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Project Sponsorship

Mr. Beith: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry which of her Department's projects have received sponsorship since 1997, including (a) details of the sponsor, (b) the nature of the project, (c) the date of the project, (d) the total cost of the project and (e) the amount of money involved in the sponsorship deal.[48393]

Ms Hewitt: In line with the Government's commitment in its response to the Sixth Report from the Committee on Standards in Public Life, details of individual amounts of sponsorship valued at more than £5,000 will be disclosed in departmental Annual Reports.

EU Structural Funding

Mr. Andrew Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, pursuant to the answer of 26 March 2002, ref. 44277/44278, what percentage of the population of (a) each NUTS 2 area and (b) each shire county, unitary authority London borough or metropolitan borough which is not terminous with a NUTS 2 area lies within an area holding EU objective 2 status. [48388]

Alan Johnson: The information requested is available for NUTS areas 1–4, and has been placed in the Libraries of the House.

Mr. Beith: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what (a) amount and (b) proportion of the current overall EU Objective 2 budget for the UK has been (i) committed and (ii) spent in each of the UK Objective 2 regions. [45816]

Alan Johnson [holding answer 10 April 2002]: The information requested is not held centrally.

As soon as the information has been collated I will write to the hon. Member and place a copy of that letter in the Libraries of the House.

Miss Melanie Johnson: The Insolvency Service, in its corporate Plan 2001–04, includes the objective to "develop policy and legislative solutions needed to support and underpin a modern commercial and financial infrastructure and which reflect both national and global changes in economic and business dynamics, and perceptions and expectations of society".

In addition, the Insolvency Service undertakes or commissions research to inform both the development of policy and the formulation of operational strategy.

Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (1) what the objectives are of the Insolvency Service; [42083]

Miss Melanie Johnson: The Insolvency Service objectives are set out in its published Corporate Plan 2001–04 a copy of which has been placed in the Libraries of the House.

Job No: CW0126 Folios: 000-000Operator: Operator Number 3. Date: 11/04/02

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Merchant Ships (Steel)

Dr. Iddon: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (1) if she will ban the use of grade A steel for the construction of merchant ships. [47571]

Mr. Jamieson: I have been asked to reply.

The toughness grades of steel used in shipbuilding are regulated by the International Association of Classification Societies through their unified requirement UR S6. The current version of UR S6 permits limited use of grade A mild steel, as well as grade AH high tensile steel, in structures contributing to overall strength.

This standard limits the use of grades A and AH steels according to their rolled thickness and mean air temperatures in expected area of operation, requiring grades with a higher standard of fracture toughness for high thickness and low temperature.

There are no plans to ban the use of grade A mild steel or to reappraise the use of high tensile steels for merchant ship construction, given the fracture toughness now achieved with grades A and AH.


Human Rights Act

Mr. Bercow: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department how many cases have been brought against his Department under the Human Rights Act 1998; and what has been the cost in (a) legal fees to defend cases and (b) compensation payments.[45057]

Mr. Wills: We do not collect central records of all cases in which the Human Rights Act 1998 is relied on. Human rights are now integrated in the general law and are rarely the sole basis for a challenge. We do monitor centrally those cases which we consider may be of particular significance to this department. We have recorded 29 cases to date.

We do not collect separate information centrally about the costs to public funds, legal fees or compensation payments in cases which include a human rights issue. In most cases it will be difficult to identify costs referable to the human rights element.


Parliamentary Questions

Mr. Garnier: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department when he will answer the quesion tabled by the hon. and learned Member for Harborough on 26 February regarding the closure of courts. [45686]

Mr. Wills: I am sorry that your question tabled on 26 February was not answered. You ask how many (a) county courts, (b) crown courts and (c) magistates' courts have been closed in each year since 1 May 1997. Based on the latest survey information the numbers of courts closed since that date are:

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YearMagistrates' CourtsCounty CourtsCrown Court Centres

1 from 1 May 1997

2 to date of answer

Specific details of the Magistrates' courthouses and county courts closed are given in the attached tables.

Court Closures 1997–2002

CourtDate of ClosurePost Closure Jurisidiction
Andover230 June 1997Basingstoke, Salisbury, Winchester
Braintree+1 December 1997Chelmsford, Harlow and Colchester
Bishop's Stortford1 December 1997Cambridge, Harlow and Hitchin
Alnwick+15 December 1997Morpeth
Blyth15 December 1997Morpeth
Berwick upon Tweed 115 December 1997Amalgamated with Morpeth
Bridlington+24 December 1997Scarborough
Rochdale7 September 1998Oldham and Rawtenstall
Holywell*7 September 1998Rhyl and Chester. * (Caller Office formally closed wef 17 January 2002)
Camborne and Redruth+24 December 1998Penzance
Hemel Hempstead+24 December 1998Aylesbury, Luton and Watford
West Bromwich24 December 1998Birmingham, Dudley and Walsall
Loughborough31 December 1998Derby, Leicester and Nottingham
Corby+ (local sittings on trial basis to July 1999)1 March 1999Kettering and Peterborough
Bridgewater+20 December 1999Taunton
Great Yarmouth+31 January 2000Lowestoft and Norwich
Grays Thurrock31 January 2000Basildon
Lichfield3 July 2000Burton on Trent, Stafford, Tamworth and Walsall
Caerphilly30 November 2000Cardiff and Blackwood
Workington2 January 2001Whitehaven
Chepstow+1 April 2002Newport, Hereford and Gloucester
Monmouth1 April 2002Newport, Hereford and Gloucester

218 courts left when Chepstow and Monmouth courts closed.

1 courts with caller office status

2 courts where Circuit Administrators have undertaken to continue local District Judge sittings in suitable accommodation subject to demand

11 Apr 2002 : Column 544W

Magistrates' Courts

Magistrates' CourthouseClosure Date
Bromsgrove31 May 1997
Ledbury31 May 1997
Hebburn5 June 1997
South Shields (Kepple Street)5 June 1997
Bargoed Chippenham (Market Place)30 June 1997
Monmouth30 June 1997
Pontlottyn30 June 1997
Pontypool30 June 1997
Ashton under Lyne (Manchester Road)31 August 1997
Duckinsfield31 August 1997
Thorne31 August 1997
Braintree31 December 1997
Clacton on Sea31 December 1997
Saffron Walden31 December 1997
Stokesley31 December 1997
Malton6 February 1998
Appleby31 March 1998
Bishop's Stortford31 March 1998
Chertsey31 March 1998
Farnham31 March 1998
Hatfield31 March 1998
Hitchin31 March 1998
Market Rasen31 March 1998
Marlborough Street31 March 1998
Oxted31 March 1998
Lutterworth31 July 1998
Ripon1 August 1998
Barnard Castle31 December 1998
Clerkenwell31 December 1998
Corwen31 December 1998
Diss31 December 1998
Felixstowe31 December 1998
Haverhill31 December 1998
Lytham31 December 1998
Newmarket31 December 1998
Saxmundham31 December 1998
Sheerness31 December 1998
Stowmarket31 December 1998
West Malling31 December 1998
Abingdon31 March 1999
Christchuch31 March 1999
Henley on Thames31 March 1999
Morley31 March 1999
Pudsey31 March 1999
Windsor31 March 1999
Stow on the Wold30 June 1999
March31 December 1999
Apmthill1 January 2000
Biggleswade1 January 2000
Apmthill1 January 2000
Dunstable1 January 2000
Leighton Buzzard1 January 2000
Lichfield31 March 2000
Keighley1 April 2000
Keswick30 April 2000
Appleby31 May 2000
Windermere31 May 2000
Wigton31 May 2000
Gravesend9 June 2000
Wootton Bassett2 October 2000
Abergele31 December 2000
Alfreton1 January 2001
Ashbourne1 January 2001
Bakewell1 January 2001
Matlock1 January 2001
Leigh31 March 2001
Middleton31 March 2001
Leek31 March 2001
Worcester31 March 2001
Macclesfield Park Green1 April 2001
Warrington Patten Hall1 April 2001
Bideford30 April 2001
Exmouth30 April 2001
Kingsbridge30 April 2001
South Molton30 April 2001
Teignmouth30 April 2001
Tavistock30 April 2001
Axminster4 May 2001
Tiverton4 May 2001
Newquay30 June 2001
Womborne31 August 2001
Southampton (Commercial Road)31 August 2001
Gillingham30 September 2001
Bridlington9 November 2001
Brough9 November 2001
Driffield9 November 2001
Hull (Guildhall)9 November 2001
Hull (Lowgate)9 November 2001
Pocklington9 November 2001
Withernsea9 November 2001

11 Apr 2002 : Column 545W

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