Chris will prove tough to follow

Chris Mullin will be a tough act to follow.

After 20 years in the front line of politics, the Sunderland South MP has decided to call time on his political career.

And what a career it has been.

In between editing a newspaper, writing books and heading various parliamentary committees and campaign groups, the 60-year-old, perhaps most famously, played a pivotal role in securing the release of the Birmingham Six.

Despite receiving hugely personal criticism and vitriolic attacks from sections of the national media, Mr Mullin stuck by his guns throughout this controversial case, and he was proved 100 per cent right.

This is one MP who has never been afraid to put his head above the parapet to fight for what he believes is right and just. He is a conviction politician of the sort that in this day and age are few and far between.

Despite his national standing, he has always had the city of Sunderland and his constituents at heart – as his regular column in the Echo clearly shows.

Today he has reluctantly concluded that his useful life in Parliament is over. We will reluctantly say goodbye when he steps down in two years' time.

Fantastic racers

Well done each and every one of the 3,000 women who completed the Race for Life.

As our pictures show, great fun was had by all with a record 157,000 raised for charity. What a fantastic effort.