Colleagues wish Suffolk Tory MP well after apparent suicide attempt

Friends and colleagues of Suffolk MP David Ruffley have wished him well after he jumped in front of a train in an apparent suicide attempt.

Friends and colleagues of Suffolk MP David Ruffley have wished him well after he jumped in front of a train in an apparent suicide attempt.

Mr Ruffley, 48, miraculously survived the incident at London's Victoria Station with minor injuries when the train passed over him and he did not make contact with the live rail.

Friends said he had been courageously fighting depression throughout May's general election.

They said they had been concerned for his health for some time and revealed how last year's expenses scandal had deeply affected the 48-year-old, who is MP for the Bury St Edmunds constituency.

Mr Ruffley was taken to St Thomas's Hospital after the incident, which happened around 5pm on Thursday .

He is now believed to be out of hospital and is said to be making a good recovery.

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It is understood Mr Cameron visited Mr Ruffley on Saturday to wish him well and to assure him that he had his full support.

Last night a close colleague of Mr Ruffley said: 'He is now out of St Thomas's and is being cared for and getting the proper support he needs to make a full recovery.

'David has been unwell, suffering from depression, for a while. He fought it very courageously during the general election and I think his colleagues thought that he was on the mend.

'Clearly that proved not to be the case. However, I think this lucky deliverance really is a blessing in disguise.

'He will now get the proper medical treatment that he needs that will allow him to make a full recovery. I fully expect him to emerge better and stronger for it.'

Virginia Tuck, who was Mr Ruffley's general election agent and now works for him within the constituency, said his thoughts had already turned to his constituents.

'David is continuing to make a good recovery and his only concern now is for his constituents,' she said.

'I have been able to reassure him that his regular surgeries will continue with the assistance of local councillors and a normal service for his constituents will still be operating.

'If his constituents need his support they should contact his House of Commons office as usual.'

Mr Ruffley had faced some criticism during last year's expenses scandal, and one friend said it had left him very distressed. In an open letter to his constituents at the time, he fiercely denied he had ever 'flipped' his second home in order to sell any property to make a gain, and said he had never avoided paying capital gains tax.

Included in his expenses was a claim of �1,674 for a sofa and �2,175 for a 46in Sony widescreen television, bought from Harrods in London - although this was capped at �750 by the Fees Office.

He subsequently voluntarily repaid more than �1,200 of his claims and pledged to publish every one of his expenses regardless of what new Parliamentary rules were brought in.

Mr Ruffley also called for the then expenses system to be scrapped as soon as possible because it was destroying public confidence in politicians.

Mr Ruffley kept hold of his seat in May's general election by securing an impressive majority of 12,380 votes.

However, he has taken part in just six debates in the House of Commons this year, the last of which was in February.

Jane Storey, Suffolk County Council deputy leader, said: 'We all hope he makes a rapid and full recovery.

'It's all very sad. He is such a nice man and he cares so deeply for the constituency and the people who live here.'

A spokeswoman for the Conservative Party confirmed Mr Ruffley received 'minor injuries' at a London railway station on Thursday evening.

A British Transport Police spokeswoman said the incident was being treated as 'non-suspicious'.