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Letter from E. W. Frizzell to Mr. John McFall, dated 18January 1994 :
The Secretary of State has asked me to reply to your Question about who granted permission for a visit in December 1993 by Mr. Roger Kendrick, former governor, and Mr. Walter Litherard, to Glenochil Prison, and how many staff and prisoners they interviewed. Mr. Kendrick telephoned Mr. L. McBain, Governor-in-Charge, HM Prison, Glenochil, and asked if he could visit to discuss a number of matters and Mr. McBain agreed.
Mr. Litherard did not visit the establishment.
Mr. Kendrick subsequently visited, The purpose of the visit was to advise the Governor of the existence of a new electronic drug detection unit that Mr. Kendrick's company was marketing. Mr. Kendrick also met with a Governor involved in the prison industries complex to ask if Glenochil Prison would be interested in seeking a contract to supply his company with items of prison industries output. No staff and no prisoners were interviewed by Mr. Kendrick.
Mr. Pendry : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will list the Scottish League clubs together with the total season's attendance at (a) matches played in the Scottish Premiership and Leagues and (b) matches played in the Tennant's Scottish cup, Skol cup and B and Q cup with the total numbers of (i) arrests, (ii) ejections and (iii) arrests plus ejections as a percentage of the total attendance at each category of such matches, accurate to four decimal places for the seasons 1991-92 and 1992- 93 ; and if he will make a statement on attendance rates and arrest rates at each category of such matches.
Sir Hector Monro : This information is not held centrally and cannot, therefore, be assembled in the time available. I shall write to the hon. Member and arrange for a copy of the letter to be placed in the Library of the House.
Sir Hector Monro : Ministers will await the advice of the forestry review group before deciding what action, if any, should be taken in relation to the ownership and management of the Forestry Commission's woodlands.
Mrs. Dunwoody : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what undertakings he has made to the forestry unions to guarantee the future of the Forestry Commission ; and if he will place them in the Library.
Mrs. Ray Michie : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what tariff rebate subsidy will be applied to the bulk transport of timber ; and what plans the Government have to reduce the rate or abolish the scheme.
Mrs. Ray Michie : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what estimate he has made as to the number of extra timber loads which will be transported by road in the west highlands following the termination of ship freight services ; what assessment he has made of the cost in terms of repair and maintenance of trunk roads resulting from such extra loads ; what studies he has made of the economic and environmental effect of such extra traffic on the areas concerned ; and if he will make a statement.
Lord James Douglas-Hamilton : It is my understanding that Glenlight Shipping Ltd. is continuing to transport timber by sea within the highlands and islands area using the company's timber barge system. Glenlight Shipping Ltd. will continue to receive subsidy on such cargoes. In addition, other bulk shippers operating within the TRS scheme are eligible to receive subsidy for the carriage of timber. Given the continuing operation of Glenlight's timber barge system as well as the availability of other bulk shipping operators to carry timber, it seems unlikely that there will be any significant transfer of timber transport to road in the west highlands area.
Mrs. Ray Michie : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland (1) which bulk shipping operators will be undertaking the transport of goods which were previously carried out by Glenlight Shipping ; when he expects the commencement of the service by alternative operators ; what level of subsidy they are receiving ; and if he will make a statement.
(2) what discussions his Department has had with freight shipping services following the collapse of the Glenlight Shipping company regarding the provision of life line shipping services to the Isles ; if he will list the shipping services which have shown an interest in the routes currently served by Glenlight ; and if he will make a statement ;
(3) what consultation has been initiated or entered into by his Department with bulk shipping companies in order to operate the routes relinquished by Glenlight Shipping Services Ltd ; on what dates these meetings took place ; and which ministers or officials were involved.
Lord James Douglas-Hamilton : Glenlight Shipping Ltd. has not collapsed. The company is still operating but has taken the commercial decision to discontinue bulk shipping operations in the highlands and islands area apart from the carriage of timber. The Scottish Office is continuing to provide tariff rebate subsidy to the company on the basis of eligible cargoes carried. In addition to Glenlight there are four other bulk shipping operators within the TRS scheme operating on the west coast. The
Column 487relevant companies are : Easdale Island Shipping Line, Gardner Shipping (Scotland) Ltd., Roderick Cunningham (Scalpay) Ltd. and Dennison (Shipping) Ltd. I understand that at least two of these shipping companies are already carrying cargoes for customers who were previously served by Glenlight Shipping Ltd. The Scottish Office maintains regular and frequent contact with shipping operators within the TRS scheme to discuss variations in traffic levels, the redistribution of TRS resources and other matters. In recent months the Scottish Office has had extensive discussions with Glenlight Shipping Ltd. and also with Easdale Shipping Line and Gardner Shipping (Scotland) Ltd., the two west coast bulk shipping operators that are most likely to carry the traffic previously carried by Glenlight.
The general rate of TRS subvention on the west coast is 40 per cent. for cargoes originating from the mainland and 30 per cent. for cargoes originating from the islands. Each company's TRS allocation is based on the company's estimates of traffic to be carried within the specified period and on previous years' actual traffic carried as compared with forecasts. Individual bulk shipping operators' allocations are commercially confidential. In 1993-94 provision of £3.130 million is being made available for bulk shipping services and £6.768 million for P and O Scottish Ferries Ltd., giving a total TRS provision of £9.898 million.
Mrs. Ray Michie : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what assessment he has made of the effect local government reform will have on projects currently being planned and undertaken by existing local authorities and specific requests for assistance of objective 1 funding ; what guidelines his Department has drawn up or plans ; what discussions his Department has had with local authorities regarding the matter ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Stewart : Local government reform will not affect the ability of local authorities to compete for objective 1 funds. Any rights, liabilities and obligations of existing authorities resulting from grant awards before the new local authority structure comes into effect will be inherited by relevant successor authorities, as provided for in the Local Government etc. (Scotland) Bill. No specific guidelines are planned in relation to the European structural funds ; and my Department has had no discussions with local authorities regarding the matter.
Mr. Donohoe : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, pursuant to his answer of 6 December, Official Report, column 84, if he will make a detailed statement on the facilities which have been closed in Crosshouse hospital by the North Ayrshire and Arran NHS trust.
Mr. Stewart : There have been no reductions in service but there are two wards for which there are planned changes in use. In its first six months the trust has treated 400 more in-patients, 1,900 more day patients and 1,500 more out-patients compared with the same period last year. In orthopaedic surgery and gynaecology, changes in service delivery patterns have meant that fewer in-patient beds are required to meet an increased demand for services.
Column 488Orthopaedic day surgery has increased by 83 per cent. and in-patient activity by 11 per cent. following the appointment of an additional consultant orthopaedic surgeon and the opening of a £1 million purpose-planned day surgery unit. As day surgery patients no longer require to be cared for in a hospital ward, a 30-bedded orthopaedic ward will now be used to provide expanded and improved in- patient facilities for renal and haematology patients. Gynaecological day surgery has increased by 20 per cent. compared with last year and this improvement in clinical practice means that consultants require 26 fewer gynaecological in-patient beds to treat an increased number of patients. A gynaecology ward will shortly become available for use as a decanting facility which will ensure that the planned programme of ward upgrading at Crosshouse hospital can proceed without inconveniencing patients and with no reduction in the number of patients treated.
Mrs. Ray Michie : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what representations he has received regarding amending revaluation forms under the Land Valuation Acts to simplify the procedure for business in Scotland by eliminating the need to provide detailed financial information about the business concerned ; what are the implications for the arrangement of the commitment to reducing bureaucracy, and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Stewart : My right hon. Friend has received three letters on this subject since 1 January 1993. Under section7 of the Lands Valuation (Scotland) Act 1854, as amended, an assessor is authorised to call upon any ratepayer within his area to supply him only with such information as is reasonably required in order to value the property concerned. This is to ensure that the property is valued as accurately as possible with the objective of minimising the need for an appeal and the consequent additional costs for the ratepayer.
Mrs. Ray Michie : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what representations he has received regarding the consultation exercise into tourist boards in Scotland concerning the proposed new board covering Argyll and Bute ; what suggestions have been made with regard to the geography of that tourist board area ; when he expects the conclusion of the exercise ; and if he will make a statement.
Lord James Douglas-Hamilton : The Scottish tourist board has submitted a recommendation on a new area tourist board structure to my right hon. Friend. This is being considered carefully and an announcement will be made in due course.
Mr. Robert Hughes : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will now direct that the salaries of general managers of NHS trusts be made public ; and if he will arrange for the members of the boards of NHS trusts to declare any financial interests and that a register of such interests be made available for public scrutiny.
Mrs. Ray Michie : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland which companies presently receive tariff rebate subsidy ; what is the extent of tariff rebate subsidy for each shipping operator ; what are the current guidelines for receiving the subsidy ; and if he will make a statement.
Lord James Douglas-Hamilton : The companies currently operating within the tariff rebate subsidy scheme are as listed. Each company's TRS allocation is based on the company's estimates of traffic to be carried during the year concerned as well as on previous years' actual traffic carried as compared with forecasts. Individual shipping operators' claims are monitored monthly against the TRS resources available. Individual bulk shipping operators' allocations are treated as being commercial confidential. In 1993-94 provision of £3.130 million is being made available for bulk shipping services and £6.768 million for P and O Scottish Ferries Ltd., giving a total TRS provision of £9.898 million. The TRS scheme operates on the basis of providing for reduction in shipping operators' normal commercial tariffs. The shipping operator determines tariffs on a normal commercial basis for the carriage of particular cargoes, and, if the cargo and the destination are eligible for subsidy under the scheme, the operator reduces the commercial tariff by a percentage decided by the Scottish Office. The Scottish Office pays subsidy to the shipping operator to compensate for tariff reductions. Before becoming eligible for assistance under the tariff rebate subsidy scheme a shipping operator is required to enter into an undertaking with the Secretary of State for Scotland to provide approved shipping services within the highlands and islands area.
Companies operating within the TRS scheme :
P & O Scottish Ferries
Orkney Line Ltd
Shetland Line Ltd
Dennison (Shipping) Ltd
Easdale Island Shipping Line
Gardner Shipping (Scotland) Ltd
Glenlight Shipping Ltd
Hay & Company (Lerwick) Ltd
Roderick Cunningham (Scalpay) Ltd
Mr. Lang : I have decided that student awards branch of the Scottish Office Education Department should become an executive agency of the Secretary of State for Scotland, under the "next steps" initiative, with a proposed launch date of 5 April 1994.
Mr. Stewart [holding answer 14 January 1994] : The information requested for 1993 should be ready by April 1994. I shall write to the hon. Member as soon as it is available. Meanwhile, the numbers of deaths from such incidents in the most recent 10 years are given in the table.
Deaths<1> as the result of incidents on Scottish mountains ICD Code |E884.1 |E908-909 |E901.0 |Total |Falls on |Blizzard or|Hypo- |mountains |avalanche |thermia ------------------------------------------------------------------------ 1983 |24 |- |1 |25 1984 |20 |- |2 |22 1985 |11 |3 |- |14 1986 |23 |4 |1 |28 1987 |21 |3 |- |24 1988 |22 |- |- |22 1989 |16 |1 |1 |18 1990 |18 |- |- |18 1991 |24 |1 |- |25 1922 |19 |1 |3 |23 <1> Excluding deaths from pre-existing medical conditions (eg heart attacks).
Lord James Douglas-Hamilton [holding answer 17 January 1994] : Good progress is being made in implementing the decisions announced by my right hon. Friend on 29 June 1993 following the tourism review.
To ensure collaboration at the national level, my right hon. Friend has appointed representatives of Scottish Enterprise and Highlands and Islands Enterprise to the board of the Scottish tourist board. I hope to announce shortly the measures we are taking to strengthen the Scottish tourism co- ordinating group and the Scottish Confederation of Tourism. I expect the first national strategic plan for tourism to be published in the spring.
Arrangements for the Scottish tourist board's assumption of Highlands and Islands Enterprise's tourism marketing and visitor service functions with effect from 1 April 1994, for the consolidation of business support within the enterprise network, and for the relocation of some of the board's functions to Inverness are well advanced.
The provisions of the Local Government etc. (Scotland) Bill confirm the important role which local authorities have in supporting the tourist industry and provide for the establishment of a co-ordinated and coherent network of area tourist boards covering the whole of Scotland.
(2) what reduction the Scottish tourist board has proposed in the number of area tourist boards in Scotland.
Lord James Douglas-Hamilton [holding answer 17 January 1994] : The Scottish tourist board has submitted a recommendation on a new area tourist board structure to my right hon. Friend. This is being considered carefully and an announcement will be made in due course.
College/University |Number of Graduates |in 1993 |(provisional) --------------------------------------------------------------------------- University of Paisley |180 Strathclyde University |758 Moray House Institute of Education |539 Northern College of Education |455 St. Andrew's College of Education |420 University of Stirling |31 |--- All |2,383
Mr. Foulkes : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many newly qualified teachers were appointed to permanent teaching posts by each of the regional and island authorities in Scotland in 1993.
Column 492newly qualified teachers are undertaken in September of the graduation year and in the following March, the later survey tending to give a more comprehensive picture of employment rates. Such information as is available from the September 1993 survey about teachers who qualified in 1993 is set out in the following tables. The high non-response rate--34 per cent.--to the survey questionnaire means, however, that the figures are of limited reliability.
Table 1 First destination of teacher training graduates<1> Destination at |Number September 1993 ------------------------------------------------------- Number in teaching posts (a) In Scotland Permanent |377 Temporary/supply |507 Contract unknown |39 |--- Total |923 (b) Elsewhere |75 Employed non-teaching |168 Studying |9 Unemployed |405 Unknown |<2>803 |--- Total output |2,383
Table 2 Number of newly qualified teachers known to have been appointed to teaching posts in Scotland<1> (September 1993) Employer in Scotland |Permanent |Temporary/ |Type of |All |supply |contract |unknown ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Borders |4 |5 |5 |14 Central |14 |17 |1 |32 Dumfries and Galloway |12 |17 |0 |29 Fife |35 |30 |7 |72 Grampian |37 |33 |0 |70 Highland |8 |8 |0 |16 Lothian |54 |36 |9 |99 Strathclyde |148 |322 |3 |473 Tayside |38 |20 |3 |61 Islands Authorities |9 |8 |3 |20 Independent or other schools |18 |11 |8 |37 |--- |--- |--- |--- Total |377 |507 |39 |923 <1> The figures include an element of estimation in cases where only partial information is known. <2> Information on the 31 Stirling University graduates is not available in this form. These students are categorised as having unknown destination in Table 1.
Mrs. Ewing : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland (1) what recent discussions he has held with representatives of ambulance staff and Unison in connection with plans for early retirement of ambulance personnel ;
Column 492(2) what recent discussions he has held with representatives of the national Whitley council to look at provisions for early retirement schemes for ambulance personnel.
On 13 January my noble and learned Friend the Minister of State announced a special scheme for this financial year to enable some ambulance staff aged 60 and over to retire early with the full pension rights which they would have accrued by age 65.
Sir Teddy Taylor : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food how much the EC plans to spend in the current financial year on its agricultural policy ; and by what percentage this has changed over the past five and 10 years.
Mr. Jack : Expenditure on agricultural support in the United Kingdom in the current financial year--1993-94--is estimated at £3,011 million. This represents increases of 118 per cent. and 74 per cent. over expenditure in the 1988-89 and 1983-84 financial years respectively. Of this, £2,727 million represents the estimated expenditure on the CAP in the United Kingdom.
Mr. Jack : Individuals rearing rare breeds of farm livestock are eligible for the same support under the common agricultural policy as other livestock producers. In addition, the European Commission has made a proposal on the conservation of genetic resources in agriculture which may prove helpful to organisations concerned with rare breeds : and my Department is planning a study to establish the extent to which rare breeds contribute to genetic diversity.
Mr. Morley : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether she is encouraging conservation agencies to use rare breeds of livestock in conservation grazing schemes ; and if she will make a statement.
Mr. Jack : None of the conservation schemes for which this Department has responsibility specifically encourages the use of rare breeds. However, a recent change to the EC set-aside rules has introduced the possibility of limited grazing of set-aside land in the autumn, including grazing by rare breeds.
Woodland |Area |(hectares) --------------------------------------- Bolt Wood |27 Hayes Wood |2 Hewson's Spinney |2 Launde Big Wood |41 Launde Park |55 Owston Wood |104 Salome Wood |23 West Wood |29
Mr. Ainger : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food how many farmers there are in Britain ; and how many acres of land are farmed (a) in absolute terms and (b) as a percentage of the total land area.
Mr. Jack : The number of farmers, partners and directors working on agricultural holdings in the United Kingdom at 1 June 1993 was 278, 700. The absolute area of land being farmed in the United Kingdom at 1 June 1993 was 45.7 million acres, which was about 77 per cent. of the total land area.
1. Source : Provisional results from the 1993 June agricultural and horticultural census. Final results are expected to be published towards the end of January.
2. Estimates for minor holdings are included for England and Wales but not for Scotland and Northern Ireland.
3. Figures exclude the wives/husbands of farmers, partners and directors, even though they themselves may be partners or directors.
Mr. Ainger : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what was the total of all subsidies paid to farmers in Britain in the most recent year for which figures are available (a) by the British Government and (b) by the European Union, in sterling terms ; and if she will give the total for each subsidy.
Mr. Jack : Table 9.1 of "Agriculture in the United Kingdom : 1992"-- pages 78-79--provides details of public expenditure on market support measures and on other grants and subsidies paid in the United Kingdom. Receipts from the European Union are set out at the foot of page 79. A copy has been deposited in the Library of the House of Commons.
Mr. Jack : I refer the hon. Member to the reply which my right hon. Friend the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food gave to the hon. Member for Edinburgh, East (Dr. Strang) on 11 January at column 50.
Mr. Bayley : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food how many official Christmas cards were sent out in 1993 by (a) Ministers, (b) civil servants and (c) staff of Government agencies working in or to her Department ; and how much these cards cost (i) to buy, (ii) to post and (iii) in staff time to sign, address and place in envelopes.
Mr. Jack : A total of 2,750 charity Christmas cards were purchased at a cost of £1,633 and sent out by MAFF Ministers and senior officials in 1993. The cost of sending these cards is not known. A combination of delivery by hand and by postal system was used.
Mr. Colvin : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if she will apply flexibility in enforcing the closing date for the sheep annual premium, suckler cow premium and arable payments in cases of obvious hardship.
Mr. Jack : Rules which apply to claims received after the closing dates both for individual schemes and for the area aid application, required under schemes covered by the integrated administration and control system, are laid down in EC legislation. The explanatory literature connected with all these schemes makes it clear that it is the farmer's responsibility to get the claims in by the due date. However, we will look sympathetically at cases where it is claimed that delay is the result of force majeure.
Mr. Tyler : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if she will publish a table of farm incomes for each of the years 1982-83 to 1992-93 showing the figures at 1992-93 prices for the dairy farm, lowland livestock farm, cropping farm and hill and upland livestock farm sectors.
Mr. Jack : Estimates of the average net farm income at 1992-93 prices are provided in the following table. The method of farm classification has been changed and results are available only on the new classification from 1986-87. Year-to-year comparisons can best be made by reference to the indices shown in the table ; these are based on results from identical samples between successive years.