Richmond MP says talk of the Lords is "definitely premature"

Too soon for talk of a peerage for the former Foreign Secretary Credit: Joe Giddens/PA Wire/Press Association Images

William Hague neatly sidestepped the suggestion from a committee of MPs that he was "going down the corridor" to the House of Lords.

The former Conservative leader and Foreign Secretary, who has served as the MP for Richmond in North Yorkshire for over 25 years, is standing down at the General Election in May 2015.

As Leader of the House of Commons, William Hague was giving evidence to a committee about sharing services with the House of Lords when the question popped up.

The suggestion that he might be heading for the red benches of the Upper House came from the Democratic Unionist MP Ian Paisley, who asked if he would be "going down the corridor".

Laughing, Mr Hague replied, "Speculation about that would definitely be premature". He didn't, however, quash the idea completely.

Margaret Thatcher and Michael Howard are among the former Conservative leaders to have entered the House of Lords; Sir John Major said he would not want to become a peer straight after leaving the House of Commons.

William Hague announced in July that he would be leaving frontline politics next year.

He decribed his constituency of Richmond in North Yorkshire as "one of the greatest places on earth", adding that he wanted to return to writing books, but would continue to support the Conservative party, and campaign for international causes.