With membership topping a respectable 21,000 ? a 43 per cent increase and the highest number for many years; and racing licence holders topping 11,658 ? a 31 per cent increase, British Cycling can claim to be reaping the benefits of their UK Wide One Stop Plan for Cycling introduced two years ago.

At BC?s National Council meeting in Manchester on Saturday, Operations Director Ian Drake, the Deputy Chief Executive and the brains behind the schools cycling recruitment drive, explained the range of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and the next stage of the strategic planning process from 2009 to 2013.

British Cycling is on course towards goals of 50 per cent and 40 per cent increases respectively, Drake told delegates.

The number of competitive events has also increased by 15 per cent, and the 12 per cent increase in participants was well ahead of the planned growth of one per cent per annum.

Progress in coaching, coach education, and Go-Ride club registration and facilities, is advanced. Aided by the continued international success of the GB team, British Cycling is looking forward to the next four years with optimism, with its eyes firmly set on the ?once in a lifetime? opportunity of the London 2012 Olympics.

National Council heard Richard Arnold, the chief executive of the Olympic Delivery Authority, give a presentation on the 2012 Olympics Velopark, plus the interim and legacy facilities in East London.

As well as showing images of the velodrome design, Arnold told how the problems of providing for other cycling disciplines were being addressed (as reported in Cycling Weekly recently).

He said there had been considerable input from local cycling interests and clubs, as well as from regional representatives and British Cycling.

And he hoped there would soon be agreement on the final plans.

BC CEO Peter King talked of how newt clearance at Hog Hill had delayed the preparation of the temporary relocation site for Eastway, demolished to make way for the Olympics.

But he said that as he spoke, the first Go-Ride and club cycling sessions were taking place at London Docklands circuit, the interim relocation site until Hog Hill is ready.

The Gold Badge of Honour was awarded to Ian Emmerson OBE and Hugh Porter MBE. Brian Cookson was re-elected president of British Cycling.

Cookson said: ?I think it was a very positive and forward thinking National Council with some really good and interesting debates. Issues surrounding the Olympic Velopark and Legacy facilities were given a very in-depth treatment and it was great we had Richard Arnold from the Olympic Delivery Authority here, from whom we had a really good presentation. Everyone from the Eastern and South East regions had their input. There are still some details to be resolved, but it looks like we?re moving together harmoniously on this.

Chief Executive, Peter King, said: ?I think it was a constructive and positive meeting conducted in a very good spirit and I?m very happy with the outcome of all the proposals and motions. I think that, compared with recent history, there?s now a much higher degree of trust and respect between those of us who are trying to do the job and the people who are delegated to come along and discuss it with us on an annual basis.?