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Written Answers to Questions

Friday 17 January 1992

EMPLOYMENT

Virus Research

Mr. Gareth Wardell : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will place in the Library a summary of the procedures that are now required to be implemented by employers for the protection of employees working in HIV and hepatitis B virus research laboratories and production facilities in England and Wales.

Mr. Forth : Under the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, employers are required to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare at work of their employees and others who may be affected by their activities. In addition, under the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 1988 employers are required to carry out a risk assessment for all activities which are likely to expose any employee to any substance hazardous to health, including pathogenic micro-organisms, and to introduce appropriate precautions commensurate to the risk.


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To assist employers with these provisions, guidance has been published for the protection of employees working in HIV and hepatitis B virus research laboratories and production facilities. The guidance is contained in "Categorisation of pathogens according to hazard and categories of containment" and "HIV--the causative agent of AIDS and related conditions" prepared by the Health and Safety Commission's Advisory Committee on Dangerous Pathogens. Copies of the document will be placed in the Library.

Unemployment

Mr. Meacher : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what has been the level of unemployment in the original EC Six countries as a whole each year since 1962, in the EC Nine as a whole after 1973, and in the EC Twelve as a whole since 1986, both in numbers and as a percentage of their total work force.

Mr. Jackson : The following two tables provide the extent of the readily available information :

(i) estimates of the annual average numbers of unemployed for the years 1983 to 1990 produced by the Statistical Office of the European Community (SOEC). Comparable estimates of numbers unemployed are not available on a monthly basis ;

(ii) internationally comparable unemployment rates produced by SOEC from 1983-1990. Similar standardised rates, produced by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), are available from 1975. These have been provided for the years 1975 to 1982.


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Table 1  Estimates of the number of unemployed in EC countries       

annual averages                                                      

(thousands)                                                          

               |1983 |1984 |1985 |1986 |1987 |1988 |1989 |1990       

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

Belgium        |487  |496  |463  |463  |447  |390  |328  |302        

Denmark        |247  |237  |199  |156  |158  |184  |222  |238        

Germany        |1,921|1,988|2,012|1,796|1,770|1,747|1,603|1,482      

Greece         |-    |-    |-    |287  |286  |304  |297  |281        

Spain          |-    |-    |-    |2,910|2,917|2,813|2,512|2,407      

France         |1,912|2,314|2,424|2,474|2,500|2,375|2,265|2,189      

Ireland        |200  |221  |239  |240  |239  |230  |208  |202        

Italy          |1,970|2,097|2,189|2,420|2,373|2,535|2,498|2,316      

Luxembourg     |5    |5    |4    |4    |4    |3    |3    |3          

Netherlands    |702  |711  |603  |616  |651  |609  |571  |535        

Portugal       |-    |-    |-    |383  |321  |266  |240  |224        

United Kingdom |2,894|2,954|3,124|3,161|2,908|2,411|2,037|2,033      

Source: EUROSTAT "Unemployment" bulletins                            


Table 2  Unemployment Rates, Annual Averages                                                        

               |1975|1976|1977|1978|1979|1980|1981|1982|1983|1984|1985|1986|1987|1988|1989|1990     

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

Belgium        |5.0 |6.4 |7.4 |7.9 |8.2 |8.8 |10.8|12.6|12.5|12.5|11.6|11.6|11.4|10.0|8.4 |7.7      

Denmark<1>     |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |9.3 |8.7 |7.2 |5.6 |5.7 |6.5 |7.8 |8.2      

Germany        |3.6 |3.7 |3.6 |3.5 |3.2 |2.9 |4.2 |5.9 |6.9 |7.1 |7.1 |6.3 |6.2 |6.1 |5.5 |5.1      

Greece         |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |7.4 |7.4 |7.7 |7.5 |7.0      

Spain          |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |21.1|20.4|19.3|17.1|16.1     

France         |4.0 |4.4 |4.9 |5.2 |5.9 |6.3 |7.4 |8.1 |8.2 |9.8 |10.2|10.3|10.4|9.9 |9.4 |9.1      

Ireland        |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |15.2|16.8|18.2|18.2|18.0|17.4|16.0|15.6     

Italy          |5.8 |6.6 |7.0 |7.1 |7.6 |7.5 |7.8 |8.4 |8.8 |9.3 |9.6 |10.5|10.2|10.8|10.7|9.8      

Luxembourg<1>  |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |3.5 |3.1 |2.9 |2.6 |2.6 |2.1 |1.8 |1.7      

Netherlands    |5.2 |5.5 |5.3 |5.3 |5.4 |6.0 |8.5 |11.4|12.4|12.3|10.5|10.2|10.0|9.3 |8.7 |8.1      

Portugal       |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |8.2 |6.8 |5.6 |5.0 |4.6      

United Kingdom |4.3 |5.6 |6.0 |5.9 |5.0 |6.4 |9.8 |11.3|11.0|11.0|11.4|11.4|10.4|8.5 |7.1 |7.1      

<1> OECD standardised rates are not available for Denmark, Luxembourg and Greece.                   

There are no OECD figures available prior to 1983 for Ireland.                                      

<2> There are no reliable figures available as yet for the unified Germany, the figures quoted      

relate to the former West Germany.                                                                  

Sources:                                                                                            

EUROSTAT "Unemployment" bulletins for 1983-1990 rates.                                              

OECD "Quarterly Labour Force Statistics" for 1975-1982 rates.                                       

Contaminated Syringes

Mr. Gareth Wardell : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment, if he will introduce regulations to require contaminated syringes stored in a primary container in health treatment premises to be placed in a secondary container if leakage is possible during handling, storage, transport or shipping.

Mr. Forth : My right hon. and learned Friend, the Secretary of State, does not consider it necessary to introduce regulations so specific as to cover this matter. Adequate guidance regarding the handling, storage, transport and shipping of contaminated syringes is provided in the publication "The safe disposal of clinical waste" published by the Health and Safety Commission's Health Services Advisory Committee, which was revised in 1991.

This document provides employers in all health care premises with the necessary information for them to comply with their legal obligations under the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 1988 (the COSHH regulations) which involve risk assessment and the provision of adequate controls to guard against exposure to infection for both workers and the public.

SOCIAL SECURITY

Severe Disability Premium

Mr. Rooker : To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security, pursuant to his reply at 2 July 1991, Official Report, column 121, if he will make a statement on the likely date of the conclusion of the appeal relating to the severe disability premium awarded to Miss M. Hunt of Perry Barr, Birmingham, Ref 401 : 33209.

Miss Widdecombe : On 7 January 1992 the Social Security Commissioner gave, with the consent of all interested parties, an interim decision to award the severe disability premium in respect of the period from 11 April 1988 to 8 October 1989. A copy of the decision was issued to all parties on 13 January 1992. The Commissioner has postponed the further decision for the period 9 October 1989 onwards until the House of Lords has given its decision in another case.

Hours of Work

Mr. Allen : To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security how many claimants in 1991 with a physical or mental disability who received income support were working for (a) more than 24 hours a week, under regulation 6 of the Income Support (General) Regulations 1987 and (b) working for between 16 and 24 hours.

Miss Widdecombe : I understand from Mr. Michael Bichard, the chief executive of the Benefits Agency, that the information requested is not readily available and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

Disability

Mr. Allen : To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security whether lifetime awards of attendance allowance and mobility allowance will be reconsidered by adjudication officers under the Disability Living Allowance and Disability Working Allowance Act 1991.


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Mr. Scott : Awards of attendance allowance for people aged under 65 and mobility allowance will be replaced by awards of disability living allowance--DLA--from 6 April 1992. Life awards of DLA and attendance allowance for those aged over 65 will not be reviewed by adjudication officers unless the person expressly applies for a review of the award of either or both components, or, in exceptional circumstances, where information comes to light which gives the adjudication officer reasonable grounds to believe that entitlement is either too low or too high.

Medical Evidence

Mr. Allen : To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security if he will estimate total annual cost to social security claimants of providing medical evidence required by the social security appeals procedures which is not provided under the national health service.

Miss Widdecombe : The Department's general policy is to provide medical evidence for Social Security claimants free of charge where this is required by the appeals system.

Cold Weather Payments

Mr. Winnick : To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security if he will list the weather stations which have recorded temperatures triggering cold weather payments in each week in 1992.

Mr. Scott : The administration of the social fund is a matter for Mr. Michael Bichard, the chief executive of the Benefits Agency. He will write to the hon. Member and copies will be placed in the Library and the Public Information Office.

TRANSPORT

Lorry Speed Limits

Mr. Butler : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what is his estimate of the costs to British businesses of the European proposal of a 50 mph speed limit on lorries.

Mr. Chope : The costs for some vehicle operators would have been substantial. In the event the Transport Council decided upon a speed limiter setting of 90 km/h--56 mph--for heavy goods vehicles. This will increase some journey times, although there will be offsetting fuel savings.

Motorway Accidents

Mr. Pawsey : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what research has taken place into accidents on motorways caused by motorists falling momentarily asleep.

Mr. Chope : Research has been carried out by the university of Loughborough in this country and by various institutions overseas.

Mr. Pawsey : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what contact his Department has with his opposite numbers in the European Community and the United States of America on research into motorists falling momentarily asleep whilst driving on motorways.


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Mr. Chope : My Department has regular contact with other countries to discuss all aspects of road safety and research.

Bus Priority Schemes

Mr. Fearn : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will undertake to review the criteria for Transport supplementary grant funding of bus priority schemes.

Mr. Freeman : Consultations will shortly begin with the local authority associations about the transport policies and plans circular for 1992-93. The references in the circular to bus priority schemes and their eligibility for transport supplementary grant and credit approval will be covered in these consultations.

Mr. Fearn : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what consultations he has had concerning the funding of bus priority schemes.

Mr. Freeman : I recently chaired a working group comprising the Bus and Coach Council, the local authority associations, the police, bus manufacturers and the National Federation of Bus Users during which the funding of bus priority schemes was discussed. The group endorsed the statement I made on 16 December announcing the provision of at least £10 million over the next two years to fund specific local authority bus schemes.

Pavements

Mr. Andrew Bowden : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what steps his Department is taking to monitor the provisions of the Road Traffic Act 1990 with respect to the condition of pavements.

Mr. Chope : On 31 December 1991 my Department wrote to local authority associations and other interested organisations to consult them about draft regulations and a draft non-statutory code of practice on various aspects of the arrangements for inspection of undertakers' street works. The draft code of practice was prepared by a joint committee of local authorities' and undertakers' representatives.

Utilities' Street Works

Mr. Fearn : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what consultations he has had with representatives of local authorities concerning procedures for carrying out the inspection of utilities' street works.

Mr. Chope : I assume that the hon. Gentleman is referring to the street works provisions of the New Roads and Street Works Act 1991. These provide, in sections 71 and 139, for reinstatements of the street, including pavements, following street works to comply with prescribed specifications of materials and standards of workmanship. The Government have commissioned consultants to advise on appropriate arrangements for monitoring the effects of the Act.

Speed Limits

Mr. Onslow : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when he expects to issue revised advice on the criteria to be applied for road speed limits in villages and semi-rural areas.


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Mr. Chope : Consultation with interested bodies on revisions to the criteria for setting speed limits will take place within the next week few weeks, with a view to issuing the revised criteria as soon as possible thereafter.

Severn Tunnel (Accident)

Mr. Morgan : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what is his assessment of the effect of drying out of a length of self-healing cable on its usefulness to the railways inspectorate inquiry into the Severn tunnel accident on 7 December.

Mr. Freeman : The cable in question was stored at British Rail's laboratory at Reading for as long as was necessary to arrange a programme of tests, which would identify possible faults without causing further damage or concealing evidence of other problems. Storage of the cable for any length of time in laboratory conditions could cause the latex-like insulation on the individual wires in the cable to reseal, so tests were conducted as soon as possible with both British Rail and HM railway inspectorate engineers being present. The tests have now been successfully completed.

Mr. Morgan : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will instruct the railways inspectorate to make available immediately to (a) the British Rail national inquiry and (b) independent inspection the length of self-healing cable from signal box 164 suspected to be part of the cause of the signalling failurewhich may have led to the accident in the Severn tunnel on 7 December.

Mr. Freeman : The accident is being investigated both internally by British Rail and independently by the Health and Safety Executive's HM railway inspectorate. The cable in question has now been examined in detail by engineers from both organisations working together in a British railways laboratory.

Network SouthEast

Sir John Stanley : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) pursuant to his reply to the right hon. Member for Tonbridge and Malling on 19 December, Official Report , column 239 , when he expects the individual objectives for all 15 of the Network SouthEast route groups to be set under the British Rail passengers charter ; and who will be the judge and against what criteria as to whether the service delivered falls significantly short of published standards. (2) whether he has set the new performance standards for the Kent coastal services in 1992 that his hon. Friend the Minister for Public Transport said in the House on 12 December, Official Report, column 1143, that he would be setting from 1 January ; and whether he will publish those standards.

Mr. Freeman : The individual performance targets for each of the 15 route groups of Network SouthEast and the related compensation arrangements will be set outin the BR passengers charter shortly. Monitoring of performance already occurs and the targets will apply from January 1992.


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Job Applicants (Expenses)

Mr. Wallace : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport in what circumstances his Department is willing to pay reasonable travelling expenses for applicants to attend job or recruitment board interviews ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. McLoughlin : My Department pays reasonable travelling expenses to applicants for many jobs in the Department. For clerical and secretarial posts, recruitment tends to be from the local area, with less need to pay travelling expenses.

Channel Tunnel

Mr. Trotter : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what progress has been made in ordering the trains for the north of London daytime passenger services through the channel tunnel.

Mr. Freeman : The seven train sets needed for the north of London daytime channel tunnel services were ordered by the railways on 18 December 1991.

Vehicle Excise Duty

Mr. Stevens : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when the implementation report of the 1990 efficiency scrutiny of vehicle excise duty enforcement will be available.

Mr. Chope : I have today placed copies of the scrutiny implementation report in the Libraries of both Houses. The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency has made good progress in putting into practice the 28 main recommendations. The number of VED evaders caught and penalised through out-of-court settlements has increased by more than 30 per cent. over the past two years and 420,000 offenders will be brought to book in the present financial year. Further efficiency benefits currently under development will be included in a follow up report to be produced in 12 months' time.

Road Schemes

Sir John Stanley : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether he will be issuing for consultation the criteria he proposes to use in exercising his discretionary power under section 62 of the Planning and Compensation Act 1991 to acquire property which is seriously affected by his Department's road schemes ; and whether he expects to make the criteria public before the end of 1991.

Mr. Chope [pursuant to his reply, 21 November 1991, c. 237.] : My right hon. Friend will use the new power of earlier and wider acquisition to alleviate hardship by buying off-line property which in his opinion is suffering from serious "blight by proximity". Until now property not likely to be needed for a scheme could be acquired only if conditions during construction or after road opening would be intolerable. Acquisition will be from as early as the announcement of the preferred route. Each case will be considered on its merits, but as a guideline we would normally expect qualifying properties to lie within about 100 m of the centre of the road.

The other guidelines are as follows :

(a) Where it would be intolerable for the occupier to remain in the property during works or once the


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road is open the vendor must show that he has made reasonable efforts to sell. The property must have been on offer for at least 20 weeks at a reasonable price and have been impossible to sell other than at a price substantially lower than that for which it might have been expected to be sold but for the scheme. Normally the difference should amount to not less than 5 per cent.

(b) Therre are a variety of reasons why a vendor might need to move without delay, and where they appear cogent, they should be accepted. In the case of owner occupiers of dwellings guidelines set out the following main types of reason which should be accepted : (

(i) acquisition of a job outside reasonable commuting distance when unemployed (what is reasonable under this and the next head will vary with the circumstances, including the means of the individual) ; (

(ii) acquisition of a different job outside reasonable commuting distance (it is undesirable for blight to impede job mobility) ; (

(iii) need to move for medical reasons, including need to look after an elderly relative in a different sort of house ;

(iv) need to provide for growing family (primarily to be considered in relation to bedrooms--it is undesirable for growing children of different sexes to share) ;

(v) need to realise assets, perhaps because of serious financial difficulties or dissolution of marriage.

PRIME MINISTER

Oxleas Wood

Mr. Simon Hughes : To ask the Prime Minister when he last visited Oxleas Wood, south-east London ; and if he will make a statement. The Prime Minister : I have not visited Oxleas Wood.

European Union

Mr. Spearing : To ask the Prime Minister, pursuant to his answer of 13 January, Official Report, column 470, concerning the inclusion in the draft treaty of European union of a reference to the role and significance of European parties, when he expects to receive a draft formulation from the presidency ; when he expects to lay this before Parliament ; and what is the objective of the provision.

The Prime Minister : The Portuguese presidency has proposed the following draft treaty article :

"Political parties at European level are important as a factor for integration within the Union. They contribute to forming a European awareness and to expressing the political will of the citizens of the Union".

Discussion is continuing in Brussels as to where this article should appear in the treaty. This is one of a number of technical points which will be settled before signature in early February. The text of the treaty will be published in the normal way after signature.

Advisory Council on Science and Technology

Dr. Bray : To ask the Prime Minister if he will list the current members of the Advisory Council on Science and Technology ; if he will give the date of their original appointment ; and what is the date on which their current term of office will end.


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The Prime Minister : The current members of the Advisory Council on Science and Technology are as listed. In addition, the chief scientific adviser, Cabinet Office, Professor William Stewart, attends council meetings. Departmental chief scientists/scientific advisers are also invited to attend most meetings.


Name                                |Date of     |Appointment              

                                    |original    |ends                     

                                    |appointment                           

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

Sir Robin Nicholson (Chairman)      |July 1990   |July 1993                

    Executive Director, Pilkington                                         

    plc                                                                    

Professor Roy Anderson              |July 1989   |July 1992                

    Department of Pure & Applied                                           

    Biology Imperial College of                                            

    Science, Technology and                                                

    Medicine                                                               

Professor Sir Michael Atiyah        |July 1991   |July 1994                

    President, The Royal Society                                           

Professor Michael Brady             |July 1990   |July 1993                

    Department of Engineering                                              

    Science, University of Oxford                                          

Lord Chilver                        |May 1989    |<1>n/a                   

    Chairman, Universities                                                 

    Funding Council                                                        

Dr. Peter Doyle                     |July 1989   |July 1992                

    Director of Research and                                               

    Technology, Imperial Chemical                                          

    Industries plc                                                         

Mr. Ian Harvey                      |July 1989   |July 1992                

    Chief Executive, British                                               

    Technology Group                                                       

Mr. Keith Henry                     |July 1991   |July 1994                

    Chief Executive, Brown and                                             

    Root Ltd.                                                              

Sir Graham Hills                    |July 1987   |<2>July 1993             

    Past Principal of University of                                        

    Strathclyde                                                            

Dr. Nigel Horne                     |July 1990   |July 1993                

    Head of IT Practice, KPMG                                              

    Management Consulting                                                  

Professor Christopher Llewellyn     |July 1989   |July 1992                

    Smith, Chairman of Physics,                                            

    University of Oxford                                                   

Professor Leonard Maunder           |July 1987   |July 1993<2>             

    Department of Mechanical,                                              

    Materials and Manufacturing                                            

    Engineering, University of                                             

    Newcastle-upon-Tyne                                                    

Professor Sir David Phillips        |July 1987   |<1>n/a                   

    Chairman, Advisory Board for                                           

    the Research Councils                                                  

Professor Gareth Roberts            |July 1989   |July 1992                

    Vice Chancellor, University of                                         

    Sheffield                                                              

Sir Alfred Shepperd                 |July 1989   |July 1992                

    Former Chairman and Chief                                              

    Executive, Wellcome plc                                                

Dr. David Smith                     |July 1987   |<2>July 1993             

    Consultant                                                             

Dr. William Wilkinson               |July 1990   |July 1993                

    Deputy Chief Executive,                                                

    British Nuclear Fuels plc                                              

Sir Martin Wood                     |July 1990   |July 1993                

    Deputy Chairman, Oxford                                                

    Instruments Group plc                                                  

<1> Lord Chilver and Professor Sir David Phillips are ex-officio           

members in their capacities as chairman of the Universities Funding        

Council and Chairman of the Advisory Board for the Research                

Councils respectively.                                                     

<2> Members in their second term.                                          

Staff Salaries

Mr. Winnick : To ask the Prime Minister if he will list the number of those employed in his office, their position and the salary range in each case, excluding secretarial and clerical staff.

The Prime Minister : The number of those currently employed in my office excluding Secretarial and clerical staff and paid from public funds are :--


Positions Held                             |Grade                        

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

 1 Principal Private Secretary             |Grade 2                      

 1 Private Secretary-Overseas Affairs      |Grade 3                      

 1 Private Secretary-Economic Affairs      |Grade 5                      

 1 Private Secretary-Parliamentary Affairs |Grade 7                      

 1 Private Secretary-Home Affairs          |Grade 7                      

 1 Secretary for Appointments              |Grade 5                      

 1 Chief Press Officer                     |Grade 3                      

 1 Deputy Chief Press Officer              |Grade 5                      

 1 Policy Adviser                          |Grade 3                      

 1 Policy Adviser                          |Grade 5                      

 1 Security Co-ordinator                   |Grade 7                      

 2 Assistant Private Secretaries           |SEO                          

 1 Parliamentary Clerk                     |HEO                          

 5 Special Advisers                        |-                            

 3 Senior Information Officers             |-                            

 4 Higher Executive Officers               |-                            

11 Executive Officers                      |-                            

It is not our practice to reveal the salaries of individual advisers as they are individually negotiated in relation to previous outside earnings and are therefore confidential. The rest are paid in accordance with the civil service pay scales.

Televisions

Mr. Winnick : To ask the Prime Minister how many television sets there are at 10 Downing street ; and how many television licences are held for 10 Downing street.

The Prime Minister : Nineteen television sets are currently in use at 10 Downing Street. No licence fees are payable for television sets on Crown property used for Government purposes.

EDUCATION AND SCIENCE

Research Councils

Dr. Bray : To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will list the current members of (a) the Medical Research Council, (b) the Science and Engineering Research Council, (c) the Economic and Social Research Council, (d) the Natural Environment Research Council, (e) the Agriculture and Food Research Council and (f) the Advisory Board for the Research Councils ; if he will give the date of their original appointment ; and if he will detail the date on which their current terms of office will end.

Mr. Alan Howarth : The information is as follows :


Medical Research Council                                                                

Members                              |Date of original|Date term                        

                                     |appointment     |of office ends                   

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

Sir David Plastow (Chairman)         |October 1990    |September 1994                   

Dr. D. A. Rees FRS                   |October 1987    |July 1995                        

Professor I. V. Allen                |August 1989     |July 1993                        

Professor D. T. Baird                |September 1989  |July 1993                        

Mr. R. Bauman                        |November 1990   |July 1994                        

Professor C. L. Berry                |August 1990     |July 1994                        

Professor M. Bobrow                  |November 1988   |July 1994                        

Dr. K. C. Calman                     |January 1989    |-<1>                             

Sir Michael Carlisle                 |November 1991   |July 1995                        

Dr. J. T. Carter                     |July 1983       |July 1995                        

Dr. P. Doyle                         |August 1990     |July 1994                        

Professor C. R. W. Edwards           |August 1991     |July 1995                        

Professor J. G. Evans                |January 1992    |July 1995                        

Professor R. E. Kendell              |October 1991    |-<1>                             

Sir Aaron Klug FRS                   |August 1990     |July 1994                        

Emma Nicholson MP                    |August 1991     |July 1995                        

Professor M. Peckham                 |January 1991    |-<1>                             

Professor G. K. Radda FRS            |November 1988   |July 1992                        

Professor Sir Michael Rutter CBE FRS |August 1991     |July 1995                        

Professor Sir Joseph Smith           |November 1988   |July 1992                        


Science and Engineering Research Council                                            

Members                          |Date of original|Date term                        

                                 |appointment     |of office ends                   

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

Sir Mark Richmond FRS (Chairman) |October 1990    |September 1995                   

Professor P. Burke FRS           |August 1989     |July 1993                        

Dr. R. F. Coleman CB             |June 1987       |July 1994                        

Dr. D. A. Davis                  |August 1989     |July 1993                        

Professor A. Donnachie           |August 1989     |July 1993                        

Mr. G. Fairtlough                |August 1989     |July 1993                        

Dr. K. W. Gray CBE               |September 1991  |July 1995                        

Professor R. E. Hester           |July 1990       |July 1994                        

Sir Gordon Hogginson FEng        |August 1989     |July 1993                        

Professor C. Humphreys           |August 1988     |July 1992                        

Dr. S. D. Iverson                |September1991   |July 1995                        

Dr. A. Ledwith                   |February 1990   |July 1993                        

Dr. J. S. Mason                  |July 1990       |July 1994                        

Mr. D. P. Nash                   |August 1988     |July 1992                        

Professor R. Oxburgh FRS         |September 1988  |July 1992                        

Professor J. T. Stuart FRS       |August 1989     |July 1993                        

Dr. J. O. Thomas FRS             |July 1990       |July 1994                        

Professor D. J. Wallace FRS      |August 1990     |July 1994                        

Professor A. W. Wolfendale FRS   |August 1988     |July 1992                        


Economic and Social Research Council                                                

Members                          |Date of original|Date term                        

                                 |appointment     |of office ends                   

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

Professor H. J. Newby (Chairman) |October 1988    |September 1992                   

Dr. D. Anderson                  |September 1989  |July 1993                        

Professor M. Anderson            |August 1990     |July 1993                        

Professor J. M. Ashworth         |September 1989  |July 1993                        

Professor J. Beaumont            |September 1989  |July 1993                        

Mr. M. Bichard                   |September 1989  |July 1992                        

Mrs. E. J. Filkin                |August 1990     |July 1994                        

Nigel Forman MP                  |August 1991     |August 1995                      

Mr. J. Fox                       |August 1990     |July 1994                        

Miss C. Hancock                  |August 1991     |August 1995                      

Professor D. Hargreaves          |August 1991     |August 1995                      

Professor A. Hay                 |August 1990     |July 1994                        

Professor L. C. Hunter CBE       |September 1989  |July 1992                        

Professor D. Kavanagh            |August 1991     |July 1995                        

Mr. H. Liesner                   |December 1989   |July 1992                        

Professor S. J. Nickell          |August 1990     |July 1994                        

Mr. G. T. Pepper                 |December 1989   |July 1993                        

Professor D. K. Stout            |March 1989      |July 1992                        

Mrs. M. Tuck CBE                 |August 1990     |July 1994                        

Professor P. Warr                |September 1989  |July 1992                        


Natural Environment Research Council                                                     

Members                               |Date of original|Date term                        

                                      |appointment     |of office ends                   

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

Professor J. L. Knill (Chairman) FEng |October 1988    |September 1993                   

Dr. P. J. Bunyan                      |July 1991       |-<1>                             

Professor W. G. Chaloner FRS          |August 1991     |July 1994                        

Lord Chorley                          |August 1988     |July 1994                        

Dr. R. F. Coleman CB                  |June 1987       |-<1>                             

Professor C. D. Curtis                |August 1990     |July 1993                        

Dr. W. D. Evans                       |December 1989   |-<1>                             

Dr. D. J. Fisk                        |September 1987  |-<1>                             

Dr. I. J. Graham-Bryce                |August 1989     |July 1992                        

Professor J. S. Gray                  |August 1986     |July 1992                        

Professor M. P. Hassell FRS           |August 1991     |July 1994                        

Professor B. J. Hoskins FRS           |August 1988     |July 1994                        

Professor P. S. Liss                  |August 1990     |July 1993                        

Professor J. G. Ramsay FRS            |August 1989     |July 1992                        

Professor D. A. Richie                |August 1990     |July 1993                        

Mr. D. G. M. Roberts CBE              |August 1987     |July 1993                        

Dr. O. Rogne                          |August 1990     |July 1993                        

Professor J. I. Sprent                |August 1991     |July 1994                        

Professor S. A. Thorpe FRS            |August 1991     |July 1994                        

Professor D. Wood                     |August 1987     |July 1993                        


Agricultural and Food Research Council                                               

Members                           |Date of original|Date term                        

                                  |appointment     |of office ends                   

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

Sir Alistair Grant (Chairman)     |September 1990  |August 1995                      

Professor T. L. Blundell FRS      |January 1991    |December 1995                    

Dr. P. J. Bunyan                  |January 1990    |-<1>                             

Professor E. C. D. Cocking FRS    |August 1990     |July 1994                        

Professor J. R. Coggins           |August 1990     |July 1994                        

Professor J. M. M. Cunningham CBE |April 1987      |May 1993                         

Sir Sam Edwards FRS               |August 1990     |July 1994                        

Dr. D. A. Evans                   |October 1989    |July 1992                        

Mr. D. F. R. George               |October 1989    |July 1992                        

Mr. B. Gill                       |August 1991     |July 1995                        

Mr. L. P. Hamilton CB             |May 1984        |-<1>                             

Professor R. M. Hicks             |August 1991     |July 1995                        

Professor G. Horn FRS             |August 1991     |July 1995                        

Roger Knapman MP                  |January 1991    |July 1994                        

Professor J. R. Krebs FRS         |November 1988   |July 1995                        

Professor C. J. Leaver            |August 1990     |July 1994                        

Professor T. A. Mansfield FRS     |October 1989    |July 1992                        

Mr. J. L. C. Provan               |August 1990     |July 1994                        

Mr. G. T. Pryce                   |June 1986       |July 1994                        

Dr. D. W. F. Shannon              |September 1986  |-<1>                             

Professor W. V. Shaw              |August 1990     |July 1994                        


Advisory Board for the Research Councils                                               

Members                             |Date of original|Date term                        

                                    |appointment     |of office ends                   

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

Professor Sir David Phillips FRS    |January 1983    |March 1993                       

(Chairman)                                                                             

Professor Sir Eric Ash CBE FRS FEng |January 1989    |March 1992                       

Professor T. Blundell FRS<2>        |January 1991    |September 1995                   

Dr. A. S. Ganguly                   |May 1991        |March 1994                       

Professor R. L. Gardner FRS         |April 1990      |March 1992                       

Professor M. Hart FRS               |April 1990      |March 1993                       

Professor J. L. Knill<2> FEng       |October 1988    |September 1993                   

Sir Mark Richmond FRS<2>            |October 1990    |September 1995                   

Professor H. J. Newby               |October 1988    |September 1992                   

Dr. D. A. Rees FRS<2>               |October 1987    |-                                

Professor I. A. Shanks              |April 1990      |March 1993                       

<1> Not more than four members of the Medical Research Council, Natural Environment    

Research Council and Scienec and Engineering                                           

Research Council are appointed by the Secretary of State for Education and Science on  

the nomination of such Ministers of the                                                

Government as the Secretary of State shall determine. Up to four members of the        

Agriculture and Food Research Council are appointed                                    

by the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food and up to two members by the       

Secretary of State for Scotland. With the exception                                    

of the Science and Engineering Research Council, in the case of members who are        

officials of Government Departments their length of                                    

office is not specified.                                                               

<2> Ex-officio members.                                                                




Column 665

Ecstasy

Mr. Rathbone : To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science what steps he has taken to inform drugs education co-ordinators and teachers about ecstasy, its symptoms and its harmful effects.

Mr. Atkins : We believe that health (formerly drugs) education co- ordinators are generally well-informed about the nature and effects of ecstasy, and are briefing teachers as necessary. It is not the Department's normal practice to distribute information on particular drugs, but we should be prepared to consider doing so if a need became apparent.

Education Reform

Mr. Matthew Taylor : To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will list those he has consulted regarding (a) changes to GCSE coursework requirements, (b) the plans for further education in the Further and Higher Education Bill, (c) the plans for the schools inspectorate in the Education (Schools) Bill and (d) the plans for higher education in the Further and Higher Education Bill.

Mr. Eggar : My right hon. Friend consulted the School Examinations and Assessment Council (SEAC), which has access to the advice of examining bodies and teachers, on changes to GCSE coursework requirements.

The plans for further education underlying part I of the Further and Higher Education Bill were set out in the White Paper "Education and Training for the 21st Century" (Cm 1536). This contained an open invitation to interested parties to comment.

The plans for school inspection were set out in the parents charter, which also contained an open invitation to comment. In addition, the Department of Education and Science wrote to local education authorities and relevant national bodies inviting comments on the inspection proposals. A full list is attached to the Department's letter of 2 October, a copy of which has been placed in the Library of the House.

The plans for higher education underlying part II of the Further and Higher Education Bill were set out in the White Paper "Higher Education : a New Framework" (Cm. 1541). Although the White Paper did not itself invite comments, the Government have since consulted higher education institutions and their representatives on various aspects of the new framework, as foreshadowed by the White Paper.

Mexico (Ministerial Visit)

Mr. Straw : To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science what was the purpose of his recent visit to Mexico ; who accompanied him in any official capacity ; and what was the total cost to the Exchequer for him and those with him.

Mr. Kenneth Clarke : My visit was in response to an invitation from the Mexican Government. The Mexican Government are giving very high priority to the modernisation of their education system and they wished to share our experience of education reform particularly our policies to raise standards and improve efficiency in post-school education and training. I was also able to assist British suppliers of educational goods and services to


Column 666

benefit from this expanding market. I had meetings with President Salinas and with the Foreign Secretary and the Education Secretary of the Mexican Government and with several state governors.

I was accompanied by a departmental private secretary and a senior official of my department. The breakdown of our costs for the visit is as follows :

--Transport to Mexico and within Mexico : £9,739

--Accommodation and subsistence in the British Embassy and in hotels : £487

--Other costs : £453

I was also accompanied for part of the trip by three British businessmen who covered their own costs.

Great Britain Sports Council

Mr. Pendry : To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science what is the current number of staff employed by the Great Britain Sports Council ; and what additional numbers of staff over this number he has assumed in proposing a separate Sports Council for England and the United Kingdom Sports Commission.

Mr. Atkins : A total of 542 staff are currently employed by the GB Sports Council. I see no case for additional staff to be employed as a result of its re-structuring.

Mr. Pendry : To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will publish a table setting out the present functions of the Great Britain Sports Council, together with an indication of (a) which of these functions will be carried out solely by the proposed United Kingdom Sports Commission, (b) which of these functions will be carried out solely by the proposed Sports Council for England, (c) which of these functions will be jointly carried out by the proposed United Kingdom Sports Commission and the proposed Sports Council for England and (d) which functions of the proposed United Kingdom Sports Commission and the proposed Sports Council for England are not currently undertaken by the Great Britain Sports Council.

Mr. Atkins : The functions of the Great Britain Sports Council are set out in general terms in its Royal Charter. Annexes A and B of "Sport and Active Recreation" published in December set out the functions of the United Kingdom Sports Commission and the Sports Council for England respectively. These are based on the functions of the Great Britain Sports Council.

School Playing Fields

Mr. Pendry : To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science, further to his answer of 13 January, Official Report, column 455, if he will make it his policy to request and consider responses to his consultation letter on the disposal of school playing fields from the Sports Council, the Central Council of Physical Recreation, the National Playing Fields Association and the regional councils for sport and recreation before announcing the conclusions of his consultation exercise on this matter.

Mr. Atkins : All these organisations have been sent copies of the consultation letter for information and are free to comment before any announcement is made on the conclusions of this consultation exercise.


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