And so we say a fond farewell to Faisal Rashid, our MP in Warrington South for the briefest of times.

Yes, just two years in Parliament before the voting public decided he wasn’t the man for them in the General Election, instead opting to send Tory Andy Carter to Westminster.

And I can’t say I’m surprised, despite the People’s Vote campaign and other pro-Remain websites naming Faisal as the one to back.

It’s only a couple of weeks ago I (sort of) predicted what would happen in Warrington South. In November, I wrote: Think back to the general election of 2010 and ‘Cleggmania’.

But what happened in Warrington South that year? It very much looks like the Lib Dems split the vote with David Mowat of the Conservatives coming through to take the seat by just 1,553 votes.

Will we witness history repeating itself this year, I wonder?

And yes, history repeated itself. The Green Party elected not to stand a candidate in Warrington South as part of a ‘Remain Alliance’ and fair play to LibDem Ryan Bate, he managed to pick up a significant number of extra votes – 5,732 this time compared with 3,339 in 2017.

And while I know there is any number of variables in this, the extra votes Ryan picked up would have seen Faisal Rashid to victory had they gone to him.

For Remainers, the decision to field two pro-Europe candidates, albeit from different parties, was enough to split the Remain vote and return a Brexiter Conservative.

(Yes, I also fully realise that it wasn’t just Brexit that influenced people’s voting decisions)

So as we wave goodbye to Faisal Rashid, I think it’s only right to have a look at his impact on local, national and international politics.

He campaigned (unsuccessfully) for the removal of tolls on the Mersey Gateway crossing. He campaigned (unsuccessfully) for justice for the so-called Waspi women, those women born in the 1950s who were told they would be retiring at the age of 60 only to find out it would be the age of 66 before they could draw their state pension. And he campaigned (unsuccessfully) for those caught in the leasehold trap.

But fair play, at least he tried.

There was, sort of, one success. As a Chapelford councillor, he was a supporter of the plans for a new station there and continued to back it when he was elected to Parliament. Oh the irony that the first trains to stop at the new Warrington West station ran just three days after he lost his job as an MP.

But it is on the international stage I think he will be missed most.

It was in October 2018 that Local Democracy Reporter Aran Dhillon revealed that Mr Rashid had benefited from almost £10,000 worth of free overseas trips – including to Qatar and China – in just over a year since winning the seat.

The report said BBC analysis of Parliament’s expenses register revealed Mr Rashid had five trips.

A trip to Qatar worth an estimated £4,600 was paid for by Qatar’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, a £1,500 trip to Azad Kashmir was paid for by the Government of Pakistan and Azad Kashmir, a £1,235 trip to the West Bank and Israel was paid for by Medical Aid for Palestinians and a £669 trip to Germany was paid for by chemical firm BASF.

He also had a £1,627 trip to China, paid for by the All-Party Parliamentary China Group, with sponsorship. Added together, the overall value of the trips to came to £9,631.

Oh well, at least he will have his photos and memories of warmer climes and happier days.

It would be remiss of me not to mention the success of Labour’s Charlotte Nichols in Warrington North.

It was a close-run thing as Labour’s majority plummeted from 9,582 in the 2017 election to just 1,509.

But at least Charlotte can console herself that she wasn’t parachuted into the ‘safe’ Labour seat of Leigh.