Previous Section Index Home Page

Army Training Estate

Mrs. Gilroy: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will make a statement on the outcome of the Army training estate site utility review. [160354]

Dr. Moonie: As I said in my answer to my hon. Friend the Member for Wigan (Mr. Turner) on 23 May 2000, Official Report, column 459W, the Ministry of Defence has been conducting a site utility review (SUR) of the Army training estate to identify training areas, camps and ranges which are no longer required in order that they can be closed or sold, thereby saving maintenance costs and where possible generally revenue.

2 May 2001 : Column: 642W

The SUR has now been completed, and 21 sites have been identified for disposal. They are as follows:

Site for disposalLocation
Nesscliffe--BrookleaWest Midlands
Nesscliffe--TanglewoodWest Midlands
Kinmel Park (part of)Wales
Hamsterley ForestNorth East
Langdale ForestNorth East
Ripon South ParksNorth East
Stang ForestNorth East
Fridaywood Farm BuildingsEast
Stonebridge CampEast
Flat 1 & 2, Grooms Cottage, HawleyHome Counties
Rand Plantation, AshHome Counties
Land at Foxhills, AshHome Counties
Land at Junction 4a, M3Home Counties
Binhill RangeScotland
Marne Training AreaNorth East
Rowlston RangeNorth East
Halton Training Camp(9)North West
Pilning RangeSouth West
Wyke Regis Tented Camp Area(10)South West
Quorn Terrace/Entrance Longmoor CampHome counties

(9) Part of

(10) Tented camp area only

The Ministry of Defence expects to receive between £10 million and £18 million for the sale of the sites listed. A proportion of this, some £6.8 million, will be used to replace training facilities currently at Rowlston range, Halton training camp and Longmoor camp.

Reserve Forces (Pensions)

Mr. Cawsey: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence when regulations will be made governing the entitlement of members of the reserve forces to attributable pensions benefits. [160355]

Dr. Moonie: My hon. Friend the Minister of State for the Armed Forces announced on 18 May 2000, Official Report, columns 200-01W, that the Department had been reviewing its policy on attributable benefits for members of the reserve forces, in particular with regard to those who served in the Gulf conflict. Under the existing regulations, awards are made to individuals who were medically discharged when demobilised from active service. As a result of the review, it was agreed that the eligibility would be extended to reservists who were medically discharged from the reserve forces at other times.

I am therefore pleased to announce that the new regulations, entitled the "Reserve Forces (Attributable Benefits Etc) Regulations 2001", have now been made and came into force on 30 April 2001. We will make payments under these regulations as soon as practicable after this date.

Defence Geographic and

Imagery Intelligence Agency

Mr. Michael J. Foster: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what key targets have been set for the Defence Geographic and Imagery Intelligence Agency for 2001-02. [160356]

2 May 2001 : Column: 643W

Mr. Spellar: The role of the Defence Geographic and Imagery Intelligence Agency is to provide imagery intelligence and geographic support to defence policy, operations and training; to meet customer requirements for imagery intelligence and geographic support in accordance with defence priorities; to maintain and develop agency capabilities and readiness in line with future defence requirements; and to become progressively more efficient, while improving the quality and delivery of our products and services. The key targets for the agency for the 12 months from April 2001 are:

Chilean Military

Mr. Corbyn: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list all visits to the UK since October 1998 by Chilean military officers. [158990]

Mr. Hoon [holding answer 26 April 2001]: We do not hold records of visits which Chilean military officers may have made to the UK for private purposes. Since October 1998, there have been four official visits to the UK by Chilean military officers which included contact with the UK Government. These are:

2 May 2001 : Column: 644W

In addition, since October 1998 four Chilean officers have been present in the UK for various lengths of time attending military training courses.

Nuclear Defence Policy

Mr. Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, pursuant to his answer to the hon. Member for Islington, North (Mr. Corbyn) of 23 April 2001, Official Report, column 97W, on UK nuclear defence policy, if he will place in the Library the material on which he based his reply on the compatibility between the non- proliferation treaty and the 1958 agreement. [159756]

Mr. Hoon: Copies of the nuclear non-proliferation treaty (NPT) and the UK/US mutual defence agreement (MDA), with its subsequent amendments, are already held in the Library of the House.

Article I of the NPT states that

The terms and conditions of the 1958 UK/US MDA, and subsequent amendments, allow for the transfer of special nuclear materials between the UK and US. These movements are carried out in accordance with stringent safety procedures and, since they do not involve nuclear weapons or devices, they do not contravene the NPT.

Foot and Mouth

Mr. Gale: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence on what date veterinary surgeons from the RAVC were first made available for duties related to foot and mouth disease; and how many Army veterinary surgeons were made available (a) on that date and (b) subsequently. [159818]

Mr. Spellar [holding answer 1 May 2001]: The first deployment of armed forces personnel in support of MAFF was of two Royal Army Veterinary Corps vets and a small number of logistics advisers on 16 March. The number of vets was subsequently increased to four. The current number deployed is three.

MV Etireno

Mr. Welsh: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what resources from his Department were put at the disposal of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office during the recent hunt for the MV Etireno. [159860]

Mr. Spellar: The Benin Government issued a request for assistance in searching for the MV Etireno on 16 April. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office asked the Ministry of Defence what assets were available. We were able to offer the services of HMS Glasgow, a type 42 destroyer, and RFA Black Rover, a small ship tanker.

2 May 2001 : Column: 645W

This response was provided on the same day. The vessels were in the area as part of their patrol programme. Before they could reach the search area, the MV Etireno docked in Cotonou in the early hours of 17 April. We were subsequently informed by the Benin authorities that there was no further requirement for HMS Glasgow and RFA Black Rover.

Next Section Index Home Page