Tory councillors in Matt Hancock's Suffolk constituency divided over jungle appearance

Matt Hancock in the I'm a Celebrity jungle.
Credit: ITV Studios
Matt Hancock hit the headlines with his jungle appearance. Credit: ITV

Conservative councillors in Matt Hancock’s West Suffolk constituency have voiced split views over his stint in the Australian jungle - with some claiming he has "no honour" and others dismissing the controversy as "a storm in a teacup".

The former health secretary sparked an angry reaction from some of his constituents after flying down under to take part in ITV's I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here!

He eventually finished the show in third place.

Reacting to his appearance in the jungle, Tory councillor Margaret Marks, who represents Haverhill West ward on West Suffolk Council, said there was initially a "harsh" reaction from constituents but this has softened.

"Originally when he went in it was pretty harsh, and to be honest I feel that has turned around so massively," she said.

"I found that people who were quite combative about it, some are ambivalent, but others are actually very positive and they're saying we've seen a completely different side of him."

She said: "Hopefully he'll get the whip back. I don't really have a problem with what he's done, to be honest."

"I think this whole thing's been a storm in a teacup," she added.

Mr Hancock finished third on the hit ITV show. Credit: ITV

Tory councillor Ian Houlder, who represents Barrow ward on West Suffolk Council, said that Newmarket Town Council had asked Mr Hancock to step down as MP, and that Mr Hancock said he would not.

"He's got absolutely no honour as far as the residents of West Suffolk are concerned," said Mr Houlder.

"He probably realises the game is up but there's no urgency for him personally to give up his cushy job as an MP not representing anybody as an independent and lasting out until the next election which is a couple of years away.

"He can get that salary and expenses for a couple of years while he makes alternative arrangements for his future.

"I dare say various offers will be swilling around because of his high profile."

Want a quick and expert briefing on the biggest news stories? Listen to our latest podcasts to find out What You Need To Know