Get out on that bike but don't overdo it in the sun
Rail-thin Labour MP Ben Bradshaw, often likened in appearance to actor Hugh Grant, revealed to Parliament some of his health secrets last week. The snake-hipped former Cabinet minister has earned a reputation for his dancing skills. But pedal-power, rather than the paso doble, appears to be key. "When asked why I am still slim at 53, when I eat so much, I tell people that the answer is simple: my bike," the Member for Exeter told fellow MPs during a Commons debate on cycling. "My elderly Dawes Audax is the most important thing in my life, except – I should add, as he is outside with the (pro-cycling) demonstrators – my husband."
Thanks for coming
Topless pictures of David Cameron looking a touch over-cooked on Polzeath beach in North Cornwall caused some embarrassment for the Prime Minister. It might not have been part of George Osborne's Plan A, but local MP Dan Rogerson trumpeted the benefits for Britain plc. The Liberal Democrat MP said during a debate on the Royal Mail sell-off: "Some MPs may have seen the pictures in the national media. He is braver than I am; I would not want to see pictures like that of myself in the national media. However, we welcome him and his contribution to the local economy."
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Sheryll Murray, Conservative MP for South East Cornwall, hailed Cornish miners around the world as she pushed for deep sea mining regulations to be reformed: "Wherever there is a hole in the ground, there will be a Cornish miner at the bottom of it." But ex-Tory minister Peter Bottomley wondered whether the diaspora would be found at the floor of the Indian and Pacific oceans, where excavation is most common. "If there are Cornish miners there, I send them my best wishes," he said. "I hope they are swimming well."
The House, Parliament's in-house magazine, this week includes a feature where MPs nominate their rising stars. Hugo Swire, Conservative MP for East Devon, picked Andrew Mitchell, the former Cabinet minister who has fought to clear his name over the "plebgate" affair. Mr Swire, a Foreign Office minister, explained: "Just as surely as his star was in the ascendent before it was so publicly eclipsed it will surely rise again." And Andrew Mitchell's "rising star"? One Hugo Swire. "He is the wittiest and most amusing Member in the House of Commons," said Mr Mitchell of his "highly effective" Tory colleague.
Tweet of the week
"Brilliantly handled Ed, really well done. #Falkirk"
Ben Cooper, Labour councillor in Devon, after a report found no evidence of Unite union vote-rigging at the by-election