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Number of pupils |Number of secondary |schools ------------------------------------------------------------ Under 400 |13 401-600 |37 601-800 |51 801-1,000 |61 1,001-1,500 |64 1,501-2,000 |6
School teachers' pay and |Number of secondary conditions document |schools group number --------------------------------------------------------------------------- 7 |4 8 |24 9 |28 10 |56 11 |78 12 |29 13 |12 14 |1
Mrs. Ann Taylor : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will publish a list showing the numbers of primary schools by size (a) in relation to pupil numbers and (b) in relation to the group size defined in the school teachers' pay and conditions document.
H Full-time and part-time |Number of schools pupils numbers ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Up to 25 |77 26-50 |221 51-100 |342 101-200 |615 201-300 |380 301-400 |97 401-600 |21
School teachers pay and |Number of Schools conditions document group number ------------------------------------------------------------------------ 1 |314 2 |331 3 |304 4 |556 5 |187 6 |58 7 |3
Mr. Wigley : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what are the implications for patients in Gwynedd needing emergency hospital treatment, arising from the road works on the A55 road holding up ambulances en route to hospital ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Wyn Roberts : Temporary traffic restrictions on the A55 in Gwynedd to allow completion of trunk road improvements have been imposed in close co-operation with the emergency services. The administration of contingency plans is the responsibility of each service involved. However, I am advised that patients who require urgent treatment at a district general hospital will be taken to Bodelwyddan if there are difficulties in reaching Bangor. Should it prove necessary the medical services can call on helicopters from RAF Valley for assistance.
Mr. Wigley : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what date the Felinheli bypass on the A48 was first put into the Welsh Office roads preparation pool ; when the first draft bypass plan was put out for public consultation ; when the most recent plan was put out to public consultation ; whether his most recently favoured route has now been confirmed in detail ; what is the latest target date for commencing that work ; and when is it planned that the bypass will open.
Mr. Wyn Roberts : The Felinheli bypass was first put into the Welsh Office preparation pool in 1971. A feasibility study into various routes for a bypass was carried out in 1971 and the selected route was protected for planning control purposes in December 1972. There has been no public consultation but an exhibition of the revised protected route was held in December 1985. Draft orders were published in November-December 1987 and, as a result of objections received, a public inquiry was held in May 1988. The inspector's report has been received and is under consideration. The scheme is programmed to start in the medium term, ie April 1991-March 1994 as shown in the recently published edition of "Roads in Wales", and will take two years to construct.
Mr. Peter Walker : The Welsh plant breeding station is part of the Agricultural and Food Research Council's Institute for Grassland and Animal Production and, as such, is the responsibility of that research council. The council has been supportive of the station in the past, and I would expect it to be so in the future.
Column 556The scheme will be reopening for the 1989-90 season shortly.
94. Mr. Rowe : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if the environmental impact study being undertaken for British Rail of the high- speed rail link through Kent meets the requirements for such studies as defined by the European Community.
Mr. Roy Hughes : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what recent discussions he has had with the Humber bridge authorities concerning outstanding debt ; whether any amount has been written off ; and when he expects the overall debt on the bridge to be finally paid off.
Mr. Peter Bottomley : There have been no recent discussions, and no debt has been written off. The date at which the debt is written off will depend on various factors, including future toll levels. When my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State reaches a decision on the inspector's report, following last year's inquiry into proposals to raise tolls, we shall discuss the debts of the bridge with the bridge board.
Mr. Peter Bottomley : The recently awarded contract for the resurfacing should be completed around the end of next year. The estimated total cost of the repair and renewal work for the strengthening of the crossing is £69.1 million.
Mr. Roy Hughes : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when he expects to receive the report of the inspector who conducted the inquiry into the Government's proposal to increase toll charges on the Severn bridge.
Mr. Peter Bottomley : No general statistics are kept of the cost of draining public highways. I refer my hon. Friend to the answer that I gave him on 13 December last Official Report column 520, for the latest figures of the cost in England of maintaining road drainage. It falls to highway authorities to meet the costs of providing and maintaining drainage within the highway and to water authorities to meet the costs of dealing with the surface water discharged from it.
Mr. Peter Bottomley : The Department is committed to minimising the impact of new roads on the environment and to enhancing road safety. These are two of our main objectives in building roads and form an integral part of our planning and design process.
Possible measures to mitigate the impact of the road such as use of sensitive design, banks to screen traffic, planting, choice of materials and colour of structures are all taken into consideration when preparing the detailed design.
In some exceptional circumstances, special features such as tunnels may be incorporated.
Safety features such as lighting, signing, safety barriers and special provisions for pedestrians and cyclists are considered when drawing up the detailed design ; and all contribute to the overall safety of the road.
Because environmental and safety measures are integrated into the design and construction of schemes, their cost cannot in general be identified separately.
Information can be given for some illustrative examples. On the A12 Hackney -M11 link road, we estimate that overall some £50 million will be spent on environmental measures, including some tunnelling. This represents about 40 per cent. of the total scheme cost.
The A69 Newcastle Western bypass is to pass under rather than over the Metro line at an additional cost of £3 million.
On the A361 North Devon link road well over £1 million was spent on environmental measures including nearly three miles of Devon hedgebanks.
Planting is only implemented after a road scheme has been built. The expenditure involved can be more readily identified.
In the last financial year the Department spent £2.2 million on planting and associated works.
A total of 1.4 million trees and shrubs were planted. Typical schemes are A35 Dorchester bypass where almost 70,000 plants are being provided at a cost of £150,000 and the A626 Stocksbridge-M1 link where £111,000 is being spent on over 60,000 plants.
Column 558With regard to safety aspects, the cost of central reserve safety barriers can be identified. New dual carriageways are generally provided with central reserve safety barriers at the outset. For example, over £0.5 million was spent on this on the south Woodford to Barking relief road completed in December 1987 and over £1 million on the Newcastle Western bypass currently under construction.
In addition the Department has a rolling programme to a value of some £10 million per year to install central reserve safety fencing on existing roads.
For 1989-90 this represents almost 150 miles of safety fencing. The provision and renewal of safety barriers is also carried out as part of major maintenance contracts.
Mr. Rowe : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether, in the current year, the transport and road research laboratory will be continuing its programme of roadside surveys of drinking and driving.
Mrs. Roe : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what is his policy on the ending of the United Kingdom's derogations from the European Community vehicle weight limits ; and if he will make it his policy to agree only to an end-date which takes full account of the time needed to strengthen United Kingdom bridges.
Mr. Channon : As I explained to the House on 8 March, my aim is to resist attempts to end the United Kingdom's derogations in 1993 or at any other premature date. I shall therefore be negotiating at the June Transport Council for an end-date which takes proper account of the need to strengthen our bridges.
Mr. Mellor : Officials from the Medicines Control Agency are engaged with the Commission and other member states in discussion on various issues relating to the establishment of a single EC market in medicines by 1992. These include the development of draft technical regulatons and guidelines relating to the safety, quality and efficacy required before medicinal products can be marketed as well as broader discussion about the system for licensing and control of medicines after 1992. These discussions are intended to lead to the formulation by the Commission of proposals for a definite system for the free movement of medicinal products within the Community, to be submitted to the Council of Ministers by the end of the year.
Mr. Freeman : The hospital activity records for 1987-88 have not yet been analysed to produce information about beds occupied in individual districts by patients with specified diagnoses. My hon. Friend may wish to write to the chairman of the district health authority, who may be able to provide the information.
Mr. Ralph Howell : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what was (a) the total number of beds available daily in the United Kingdom and (b) the number unoccupied in the NHS for each of the years 1979, 1986, 1987 and 1988.
Mr. Freeman : Information for Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland is a matter for my right hon. Friends the Secretaries of State for Wales and for Northern Ireland and my right hon. and learned Friend the Secretary of State for Scotland.
Information for England is given in the table.
Beds in NHS hospitals, England, 1979, 1986 and 1987-88 Year |Average daily available |<1>Average daily occupied|Average daily unoccupied |beds |beds |beds ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1979 |361,670 |293,272 |68,398 1986 |315,714 |254,597 |61,117 1987-88 |297,342 |<2>240,000 |57,342 <1>Bed occupancy figures are based on a midnight count and do not reflect the use of beds by patients who do not stay overnight. <2>Estimated.
Mr. Riddick : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what income has been derived by the Huddersfield health authority from pay beds in the latest year for which figures are available and in the preceding eight years ; and how that income has been used.
Mr. Mellor : The table lists the information requested from 1982-83 onwards. Prior to 1 April 1982, the authority's predecesssor health district formed part of an area health authority and district based figures were not collected centrally.
Income from private in-patients (under section 65 of the NHS Act 1977) Year |£ --------------------------- 1982-83 |61,962 1983-84 |156,764 1984-85 |191,590 1985-86 |71,107 1986-87 |9,745 <1>1987-88 |16,354 <1>Latest available-annual accounts for 1988-89 are not due for submission to the Department until 30 June 1989.
Health authorities are free to retain such income, which by its nature is bound to vary from year to year, as a supplementary source of funds in order to meet their total annual expenditure. We do not collect information centrally on the specific purpose to which such monies have been put.
Mr. David Nicholson : To ask the Secretary of State for Health by what means counterfeit medicines imported into the United Kingdom from elsewhere within the European Community will be detected when inter- community custom barriers are removed in 1992.
Mr. David Nicholson : To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether he intends to take action under article 36 of the treaty of Rome, on the grounds of public safety, to control the quality, efficacy and safety of parallel imported medicines in view of the recent instances of counterfeit medicines being found in the United Kingdom.
Mr. Riddick : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what savings have been achieved by the Huddersfield health authority by putting ancillary services out to competitive tendering in the latest year for which figures are available and in the preceding eight years ; and how have any savings achieved been used.
Mr. Mellor : We do not collect information in the form requested centrally. Savings achieved in 1988-89 amounted to £675,000. The total since the initiative started in 1983 is of the order of £1.85 million. Such savings contribute to the total resources available to the district ; they are not attributed to specified developments.
Mr. Ralph Howell : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will state the total directly employed staff in the National Health Service, in the United Kingdom (a) the number of persons and (b) full-time equivalents, for 1979, 1986, 1987 and 1988.
Total directly employed staff in the National Health Service at 30 September of each year: United Kingdom |Number<1><2> |Whole-time |equivalent<1><2> -------------------------------------------------------------------- 1979 |1,171,700 |976,900 1986 |1,217,400 |1,018,400 1987 |1,222,400 |1,016,400 1988 |n/a |n/a Source: Department of Health (SMI3) annual censuses of NHS medical and non-medical manpower, Welsh Office; Scottish Health Service common services agency and Northern Ireland Department of Health and Social Services. <1> All figures are independently rounded to the nearest 100. <2> Includes medical and dental locums and nursing and midwifery agency staff. n/a = Not available.
Column 561in the Oxford district ; for how long such vacancies are advertised on average before they are filled, and what was the percentage turnover of all ancillary staff in the Oxford district in 1986, 1987 and 1988.
(2) what has been the cost to his Department of water fluoridation since the Water (Fluoridation) Act came into effect ;
(3) what new estimate he has made of the cost effectiveness of further fluoridation in view of the general decline in dental cavities in children's teeth in the 90 per cent. of the population not in receipt of artificially fluoridated water ;
(4) whether he is prepared to offer an indemnity to private water undertakers who are liable to be sued for harm resulting from fluoridation of their drinking water ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Freeman : The Water (Fluoridation) Act 1985 did what it was intended to do and put beyond doubt the power of water undertakers to add fluoride to the water supplied to them when asked to do so by health authorities. No new fluoridation schemes have been introduced since the Act came into force though a number of schemes are at various stages of preparation.
The central funds allocated to health authorities for the implementation of water fluoridation schemes amounted to £262,000 in 1986-87 ; £433,000 in 1987-88 and £1,168,000 in 1988-89. The 1988-89 figure reflects the commitment in the Government's White Paper "Promoting Better Health" to increase the amount of money made available to Health Authorities to fund fluoridation schemes. £2,075, 000 is allocated for 1989-90.
A recent survey comparing the dental health of young children in fluoridated south Birmingham and non-fluoridated Bolton (C. M. Mitropoulos et al., Br. Dent. J. 1988) confirms that further reductions in caries levels in children's teeth are undoubtedly achievable over and above the general decline in caries that has occurred. These benefits are particularly cost-effective where caries levels are otherwise high and in the less privileged social classes where the highest incidence of caries is found.
A copy of the model agreement which provides the basis of discussion between health authorities and water undertakers on the terms under which fluoridation of domestic water supplies may be carried out, including a copy of the terms of indemnity provided for water authorities and private water companies operating fluoridation schemes was placed in the Library on 16 January 1989. We will continue to provide an indemnity to water undertakers after privatisation of the water
Column 562industry ; the terms of this indemnity are being considered in the light of representations made by the water authorities and the water companies associations.
Mr. Austin Mitchell : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate the Government have made of the effects of the proposed changes in the remuneration of general practitioners on the gross income of those who do not opt for their own budgets ; and what is the intended effect of the new arrangements in terms of (a) the number of patients per doctor and (b) the number of staff employed by doctors, and their remuneration.
Mr. Mellor : I refer the hon. Member to the reply that I gave to my hon. Friends the Members for Ealing, North (Mr. Greenway), for Brigg and Cleethorpes (Mr. Brown), for Slough (Mr. Watts) and for Colne Valley (Mr. Riddick) today. Under the proposals for GP practice budgets set out in the White Paper, "Working for Patients", and Working Paper 3, practices which opt to become budget holders may invest any savings on their annual budget in improving the services that they offer to patients. The review body on doctors' and dentists' remuneration will continue as now to recommend the average net income and indirectly reimbursed expenses of all GPs, whether budget holders or not. Other expenses incurred by GPs are reimbursed directly.
We expect the number of staff employed by GPs to increase as a result of our intention to invest more in practice teams, and to remove the present restraints on their number and the range of qualifying duties. By enabling family practitioner committees to target funds on areas of greatest need, the deployment of practice team staff will become more cost-effective.
Mr. Ryder : 1. The resources devoted to agricultural research and development by and for my Department were increased in 1988-89. The cost rose from £81.7 million in 1987-88 to an estimated £85.6 million in 1988-89. The majority of the work is included in rolling programmes commissioned with the Agricultural Development and Advisory Service and the Agricultural and Food Research Council. Other ad hoc projects are performed by a variety of contractors under short term contracts.
2. The rolling programmes of commissioned research are under constant review and adjustment, in the light of changing priorities and the prospects for useful results. A number of individual experiments and studies in each programme will have ceased in 1988-89 to be replaced by new work. It would not be possible to list such adjustments except at disproportionate cost. The following short-term contracts were completed during 1988-89 ; none was terminated prematurely.
Project title |Contractor -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Group breeding scheme |University College, Wales Potato clones partially resistant to Globodera Pallida |National Institute of Agricultural Botany Buffer feeding as a means of increasing the efficiency of grass use |University College of North Wales Response in the yields of milk fat and protein to nutrition |Leeds University Biodegradation of thatching straw |Bath University Storage of Rubus mother stocks |Edinburgh School of Agriculture Free convective airflows in perishable crop storage |Silsoe college Anthelmintic resistance in sheep nematodes |Nottingham University Tuberculin production by recombinant E. Coli |Surrey University Investigation of mastitis in sheep |Royal Veterinary College The dynamic behaviour of specialised spraying vehicles |Leeds University Improvement of fruit quality and control of tree vigour |East Malling Research Station Maintenance of soil structure, fertility and fruit quality in herbicide managed orchards |East Malling Research Station Methods for rapid classification of carcasses |Food Research Institute The prevention of bolting in early protected celery |Glasshouse Crops Research Institute Micropropogation of FI hybrid lettuce |Glasshouse Crops Research Institute The nitrogen cycle on organic farms |University College of Wales Salmonella shedding in poultry |Bristol University A mathematical study of the genetics and epidemiology of nematode parasites resistant to anthelmintics |Strathclyde University Modified atmosphere packaging of tree fruits to retain quality |East Malling Research Station The palatability and nutritive value of low-glucosinolates |Royal Veterinary College The development of a rapid and simple method for the analysis of glucosinalate content of rapeseed |Food Research Institute Broken bones in culled layer hens |Food Research Institute A pilot study of the interdependence of farming and the local rural economy |Ecotec Consulting Ltd. Pilot study of grazing by hares and deer on double low oilseed rape |Game Conservancy Trust Reed beds for agricultural effluent treatment |Birmingham University The impact on the rural economy of replacing agricultural land use by planting woodland |Laurence Gould Consultants Ltd. Flow rate serving for automatic cluster removal on small ruminants |Cranfield Institute of Technology Review of the risk of exposure of dairy cows to bracken |Institute for Grassland and Animal Production
Mr. Jack : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what representations he has received about the implications for gas prices for horticulturalists resulting from the Monopolies and Mergers Commission report on gas tariffs ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Ryder : I have so far received 10 letters, including two from the National Farmers Union, making representations about the new price schedules being introduced by British Gas and the likely impact of these on growers.
Column 564My officials have subsequently met NFU horticultural
representatives to discuss the problem and have asked, to be kept informed urgently of progress in the discussions which they are having with the Office of Gas Supply.
recommendations have been issued about it ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Ryder : New Nitrashell is a propriety fertiliser based on ammonium nitrate manufactured by Kemira Ince Ltd, Ince, Chester, and according to the manufacturer contains more than 28 per cent. nitrogen and as such complies with EC directive 80/876.
The Fertilisers Regulations 1977, as amended by the Fertilisers (Amendment) Regulations 1984, require ammonium nitrate fertilisers, such as New Nitrashell to meet minimum safety standards which include limits on inorganic additives, heavy metals, the percentage of combustible material and minimum particle size.
Ammonium nitrate is an oxidising agent which is not itself combustible but can be detonated under conditions of heat and confinement of severe shock. It is therefore controlled under the United Kingdom Classification, Packaging and Labelling of Dangerous Substances Regulations 1984 and the United Kingdom Control of Industrial Major Accident Hazard Regulations 1984. These regulations are enforced by HSE, which also issues guidance note CS 18 on storage and handling of ammonium nitrate.
The Fertilisers Manufacturers Association and Kemira Ince Ltd issue full safety advice for the storage, handling and transportation of ammonium nitrate fertilisers.
Mr. Austin Mitchell : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether he will publish in the Official Report a table showing (a) payments under the common agricultural policy and (b) payments from the Exchequer to United Kingdom farmers for each crop and type of livestock since the financial year 1969-70 together with his estimate for 1988-89 and 1989-90.
Mr Donald Thompson : Expenditure on market regulation under the CAP and on price guarantees up to 1988-89 is set out by main commodity in the publication "Agriculture in the United Kingdom 1988", and the annual reviews of agriculture which preceded it. Forecasts for 1989-90 are contained in the Supply Estimates
Mr. Ryder [holding answer 22 May 1989] : Time permitted only brief and very gneral discussion at this meeting. It focussed mainly on the Commission's suggestion, in its document "The Future of Rural Society", that Community law might provide for certain food designations to be reserved for foods of a particular composition or produced by specified methods or originating in a specific geographical area.
A wide range of views was expressed. Some believed that such measures would improve food quality, discourage "substitute" products, and help raise farmers' incomes. Others, like me, felt that consumer choice and freedom of trade could best be maximised by allowing producers to respond freely to demand, while ensuring that consumers where fully informed about the nature of the goods offered to them. The Council is likely to return to the subject on a future occasion.