Page last updated at 17:40 GMT, Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Labour MP Mark Fisher to step down

Labour MP Mark Fisher
Mr Fisher is standing down for health reasons

Labour MP Mark Fisher is to stand down at the next election for health reasons, the BBC has learned.

Mr Fisher said he was suffering from a condition called hydrocephalus - also known as water on the brain.

He worked in the film industry before being elected MP for Stoke Central in 1983. He was appointed as arts minister after Labour came to power in 1997.

In June last year, Mr Fisher joined a group of MPs calling for Gordon Brown to step down as prime minister.

Educated at Eton and Cambridge University, Mr Fisher is the son of a former Conservative MP, Sir Nigel Fisher.

He served as arts minister for just a year, being sacked in a 1998 cabinet reshuffle after voting against the Labour whip on the Competition Act.

At the 2005 general election, he retained the Stoke Central seat with 52.9% of the vote.

Mr Fisher has written several books about the arts and museums.

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