Matt Hancock affair: who is Gina Coladangelo, why did MP resign as UK health secretary?

Matt Hancock has joined the line-up of I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! 2022

The 44-year-old has kept a fairly low profile since stepping down as Health Secretary last year - but why did Hancock resign from the role and what has happened to him since leaving office? Here is everything you need to know.

Why did Matt Hancock resign as health secretary?

Hancock stepped down from his role as Health Secretary in June 2021 after it was discovered that he had broken social distancing rules when The Sun newspaper published pictures and video evidence of Hancock engaging in an affair with Gina Coladangelo. The images are believed to have been leaked by an insider at the Department of Health on 6 May 2021. At the time, both Hancock and Coladangelo were married with children.

The former Health Secretary came under immense pressure to leave his role and in a letter to the Prime Minister at the time, Boris Johnson, Hancock admitted that he felt he had let the public down with his behaviour. Hancock said: “I owe it to the people who have sacrificed so much in this pandemic to be honest when we have let them down.”

Who is Gina Coladangelo?

Health Secretary Matt Hancock leaves 10 Downing Street with aide Gina Coladangelo (Getty Images)

Gina Lucia Coladangelo is a businesswoman, lobbyist and a former non-executive director at the Department of Health and Social Care.

Coladangelo first met Hancock during their time studying at Oxford University. During an interview on the Youtube podcast The Diary Of A Ceo, Hancock recalled that the pair became close friends when they started presenting on a student radio station together.

Coladangelo studied Politics, Philosophy and Economics and was on the same course as Hancock. The pair remained close friends after university, however both went on to pursue relationships with other people.

Hancock went on to marry Martha Hoyer Millar in 2006 and Gina Coladangelo married Oliver Tress in 2009. Tress is a British businessman and the founder of UK retail chain Oliver Bonas.

Hancock appointed Coladangelo to the Department of Health and Social Care in March 2020. In September he promoted Coladangelo to the role of non executive director, meaning that she was a member of the board who can scrutinise the department.

The affair between the two became public knowledge in June 2021 and Coladangelo also resigned from her role in office in the aftermath.

Is Matt Hancock still married?

Matt Hancock and Martha Hoyer Millar are no longer living together, according to reports. However, the pair have not yet filed for divorce. Hancock claimed at the time that he was “madly in love” with Coladangelo, and the pair have since separated from their respective spouses in order to move in together.

What has been the reaction to Hancock appearing on I’m A Celeb?

The response to Hancokc’s appearance to I’m A Celebrity has been widely and immediately critical, with bereaved families who lost people to Covid-19 being particularly vocal about their opposition to Hancock’s pivot to light entertainment.

Hancock follows in a long line of senior political figures to appear on the reality show such as MP Nadine Dorries, Stanley Johnson and MP Lembit Opik