Mr. Frank Field : To ask the right hon. Member for Selby, representing the Church Commissioners, under what terms the Commissioners hold 8 Barton street, London house ; who else has a legal interest in the property ; and if he will make a statement.
The Attorney-General : The Lord Chancellor has received the report of the efficiency scrutiny of the Public Record Office. The report is being published today and copies placed in the Libraries of both Houses.
The scrutiny was set up in August 1990 to look at the functions, management and organisation of the Public Record Office, to examine the services it provides and to make proposals on its future status. The Lord Chancellor is most concerned to ensure that the priceless national asset of the records held by the Public Record Office is maintained efficiently and that the best possible quality of service is provided to those who wish to use them.
The scrutiny team has produced a wide-ranging report and the Lord Chancellor will be considering the detailed recommendations that it contains. He accepts the broad thrust of the report and agrees with the scrutiny team's conclusion that the Public Record Office should become an executive agency under the Government's "next steps" programme. Officials of the Public Record Office and the Lord Chancellor's Department will be drawing up an action plan for the transition to agency status and associated management changes.
Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what records are kept by his Department of the number of shipping accidents there have been in the coastal waters of the United Kingdom, involving (a) collisions, (b) groundings and (c) sinkings ; how far the records go back ; and what is the date of the latest records available.
Mr. McLoughlin : The records kept show the numbers of collisions and groundings for each year for United Kingdom merchant vessels over 100 gross tons and United Kingdom fishing vessels, on a worldwide basis, back to 1972. They also show individual merchant and fishing vessels lost from any cause in each year.
The information for the years 1972-88 is available in the Department's publication "Casualties to Vessels and Accidents to Men". This publication was discontinued with the setting up of the marine accident investigation branch (MAIB) in July 1989. For 1989--the latest year for which figures are currently available--the information is contained in the MAIB publication "Review for 1989". The figures for the past 10 years are as follows :
Year |Collisions and|Strandings and |contacts |Groundings |(all causes) --------------------------------------------------------------------------- Merchant vessels 1980 |153 |49 |8 1981 |125 |45 |11 1982 |154 |44 |4 1983 |107 |25 |5 1984 |91 |35 |5 1985 |69 |28 |6 1986 |55 |21 |4 1987 |46 |16 |5 1988 |56 |22 |6 1989 |62 |28 |3 Fishing vessels 1980 |23 |26 |39 1981 |20 |25 |52 1982 |38 |29 |50 1983 |26 |33 |42 1984 |15 |36 |41 1985 |22 |32 |40 1986 |21 |33 |19 1987 |13 |40 |14 1988 |19 |55 |22 1989 |46 |51 |22
Mr. Wilson : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what representations he has received regarding the environmental risks associated with oil tankers using the route through the Minches, as opposed to the recommended deep water route west of the Western Isles ; and if he will make a statement.
Since the deep water route was implemented in October 1987 I have received a number of representations from hon. Members, environmental organisations and members of the public, all expressing concern about the use of the Minches by oil tankers.
Mr. Wilson : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what are the annual figures for the number of laden oil tankers which sailed through the deep water route west of the Western Isles in a southerly direction for each of the past 10 years and the amount of oil carried ;
(2) what are the annual figures for the number of laden oil tankers which sailed through the Minches in a southerly direction for each of the past 10 years and the amount of oil carried.
Column 183My Department commissioned a survey of southbound traffic in the two routes in September and October 1989. The survey ran for 21 days and nights, excluding three interruptions by bad weather which forced the survey vessels to seek shelter for a total of six days. During the survey period a total of 25 laden oil tankers, 16 of which were over 10,000 grt, proceeded south through the Minches compared with four laden tankers, all over 10,000 grt, which proceeded south through the deep water route. Sea conditions were such as to render use of the deep water route an impractical alternative in the opinion of many of the masters involved.
Mr. Wilson : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) if he intends that cost-benefit analysis should be used in considering any proposals from ScotRail to electrify the Edinburgh-Glasgow, via Falkirk, and the Edinburgh-Dunblane-Glasgow railway lines ; and if he will make a statement.
(2) what assurances have been given that the social benefits of electrification will be taken into account in considering proposals to electrify the Edinburgh-Glasgow, via Falkirk, and
Edinburgh-Dunblane-Glasgow railway lines ;
(3) what criteria will be used to assess any proposals to electrify the railway line between Edinburgh and Aberdeen.
Mr. Freeman : My right hon. Friend the Member for Hertsmere (Mr. Parkinson), the then Secretary of State, set out the criteria for rail investment in his letter of 19 December 1989 to the then chairman of the British Railways Board, which set the board's objectives for the period 1990-91 to 1992-93. I am sending a copy to the hon. Member.
Mr. David Marshall : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what is the total value of moneys paid out under section 8 of the Transport Act 1974 to assist in the provision of Speedlink rail freight services.
Mr. Freeman : Since 1975 grants of £69 million (cash) have been awarded under section 8 of the Railways Act 1974. Around £10 million assisted the provision of rail facilities serviced by the Speedlink network representing less than 10 per cent. of the total grant-aided traffic. These figures include a number of schemes no longer subject to the conditions of grant which normally apply for 10 years and others which have ceased operation at some time during the period.
Mr. Pendry : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what specific measures his Department has taken to promote energy efficiency ; what further measures his Department intends to take to promote energy efficiency ; and by what amount and what percentage of its total energy bill his Department's energy bill has been reduced over the past year.
Column 184activities have, for example, produced improvements in air conditioning plant and have led to the introduction of new building management systems and to the installation of new lighting systems. New opportunities continue to be sought and implemented.
In 1989-90, the last full year for which data are available, the energy bill of the Department was reduced by about £120,000, 5 per cent. compared with the previous year.
Mr. Corbyn : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to his oral answer of 14 January, Official Report, column 606, if he will outline the programme of monitoring for the pilot red route scheme being undertaken by his Department ; and if he will make a statement on the effects so far of the routes' introduction.
Mr. Chope : Monitoring will cover safety, public transport performance, vehicle flow counts, parking surveys, shopping activity, pedestrian movement, journey times, enforcement data, loading activity and the use of rat runs.
Present indications are that traffic, including buses, is flowing more freely and that there is less illegal parking, but it is too soon to reach firm conclusions.
Mr. David Hunt : No special financial assistance is provided by my Department to ensure slaughterhouses in Wales meet EC standards. The Department's veterinary staff are available to provide advice on these standards.
Mr. Nicholas Bennett : This matter is being considered as part of the current exercise to review the Department's existing strategic planning guidance. The Assembly of Welsh Counties has accepted the invitation to take forward that review in consultation with the Council of Welsh Districts and other interested bodies. To launch the debate on green belts, my right hon. Friend has convened and will address a conference at the Welsh Office on 28 January 1991.
Mr. Gwilym Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what consideration he has given to the report of the Council for the Protection of Rural Wales entitled "How Green Was My Valley" ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Nicholas Bennett : My right hon. Friend has read the report with interest. Some of its central concerns will be considered at the green belts conference in the Welsh Office, on 28 January 1991, when the CPRW will present a paper.
Mr. Barry Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many job vacancies there are for (a) machine operators, (b) catering staff, (c) sales distribution staff, (d) cleaning staff and (e) clerical employees in Wales.
Total vacancies unfilled-October 1990 (latest) ----------------------------------------------------- Machine Operator (Engineering)-skilled |60 Machine Operator (Engineering)-unskilled |6 Catering |1,907 Selling-Distribution |1,312 Cleaning and Personal Services |1,944 Clerical and Machine Operators |1,367
Mr. Michael : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, further to his reply to the hon. Member for Cardiff, North (Mr. Jones), on 14 January, Official Report, column 433, if he will now set out his proposed timetable for (a) the submission of the application for Pembrokeshire district health authority to become a trust, (b) the consultation process on the application and (c) his decision on the application.
Mr. David Hunt : If Pembrokeshire district health authority decides to submit a formal application it will be subject to a statutory consultation period of three months after which I would hope to issue an early decision.
Mr. Corbyn : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will give details of the number of people admitted as visitors and the number of people refused entry and returned abroad by the immigration authorities at United Kingdom ports of entry for each month in 1990 who were nationals of (a) Jamaica, (b) Barbados, (c) Trinidad and Tobago and (d) Guyana.
Total visitors admitted to, and total passengers refused leave to enter and removed from, the United Kingdom for selected nationalities, 1990 Nationality |January |February |March |April |May |June |July |August |September |October ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Jamaica Total visitors admitted<1> |600 |800 |1,000 |1,200 |1,500 |2,300 |3,100 |2,300 |1,600 |1,400 Total passengers refused leave to enter and removed |50 |52 |58 |42 |48 |50 |52 |36 |47 |60 Barbados Total visitors admitted<1> |100 |100 |200 |300 |400 |800 |1,000 |900 |600 |300 Total passengers refused leave to enter and removed |2 |1 |3 |3 |4 |3 |2 |3 |3 |5 Trinidad and Tobago Total visitors admitted<1> |300 |300 |500 |600 |700 |1,300 |1,700 |1,200 |1,000 |800 Total passengers refused leave to enter and removed |11 |11 |10 |9 |11 |11 |10 |10 |17 |13 Guyana Total visitors admitted<1> |100 |200 |200 |200 |200 |400 |700 |500 |400 |200 Total passengers refused leave to enter and removed |6 |3 |6 |3 |4 |4 |5 |1 |2 |10 <1> Provisional figures for ordinary and business visitors.
Dr. Marek : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether for the 1987 general election any chief executive of a local authority (a) refused appointment as an acting returning officer or (b) took unpaid leave from their authority in order to carry out the function of an acting returning officer.
Mrs. Rumbold : Chief executives of local authorities in England and Wales who are acting retuning officers are not directly appointed to that office : they have a statutory responsibility to carry out the duties of acting returning officers by virtue of the fact that they are electoral registration officers appointed by a district or London borough council. We are not aware of any chief executive who took unpaid leave in order to carry out the duties of acting returning officer at the last general election.
Column 187(2) which prison department establishments allow only one visit every four weeks.
Mrs. Rumbold : Convicted prisoners are normally able to receive at least two visits every four weeks, and sometimes more, at all establishments except Brixton, Durham, Liverpool, Manchester, Preston, Shrewsbury and Swansea.
Visits normally last at least one hour, and frequently longer, at all establishments except Durham, Leeds, Liverpool and Wandsworth.
Mr. Sheerman : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what has been the annual expenditure on assisted visits each year since 1986-87 ; and what is the estimated annual expenditure in 1990-91.
|£ ------------------------------ 1986-87 |905,628 1987-88 |793,407 1988-89 |1,332,598 1989-90 |1,491,204
The scheme is not cash limited and all valid claims are met in full. It is therefore possible to estimate only annual expenditure in 1990-91. It appears likely that end-of-year expenditure will be around £1,650,000.
Mrs. Rumbold : Standing order 5, a copy of which is in the Library, stipulates that visits to prisoners should take place in open visiting rooms unless security or control considerations require that a special or closed visiting room or a closed visiting box should be used. This may be considered necessary in individual cases in order to prevent, for example, the smuggling of drugs.
Mr. Cox : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what plans he has to stop the censorship of prisoners' letters in prisons in England and Wales, except where prisoner security is necessary ; and if he will make a statement.
Mrs. Rumbold : In 1986, routine censorship of prisoners' correspondence in category D prison establishments was abolished. Since 1988 only a random 5 per cent. sample of incoming and outgoing letters are routinely read in category C and equivalent female and young offender establishments. During 1990, a trial took place to test the
Column 188reduction of censorship to a 5 per cent. sample in selected category B--non-dispersal--establishments. We are currently studying the results of that trial.
Sir Dudley Smith : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he has any plans to meet the chief constable of Warwickshire to discuss the standard spending assessment for the police service in Warwickshire.
Population<1> of adult male sentenced prisoners in local and training prisons in England and Wales on 30 September 1990: by security category of prisoner |Number ------------------------------- A<2> |431 B |5,240 C |13,866 D |5,135 Not recorded |3,064 Total population |27,736 <1> The figures are those recorded centrally and are approximate: detailed checking of individual cases would involve disproportionate cost. <2> Including prisoners provisionally placed in Category A.
Sir Dudley Smith : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will meet the chief fire officer of Warwickshire to discuss the standard spending assessment for the county's fire service.
Mr. John Patten : Representatives of Warwickshire county council have had a number of opportunities to discuss their standard spending assessments with Ministers at the Department of the Environment. We will consider carefully any request from the Warwickshire fire authority for a meeting to discuss standards of fire cover. The chief fire officer met Her Majesty's chief inspector of fire services on 17 December to discuss those standards.
Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will list for the South Yorkshire police force area how many (a) children and (b) adults are known to have gone missing for each of the last five years he has records ; and how many were subsequently traced.
Mr. Peter Lloyd : The following annual figures are given in relation to the total number of missing persons reports received in the South Yorkshire police force area for the years 1986-1990. Children and adults are not categorised separately, nor do the figures take account of those individuals who regularly leave their homes and may be
Column 189reported missing several times a year. Separate records are maintained of children and adults who are still missing at the end of each year.
Year Total number of Outstanding at end of year |missing persons|Children |Adults |reports -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1986 |3,990 |16 |4 1987 |3,908 |32 |5 1988 |3,420 |13 |4 1989 |4,281 |14 |3 1990 |4,740 |27 |7
Mr. Bowis : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many elderly people have so far benefited from the provision of home security and alarm systems under the safer cities and other projects (a) in London and (b) in the London borough of Wandsworth.
Mr. John Patten : Four safer cities projects are based in London : at Islington, Lewisham, Tower Hamlets and Wandsworth. Twenty-two safer cities grants, worth £209,000, have been approved for agencies and organisations in those areas so that they can provide better home security or alarm systems to elderly people. The estimated number of beneficiaries is 3,500 elderly people, including 400 in the London borough of Wandsworth.
Mr. Peter Lloyd : Since the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait on 2 August, notices of intention to make deportation orders have been served on 128 Iraqi nationals. Deportation orders have been made against three of these Iraqi nationals. As of 22 January 1991, a total of 61 Iraqi nationals are detained pending their appearance before the advisory panel established under paragraph 157 of the immigration rules--HC 251--or consideration of other representations. Two further Iraqi nationals, who are military officers, are being detained as prisoners of war.
Mr. Corbyn : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many Iraqi nationals are currently in the United Kingdom by virtue of (a) permanent residence, (b) student, (c) exceptional leave to remain and (d) asylum application.
Mr. Peter Lloyd : The revised estimate from the latest labour force surveys and immigration control data is that some 7,000 Iraqis are usually resident in the United Kingdom, including students. In addition, some 1,300 Iraqis have been granted exceptional leave to remain and around 1,600 have applications outstanding for asylum.
Mr. Thurnham : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what was the number of children admitted into the United Kingdom in each of the last five years, for the purpose of adoption, without the necessary entry clearance ; and if he will make a statement.
Year |£ billion|GDP |Per cent. ---------------------------------------- 1980-81 |2.5 |1.0 1981-82 |2.1 |0.8 1982-83 |2.1 |0.7 1983-84 |2.8 |0.9 1984-85 |3.1 |0.9 1985-86 |3.2 |0.9 1986-87 |3.4 |0.9 1987-88 |3.5 |0.8 1988-89 |3.4 |0.7 1989-90 |3.8 |0.7
Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will list by local authority the percentage of uncollected (a) community charge and (b) uniform business rates outstanding for the latest date for which he has figures.
Mr. Blunkett : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, pursuant to his reply of 7 December 1990, Official Report, column 220, if he will publish in the Official Report his letter of 19 December 1990 to the hon. Member for Sheffield, Brightside.
Local Government Finance--
Statutory Instruments (all subject to the negative resolution procedure) to be laid by 31 March 1991.
The Community Charge
1. Introduction of community charge reduction scheme.
2. Form of the community charge bill and content of rate demand notice for 1991-92.
3. Content of community charge bill and of rate demand notice for the City of London for 1991-92.
4. Miscellaneous administrative matters--billing on change of address, attachment of earnings orders, costs of summonses, notification of entry.
5. Revised rules for calculation of relevant population. 6. Amendment to increase the amounts of financial loss and travel and subsistence allowance payable to VCCT members.