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AFTER 13 years as Labour MP for Morecambe and Lunesdale, Geraldine Smith is planning a well-earned rest.

Ms Smith, 48, lost out to Tory David Morris by just 866 votes at last week’s election count but said she had been “honoured” to represent the constituency.

During her time in office, Ms Smith has been involved in the redevelopment of the Midland Hotel, the Morecambe regeneration programme and urged MPs to back the demands for licensing with The Gangmasters (Licensing) Bill.

“Getting the gangmasters legislation through parliament after the Morecambe Bay tragedy was so important and gave me a real sense of achievement,” she said.

“I feel Morecambe and Lunesdale is a better place now than when I became an MP, though there is still a long way to go.

“Fifteen years ago Morecambe was really in a state of decline. There were terrible problems with drug and alcohol abuse. A lot of that has changed and I am proud to have played my part.

“Now I think I will have a rest and go walking in the Lake District. I haven’t had time for a while so I will look forward to some lovely walks in Grasmere.”

Ms Smith was educated at Morecambe High School and Lancaster and Morecambe College.

She was a Lancaster City Councillor and Royal Mail postal worker before her election to office.

As an ardent supporter of Gordon Brown Ms Smith believes history will judge him favourably.

She said: “I think Gordon Brown has played his role in seeing the economy through some very difficult times and I think history will judge him a lot better than the electorate did.”