London mayor Ken Livingstone was meant to be the star attraction at yesterday's All Party Parliamentary Cycling Group meeting at the House of Commons, but he failed to show. However there were impressive and passionate performances from former transport minister Steve Norris and bolshy biking MP Ben Bradshaw

Red Ken? Green Ken? No, Yellow Ken.

As the mayor was unable to attend yesterday’s meeting it was left up to civil servants to field the criticism over the £8m slashing of London’s bicycle budget. They claimed the decision to cut had yet been cast in stone and was merely a proposal so far.

Ben Bradshaw MP was up in arms over even the suggestion that London cyclists would have to go to the back of the transport queue.

And Steve Norris, the first chair of the new National Cycling Strategy Board, gave what Patrick Barker, president of the Bicycle Association, said was "an impressive performance".

This was echoed by Nick Harvey, coordinator of Bike Week 2002:

"Steve Norris made the best speech of the evening and if he carries on in that vein will be a great NCSB chairman!"

With 70+ members, the All Party Parliamentary Cycling Group is one of the largest cross-party groups in this Parliament.

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