In February, I announced to the House that Sir John Benger, the current Clerk of the House and Head of the House of Commons service, will be leaving Parliament in the autumn to take up the role of Master of St Catherine’s College, Cambridge. I am pleased to announce that, following a competitive recruitment process, Tom Goldsmith, the current Principal Clerk of the Table Office, has been appointed as the 52nd Clerk of the House of Commons, following the approval of His Majesty the King. I am sure that you will join me in congratulating Tom, who has many outstanding qualities to bring to this important role and will be a distinguished successor to Sir John Benger.
Arrangements will be made for a comprehensive handover period before Tom formally takes up the role in October. Until then, Sir John will continue to work hard and diligently as Clerk of the House—he has a lot of work to do! There will also be an opportunity before then for colleagues to recognise more formally Sir John’s historic contribution to the House and to wish him all the very best in the future.