VETERAN Labour politician Tony Benn is spending a fourth night in hospital.

The former Cabinet minister, 88, was admitted over the weekend and is understood to be seriously ill.

A family spokesman said: "Tony Benn was taken to hospital on Saturday evening after feeling unwell. He is currently receiving treatment."

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Mr Benn entered Parliament in November 1950 and served in the Cabinet under Harold Wilson and Jim Callaghan.

He campaigned against EU membership, oversaw the development of Concorde, narrowly missed out on election as Labour deputy leader in 1981, and was instrumental in partys 1983 manifesto.

He stepped down from Parliament in 2001, but remains a significant figure in the Labour movement - in particular as a staunch opponent of the Iraq War.

Reacting to the news, Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner Vera Baird tweeted: "I am very worried about Tony Benn."