It has become something of a tradition here that the local cycle campaign group surveys candidates for views on cycling issues in the run up to elections. But its more of a niggling bad habit that I go through those responses and praise, mock or pour 'meh' all over them.
As ever, thanks you Camcycle for doing this. Its a worthwhile on occasion hilarious exercise.
So here's the deal. I've gone through them party by party, picking a couple of candidates from each. I've always picked a candidate from my own ward (Kings Hedges) if I can, and go further afield for others, until I've been through at least two of each party.
This year is, as always, a mixed bag.
Got to say that I'm always surprised by how poorly the Greens come across in this - its like they're struggling to get good candidates or motivate themselves to try at all. Shame. If you look closely at your green candidate it might be the case that you have a cracker, but don't assume it. And this pains me - my instinct is to vote Green, but on the strength of their responses here, I'm not convinced to do so at all.
The Labour and Tory parties suck - averaging 4/10 and 3.5/10. Be very careful voting for either if cycling matters to you - some candidates are much better than others but on my sampling I'm unimpressed.
The LibDems have excelled themselves. I'm not saying that if I'd gone in another direction for my second candidate I was guaranteed to find another as good (is it Tim standing again in Arbury? Always touch and go on cycling). But on the strength of these two candidates, both being pretty close to spot on, I'd give other candidates my attention on this subject. Its just a shame that there has been a complete lack of any contact from the LibDems, at all, ever, over this or any other subject in this local election campaign. No calls, knocks, campaign literature, anything. Shame, there are a couple of points I'd like them to clarify on other subjects before voting for them.
At least UKIP have fucked off into the sunset.