The most logical reason for such a mass withdrawal (OK, I know it is only two but it 100% of those who were due to attend) would be that it is the day the Prime Minister will call a March election and this adds to the strong rumours in Westminster yesterday afternoon that the election would be on March 25 or in April.
We know already that Brown is making a speech tomorrow announcing Labour’s four themes of the election (which have already been leaked), together with Labour’s election slogan.
An election before 6 May would also explain why the chancellor hasn’t yet announced Budget Day (It is normally announced before the two week half term recess) and would avoid.
The Chancellor having to produce a Budget which would clearly not be able to be a vote winner.
Avoid the risk of the Q1 GDP figures due to be announced on April 25 sinking us back into recession before the election.
If you are interested in politics it could be an interesting weekend.