- 10 updates
Jamie Reed will step down as MP for Copeland when he takes up his new position at Sellafield on February 1st 2017. Mr Reed is taking on the role of Head of Development and Community Relations, where he will report directly to Chief Executive Paul Foster.
But when can we expect a by-election? Below is the timetable of events when an MP resigns.
Reasons for by-elections:
A seat becomes vacant during the lifetime of a Parliament either when an MP resigns from Parliament, for example to take up a job which by law cannot be done by an MP, or because an MP has died. The law also allows a seat to be declared vacant because of a Member's bankruptcy, mental illness or conviction for a serious criminal offence.
A by-election does not automatically take place if an MP changes political party.
Until a new MP is elected, constituency matters are handled by an MP of the same party in a neighbouring constituency.
'Moving the Writ'
Traditionally the Chief Whip of the political party whose MP held the vacant seat will begin the procedure for a by-election. This is known as 'moving the Writ' and takes the form of a motion in the House of Commons.
A new Writ is moved within three months of the vacancy occurring. There have been a few instances of seats remaining vacant longer than six months before a by-election was called. Seats have also been left vacant towards the end of a Parliament to be filled at the general election.
If there are several vacant seats then a number of by-elections can take place on the same day.
The Conservative MP for Carlisle, John Stevenson, says he hopes that Jamie Reed's replacement will be somebody who is pro-nuclear.
Mr Stevenson said he was sorry to hear of Jamie's resignation after working together on many cross-party campaigns.
He said that it's important for the new Copeland MP to understand the importance of Sellafield and NuGen.
South Lakes MP Tim Farron, has told ITV Border he's surprised that Jamie Reed is stepping down as an MP.
The Leader of the Liberal Democrats said he's also disappointed, because he's enjoyed working with Mr Reed over the years, but looks forward to working with him in his new role.
The Leader of the Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn MP, has given his reaction to Jamie Reed's resignation.
In a statement he said he was sorry to hear the Copeland MP was standing down and wished him all the best for the future.
The Conservative Party Chairman, Patrick McLoughlin, says the party is sorry to see Jamie Reed leaving Parliament.
The Copeland MP announced his resignation in a letter to Jeremy Corbyn on Wednesday afternoon.
Below is the full letter from Jamie Reed to Jeremy Corbyn, as he announced his resignation.
People have been sharing their thoughts on social media on the announcement that Copeland MP Jamie Reed is resigning.
Sellafield have released a statement saying Jamie Reed was an "outstanding candidate" during the recruitment process.
The nuclear giants confirmed he will be taking up the role of Head of Development and Community Relations.
Mr Reed was successful following a 'rigourous' recruitment process, and will begin his new post on 1st February 2017.
In his letter of resignation, Copeland MP Jamie Reed says leaving Parliament is the hardest decision of his life.
He thanked everyone who has supported and advised him, and marked his achievements at the West Cumberland Hospital as his proudest achievements.
Latest ITV News reports
Jamie Reed insists his decision to step down as Copeland MP was not down to Jeremy Corbyn. Speculation into his replacement is now underway.