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28 Nov 2000 : Column WA129

Written Answers

Tuesday, 28th November 2000.

TA Units: Location

Lord Elder asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What plans they have to make further changes to the location of Territorial Army units. [HL4719]

The Minister of State, Ministry of Defence (Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean): Three changes are to be made to the locations of units announced as part of the Territorial Army restructuring on 17 November 1998 (Official Report, col. 749-771) by the then Secretary of State for Defence. These involve changing the final location of HQ 101 Bn REME (V) from Harry Weale Hall, Queensferry to Hightown Barracks, Wrexham; changing the location for 59 Sig Sqn (V) from Deysbrook to Aintree and sell Deysbrook Barracks complete; and changing the location of A (The Royal Scots (The Royal Regiment)) Company, 52nd Lowland Regiment from TAC Dalmeny Street to TAC East Claremont Street.

These changes are being made because they represent more cost-effective solutions to locating the units in question.

In addition, the intention is to retain the TA Centre in Chorley to house E Sqn 5 GS Med Regt which will be moving from Hull.

Street Numbering

Lord Hylton asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether street numbering, using clear and visible numbers, is a matter that can be dealt with through local by-laws; and whether a British standard exists for house and commercial numbers.[HL4631]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions (Lord Whitty): There are no specific by-laws and no general legal requirement for premises to display their numbers in any particular way. However, under the Town Improvement Clauses Act 1847 local authorities are able, by means of a local Act, to take special powers which enable them to require premises to maintain their number and display it conspicuously.

I understand from the British Standards Institute that there is no British standard for house and commercial numbering. Nevertheless, Appendix C of the Department of Transport Circular Roads 3/93 sets out recommended best practice regarding the style and location of premises' numbers.

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Lead Shot Regulations

Lord Marlesford asked Her Majesty's Government:

    How many prosecutions and how many convictions there have so far been for offences under the Environmental Protection (Restriction on the Use of Lead Shot) (England) Regulations 1999 (SI 1999/2170).[HL4763]

Lord Whitty: The Home Office Court Proceedings Database does not identify such offences separately from other summary offences. However, the Association of Chief Police Officers' Wildlife and Environmental Crime Adviser surveyed a number of police forces following the first season's operation of the Environmental Protection (Restriction on the Use of Lead Shot) (England) Regulations 1999. The responses suggest that a very small number of potential infringements were reported to the police, that all were dealt with by advice and no court proceedings were undertaken.

Lord Marlesford asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they will review the enforcement and administration of, and the need for, the Environmental Protection (Restriction on the Use of Lead Shot) (England) Regulations 1999 (SI 1999/2170); and whether they will consider the repeal or modification of these regulations.[HL4764]

Lord Whitty: The Government are already reviewing these regulations on the basis of the first season's experience and convened earlier this year the Lead Shot Legislation (England) Review Group which will specifically review Schedule 1 to the regulations, the list of sites, as well as considering other issues relating to the effectiveness of the legislation. Representatives from shooting, farming, land-owning and conservation organisations and gun and ammunition industry interests are included in the group. The review group is expected to report early next year.

Lord Marlesford asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they regard it as satisfactory that the restrictions on the use of lead shot introduced under the Environmental Protection (Restriction on the Use of Lead Shot) (England) Regulations 1999 (SI 1999/2170) do not apply throughout the United Kingdom; and, if not, whether they intend to make representations to the devolved legislatures as to the need to introduce similar regulations.[HL4765]

Lord Whitty: The decision on whether to implement similar legislation in Wales and Scotland is a matter for the devolved administrations.

It is inherent in the principle of devolution that there will not necessarily be consistency of regulation throughout the United Kingdom and that measures will not necessarily be implemented on a consistent

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timetable. However, the Environment Minister for Wales, Sue Essex, announced on 9 November that regulations would be introduced for the next shooting season in September 2001 to restrict the use of lead shot over wetlands.

All the devolved administrations are responsible for various matters concerning environmental protection, though in many cases the framework provided by Community law or by other international organisations will provide a consistency of effect and of timing between the regulations.

As regards the Environmental Protection (Restriction on the Use of Lead Shot) (England) Regulations 1999 (SI 1999/2170), the decision on whether to implement similar legislation in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland is a matter for the devolved authorities. The devolved administrations are currently considering the issue of lead shot over wetlands.

Invalid Care Allowance

Lord Tebbit asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether the invalid carers allowance will be paid to family members having care of a severely disabled relative in order to assist them in paying for professional carers to assist in that work.[HL4739]

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The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Social Security (Baroness Hollis of Heigham): Invalid care allowance can already be used in this way provided the conditions of entitlement are met.

Stoppages in the Streets: Sessional Order

Lord Varley asked the Leader of the House:

    What action has been taken to ensure that the sessional order on stoppages in the streets has been properly implemented.[HL4832]

The Lord Privy Seal (Baroness Jay of Paddington): The Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police has accepted without qualification that it is the duty of the Metropolitan Police to implement in full the terms of the sessional order to ensure that passage through the streets leading to this House is kept clear and open for the duration of this Parliament.

While I recognise the right of individuals to demonstrate and to lobby their members of Parliament, I do not consider it acceptable to prevent noble Lords from performing their duties in this House.

I receive regular reports from Black Rod, and the Commissioner has assured me, through Black Rod, that his officers will do everything necessary to ensure that the business of both Houses of Parliament is not hindered by disturbances in the streets.



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