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Speaker’s Statement

Volume 738: debated on Thursday 26 October 2023

Before we proceed to the next item of business, I would like to acknowledge that this is the last working day in the Chamber of Jim Davey, the Speaker’s Trainbearer. Before he moves on to an exciting new role within the House, I want to express my personal thanks, and those of honourable colleagues and the whole of the Speaker’s Office, to Jim, who has served as Trainbearer for the last 12 years. When I became Speaker, he made that transition into the role so much easier with his encyclopaedic knowledge of procedural matters in the Chamber and his authoritative recollection of events that have taken place here during his time in office.

In 2013, a political sketchwriter commented:

“The trainbearer will, I hope, forgive me if I report that he carries his page-boy uniform, complete with rosette…with aplomb.”

But of course, nothing fazes Jim. In his 12 years, he has seen a lot and still retained that aplomb. Of course, we all thought that Quentin Letts just did it for Members, but Jim has also had the privilege of Mr Letts’s evaluation of his proceedings.

I am sure that the whole House will join me in wishing Jim well in his next job as Senior Clerk in the Table Office. I know that many Members rely on his wise counsel, so I am pleased that we will retain his knowledge and experience, and that they will be put to good use just along the Corridor. The good news for me is that at least I do not have far to go for the benefit of that knowledge this time. So, Jim, can we wish you well and thank you for everything you have done? It has been amazing. With aplomb, thank you again.