6 Feb 2001 : Column: 443W

Written Answers to Questions

Tuesday 6 February 2001



Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what development projects her Department supports which involve the protection of apes. [148834]

Clare Short: Our primary aim is poverty reduction. We are not directly involved in ape protection projects. The sustainable management of ecosystems is important in improving poor peoples' livelihood and in some cases contributes to the conservation of apes and their habitats, principally through support for sustainable forest management. For example, we have recently agreed a £25 million programme to tackle illegal exploitation of forest resources in Indonesia.


Mr. Streeter: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development for what reasons her Department's support for the Romania Information Centre has ceased. [147212]

Clare Short: We have supported the Romanian Information Centre since 1993. This funding was not intended to be indefinite in duration and the centre has been encouraged for some years to plan for self-sustainability. An independent report, a copy of which is being placed in the Library of the House, did not make a convincing case that the centre could achieve self- sustainability. We decided therefore that we should focus our resources on the poverty challenges to be tackled in Romania.


CPS (Victim Consultation)

Miss Widdecombe: To ask the Solicitor-General what (a) statutory and (b) non-statutory duties there are on

6 Feb 2001 : Column: 444W

(i) the CPS and (ii) the police to consult victims before dropping or downgrading charges. [148978]

The Solicitor-General: In relation to the duties of the Crown Prosecution Service I refer the right hon. Member to the answer given to the hon. Member for Buckingham (Mr. Bercow) on 30 January 2001, Official Report, column 112W, and that given to the hon. Member for Southwark, North and Bermondsey (Mr. Hughes) on 5 February 2001, Official Report, column 357W.

The police no longer have any power to drop or downgrade charges as the prosecution is in the hands of the Crown Prosecution Service. The 1996 Victim's Charter commits the police to keep victims informed of significant developments in a case--ie when a person has been charged, any decision to drop or substantially alter those charges, the date of trial and the final outcome of the case.

The CPS seeks the views of the police prior to making a decision to discontinue or substantially to alter charges. This procedure provides the opportunity for the police to consult the victim, in appropriate cases, before the final decision is made.

On 7 December 2000, the Attorney-General published new guidelines outlining the approach that should be adopted by a prosecution advocate when considering the acceptability of a defendant's plea. The guidelines emphasise that the prosecution should keep victims or victims' families attending court informed of developments in a case and, wherever practicable, speak with them so that their views and interests can be taken into account as part of the decision-making process.


Marriage Support

Mr. Willetts: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what bids have been received in each year since 1996 for funding for marriage support; how much each bid has been worth; which of the bids have been successful; and what is the total value of grants towards marriage and relationship support. [148482]

Jane Kennedy: The table sets out the Department's funding for marriage and relationship support since 1996. In general, funds have been allocated after negotiation, rather than as a result of a formal bidding process. The total funding will increase to £4.5 million in 2001-02, and to £5 million in 2002-03.

6 Feb 2001 : Column: 443W

Total funding for marriage and relationship support since 1996

Financial year
One Plus One63,401.65167,000.00171,843.00217,139.08270,000.00
Marriage Care163,770.00263,770.00271,419.00292,876.41333,516.00
Tavistock Marital Studies Institute375,435.00385,759.46396,946.00422,757.65486,161.00
Jewish Marriage Council16,912.0016,912.6041,912.0049,009.8048,313.00
Family Welfare Association23,458.2523,458.2524,138.0030,741.4599,925.00
Inter-Agency Co-operation--21,200.00------
London Marriage Guidance Council------50,000.00100,000.00
Parentline Plus------20,000.0060,000.00
One Plus One--134,720.0010,000.0014,700.0087,000.00
Marriage Care--67,214.0015,000.00----
Tavistock Marital Studies Institute--10,550.0010,550.00----
Family Welfare Association--72,550.0040,600.00----
Marriage Resource--138,128.00------
African Family Mediation Service and London Marriage Guidance--89,190.0021,680.00----
The Light House (Christian Care Ministry)--29,580.0029,580.00----
All Souls College--42,751.0035,864.00----
Oasis Media--National Marriage Week------16,291.3830,000.00
Community Family Projects--------30,000.00
Asian Family Counselling Service--------18,500.00

6 Feb 2001 : Column: 445W

6 Feb 2001 : Column: 445W


Lottery Grants (Scotland)

Mr. Donohoe: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport (1) what proportion of successful applications to each Lottery distribution body came from each Scottish local authority area in each year since the National Lottery began; [148282]

Kate Hoey: We have contacted the National Lottery distributing bodies to request the information required, and I will write to my hon. Friend as soon as it is available, placing copies of my letter in the Libraries of both Houses.

Mr. Donohoe: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what action he will take to reduce the geographical differences in the distribution of Lottery grants in Scotland; and if he will make a statement. [148284]

Kate Hoey: The Government are keen to see all parts of the United Kingdom receive a fair share of Lottery funding. Reforms introduced through the National Lottery Act 1998 are designed to encourage this. My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State also issued new policy directions which direct distributors to ensure that all parts of the country have access to funding, and to take into account the need to reduce economic and social deprivation.

6 Feb 2001 : Column: 446W

Ministers in the Scottish Executive can make directions and take other decisions about the Scottish operations of Lottery distributors where they relate to devolved policy areas. My Department and Lottery distributors commissioned research into the impact of the Lottery on the coalfields and other areas of low take-up and my right hon. Friend has established an action group to take forward the report's recommendations. Lottery distributors in Scotland participate in the work of the group, which also has the support of the Scottish Executive.

Mr. Robert Bourne

Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, pursuant to his answer of 16 January 2001, Official Report, column 135W, on what date he was first informed that Mr. Robert Bourne had made donations to the Islington, South and Finsbury Labour Party. [148565]

Mr. Chris Smith [holding answer 2 February 2001]: I was first informed of such donations when they were made, prior to becoming a Minister. In relation to subsequent events I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave him on 16 January 2001, Official Report, column 135W.

Next Section Index Home Page