Home Page

Column 171

Written Answers to Questions

Wednesday 23 May 1990

PRIME MINISTER

Renault (Subsidies)

Mr. Teddy Taylor : To ask the Prime Minister if she will raise at the next meeting of the European Council the refusal of the French Government to obey the instruction of the European Economic Community Commission on the reclaiming of substantial sums provided to messrs Renault ; and if she will make a statement.

The Prime Minister [holding reply 22 May 1990] : I understand that the Commission made a decision on this case yesterday. I do not know what the considered response of the French Government will be. We will continue to watch the case closely.

HOME DEPARTMENT

Fire Risks

Mr. Tony Banks : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether his Department has made any assessment of the fire risk among the homeless people living in cardboard boxes.

120. Mr. Battle : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether his Department has conducted any studies on the risk of fire to people living in cardboard boxes.

121. Mrs. Golding : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what proposals he has to deal with the fire risk in cardboard cities.

Mr. John Patten : Assessment of all fire risks is a matter for the professional judgment of chief fire officers. Their contingency plans take into account the risk presented by makeshift habitations and operational arrangements are adjusted to meet any new circumstances.

Public Appointments

Mr. Grocott : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will list the full time and part time public appointments for which he is responsible, together with the salary and the date when the appointment is due for renewal.

Mr. Waddington : The available information is published by the Cabinet Office in "Public Bodies 1989", a copy of which is in the Library. The dates when these appointments are due for renewal are subject to change, and are not held centrally.

Departmental Staff

Mr. Grocott : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how may staff are employed by his Department ; and what proportion of them are employed in each of the standard regions.


Column 172

Mr. Waddington : The table below sets out Home Office staff by region as at 18 May 1990 :


                     |Numbers |Per cent         

------------------------------------------------

London region        |11,125  |26.6             

Rest of South-East   |7,684   |18.3             

South-West           |2,981   |7.1              

East Anglia          |1,980   |4.7              

East Midlands        |3,086   |7.4              

West Midlands        |3,116   |7.4              

North-West           |4,936   |11.8             

Yorkshire/Humberside |3,528   |8.4              

North                |2,202   |5.3              

Wales                |943     |2.3              

Northern Ireland     |48      |0.1              

Scotland             |239     |0.6              

                     |------- |-------          

Total                |41,868  |100              

Note: Part-time staff have been counted as      

whole units.                                    

Charity Commission

Mr. Lester : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether any changes will be made to the Charity Commission cash limit and running cost limit for 1990-91.

Mr. John Patten : Subject to parliamentary approval of the revised estimate, the cash limit for the Charity Commission's vote (class IX, vote 5) has been reduced by £4 million from £18,302,000 to £14,302, 000. This is the result of a new office building being acquired by lease rather than by freehold purchase, as originally proposed. The Commission's running costs limit has been increased by £10,000 from £13,404,000 to £13,414,000. The increase represents part of the cost of a management consultant appointed to co-ordinate a comprehensive programme of change within the Commission. The full cost will be recouped by a contribution from the private sector and by other offsetting savings.

IBA Transmissions System

Mr. Quentin Davies : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how the payment of preliminary expenses in respect of the sale of the Independent Broadcasting Authority transmissions system is being financed.

Mr. Mellor : Parliamentary approval for this service has been sought in the supply estimates for 1990-91. Pending that approval urgent and necessary expenditure estimated at £281,000 will be met by a repayable advance from the contingencies fund.

Private Security Firms

Mr. Janner : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he has any plans to introduce statutory minimum training standards for employees of private security firms ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. John Patten : My right hon. and learned Friend has no such plans at present. As part of the Training Agency standards programme, representatives from the security industry and users of security industry services are working together to develop training standards and related national vocational qualifications. In addition, the British Standards Institute is developing a British standard


Column 173

code of practice for the operation and management of manned security services, which will include and specify requirements for the training of staff.

Pornography

Mr. Gerald Howarth : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether the review of the academic research into the links between pornography and sexual crime, announced in January, has been completed ; and when he expects that the review will be published.

Mr. Mellor : Good progress is being made. We hope the report will be published in the autumn.

Young Offenders (Sentencing)

Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) if he will list by year for the last 10 years and by (a) sex and (b) ethnic group the number of children committed under section 53 ; and if he will make a statement.

(2) if he will list by year for the last 12 months for which he has figures and by (a) sex and (b) ethnic origin, the offences committed by children detained under section 53.


Column 174

Mr. John Patten : The number of defendants ordered to be detained under section 53 of the Children and Young Persons Act 1933 is given in table A below for the years 1979 to 1988. Data are not available by ethnic origin for orders made by the court. However, for recent years ethnic origin is recorded for receptions to prison service establishments. An analysis for receptions of offenders detained under section 53 is given in table B. To produce such tables for earlier years would involve disproportionate cost.


|c|Table A|c|                   

|c|Defendants ordered to be     

detained under section 53 of    

the Children|c|                 

|c|and Young Persons Act        

1933|c|                         

|c|England and Wales|c|         

Year    |Males  |Females        

--------------------------------

1979    |75     |4              

1980    |80     |5              

1981    |82     |6              

1982    |112    |2              

1983    |84     |1              

1984    |116    |5              

1985    |164    |8              

1986    |166    |6              

1987    |169    |4              

1988    |188    |11             


|c|Table B|c|                                                                                                                                                                                                                  

|c|Receptions<1> into prison service establishments in England and Wales of offenders detained under section 53 of the Children and Young Persons|c|                                                                           

|c|Act 1933: by sex, offence and ethnic origin, 1988|c|                                                                                                                                                                        

                             Ethnic origin                                                                                                                                                                                     

Offence Group                White                         West Indian,                  Indian,                       Chinese, Arab,                Other not                     All persons                                 

                                                           Guyanese                      Pakistani,                    Mixed origin                  recorded                      received into                               

                                                                                         Bangladeshi                                                 (inc. refusals)               Prison Service                              

                                                                                                                                                                                  |establishments                              

                            |M             |F             |M             |F             |M             |F             |M             |F             |M             |F             |M             |F                            

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Violence against the person |37            |2             |9             |-             |2             |-             |2             |-             |-             |-             |50            |2                            

Sexual offences             |11            |-             |2             |-             |1             |-             |-             |-             |-             |-             |14            |-                            

Burglary                    |29            |-             |1             |-             |1             |-             |-             |-             |-             |-             |31            |-                            

Robbery                     |34            |6             |13            |-             |3             |-             |2             |-             |2             |-             |54            |6                            

Criminal damage             |3             |-             |2             |-             |-             |-             |-             |-             |-             |-             |5             |-                            

Drug offence                |1             |-             |-             |-             |-             |-             |-             |-             |-             |-             |1             |-                            

Other offences              |23            |1             |-             |-             |1             |-             |2             |-             |-             |-             |26            |1                            

Offence not recorded        |4             |-             |1             |-             |1             |-             |-             |-             |-             |-             |6             |-                            

                            |--            |--            |--            |--            |--            |--            |--            |--            |--            |--            |--            |--                           

Total                       |142           |9             |28            |-             |9             |-             |6             |-             |2             |-             |187           |9                            

<1>Including detainees transferred from non-Prison Service establishments.                                                                                                                                                     

Prisoners (Deaths)

Mr. Sheerman : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will state the ethnic origin of those prisoners who died at prison service establishments between 1 January 1989 and 31 March 1990.

Mr. Mellor : Between 1 January 1989 and 31 March 1990, 103 inmates died at prison service establishments. Their ethnic origin was as follows :


            |Numbers        

----------------------------

White       |89             

West Indian |7              

Indian      |3              

Pakistani   |2              

African     |2              

Metropolitan Police Forensic Science Laboratory

Mr. Fraser : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many scientific staff are employed at the Metropolitan police forensic science laboratory ; and how many were employed at the laboratory in each of the preceding three years.

Mr. Peter Lloyd : The information requested is shown in the table :


                 |Scientific staff                 

                 |employed                         

---------------------------------------------------

30 April 1987    |206                              

30 April 1988    |203                              

30 April 1989    |207                              

30 April 1990    |215                              

Orange Badges

Mr. Wigley : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what representations he has received regarding outlawing display and use of the orange badge by anyone other than the holder of the badge.


Column 175

Mr. Peter Lloyd : My right hon. and noble Friend the Minister of State met a delegation from the Disabled Persons Transport Advisory Committee, led by the right hon. Member for Stoke-on- Trent, South (Mr. Ashley), on 24 April to discuss this subject. We are considering carefully the representations which were made at the meeting.

Police Stations (Prisoners)

Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will list for the counties of Yorkshire and Humberside for the latest date for which he has figures (a) the police stations that are holding inmates from prisons because of a shortage of detention space, (b) the number they are holding and (c) from which prison they were transferred.

Mr. Mellor : On Friday 18 May 1990 there were 155 prisoners held in police stations in Yorkshire. No prisoners were held in Humberside police stations. Not all of these currently held in police stations were at Her Majesty's prison Manchester at the time of the disturbance, but they would have been accommodated in Manchester prison but for the loss of accommodation there.

Details of the number of prisoners held in each police station in Yorkshire are as follows :


Police Station |Number of                    

               |Prisoners                    

---------------------------------------------

Holmfirth      |6                            

Morley         |7                            

Halifax        |13                           

Weetwood       |5                            

South Kirby    |8                            

Huddersfield   |13                           

Dewsbury       |10                           

Sheffield      |29                           

Doncaster      |23                           

Barnsley       |14                           

Rotherham      |16                           

York           |11                           

Electronic Tagging

Mr. Butler : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what proportion of electronically tagged offenders have breached the conditions of their sentence ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. John Patten : The electronic monitoring trials involved defendants on bail and not sentenced offenders. As at 16 May the number of defendants who have breached their conditions of bail was as follows :


Total Monitored |Breaches                       

------------------------------------------------

50              |28                             

Electronic monitoring of itself cannot prevent breaches of bail, which are also committed by defendants on bail subject to other conditions, but it does enable even minor breaches to be swiftly detected and recorded.

Police (Firearms)

Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will list by individual police force in the United Kingdom, how many officers are authorised


Column 176

to carry firearms on routine patrols while (a) on foot, (b) in a patrol vehicle, (c) horse mounted, (d) in the air and (e) on other patrol.

Mr. Peter Lloyd : Details of the number of authorised firearms police officers in England and Wales on 31 December 1989--the latest date for which information is readily available--is contained in the table.


|c|Numbers of authorised firearms       

officers by force area as at 31|c|      

|c|December 1989|c|                     

                          |Number       

----------------------------------------

Avon and Somerset         |110          

Bedfordshire              |37           

Cambridgeshire            |45           

Cheshire                  |95           

Cleveland                 |66           

City of London            |101          

Cumbria                   |125          

Derbyshire                |98           

Devon and Cornwall        |141          

Dorset                    |68           

Durham                    |84           

Essex                     |155          

Gloucestershire           |66           

Greater Manchester        |194          

Hampshire                 |126          

Hertfordshire             |91           

Humberside                |92           

Kent                      |193          

Lancashire                |191          

Leicestershire            |100          

Lincolnshire              |86           

Merseyside                |135          

Metropolitan              |2,552        

Norfolk                   |110          

Northamptonshire          |70           

Northumbria               |159          

North Yorkshire           |183          

Nottinghamshire           |126          

South Yorkshire           |153          

Staffordshire             |55           

Suffolk                   |100          

Surrey                    |65           

Sussex                    |198          

Thames Valley             |264          

Warwickshire              |55           

West Mercia               |103          

West Midlands             |140          

West Yorkshire            |185          

Wiltshire                 |96           

Dyfed Powys               |46           

Gwent                     |40           

North Wales               |67           

South Wales               |145          

                          |---          

  Total England and Wales |7,311        

The issue of a firearm to an authorised firearms officer requires the further authority of a senior officer. This is given only where there is reason to suppose that the officer may have to face a person who is armed or otherwise so dangerous that he could not safely be restrained without the use of firearms ; or for the destruction of dangerous animals.

Shop Opening Hours

Mr. Vaz : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what plans the Government have to introduce legislation to remove restrictions on small shopkeepers' opening hours ; and if he will make a statement.


Column 177

Mr. Mellor : So long as opinions differ widely on the subject of Sunday trading, the Government have no plans for early legislation to reform the Shops Act 1950.

HOUSE OF COMMONS

Provision of Services

Mr. Page : To ask the hon. Member for Berwick upon Tweed, as representing the House of Commons Commission, what steps the Commission is taking to improve the machinery for the provision of services to hon. Members and the House.

Mr. Beith : The House of Commons Commission has decided to set up a review to examine whether the responsibilities for the management of the House and its facilities, at present divided between itself, the Select Committee on House of Commons (Services), the Department of the Environment and the Leader of the House, can be brought together with a view to ensuring that so far as possible there is a co-ordinated management and decision-taking structure under the control of the House, which can adequately respond to Members' needs and demands for services, and determine priorities between them. Sir Robin Ibbs KBE has been invited to undertake this work and in due course to advise the Commission of his recommendations for change. Members either individually or collectively through the various House Committees and other representative bodies will be consulted during the course of Sir Robin's study, and will be able to make individual representations to him.

The House will be advised of the outcome of this review, and of any organisational proposals arising therefrom, after Sir Robin Ibbs has tendered his advice to the Commission.

Food

Mr. Vaz : To ask the Lord President of the Council how many free- range eggs are consumed in the House each week on average ; and if he will make a statement.

Sir Geoffrey Howe : An average of 10,000 eggs, all of which are free range, are consumed in the House each week.

Mr. Vaz : To ask the Lord President of the Council how many representations he has received from hon. and right hon. Members in the past 12 months concerning the availability of vegetarian and vegan food in the House ; and if he will make a statement.

Sir Geoffrey Howe : The Refreshment Department has received no requests from Members in respect of the availability of vegetarian and vegan food. Vegetarian dishes are, however, provided on the menus of all outlets in the House ; and it is understood that the Refreshment Department responds sympathetically to specific requests for other specialised menus.

NORTHERN IRELAND

Legal Services

Mr. Stott : To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland whether he has yet made a decision on whether to create authorised practitioners and licensed conveyancers


Column 178

in Northern Ireland along the lines laid down in the Administration of Justice Act and the Courts and Legal Services Bill in England and Wales ; and whether he will make a statement.

Mr. Cope : We are considering the future framework for legal services in Northern Ireland, including the provision of conveyancing, in consultation with my noble and learned Friend the Lord Chancellor. I expect that a policy paper for Northern Ireland will be published in the autumn.

School Meals

Mr. Gregory : To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland (1) what is the number and percentage of free school meals provided ; and if he will make a statement ;

(2) how many and what percentage of children took school meals in 1989 ; and if he will make a statement ;

(3) what is the average price of a school meal ; and if he will make a statement.

Dr. Mawhinney [holding answer 22 May 1990] : At the annual census on a day in October 1989, 155,769 pupils took school meals, 47 per cent. of those present. Of the meals taken 74,416, 48 per cent., were free. The average charge for a fixed-priced school meal is 80p.

Stevens Inquiry

Mr. Mullin : To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland on what date his Department received the report of the Stevens inquiry.

Mr. Brooke [holding answer 21 May 1990] : The Chief Constable of the RUC made a copy of the report available to officials in my Department on 11 April 1990.

OVERSEAS DEVELOPMENT

Population

Sir Charles Morrison : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what contributions, for each of the years 1988, 1989 and 1990 have been made to the International Planned Parenthood Federation, the United Nations Population Fund and the World Health Organisation's special programme on human reproduction.

Mrs. Chalker : The following contributions have been made :


£'000                                   

        |1988   |1989   |1990<1>        

----------------------------------------

IPPF    |6,000  |6,897  |7,399          

UNFPA   |5,250  |5,500  |6,000          

WHO/HRP |2,200  |2,200  |2,300          

        |-------|-------|-------        

Total   |13,450 |14,597 |15,699         

<1>Pledged contribution.                

Sir Charles Morrison : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what was the total expenditure on population activities for each of the years 1989 and 1990 ; and what percentage this represents of total gross public expenditure on aid for each of the years 1989 and 1990.


Column 179

Mrs. Chalker : In 1989, £17.275 million was spent on population activities : this figure represents 1 per cent. of total gross public expenditure on aid. Figures for 1990 are not yet available. In addition, aid spending on other programmes, including health care and education, especially that benefiting women, helps create the conditions for slowing down the rapid rate of population growth.

Philippines

Sir Philip Goodhart : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what financial support has been offered to the Government of the Philippines to build a camp for refugees from Vietnam.

Mrs. Chalker : We have committed £3 million from the overseas aid programme, within the context of the comprehensive plan of action for dealing with Vietnamese refugees, towards the costs of extending an existing camp at Bataan in the Philippines. This facility, which is being supervised by the United Nations High Commission for Refugees, is intended to be used as a processing centre for Vietnamese from Hong Kong who are classified as refugees and are en route to resettlement in other countries. Other donors are also expected to contribute towards its costs.

Overseas Development Administration

Mr. French : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what changes have been made in the cash limit for expenditure by the Overseas Development Administration in 1990-91.

Mrs. Chalker : Subject to parliamentary approval of the necessary supplementary estimate, the cash limit on the overseas aid vote (class II, vote 5) will be increased by £30,000,000 from £1,441,654, 000 to £1,471,654,000. As I announced on 5 April at column 734, the increase enables provision to be taken for a pledge in support of Zambia's economic reform programme and for an increase in the external financing limit of the Commonwealth Development Corporation. The increase will be charged to the reserve and will not therefore add to the planned total of public expenditure.

EDUCATION AND SCIENCE

Public Appointments

Mr. Grocott : To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will list the full and part time public appointments for which he is responsible, together with the salary and the date when each appointment is due for renewal.

Mrs. Rumbold : This information has been provided by the Department to the Women's National Commission for its directory "Women in Public Appointments". The directory is to be published next month and a copy will then be placed in the Library.

Departmental Staff

Mr. Grocott : To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science how many staff are employed by his Department ; and what proportion of them are employed in each of the standard regions.


Column 180

Mrs. Rumbold : This information is available in "Civil Service Statistics 1988-89, table 3" a copy of which is in the Library.

Literacy

Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science what information he has, by year for the last 10 years and by local education authority, on the percentage of pupils leaving school who have literacy problems.

Mr. Alan Howarth : The Department does not collect statistics on pupils leaving school with literacy problems. The attached tables show, for all LEAs in the regions and the larger LEAs individually, for three years, the percentage of pupils leaving school without a graded result in English.


|c|Maintained schools in England|c|                      

|c|Percentage of school leavers with no graded result in 

English|c|                                               

LEAs                     |1977-78|1982-83|1987-88        

---------------------------------------------------------

Avon                     |16.3   |11.9   |13.2           

Bedfordshire             |22.2   |18.2   |15.0           

Berkshire                |17.7   |10.5   |10.7           

Birmingham               |28.6   |23.0   |20.5           

Bolton                   |29.1   |25.4   |14.7           

Bradford                 |32.1   |23.3   |28.5           

Buckinghamshire          |15.1   |8.3    |10.4           

Cambridgeshire           |22.9   |17.2   |10.3           

Cheshire                 |22.8   |18.7   |13.7           

Cleveland                |18.5   |15.2   |19.4           

Cornwall<1>              |22.8   |13.0   |14.9           

Coventry                 |20.8   |18.0   |16.1           

Cumbria                  |17.3   |15.7   |13.5           

Derbyshire               |23.3   |16.1   |14.7           

Devon                    |21.7   |12.2   |11.3           

Doncaster                |24.2   |21.2   |21.0           

Dorset                   |18.1   |10.7   |9.8            

Dudley                   |25.7   |13.6   |12.1           

Durham                   |20.4   |19.0   |17.6           

East Sussex              |20.3   |17.2   |11.8           

Essex                    |19.6   |15.0   |13.5           

Gloucestershire          |20.3   |11.6   |11.3           

Hampshire                |20.7   |12.1   |12.4           

Hereford and Worcester   |21.5   |13.5   |12.7           

Hertfordshire            |15.5   |14.4   |14.6           

Humberside               |23.5   |20.3   |14.5           

Inner London             |31.6   |27.3   |28.0           

Kent                     |22.1   |12.8   |15.6           

Kirklees                 |23.2   |15.9   |21.0           

Lancashire               |23.3   |19.8   |18.3           

Leeds                    |24.2   |17.7   |20.1           

Leicestershire           |25.5   |18.6   |18.1           

Lincolnshire             |18.5   |11.7   |13.8           

Liverpool                |27.9   |26.8   |34.2           

Manchester               |28.2   |32.1   |39.1           

Norfolk                  |27.4   |22.1   |19.1           

North Yorkshire          |18.0   |14.0   |14.9           

Northamptonshire         |23.6   |13.0   |17.1           

Northumberland           |15.6   |8.1    |12.7           

Nottinghamshire          |28.1   |14.3   |13.0           

Oxfordshire              |19.3   |9.6    |11.8           

Rotherham                |23.8   |18.6   |17.1           

Sandwell                 |35.1   |23.4   |21.5           

Sefton                   |18.9   |17.3   |19.6           

Sheffield                |13.8   |17.1   |17.0           

Shropshire               |25.2   |13.6   |14.7           

Somerset                 |24.8   |13.6   |8.9            

Staffordshire            |32.8   |18.0   |15.9           

Stockport                |22.8   |15.6   |15.6           

Suffolk                  |28.6   |18.9   |13.4           

Sunderland               |21.4   |14.1   |19.0           

Surrey                   |16.1   |10.1   |9.3            

Wakefield                |30.8   |23.8   |21.5           

Walsall                  |33.1   |20.7   |19.9           

Warwickshire             |20.2   |9.2    |14.2           

West Sussex              |15.8   |8.9    |7.3            

Wigan                    |23.9   |15.8   |11.6           

Wiltshire                |18.6   |10.3   |13.1           

Wirral                   |18.6   |15.5   |20.6           

                                                         

Regions                                                  

North                    |19.1   |14.8   |16.5           

Yorkshire and Humberside |23.4   |19.1   |18.6           

North West               |24.8   |21.2   |20.3           

East Midlands            |24.4   |15.1   |15.1           

West Midlands            |27.3   |17.3   |16.2           

East Anglia              |26.4   |19.5   |14.7           

Greater London           |25.0   |20.4   |20.1           

Other South East         |19.0   |12.7   |12.5           

South West               |19.9   |11.9   |11.9           

                         |--     |--     |--             

Total                    |22.9   |16.7   |16.2           

<1> Including the Isles of Scilly.                       

TRANSPORT

British Rail

Mr. Vaz : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when he last met the chairman of British Rail to discuss issues regarding rail transportation in Britain and the implications of 1992 ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Freeman : I met the chairman of British Rail on 22 May, when we discussed a variety of railway matters. The single market will present opportunities for rail in Europe, and the Government support policy initiatives by the Commission to increase the competitiveness of the railways.

Departmental Staff

Mr. Grocott : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many staff are employed by his Department ; and what proportion of them are employed in each of the standard regions.

Mr. Atkins : 16,560 staff are employed by the Department of Transport and its executive agencies. The regional breakdown of this total is as follows :


                         |Numbers        

-----------------------------------------

London area              |3,810          

South East               |2,270          

South West               |1,180          

East Anglia              |320            

East Midlands            |560            

West Midlands            |810            

North West               |860            

Yorkshire and Humberside |700            

Northern                 |440            

Scotland                 |750            

Wales                    |4,830          

Northern Ireland         |30             

                         |-------        

                         |16,560         

Figures derived from computerised staff  

records and rounded to nearest 10.       


Column 182

Public Appointments

Mr. Grocott : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will list the full-time and part-time appointments for which he is responsible, together with the salary and the date when the appointment is due for renewal.

Mr. Atkins : The majority of the appointments for which my right hon. Friend is responsible are listed in either "Public Bodies 1989" published by HMSO or "Women into Public Appointments" produced by the Women's National Commission. A copy of the former is available in the Library of the House, and an up-to-date version of the latter will be available there in June. The appointments which are not listed in either document are :

Acting conservator of the River Mersey (£6,755 per annum). Delegate to the Central Rhine Commission (unpaid).

Chairman and members of the honorary medical advisory panel on driving and diabetes (unpaid).

Chairman and members of the honorary medical advisory panel for driving and disorders of the nervous system (unpaid).

Chairman and members of the honorary medical advisory panel on driving and cardiovascular disorders (unpaid).

The further information sought by the hon. Member could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Peat

Mr. Janman : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if his Department intends to replace the use of peat with refuse-derived humus in major landscaping projects.

Mr. Atkins : My Department is undertaking trials with alternatives to peat for tree planting. Refuse-based products have so far been rejected because of contamination. If a better formulation can be offered my Department will test it.

Mr. Janman : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) how many tonnes of peat his Department uses in landscaping programmes each year ;

(2) how many tons of peat his Department uses each year.

Mr. Atkins : My Department used 7,500 tonnes of peat-based composts in connection with tree and shrub planting in the 1989-90 planting season.

Channel Tunnel Rail Link

Mr. Speed : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when he received Eurorail's proposals for a high speed channel tunnel rail link ; and when he proposes to publish his response to them.

Mr. Freeman : A report was received on 2 April on the work Eurorail and British Rail have done together since November 1989, together with financial projections for a joint venture to finance, own and operate international rail passenger services. My right hon. Friend received a presentation from BR and Eurorail on 19 April. The proposals are complex and require careful consideration, but I hope that an announcement can be made shortly.


Column 183

TGV Atlantique

Mr. Speed : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to his reply of 17 May, which Ministers currently in his Department visited the TGV Atlantique route in France ; and what were the dates of their visits.

Mr. Freeman : My hon. Friend the Minister for Roads and Traffic visited the TGV Atlantique on 4 April 1990. My hon. Friend the then Minister for Public Transport, now the Minister for Local Government and Inner cities, visited the project on 20 June 1989.

Bus Deregulation

Mr. Campbell-Savours : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what recent reports he has received as to the impact of deregulation on the use of buses.

Mr. Freeman : The transport and road research laboratory have produced a wide range of reports on the impact of bus deregulation, copies of which are available in the Library.

Mr. Wray : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what studies his Department has carried out on the effect of bus deregulation in town centres affected by traffic congestion.

Mr. Freeman : Immediately after deregulation, the tranport and road research laboratory carried out an extensive research programme into the effects of deregulation. Copies of its reports are available in the Library.


Next Section

  Home Page