at the Houses of Parliament. (Photo by Kirsty Wigglesworth - WPA Pool/Getty Images) - Credit: Getty Images

History will judge Theresa May 'more kindly' than some of her critics did after she quit, Theresa May's former de facto deputy Sir David Liddington has claimed.

Sir David was speaking after he received his knighthood from the Prince of Wales at a ceremony at Buckingham Palace.

He had been named by Theresa May in the resignation honours after being considered her de facto deputy after holding influential roles in the cabinet.

"I think that she had a very difficult time as prime minister, because the controversies within her and my party and between political parties ran deep on the European issue," he told the PA news agency.

"Functioning in a parliament with a tiny minority or no majority is always difficult for any prime minister, but I think that historians will judge her as prime minister more kindly perhaps than some of the immediate comment has been."

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Sir David said he is proudest of the "individual victories" he won for his constituents as he was given a knighthood.

When asked what he was most proud of over his 27-year career in parliament, Sir David said it was the "individual victories" he achieved for his constituents as a local MP.

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He said: "I know of people whose lives I was able to change for the better.

"Whether I was able to get people refunds from the tax man, or sort out housing problems, or education problems that had been dominating that man or woman's life for weeks or months.

"That does it give you a real sense of satisfaction."

Sir David added that he while he was proud of what he had achieved in government, much of his time was spent in "relationship management".

He said: "In Government, you work with others as a team, and often lots of compromise is involved and that's true even more so of diplomacy and in my years at the Foreign Office I found that out.

"Governments come, governments go, those of us who've had the privilege of serving in government are amazingly fortunate."

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