Matt Hancock is planning a series of “serious documentaries” on assisted dying and dyslexia in his life after public office, The Telegraph understands.
Allies of the former health secretary said he believes he should put his public platform to good use and educate the public about political issues after his appearances on reality TV shows.
Mr Hancock last week announced that he plans to stand down from Parliament at the next election, telling Rishi Sunak he had “discovered a whole world of possibilities” outside Westminster, including “new ways … to communicate with people of all ages and from all backgrounds”.
He is understood to have received offers from major broadcasters and is considering a new career as a documentary presenter.
Sources close to Mr Hancock said he had decided that he backed assisted dying during the pandemic, while supporting a colleague who was terminally ill and wanted to end their own life. He had previously been against the practice, which is outlawed in the UK.
MPs have historically been given a “free vote” on assisted dying because it is seen as a conscience issue. The last Commons vote, in 2015, saw a bid to change the law defeated by 330 votes to 118.
While serving as health secretary, Mr Hancock ordered a review of evidence on assisted dying as he opened the door to a law change. Parliament’s health committee has launched an inquiry into the issue and is expected to report its findings next year.
This week it was reported that members of Mr Hancock’s constituency Conservative association in West Suffolk had written to Simon Hart, the Chief Whip, declaring that he was “not fit” to represent them.
His appearance on I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! sparked anger among constituents who argued that he should not have taken part in the show for a reported fee of £400,000 while Parliament was still in session.
It is understood Mr Hancock had twice previously declined requests to appear on the programme but finally agreed after Mr Sunak conducted his first reshuffle and did not appoint him to a ministerial role. A source said that, after he was asked a third time, he was “on a plane to Australia within 96 hours”.
It is also claimed that, despite anger from West Suffolk Conservatives, Mr Hancock has received a deluge of speaking invitations from other associations and was bombarded with constituents’ requests for selfies on a visit to Newmarket last weekend.