31 Oct 2013 : Column 557W

Culture, Media and Sport

Arts: Young People

Helen Goodman: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport (1) how many 16 to 24-year-olds participated in or accessed (a) dance or singing, (b) playing a musical instrument or writing music, (c) theatre, (d) opera/musical theatre, (e) carnival or circus, (f) street art, (g) visual art and photography, (h) film or video, (i) craft, (j) creative writing and (k) another cultural event in each year between 2009-10 and 2012-13; [172957]

(2) how many school age children participated in or accessed (a) dance or singing, (b) playing a musical instrument or writing music, (c) theatre, (d) opera/musical theatre, (e) carnival or circus, (f) street art, (g) visual art and photography, (h) film or video, (i) craft, (j) creative writing and (k) another cultural event in each year between 2009-10 and 2012-13. [172956]

Mr Vaizey [holding answer 29 October 2013]: Data at this level of detail are not published and require special analysis, and in order to release these data to the same standard as other published Taking Part data (i.e. including significant testing) we would need more time, but will deposit it in the House of Commons Library as soon as we have run the analysis.

Broadband: Northamptonshire

Mr Hollobone: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what progress has been made in rolling out broadband to the (a) towns and (b) villages in Northamptonshire. [173265]

Mr Vaizey: The Northamptonshire project signed its contract with BT in March 2013 to upgrade around 53,000 premises to superfast broadband. The project is in the final stages of the detailed planning and survey phase and will shortly be entering the build phase with the first cabinet due to go live in early 2014.

Energy

Jason McCartney: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport how much her Department spent on (a) gas and (b) electricity in (i) 2010-11 and (ii) 2011-12. [172775]

Mrs Grant: The Department for Culture, Media and Sport spent the following on gas and electricity:

(i) 2010-11

Gas: £18,010

Electricity: £189,634.

(ii) 2011-12

Gas: £20,381

Electricity: £199,743.

Chris Leslie: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what costs were incurred by her Department's estate in respect of (a) gas and (b) electricity supply in the 2012-13 financial year. [172791]

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Mrs Grant: The following costs were incurred by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport in the 2012-13 financial year:

(a) Gas: £16,841

(b) Electricity: £182,614.

In the 2010-11 financial year the following costs were incurred:

Gas: £18,010

Electricity: £189,634.

The Department has reduced its overall bills by reducing consumption.

Football

Michael Connarty: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what meetings her Department has had with (a) the FA, (b) UEFA and (c) FIFA on the issues of governance and corruption in the last three years. [173398]

Mrs Grant: DCMS Ministers and officials have regular meetings with the national and international football authorities to discuss a range of issues including governance and the need to improve the management of the sport.

Leisure

Dan Jarvis: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what recent discussions she has had with local authorities on support for local projects. [173247]

Mrs Grant: DCMS continues to work closely with local authorities on a range of projects. Ministers' meetings are published quarterly, in line with Cabinet Office guidance.

Public Libraries: Voluntary Work

Helen Goodman: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport (1) what recent discussions she has had with libraries about volunteer libraries failing to pay Public Lending Right fees; [172954]

(2) what steps she is taking to ensure that volunteer libraries pay Public Lending Right fees. [172955]

Mr Vaizey [holding answer 29 October 2013]: There has been no recent discussions with volunteer libraries about payment of Public Lending Right fees. The payment of the Public Lending Right is restricted to loans of books from public libraries. Book loans from university, college, school and other libraries including volunteer libraries that sit outside the statutory public library service do not qualify for payment. Where a library is run or managed by volunteers and forms part of a library authority's statutory provision, then PLR applies and authors are recompensed for the loan. Further details of the PLR scheme are available at:

https://www.gov.uk/public-lending-right-how-it-applies

Sports: Barrow and Furness

John Woodcock: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what estimate she has made of the proportion of (a) under 16, (b) 16 to 24, (c) 25 to 39, (d) 40 to 60 and (e) over 60 year olds who

31 Oct 2013 : Column 559W

regularly take part in recreational sport in Barrow and Furness constituency; and what change there has been in these figures in the last three years. [173305]

Mrs Grant: The Active People Survey measures the number of people aged 16 and above taking part in sport across England. For the Barrow-in-Furness local authority, the Active People Survey shows that:

35.7% of people aged 16 and above playing sport regularly. This is an increase of 4.4% since 2010;

65.5% of people aged 16 to 34 playing sport regularly. This is an increase of 12.7% since 2010;

35.4% of people aged 35 to 54 playing sport regularly. This is an increase of 1.2% since 2010; and

16% of the population aged 55+ playing sport regularly. This is a decrease of 2.6% since 2010.

Sports: Females

Mrs Hodgson: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what assessment she has made of the proportion of Sport England funding allocated to each funded sport which is spent on encouraging greater participation by women. [172987]

Mrs Grant: Sport England is investing almost £500 million in 46 sport’s national governing bodies. Sports popular with women have received increased funding, e.g. netball (£25 million), athletics (£22 million), equestrianism (£6 million), swimming (£20 million) and tennis (£17 million). Full details of Sport England's investment targets for sports are available on their website:

www.sportengland.org

Sports: Public Participation

Mrs Hodgson: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what criteria relating to increasing the participation of (a) women, (b) people with physical or learning disabilities and (c) people from black, Asian and minority ethnic groups are included as part of the bidding process for Sport England funding. [172985]

Mrs Grant: All applicants for Sport England funding must demonstrate that the investment will benefit the whole community, as well as evidence of need, impact, and sustainability. Sport England runs a number of programmes specifically designed to create opportunities to more women (Active Women) and people with disabilities (the Inclusive Sport Fund) to take up and enjoy sport. Those bidding to these programmes must provide evidence of the number of women and disabled people their project will engage.

There are no Sport England programmes specifically for BME groups as the sports participation by these groups is in line with the general population.

Mrs Hodgson: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what steps her Department is taking to promote participation in sport among (a) women, (b) people with physical or learning disabilities and (c) people from black, Asian and minority ethnic groups; and what assessment she has made of trends in such participation since 2010. [172986]

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Mrs Grant: As part of the £l billion Youth and Community sport strategy, Sport England is investing:

(i) in a number of projects specifically targeting women and girls. These include:

£2.3 million for a year-long pilot in Bury that is looking at ways to break down barriers and get the town's women more active and involved in sport. It's about listening and giving women what they want—whether that be Zumba classes or a game of rounders after they've dropped their children off at school. Best practice from this pilot could then be rolled out nationwide;

100 “girls only” satellite clubs—community sports clubs in secondary schools for 11 to 25-year-olds. The ambition is to have 5,000 satellite clubs by 2017;

£10 million to target women living in deprived areas, and women with children under the age of 16;

£1.7 million to the Women's Sport and Fitness Foundation.

(ii) £170.8 million to promote participation by people with disabilities, including:

£1.98 million to English Federation of Disability Sport;

£1.37 million to seven National Disability Sports Organisations to provide disability and impairment expertise;

£17.2 million Inclusive Sport fund to make sport a practical choice for disabled people;

£1 million Get Equipped fund for specialist sports equipment.

(iii) £1 million in its National Partner Sporting Equals to provide expertise to the national governing bodies of boxing, tennis, cricket, swimming and football on maximising the impact of their programmes in increasing the number of black, Asian and minority ethnic groups playing sport.

The Active People Survey shows that since 2010:

334,300 more women are playing sport once a week every week;

208,000 more people with physical or learning disabilities are playing sport once a week every week;

121,600 people from black, Asian and minority ethnic groups are playing sport once a week every week.

Tourism: Coastal Areas

Dan Jarvis: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what steps she is taking to promote tourism in seaside towns. [173268]

Mrs Grant: Seaside tourism has been identified as a priority area for promotion and is highlighted within VisitEngland's thematic marketing campaigns. VisitEngland identified seaside tourism as an area that needed particular attention when it created the Strategic Framework for Tourism (2010-20) and accompanying Tourism Action Plans. Several seaside towns have also been involved in match-funded destination promotions using funding from the regional growth fund. Further to this, DCLG have a “Coastal Communities Fund”, which is designed to support the economic development of coastal communities. In 2012-13, the Government committed £23.7 million to support this fund, which has been increased to £27 million for 2013-14.

Women and Equalities

Energy

Jason McCartney: To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities (1) how much the Government Equalities Office spent on (a) gas and (b) electricity in (i) 2010-11 and (ii) 2011-12; [173132]

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(2) who the provider was for (a) gas and (b) electricity for the Government Equalities Office in (i) 2010-11 and (ii) 2011-12; [173137]

(3) what steps the Government Equalities Office is taking to reduce the cost of its gas and electricity provision. [173142]

Mrs Grant: The information requested is not available as the GEO has always been based within other departmental buildings and its bills are not calculated separately. Current initiatives to reduce the cost of gas and electricity are handled independently of GEO by the building management.

Television: Licensing

Mr Hollobone: To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities if she will discuss with TV Licensing what proportion of people prosecuted for television licence non-payment are women. [173264]

Mrs Grant: TV licensing is the responsibility of the BBC, which operates independently of Government. I have no plans to discuss this matter with TV Licensing.

Northern Ireland

Police Service of Northern Ireland

Mr Dodds: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what assessment she has made of the talks facilitated by the Police Service of Northern Ireland in Cardiff on parading and protesting. [172820]

Mrs Villiers: The immediate result of the Cardiff Talks weekend in May was a statement from participants setting out agreed principles and which recognised and supported the PSNI’s responsibility to uphold the law.

This was helpful in advance of the parading season, though the events of 12th July and the following days show that significant issues remain to be resolved. A number of these are now being considered in the Haass talks.

I am encouraged that the group that met in Cardiff has since reconvened several times and appears to be regarded by those involved as a useful forum for communication and sharing information. Improving communication between key stakeholders and with the police was an important aim of the Cardiff event.

Education

Charities Act 2006

Lisa Nandy: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what reports his Department has laid before each House of Parliament pursuant to section 70(9) of the Charities Act 2006 in 2012-13. [172935]

Elizabeth Truss: The Department for Education has not yet laid any reports before Parliament. The Department's annual report and accounts for 2012-13 is expected to be published in December 2013. A report on any grants paid under section 70 of the Charities Act 2006 will be laid at the same time.

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Children's Rights

John McDonnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what steps the Government are taking to implement the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child—General Comment No. 17, published April 2013, on the right of the child to rest, leisure, play, recreational activities, cultural life and the arts (Article 31). [173410]

Mr Timpson: The Government are committed to making further progress on implementing the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), by ensuring that due consideration is given to the UNCRC Articles when developing new policies and legislation.

The Government are currently preparing our five-yearly report to the UN Committee on implementation of the UNCRC in the round and have published a draft report for comment by the key children's organisations and the Joint Committee on Human Rights. A detailed summary of the action being taken in respect of Article 31 can be found in chapter 6 of the draft report.1

1http://www.education.gov.uk/childrenandyoungpeople/healthandwellbeing/b0074766/uncrc/call-for-views

Education: Qualifications

Mr Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what proportion of pupils at (a) local authority maintained schools, (b) sponsored academies, (c) converter academies, (d) free schools, (e) university technical colleges, (f) studio schools and (g) independent schools achieved (i) five GCSEs A* to C including English and mathematics and (ii) the English Baccalaureate in the academic year 2012-13. [173324]

Mr Laws: The requested information is published in the 2013 GCSE and equivalent results including key stage 3 provisional1 statistical first release. The information is available in table 3a in the “Main tables: SFR40/2013” document.

Please note that the statistical first release does not provide a split for pupils in free schools, university technical colleges and studio schools. These institution types have been grouped together due to the small number of schools in these categories.

1https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/2013-gcse-and-equivalent-results-including-key-stage-3-provisional

E-mail

Mr Watson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education for how long e-mails (a) sent and (b) received are retained on his Department's systems; what the internal process is for retrieving and searching such e-mails; and if he will make a statement. [173198]

Elizabeth Truss: The Department does not stipulate how long e-mails should be retained and expects officials to use their judgment based on the content of the e-mail. The Department has no central facility for searching every e-mail, though all officials have the facility to search their own e-mails at any time.

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The Department has policies and guidance for the retention of information, including e-mails, relating to the work of the Department, that should be retained as a formal record. These retention policies are based on guidance from the National Archives and apply to all records regardless of medium or format. The management of information and records is the responsibility of all individual staff members. Guidance is published on the intranet and available to all staff. Records within the Electronic Document and Records Management system can be searched and retrieved centrally.

Energy

Jason McCartney: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what steps his Department is taking to reduce its spending on (a) gas and (b) electricity. [172784]

Elizabeth Truss: The Department for Education has reduced its expenditure on gas and electricity primarily through adopting low and no cost energy efficiency measures, estate rationalisation (by using space more efficiently and co-locating with other organisations), and by operating its remaining buildings even more efficiently.

As part of its energy efficiency programme, the Department has achieved a 29% reduction in its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from travel and energy use, or 6,594 CO2e tonnes, against a 2009-10 baseline. This has led to significant financial savings of approximately £1.1 million to the Department's annual energy bill.

The Department purchases its energy through Government Procurement Service (GPS) frameworks which are let following extensive market competition and EU wide tender processes to guarantee the best prices for energy. The bulk of central Government energy is aggregated under GPS frameworks, which enables the GPS Energy Team to engage directly with the energy markets to achieve best value and price for the taxpayer.

Free Schools

Mr Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what proportion of free schools that have had section 5 Ofsted inspections to date have been classified (a) outstanding, (b) good, (c) requires improvement and (d) inadequate. [173322]

Mr Laws: 25 free schools have been inspected by Ofsted under section 5 of the Education Act 2005. The inspection outcomes are as follows:

1. Outstanding: 4 schools (16%)

2. Good: 14 schools (56%)

3. Requires improvement: 5 schools (20%)

4. Inadequate: 2 schools (8%)

Internet: Bullying

Mrs Glindon: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what steps she is taking to tackle cyber-bullying; and what financial support her Department gives to anti-bullying charities to reduce this problem. [900823]

Elizabeth Truss: The Government are aware that bullying via social media sites is a growing problem among young people and in our schools. We believe

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that schools, parents and internet providers all have a role to play in keeping children and young people safe online.

This is why every school must have a behaviour policy, which includes measures to prevent all forms of bullying. To help schools develop their anti-bullying measures, the Department updated its advice to schools in 2011. This advice gives schools the flexibility to develop their own measures to prevent and tackle bullying. Ofsted hold schools to account for how well they do this. Since January 2012, school inspectors have had to consider types, rates and patterns of bullying and the effectiveness of the school's actions to prevent and tackle bullying, including cyberbullying.

The Government have also introduced wider search powers in the Education Act 2011. To give teachers stronger powers to tackle cyberbullying, the Act gives teachers a specific power to search for and, if necessary, delete inappropriate images or files on electronic devices, including mobile phones.

Educating young people about online safety is key to tackling cyberbullying. From September 2014, pupils in all four key stages will be taught about e-safety as part of the new curriculum. This will empower young people to tackle cyberbullying through responsible, respectful and secure use of technology, as well as ensuring that pupils are taught age-appropriate ways of reporting any concerns they may have about what they see or encounter online.

The Government expect all social media to have simple mechanisms for reporting abuse, to take action promptly when abuse is reported and to make it easier for users to turn off anonymous posts. The Government have pressed for progress through the UK Council for Child Internet Safety (UKCCIS). UKCCIS brings together the most important internet organisations, such as Facebook and Microsoft, as well as Ministers, and works to protect children online.

The Department is also providing £4 million of funding over two years from 2013 to four anti-bullying organisations. These are Beatbullying, the Diana Award, Kidscape and the National Children's Bureau consortium. While this funding has been awarded to specific projects to reduce bullying in general, this can, and does, include work to tackle cyberbullying.

Pupils: Bullying

Tracey Crouch: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how many incidents of bullying between pupils were recorded in schools in each local authority area in the last five years. [172893]

Elizabeth Truss: The Department does not collect information on the number of incidents of bullying. Information is, however, collected on the reasons for pupil exclusion. The numbers, by local authority area, of permanent and fixed period exclusions classified as relating to bullying for 2007/08 to 2011/12 are shown in the table, which has been placed in the House Library.

All bullying is totally unacceptable. It is for head teachers to consider whether a pupil should be given a fixed period exclusion, a permanent exclusion or other disciplinary penalty, taking account of the severity and circumstances of the incident.

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Pupils: Hearing Impairment

Jim Fitzpatrick: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what his policy is on the use of Ofsted to inspect and report upon all arrangements for the teaching of deaf children in schools. [172983]

Mr Timpson: The Ofsted inspection framework, introduced in September 2012, places a clear emphasis on meeting the needs of disabled pupils and pupils with special educational needs (SEN), such as deaf pupils. Inspectors must consider the quality of teaching and the progress made by these pupils.

Where a school has a specialist resource base or ‘integrated unit' for deaf children, or for other forms of SEN, these are covered as part of the inspection.

Ofsted also inspects special schools, which provide support for deaf children and others who may currently have a statement of SEN.

This means that any deaf child in a mainstream or specialist school would have their education inspected as part of the Ofsted section 5 framework.

Jim Fitzpatrick: To ask the Secretary of State for Education (1) what assessment his Department has made of the adequacy of data sets available to local authorities for accurately identifying children who are deaf; [172989]

(2) what steps his Department is taking to improve collection of data on deaf children in England. [172988]

Mr Timpson: It is for local authorities to collect the necessary data on deaf children to allow them to fulfil their duties under special educational needs (SEN) and disability legislation.

The Department for Education collects data through the statutory school census. This provides information on the number of children in each school who have a hearing impairment as their primary type of need, and who receive specialist support. It also provides data on attainment, absence and exclusions. These data are published annually in ‘Children with Special Educational Needs: An Analysis’. The most recent data were published on 23 October 2013.

We intend to collect this data on a broader group of pupils with hearing impairment as part of the Government's reform of the SEN system.

The Department for Education also funds the National Sensory Impairment partnership (NatSIP) to support local authorities to benchmark their support services for deaf children, as well as improve the collection and use of data. NatSIP is currently working with the Consortium for Research in Deaf Education to improve the range of data available.

Special Educational Needs: Lancashire

Mr Nigel Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what education schemes he has funded to promote literacy skills for (a) children and (b) adults with a severe learning or physical disability in (i) Ribble Valley constituency and (ii) Lancashire in the last five years. [173300]

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Mr Timpson: The Department for Education has funded a number of programmes to promote literacy for children and young people with a learning difficulty or disability. Grant funding was provided to the Dyslexia Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLD) Trust in 2011-13 to provide advice and information to schools, parents and young people on dyslexia and literacy. In 2013-15 the Trust is also funded through a contract to support the Government's special educational needs (SEN) reforms for children and young people with dyslexia and literacy difficulties, and to provide information on training and effective approaches to identifying and supporting dyslexic pupils.

Funding was provided to Dyslexia Action and the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) in 2011-13 to develop the ‘load2learn’ programme which has made more than 2,000 core texts available in flexible digital format to pupils across the country. Funding was also provided to the National Deaf Children's Society in 2011-13 to support their work in making schools more deaf-friendly, including guidance on teaching phonics to children with a hearing impairment.

From September 2011 to October 2013 the Department has provided match-funding to all state-funded primary schools in England with key stage 1 pupils so that they can purchase effective systematic synthetic phonics products and training to support their teaching of early reading. From January 2013 the Department is also providing a literacy and numeracy catch-up premium to secondary schools, including special schools, for year 7 pupils who have not achieved level 4 at key stage 2 in reading and/or mathematics.

Each of these programmes has offered support to schools across the country. It is up to individual schools to decide how to use their resources to support their teaching because schools are best placed to recognise the learning needs of their pupils, and to decide what support each child requires.

In addition, the Government are fully funding basic English and mathematics courses for adults, including those with learning difficulties and/or disabilities, who lack those skills. Further Education provision is funded through the Adult Skills Budget and eligible providers will be able to access this funding to meet the needs of local learners.

We also provide Learning Support funding to colleges and providers to help them meet the costs of reasonable adjustments as set out in the Equality Act 2010. Learning Support is available to meet the additional needs of learners with learning difficulties and/or disabilities so that they can participate fully in education and training and have the support required to achieve basic English and mathematics qualifications.

Vocational Guidance

Steve Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of careers advice and guidance at schools and colleges of further education. [173233]

Matthew Hancock: The Department commissioned Ofsted to conduct a thematic review to assess early progress on implementation of the legal duty on schools to secure access to independent and impartial careers

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guidance. This report was published on 10 September. Ofsted found that, while some schools have responded well to the new duty, the majority of schools need to have higher ambitions for their students and place inspiring careers support at the heart of what they do. Further education colleges were not included in the Ofsted review because the legal duty was only extended to cover 16 to 18-year-olds in further education from September 2013.

Ofsted have confirmed that the provision of careers guidance and destinations of pupils will be given higher priority in their school inspections for the 2013/14 academic year. Ofsted also evaluate learner progression to courses leading to higher-level qualifications and into jobs that meet local and national needs, as part of their college inspections.

The Government publish Destination Measures showing the percentage of students progressing from school or college to further or higher education, employment or training. These show how effective schools are in supporting pupils to move successfully into the next phase of their education or into sustainable work, including through the provision of independent careers guidance.

The Government responded to Ofsted's report on 10 September, publishing a vision statement for careers inspiration and an action plan outlining how we intend to take forward their recommendations. Both documents have been placed in the House of Commons Library.

Communities and Local Government

Energy

Jason McCartney: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) how much his Department spent on (a) gas and (b) electricity in (i) 2010-11 and (ii) 2011-12; [172774]

(2) which company supplied (a) gas and (b) electricity to his Department in (i) 2010-11 and (ii) 2011-12; [172779]

(3) what steps his Department is taking to reduce its spending on (a) gas and (b) electricity. [172783]

Brandon Lewis: I refer my hon. Friend to the answer given to the hon. Member for Nottingham East (Chris Leslie) on 30 October 2013, Official Report, columns 463-65W.

Non-domestic Rates

Ann Coffey: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government which local authorities have used powers under section 69 of the Localism Act 2011 to grant business rate relief since April 2012; and what the total value is of such relief granted by each authority. [172196]

Brandon Lewis: Details of the local authorities in England that used powers under section 69 of the Localism Act 2011 to grant business rate relief in 2012-13 and the total value of the relief granted is shown in the following table.

 Amount of relief granted (£)

Barnsley

205,900

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Basildon

19,900

Bath and North East Somerset

24,900

Birmingham

438,400

Blaby

40,800

Blackpool

14,500

Bromsgrove

121,400

Cheltenham

2,700

Corby

6,700

Cornwall

110,100

Dartford

38,300

Dover

36,500

East Devon

115,800

East Riding of Yorkshire

357,100

Enfield

13,000

Fareham

68,200

Fylde

7,600

Gedling

78,200

Gosport

31,600

Great Yarmouth

96,600

Halton

79,500

Hartlepool

38,200

Havering

358,200

Herefordshire

388,000

Hertsmere

70,200

High Peak

61,100

Huntingdonshire

561,700

Kingston upon Thames

120,700

Leeds

55,000

Manchester

45,100

Medway

245,100

Mid Devon

42,900

Middlesbrough

20,100

Milton Keynes

8,000

Newcastle-under-Lyme

40,400

Newham

151,500

North Warwickshire

25,400

Northampton

1,555,100

Northumberland

11,100

Pendle

111,700

Purbeck

1,600

Rotherham

378,000

Sevenoaks

100,000

Shepway

700

South Derbyshire

2,200

South Ribble

98,400

South Staffordshire

54,000

South Tyneside

314,300

Staffordshire Moorlands

77,700

Stockton-on-Tees

8,500

Stroud

48,900

Suffolk Coastal

148,100

Sunderland

36,600

Vale of White Horse

59,900

West Berkshire

52,700

West Dorset

116,700

Weymouth and Portland

36,000

Wigan

666,600

Wycombe

216,400

Total England

8,234,500

Data were collected on the national non-domestic rates (NNDR3) out-turn form which is completed annually by all billing authorities in England. These forms had not been certified by auditors. Data from auditor certified

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forms are currently being collected and will be published later in 2013. The final outturn figures may therefore be slightly different to these provisional figures.

Regeneration: Coastal Areas

Dan Jarvis: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what steps he is taking to support regeneration projects in seaside towns. [173270]

Kris Hopkins: My Department is working across Government to promote economic growth and regeneration in coastal and seaside towns. The Coastal Communities Fund was launched in 2012 to invest in projects supporting growth and jobs in coastal communities so they are better able to respond to local needs and opportunities. 26 projects approved in its first year are expected to deliver around 5,000 jobs and support more than 300 new business start-ups. We will be announcing a further round of grant awards to successful projects shortly.

A range of other funding schemes supported by the Government are helping growth and regeneration projects in coastal communities, including the Regional Growth Fund, European Regional Development Fund, Growing Places Fund, and the Portas Pilots and Towns Teams set up to breathe new life into struggling high streets.

We have put civic leaders, local residents and businesses in the driving seat by giving them a wide toolkit of powers, flexibilities and incentives to help drive growth and regeneration in their area, including seaside towns. Many local enterprise partnerships have prioritised investment in growth and regeneration projects in their coastal communities. They will benefit from the Single Local Growth Fund to be introduced from 2015 onwards.

Social Rented Housing

Martin Horwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what guidance his Department issues to local authorities on their surveying and monitoring activity within social housing in cases of suspected tenancy breach. [173173]

Kris Hopkins: This Department is taking tough action to help local authorities and other social landlords deal effectively with those who breach and abuse their tenancies. The Prevention of Social Housing Fraud Act 2013 has made the unauthorised subletting of social homes a criminal offence. Provisions in the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Bill will make it easier for landlords to evict their most antisocial tenants.

We expect, in investigating cases where tenants are suspected of breaching their tenancies, local authorities to act in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998, the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 and any other relevant legislation.

Energy and Climate Change

Climate Change Levy

Dr Whitehead: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change if he will set out the levy control framework totals for schemes funded under the low carbon levy for the years 2015-16 to 2020-21; and how much of each such total is estimated to be paid to continuing schemes and amounts payable for new entrants in each year in this period. [172460]

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Michael Fallon: The levy control framework totals for schemes funded under the low carbon levy in the years 2015-16 to 2020-21 are as follows (in 2011-12 prices):

 £ billion

2015-16

4.30

2016-17

4.90

2017-18

5.60

2018-19

6.45

2019-20

7.00

2020-21

7.60

Under current policy instruments, feed-in tariffs (FITs) and the renewables obligation, the amount of direct support predicted to be provided to UK renewables is as follows:

Under feed-in tariffs the support level for generation in 2012-13 is around £477 million in 2011-12 prices. This figure is provisional, and the final figure is due for publication in December.

For the renewables obligation, the 2014-15 obligation has been set at 72.3 million ROCs. Using the 2011-12 ROC price (£38.69) this gives a total spend, in 2011-12 prices, of £2,796 million in 2014-15.

Together, these two figures provide an estimate of the amount of funding under the LCF that is to be paid for continuing schemes, currently supported under FITs (as of the end of 2012-13) and expected to be supported under the RO (as of the end of 2014-15). These figures will be a slight underestimate, because projects coming on line in 2012-13 for FITs and 2014-15 for the RO will not receive a full year of support, as they are only supported from the point at which they begin generating. In the following year they will be supported for the full year. Therefore, the total support for continuing schemes will be slightly higher than the figures given in the table.

Energy

Stephen Barclay: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what progress has been made on Ofgem's proposal for a secure and private operating licence condition. [173006]

Michael Fallon [holding answer 30 October 2013]: Ofgem's consultation on Secure and Promote licence conditions closed on 9 August. It expects to make a decision on the proposals this autumn with a view to putting in place the relevant licence conditions by the end of the year.

Jason McCartney: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what steps his Department is taking to reduce its spending on (a) gas and (b) electricity. [173070]

Gregory Barker: Since 2011-12 DECC's estate has increased in order to accommodate the growth in staff numbers and this has had an effect on gas and electricity spend. However DECC continually aims to increase energy efficiency by taking steps to decrease our energy consumption and reduce our carbon impact.

Previous work which has contributed to energy efficiency and cost savings has included:

(1) Installation of a dedicated chiller for our IT systems which enables the main chillers which support the building to be switched off.

31 Oct 2013 : Column 571W

(2) Development and enforcement of a heating and cooling policy.

(3) Installation of a heat recovery system in the Whitehall Place canteen to keep it warm in winter thereby reducing the need for heating.

(4) Installation of solar film to reduce solar heat gain, thereby reducing the need for air conditioning in summer.

(5) Installation of radiator insulation panels in 55 Whitehall, reducing the need for increased heating in the winter.

Current work on energy efficiency and cost savings includes:

(1) The adoption of energy management system ISO50001.

(2) Using the Mayor of London's RE:FIT programme. This scheme is designed to help public sector organisations achieve substantial financial savings, improve the energy performance of their buildings and reduce their CO2 footprint.

(3) Undertaking a LED lighting trial with the ambition of rolling out energy efficient lighting.

(4) Allowing opening of windows, where feasible, in Whitehall Place thereby reducing the need for air conditioning.

Energy: Billing

Stephen Barclay: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change if he will review whether charges applying to early removal from a fixed-term energy contract are proportionate. [173008]

Gregory Barker [holding answer 30 October 2013]: Ofgem has recently completed a thorough review of the retail energy market and introduced reforms so consumers face simpler tariff choices and receive clearer information. Ofgem found that a lack of transparency around termination fees hindered consumers' engagement in the market and that some suppliers were automatically rolling over consumers on fixed-term contracts to new fixed-term contracts.

Under Ofgem's new rules suppliers will have to include key information about tariffs in a tariff information label, which will include any termination fee that suppliers charge on fixed-term contracts. The tariff information label will appear on customers' bills and annual statements and marketing material about the tariff. Clearer information on termination fees will allow consumers to take them into account when they are considering switching.

Ofgem's new rules will also prohibit suppliers from rolling over customers on fixed-term contracts to another fixed-term contract. They will be required to notify customers between 49 to 42 days before the end of the fixed term period. During this period customers cannot be charged a termination fee if they choose to switch.

Energy: Debts

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what assessment he has made of the number of people in fuel debt in each month since June 2010. [173191]

Gregory Barker: Data on the number of consumers in fuel debt are published by Ofgem on a quarterly basis. The following table shows the number of consumers in fuel debt since quarter 1 of 2010:

31 Oct 2013 : Column 572W

Number of domestic consumers repaying an energy debt
  Million
Quarter and yearGasElectricity

2010

  

Q1

0.7

0.9

Q2

0.8

1.0

Q3

0.8

1.0

Q4

0.7

0.9

   

2011

  

Q1

0.7

0.9

Q2

0.9

0.9

Q3

0.8

0.9

Q4

0.7

0.8

   

2012

  

Q1

0.7

0.8

Q2

0.8

0.9

In 2011 there were 3% of gas consumers and 3% of electricity consumers who were repaying an energy debt, according to Ofgem figures.

These data relate to customers who have entered a specific formal arrangement with their supplier to repay outstanding arrears. Figures have been rounded to the nearest 100,000 consumers and apply to Great Britain.

The latest figures currently available are for quarter 2 of 2012. Data for quarters 3 and 4 of 2012 are due to be published by Ofgem in November 2013.

The data are available on the Ofgem website:

https://www.ofgem.gov.uk/about-us/how-we-work/working-consumers/supplier-performance-social-obligations#charts

Energy: North East

Alex Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what the average change in energy bills has been for households in the (a) borough of Stockton-on-Tees, (b) Tees Valley and (c) North East in each of the last five years. [173004]

Michael Fallon [holding answer 30 October 2013]: Stockton-on-Tees, the Tees Valley, and the North East of England are within the Public Electricity Supply (PES) region “North East”. The change in average annual energy bills over the last five years is shown in the following table for the North East PES region.

 Gas bill (£)Electricity billTotal energy bill (£)Year on year change (%)

2007

521

381

902

 

2008

615

436

1,051

16

2009

682

426

1,109

6

2010

656

407

1,063

-4

2011

712

440

1,152

8

2012

787

469

1,257

9

These are based on an assumed annual consumption of 3,300 kWh of electricity and 18,000 kWh of gas per year. These estimates can be found in table 2.2.3 (electricity) and 2.3.3 (gas) of DECC's Quarterly Energy Prices publication.

31 Oct 2013 : Column 573W

Energy: Prices

Steve McCabe: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what assessment his Department has made of the potential effect of energy companies withdrawing their cheapest tariffs in order to comply with the requirement to offer all customers their lowest tariff. [172766]

Michael Fallon: There are backstop powers in the Energy Bill to ensure that Ofgem's important reforms to the retail domestic energy market are not frustrated or delayed.

These reforms will require suppliers to limit the number of tariffs they offer to four per fuel and to move customers on poor value dead tariffs to the cheapest equivalent tariff, ensuring that all customers are on the cheapest tariff with their supplier that is in line with their preferences, such as a preference for a particular payment method or a fixed or variable rate tariff.

Jim Sheridan: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what estimate he has made of the number of people affected by price rises by (a) SSE, (b) Scottish Power, (c) Npower and (d) British Gas in (i) Paisley and Renfrewshire North constituency, (ii) Renfrewshire, (iii) Scotland and (iv) the UK. [173039]

Michael Fallon: The winter 2013 round of price rises announced so far will affect consumers on variable tariffs. DECC estimates that one in six standard electricity consumers and one in five gas consumers were on fixed or capped tariffs in quarter two of 2013.

According to Ofgem, four of the big six suppliers who have increased prices (SSE, Scottish Power, Npower and British Gas) accounted for 70% of electricity customers and 77% of gas customers in June 2012.

The following table shows the total number of domestic electricity meters for the areas of interest in 2011. The data are only available at local authority level and the UK total figure is an estimate. It is published as part of DECC sub-national statistics:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/sub-national-electricity-consumption-data

 AreaNumber of domestic electricity meters (1,000)

Local authority

East Renfrewshire

39

 

Inverclyde

43

 

Renfrewshire

90

   

County

Renfrewshire

172

   

National

Scotland

2,747

 

UK

28,056

Mr Nigel Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what estimate he has made of the number of people affected by price rises by (a) SSE, (b) Scottish Power, (c) Npower and (d) British Gas in (i) Ribble Valley constituency, (ii) Lancashire and (iii) the UK. [173304]

31 Oct 2013 : Column 574W

Michael Fallon: The winter 2013 round of price rises so far announced will affect consumers on variable tariffs. DECC estimates that one in six standard electricity consumers and one in five gas consumers were on fixed or capped tariffs in quarter two of 2013.

According to Ofgem, four of the big six suppliers who have increased prices (SSE, Scottish Power, Npower and British Gas) accounted for 70% of electricity customers and 77% of gas customers in June 2012.

The following table shows the total number of domestic electricity meters for the areas of interest in 2011. The UK total figure is an estimate. It is published as part of DECC sub-national statistics:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/sub-national-electricity-consumption-data

 Number of domestic electricity meters (thousand)

Ribble Valley

24

Lancashire

644

UK

28,056

Energy: Unfair Practices

Stephen Barclay: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how many financial penalties have been levied on the six largest energy suppliers for unfair trading with small suppliers in the last year. [173007]

Michael Fallon [holding answer 30 October 2013]: To my knowledge, Ofgem has not imposed any financial penalties on the six largest energy suppliers for unfair trading with small suppliers in the last year.

Environment Protection

Julie Elliott: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what recent discussions he has had with representatives of KFW in Germany on green investment in the UK. [172660]

Michael Fallon: All meetings held with external companies are published on the Department for Energy and Climate Change's website:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/ministers-meeting-with-external-organisations

Green Deal Scheme

Caroline Flint: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how many people have agreed a Green Deal plan in (a) Doncaster, (b) South Yorkshire and (c) UK in the latest period for which figures are available. [172509]

Gregory Barker: The Department's latest monthly Green Deal/ECO statistical release, published on 17 October, showed that 954 Green Deal plans in Great Britain had at least reached the ‘quote accepted' stage by the end of September. Of those 954 plans, 57 were ‘live' with energy efficiency measures installed by the end of September.

There have been 85,177 Green Deal assessments lodged up to the end of September and research published on 17 September showed that 81% of households who had

31 Oct 2013 : Column 575W

a Green Deal assessment between April and June 2013 said they have, are getting or intend to install at least one energy saving measure using various forms of finance.

The Department also publishes more detailed breakdowns on the Green Deal/ECO via a quarterly statistical series. The latest available information covers January to June 2013, and includes tables showing the number of Green Deal assessments by parliamentary constituency, by nation and by region. In future, we intend to extend the analysis provided in quarterly releases as the data available increase and this will include a breakdown of information on Green Deal plans.

The latest monthly statistical release can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/green-deal-and-energy-company-obligation-eco-statistics

The latest quarterly statistical release can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/green-deal-and-energy-company-obligation-eco-january-june-2013-statistics

Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how many households in each (a) parliamentary constituency and (b) nation and region of the UK have (i) signed up for a Green Deal plan and (ii) had measures installed under the Green Deal to date. [172746]

Gregory Barker: The Department's latest monthly Green Deal/ECO statistical release, published on 17 October, showed that 954 Green Deal plans in Great Britain had at least reached the ‘quote accepted' stage by the end of September. Of those 954 plans, 57 were ‘live' with energy efficiency measures installed by the end of September.

There have been 85,177 Green Deal assessments lodged up to the end of September and research published on 17 September showed that 81% of households who had a Green Deal assessment between April and June 2013 said they have, are getting or intend to install at least one energy saving measure using various forms of finance.

The Department also publishes more detailed breakdowns on the Green Deal/ECO via a quarterly statistical series. The latest available information covers January to June 2013, and includes tables showing the number of Green Deal assessments by parliamentary constituency, by nation and by region. In future, we intend to extend the analysis provided in quarterly releases as the data available increase and this will include a breakdown of information on Green Deal plans.

The latest monthly statistical release can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/green-deal-and-energy-company-obligation-eco-statistics

The latest quarterly statistical release can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/green-deal-and-energy-company-obligation-eco-january-june-2013-statistics

Jonathan Reynolds: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change pursuant to the answer of 22 October 2013, Official Report, columns 147-48W, on Green Deal scheme, what criteria his Department plans

31 Oct 2013 : Column 576W

to use to evaluate the effectiveness of the £3 million advertising and awareness campaign to encourage Green Deal take-up. [172806]

Gregory Barker: The Department conducts regular tracking studies with consumers to monitor development of awareness and understanding of the Green Deal. The latest results are published at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/green-deal-household-tracker-survey-waves-1-and-2-report

Hinkley Point C Power Station

Ms Ritchie: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what public consultation and what meetings with stakeholders his Department has held in the Republic of Ireland regarding the new nuclear plant at Hinkley Point. [172825]

Michael Fallon [holding answer 29 October 2013]: DECC has a regular forum for consulting with the Irish Government on nuclear matters. We consulted the Irish Government thoroughly on the potential impact on Ireland of the UK's new nuclear programme, which included Hinkley Point, and on our conclusion that there would be no significant impact and therefore no need for a transboundary consultation in the Republic of Ireland.

National Grid

Dr Whitehead: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how many short term operating contracts are held by the National Grid; and what the (a) capacity and (b) duration is of each such contract. [172312]

Michael Fallon: The information following is from National Grid and is based on a snapshot taken for the current Short Term Operating Reserve season (Season 7.4—23 September 2013 to 28 October 2013).

STOR contracts (as of 23 October 2013)

National Grid has awarded 152 individual contracts for Season 7.4, representing a total MW position of 3,136 MW. On a weekly basis National Grid looks to ensure that 2,300 MW is made available to its Control Room.

47 of these contracts were tendered on a flexible basis and as a result may not be made available or have their availability accepted week to week. The flexible contracts represent 427 MW.

STOR unit size (for contracts in place at 23 October 2013)

The size of each individual site contracted for Season 7.4 ranges from between 3 MW to 300 MW. However, the bulk of sites are <50 MW. A high level breakdown is detailed as follows:

MW RangeNumber of STOR Sites Contracted in Season 7.4MW Total in each range

3 MW to 10 MW

67

405 MW

11 MW to 20 MW

51

834 MW

21 MW to 30 MW

12

303 MW

31 MW to 50 MW

14

537 MW

51 MW to 100 MW

4

260 MW

100 MW +

4

797 MW

31 Oct 2013 : Column 577W

STOR contract duration (for contracts in place at 23 October 2013)

389 MW of these contracts were signed under the Long Term STOR opportunity in 2010 and are on contract till March 2025.

The remaining 2,747 MW are on contracts agreed under the standard, shorter duration (two year maximum), tender opportunity.

Offshore Industry

Alex Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what recent estimate he has made of the number of workers in the offshore oil and gas industry who are employed using daily agreements. [173367]

Jo Swinson: I have been asked to reply on behalf of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.

No estimate has been made of the number of workers in the offshore oil and gas industry who are employed using daily agreements.

Cabinet Office

Charities Act 2006

Lisa Nandy: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office what reports his Department has laid before each House of Parliament pursuant to section 70(9) of the Charities Act 2006 in 2012-13. [172929]

Mr Hurd: Reports laid by the Cabinet Office on Charities Act 2006 in 2012-13 are included in the Cabinet Office annual report and accounts at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/225980/HC_15.pdf

Energy

Jason McCartney: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office (1) how much his Department spent on (a) gas and (b) electricity in (i) 2010-11 and (ii) 2011-12; [172773]

(2) what steps his Department is taking to reduce its spending on (a) gas and (b) electricity. [172782]

Mr Maude: These amounts are reported in the Cabinet Office annual report and accounts:

http://www.official-documents.gov.uk/document/hc1012/hc09/0999/0999.pdf

http://www.official-documents.gov.uk/document/hc1213/hc00/0056/0056.pdf

Since the last general election, my Department has consolidated its estate, disposing of a number of buildings, including Admiralty Arch which was essentially unoccupied. We report on our environmental performance here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/cabinet-office-greening-government-performance

The Cabinet Office now purchases energy through the Crown Commercial Service. This was created to strengthen the Government's approach to how it buys goods and services to maximise public sector buying power and generate savings for the taxpayer.

31 Oct 2013 : Column 578W

High Speed 2

Mrs Gillan: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office if he will publish the Major Project Authority's reports into High Speed 2 before Report stage and Third Reading of the High Speed Rail (Preparation) Bill. [173325]

Mr Maude: I refer my right hon. Friend to the answer I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for South Northamptonshire (Andrea Leadsom) on 30 October 2013, Official Report, column 490W.

Public Records: Northern Ireland

Ms Ritchie: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office what assessment he has made of the relevance of unreleased Cabinet Office historical documents relating to Northern Ireland held at Swadlincote to the work of the Historical Enquiries Team in investigating cases from the past; and whether he plans to release these records to the National Archive under the Public Records Act 1958. [172829]

Mr Maude: There are no Cabinet Office documents relating to Northern Ireland held at Swadlincote. Cabinet Office officials are assisting the Historical Enquiries Team.

Self-employed

Toby Perkins: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office how many people were registered as self-employed for the first time in each (a) parliamentary constituency and (b) region of the UK in each month since January 2008. [173355]

Mr Hurd: The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the authority to reply.

Letter from Glen Watson, dated October 2013:

As Director General for the Office for National Statistics (ONS), I have been asked to reply to your Parliamentary Question asking the Secretary of State for Business Innovation and Skills how many people were registered as self-employed for the first time in each (a) parliamentary constituency and (b) region of the UK in each month since January 2008 (173355).

The ONS compiles Labour Market Statistics for areas below the UK following International Labour Organisation (ILO) definitions using the Annual Population Survey (APS). However, estimates of the number of people who were self-employed for the first time are not available from this source.

National and local area estimates for many labour market statistics, including employment, unemployment and claimant count are available on the NOMIS website at

http://www.nomisweb.co.uk

Business, Innovation and Skills

Aerospace Industry

Alun Cairns: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what steps his Department is taking to support local supply chains in the aviation sector and ensure that such manufacturing processes stay in the UK. [172375]

31 Oct 2013 : Column 579W

Michael Fallon: The Aerospace Industrial Strategy, published in March this year, sets out the actions Government and industry are taking through the Aerospace Growth Partnership to secure and grow the UK's Aerospace sector. It includes actions designed to improve the sector's UK supply chain competitiveness, including:

Setting up the Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI) which represents a Government and industry commitment to invest £2 billion over seven years in aerospace research and development projects across the UK.

Improving innovation in the supply chain by delivering a £40 million National Aerospace Technology Exploitation Programme (NATEP), a joint Government and industry initiative designed to help supply chain companies develop new technologies and sales.

A £6 million Government and industry funded bursary for 500 masters degrees in aerospace. The objective is to pinpoint and train future talent now to meet industry needs.

These actions build on existing Government programmes to support business including, the Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative, the research and development tax credit and the Regional Growth Fund.

Airbus SAS

Alun Cairns: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what funding from the public purse Airbus received in the latest period for which figures are available. [172374]

Michael Fallon: The Government have a number of funding arrangements with Airbus, many of them contractual and commercially sensitive. This includes grants and repayable loans to Government. The net position is that Airbus paid the UK Government just over £110 million in the financial year 2012-13.

Apprentices

Ian Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills how many people in (a) Wrexham constituency, (b) Wales and (c) the UK started an apprenticeship in (i) 2012 and (ii) 2013 to date. [172884]

Matthew Hancock: Information on the number of apprenticeship starts in England by geography is published in a supplementary table to a quarterly Statistical First Release (SFR):

http://www.thedataservice.org.uk/NR/rdonlyres/3DA49EDD-EC1F-4F37-8D7A-AC7A0F20E3E8/0/Oct2013_Apprenticeship_Starts.xls

The Department does not collect further education information relating to the devolved Administrations.

Apprentices: Peterborough

Mr Stewart Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills how many businesses in Peterborough have participated in the AGE 16 to 24 scheme to date; and how many and what proportion of such businesses were small and medium-sized enterprises. [172815]

Matthew Hancock: Provisional data show that between 1 February 2012 and 31 July 2013, 60 employer workplaces in Peterborough parliamentary constituency received payment to take on an apprentice through the Apprenticeship Grant for Employers (AGE 16 to 24)1.

31 Oct 2013 : Column 580W

A further 20 workplaces have taken on an apprentice through AGE 16 to 24 but the apprentice has not yet been in post for 13 weeks for the employer to have been paid the £1,500 grant.

1

AGE 16 to 24 provides apprenticeship grants to employers with up to 1,000 employees. A breakdown of employers by employee size is not available.

1 Figure rounded to the nearest 10.

Business: Females

Ian Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills how many businesses in (a) Wrexham constituency, (b) Wales and (c) the UK were owned solely by women in the last five years. [172883]

Matthew Hancock: The most relevant source of information is the BIS Small Business Survey1. Analysis of the survey data shows that in 2013 there were an estimated 979,000 “majority women owned” small and medium-sized enterprises in the UK, while 31,000 of these were located in Wales.

These estimates are not detailed enough to provide figures for specific parliamentary constituencies, such as Wrexham.

1 However the survey can be used only to estimate the number of small and medium-sized enterprises (defined as a business with less than 250 employees) rather than all businesses that are “majority women owned” (defined as more than 50% of the business being owned by women).

Business: Government Assistance

Ian Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what steps he is taking to support small businesses in (a) Wrexham constituency, (b) Wales and (c) the UK. [172885]

Matthew Hancock: Small businesses are vital to the economy and this Government are supporting them in many ways.

Of course, economic stability, lower taxes, deregulation, and a culture of enterprise are vital to business growth.

The home for Government services and information online is:

www.gov.uk

One of the tools available is the ‘Finance Finder;' a searchable database of publicly-backed sources of finance. The tool helps businesses to explore the full range of options available, from Government grants to investment finance available from Business Angels and Venture Capitalists.

The BIS guide “SME access to finance schemes: measures to support small and medium-sized enterprise growth” is available on the same website by searching for the title and provides details on the main forms of public support available to businesses. The website:

www.greatbusiness.gov.uk

also provides support and advice for businesses trying to grow as well as for entrepreneurs starting out.

In addition to on-line support, the Business Link Helpline is available to provide a quick response on queries about starting a business, or a personalised and in-depth advice service for more complex needs.

31 Oct 2013 : Column 581W

Start-Up Loans are now available to anyone over the age of 18 starting a business (or in the early stages of doing so) but lacking access to the necessary finance or support to realise their ambitions. Further information can be found at:

http://www.startuploans.co.uk

For businesses ready to go further there is ‘GrowthAccelerator’—a £200 million programme for up to 26,000 high growth potential small and medium-sized enterprises, providing them with expertise and networks to achieve sustainable growth.

Charities Act 2006

Lisa Nandy: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what reports his Department has laid before each House of Parliament pursuant to section 70(9) of the Charities Act 2006 in 2012-13. [172927]

Jo Swinson: Reports laid by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) on Charities Act 2006 in 2012/13 are included in BIS's Annual Report and Accounts at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/bis-annual-report-and-accounts-2012-to-2013

Conditions of Employment

Katy Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what his policy is on the prohibition of the use of zero hours contracts. [172860]

Jo Swinson: BIS's recent review on zero hours contracts found that they suit some employers and individuals, but that there was also evidence of abuse in some instances.

The Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, my right hon. Friend the Member for Twickenham (Vince Cable), has announced that a consultation will take place in November to address the concerns identified in the recent review of zero hours contracts.

Katy Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what guidance his Department issues to employers on the use of zero hours contracts. [172871]

Jo Swinson: The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills does not issue guidance to employers on the use of zero hours contracts. Neither does the Department issue guidance to employers on other employment contract types.

Guidance is available with regard to employment contracts on:

www.gov.uk

for employers and individuals. Employers and individuals may also use other sources for information, for example, Acas.

Energy

Jason McCartney: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills how much his Department spent on (a) gas and (b) electricity in (i) 2010-11 and (ii) 2011-12. [172772]

31 Oct 2013 : Column 582W

Jo Swinson: The following figures relate to spend by this Department on gas and electricity in 2010-11 and 2011-12:

£
 GasElectricity

2010-11

144,305

1,419,770

2011-12

127,575

1,192,438

Jason McCartney: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills which company supplied (a) gas and (b) electricity to his Department in (i) 2010-11 and (ii) 2011-12. [172778]

Jo Swinson: The following companies supplied gas and electricity to the Department in 2010-11 and 2011-12:

In 2010-11 and 2011-12 Corona supplied gas to the Department.

In 2010-11 and 2011-12 EDF supplied electricity to those buildings which have half hourly meters.

In 2010-11 and 2011-12 British Gas supplied electricity to those buildings which do not have half hourly meters.

The Department uses the Government Procurement Service Energy Framework to purchase its gas and electricity supply.

Local Enterprise Partnerships: Yorkshire and the Humber

Mr Sheerman: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what recent assessment his Department has made of the effect of local economic partnerships in Yorkshire. [172863]

Michael Fallon: The Government do not carry out formal assessments of local enterprise partnerships (LEPs). As partnerships of business and civic leaders, local enterprise partnerships are first and foremost accountable to their local community and local businesses.

Local enterprise partnerships in Yorkshire are making a real difference through their programmes to support growth and jobs, such as the growing places fund and regional growth fund. For example, Leeds City Region LEP has ambitious targets for growth and jobs, building on its diverse economy and driving investment in sectors such as precision engineering and textiles, which provide the most potential for growth. LEPs in England are also being given responsibility for drawing up investment plans for over £5 billion European Structural and Investment Funds and will, through their local growth deals, gain a share of over £2 billion local growth fund from April 2015.

Members: Correspondence

Sir Gerald Kaufman: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills when he plans to reply to the letter dated 16 August 2013 from the right hon. Member for Manchester, Gorton with regard to Mr Robin Wright. [172805]

Jo Swinson: As the matters raised in the right hon. Member's letter were the responsibility of HM Treasury, his letter was transferred to that Department for a reply. An email was sent to the right hon. Member's office on 29 August 2013 advising him of the transfer of his correspondence.

31 Oct 2013 : Column 583W

Mental Illness: Discrimination

Paul Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills whether his Department has signed up to the Time to Change Initiative to end mental health discrimination. [172758]

Jo Swinson: BIS is committed to signing the Time to Change pledge. We are in the process of developing a detailed action plan, which is a pre-requisite of formally signing up, and are examining examples of good practice which we might be able to adopt in the Department.

We fully support activity to support those with mental health problems in the workplace and endorse the principle that employees with such issues should not be stigmatised.

Motor Sports: Silverstone

Andrea Leadsom: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what assessment he has made of the value of Silverstone Circuit to the UK economy. [900817]

Michael Fallon: Estimates produced by the Northamptonshire Enterprise Partnership show that Silverstone is at the centre of a cluster of more than 1,000 companies working in motorsports and related high performance technologies. Between them they employ over 21,000 people and contribute £2 billion to the local economy. The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and UK Trade and Investment are already working with Silverstone and the local enterprise partnerships across “Motorsports Valley” to see what more can be done to support and grow this international asset.

Natural Gas: Storage

Mr Wallace: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills whether, in exercising his advisory role to the Department for Energy and Climate Change on gas storage, he took account of the fact that Dr John Roberts, who chaired the report commissioned by the Council for Science and Technology into GB electricity capacity margin, is also, as the chair of Halite Gas Storage, seeking government approval for gas storage in Wyre. [173267]

Michael Fallon: The Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, the right hon. Member for Twickenham (Vince Cable), agrees that there is no case for a further intervention in the gas market above and beyond the range of measures already announced to enhance our gas security in September. This decision is informed by Ofgem's report on the outlook for gas security of supply from November 2012, analysis from Redpoint consultants, and work with National Grid and industry participants. The position of Dr John Roberts, the Council for Science and Technology's report into GB electricity capacity margin, and the case for gas storage in Wyre, were not factors in the decision making process.

New Businesses: Kent

Rehman Chishti: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills how many start-up loans have been granted to businesses in (a) Gillingham and Rainham constituency, (b) Medway and (c) Kent to date. [173031]

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Matthew Hancock: The start-up loans scheme volumes for (a) Gillingham and Rainham, (b)Medway and (c) Kent are as follows. The Start-Up Loans Company does not capture data at constituency level, therefore the following figures are obtained by postcode region.

(a) Gillingham and Rainham—seven loans with a total value of £51,800;

(b) Medway—17 loans with a total value of £132,050;

(c) Kent—114 loans with a total value of £694,672.

Overseas Trade: Sri Lanka

Kerry McCarthy: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what discussions he has had with (a) UK Trade and Investment, (b) the British high commission in Sri Lanka and (c) the Commonwealth Business Council on representatives of British companies travelling to Sri Lanka during the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting in Colombo in November 2013. [173317]

Michael Fallon: The Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, the right hon. Member for Twickenham (Vince Cable), has had no discussions with UK Trade and Investment, the British high commission in Colombo or the Commonwealth Business Council regarding British companies travelling to Sri Lanka.

I understand that a number of UK companies will be represented in Sri Lanka during November 2013 under the auspices of the Commonwealth Business Forum.

Post Offices

Ian Murray: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills when (a) he, (b) Ministers in his Department and (c) officials in his Department met the Justice for Subpostmasters Alliance. [173192]

Jo Swinson: Details of all external meetings undertaken by Ministers at the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills are published on a quarterly basis on the Gov.uk website.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications? departments%5B%5D=department-for-business-innovation-skills&publication_type=transparency-data

Details covering 2013 Q3 will be published in due course.

The Department has responded to written representations from the Justice for Subspostmasters Alliance who have also met the Minister responsible for Post Office matters on 7 October 2010 and 28 June 2012. There have been no direct meetings with departmental officials outside these ministerial meetings.

Post Offices: ICT

Ian Murray: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills pursuant to the oral statement by the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Employment Relations and Consumer Affairs, 9 July 2013, Official Report, column 198, on Post Office–Horizon system, who will chair the review that will determine how best to adjudicate future disputed cases with regard to the Horizon system; and whether the review body has yet met. [173177]

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Jo Swinson: Post Office Ltd has worked closely with the Justice for Subpostmasters Alliance (JFSA), Second Sight (the independent forensic accountants), and the right hon. Member for North East Hampshire (Mr Arbuthnot), to establish a mediation scheme. The Scheme will be overseen by a working group with an independent Chair in Sir Anthony Hooper, whose appointment was announced on 29 October 2013. The Government are not a member of the initial mediation scheme, but I understand that Sir Anthony chaired his first meeting of the group on 25 October 2013.

Subpostmasters who wish to have their case considered by the initial mediation scheme have until 18 November 2013 to submit their applications. The scheme opened on 27 August 2013.

Ian Murray: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what recent discussions he has had with Post Office Ltd regarding the Horizon system. [173182]

Jo Swinson: I regularly meet senior representatives from Post Office Ltd to discuss a wide range of matters. In addition, officials from the Department's shareholder Executive team maintain a close and continuous dialogue with the company.

Ian Murray: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills when he expects Second Sight to produce its final report on the Post Office Ltd Horizon system. [173263]

Jo Swinson: Following the publication of Second Sight's report in July, Post Office Ltd established a complaint review and mediation scheme to provide an effective mechanism to address subpostmasters' complaints. The scheme and its time scales are overseen by a working group, chaired by Sir Anthony Hooper, and comprising of representatives from Post Office Ltd, the Justice for Subpostmasters Alliance, and Second Sight. The working group is independent of Government, and is responsible for meeting the recommendations set out in the interim report. Subpostmasters who wish to have their cases reviewed by the mediation scheme have until 18 November to apply. These will then be considered and where appropriate investigated. It is for the independent working group to decide how to report on the findings of those investigations in due course.

Staff

Mrs Hodgson: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what proportion of employees within his Department on each civil service pay scale are (a) women and (b) men. [173024]

Jo Swinson: This information is contained in the Statistical Bulletin Tables (Table 22) of the 2013 Civil Service Statistics. This is available on the following page on the ONS website:

http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/publications/re-reference-tables.html?edition=tcm%3A77-319802

Students: Lancashire

Mr Nigel Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills how many university students in (a) Ribble Valley constituency and (b) Lancashire are eligible for maintenance loans. [173302]

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Mr Willetts: Estimates of the number of English domiciled students eligible to apply for a maintenance loan are published annually in Table 4A(ii) of the Student Loans Company's Statistical First Release, “Student Support for Higher Education in England”. The latest published statistics, from November 2012, are available at the following link:

http://www.slc.co.uk/statistics/national-statistics

In the academic year 2010/11 we estimated that there were 1,011,100 English domiciled students in UK higher education1 who were eligible to apply for a maintenance loan. Of this total, 983,295 students were enrolled at UK higher education institutions, of which 23,545 were from Lancashire local authority, and 2,305 were from the Ribble Valley constituency.

Estimates of the maintenance loan eligible population in the academic year 2011/12 will be published in the next edition of “Student Support for Higher Education in England” on 28 November 2013.

1 This estimate includes students enrolled at UK higher education institutions and other providers of higher education, such as further education colleges.

Deputy Prime Minister

Electoral Register: Young People

Mr Ward: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what steps he is taking to increase the number of young people registering to vote. [173089]

Greg Clark: The transition to individual electoral registration offers the opportunity for electoral administrators to ensure as many people as are entitled to are registered to vote.

Additional funding has been made available for the extra costs associated with this.

Health

Ambulance Services

John Woodcock: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what representations he has received from NHS hospital trusts on the availability of ambulances in the last 12 months. [173306]

Jane Ellison: No representations have been received from national health service hospital trusts on the availability of ambulances in the last 12 months.

Decision making regarding the number of ambulances is an operational issue and is therefore a matter for the local ambulance trust.

Clinical Commissioning Groups

Sir Roger Gale: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what safeguards he has put in place to ensure that there is no conflict of financial interest between membership of clinical commissioning groups and GP-run practices and health centres; [173319]

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(2) what provision has been made for the registration and publication of the interests of members of clinical commissioning groups. [173320]

Jane Ellison: Every clinical commissioning group (CCG) must have a constitution setting out, among other things, the arrangements made for discharging its duties with regard to registers of interest and managing conflicts of interest. CCGs are expected to provide clear guidance to their members and employees on what might constitute a conflict of interest, providing examples that are likely to arise.

The Health and Social Care Act 2012 sets out clear requirements of CCGs to make arrangements for managing conflicts of interests. Each CCG must:

maintain one or more registers of interest of the members of the group, members of the its governing body, members of its committees or sub-committees of its governing body, and its employees;

publish, or make arrangements to ensure that members of the public have access to these registers on request;

make arrangements to ensure individuals declare any potential conflicts of interest in relation to a decision to be made by the group, and record them in the registers as soon as they become aware of it, and in any event within 28 days; and

make arrangements for managing conflicts of interest, and potential conflicts of interest in such a way as to ensure that they do not and do not appear to affect the integrity of the group's decision making process.

In March 2013, NHS England published “Managing conflicts of interests: Guidance for clinical commissioning groups”. In addition, the National Health Service (Procurement, Patient Choice and Competition) Regulations 2013 set out that commissioners:

must manage conflicts and potential conflicts of interests when awarding a contract by prohibiting the award of a contract where the integrity of the award has been or appears to have been affected by a conflict; and

must keep appropriate records of how they managed any conflicts in individual cases.