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support facilities at Faslane, a number of geotechnical reports on the site were commissioned on behalf of the Ministry of Defence from distinguished academics and other experts. These included one specifically on geology and seismicity. Planning also drew on the British Geological Survey's national database of fault lines and seismic events. The support facilities were designed in accordance with the relevant national standard, namely, that a reactor plant must be capable of being shut down and maintained in a safety shut down condition following an earthquake of a severity with a probability of occurrence not exceeding one in 10,000 years. For Faslane the design peak horizontal ground acceleration of such an earthquake is 0.2 G. In the event, the Ministry of Defence achieved a more demanding criterion for the shiplift in the light of developments in United Kingdom civil practice which had followed the Chernobyl incident.

It is not possible to identify separately the financial effects of the changes in the design of facilities during planning and construction nor of past and prospective refinements to safety plans.

EMPLOYMENT

City Challenge

Mr. Heppell: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what were the unemployment figures for each area which successfully bid for city challenge (a) at the time the bid was accepted and (b) at the latest date for which figures are available.

Mr. Oppenheim: Information on claimant unemployment in those local authority areas and wards which are covered by the city challenge scheme can be obtained from the NOMIS database in the Library.

Redundancies (Walthamstow)

Mr. Gerrard: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many redundancies were notified in Walthamstow in each of the past five years.

Mr. Oppenheim: The information is not available.

Health and Safety Executive

Mr. McCartney: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many (a) prosecutions and (b) enforcement actions were taken by the Health and Safety Executive in each year from 1980 to 1994 against employers who have imposed on their employees excessive working hours or shift patterns in contravention of section 2 of the Health and Safety at Work, etc. Act 1974.

Mr. Oppenheim: This information can be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Income Support

Mr. Hanson: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will review the policy of refusing travel claims for income support recipients who have applied for positions of less than one year in duration.

Miss Widdecombe: The rules of the travel-to-interview scheme have been reviewed recently and the Employment Service is at present testing changes to the


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scheme in its north-west region. One of the changes is a more flexible approach to the rule that the prospective job must be expected to last for more than a year. However, this relaxation does not include seasonal jobs, or very short-term temporary jobs. If the test shows that the changes are effective and can be paid for within the resources available, we would hope to introduce the revised scheme nationally in the autumn.

Disabled People

Mr. Redmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many disabled (a) men and (b) women in the Doncaster and Mexborough area were registered unemployed (i) at the last date for which figures are available and (ii) on the same date for each of the previous four years.

Mr. Oppenheim: Information on the number of disabled people claiming unemployment-related benefit is not readily available and can be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

Occupational Asthma

Mr. Chidgey: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what steps his Department is taking following the findings of Professor Anthony Newman on the relationship between the amount of workplace exposure to respiratory sensitisers and the development of occupational asthma.

Mr. Oppenheim: The Health and Safety Executive was aware of the emerging findings of Professor Newman Taylor's research when it launched its "Breathe Freely" campaign last April. The campaign focuses on preventing occupational asthma by raising awareness of the dangers of respiratory sensitisers and reminds employers of their duty under the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 1988 to control exposure to these substances. The results of Professor Newman Taylor's research, which was jointly funded by HSE and the National Asthma Campaign, underline the message of the "Breathe Freely" campaign: controlling exposure to respiratory sensitisers will reduce the prevalence of occupational asthma.

Gas Explosions

Mr. Nigel Griffiths: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will commission a report on gas explosions since mid-December.

Mr. Oppenheim: The Health and Safety Executive has been investigating four separate incidents since mid-December 1994. Any lessons to be learned will be discussed as a matter of urgency with British Gas and will be more widely available under the terms of the Health and Safety Commission's policy of openness.

National Vocational Qualifications

Mr. Gerrard: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what are the percentages of youth training leavers (a) nationally and (b) in London obtaining full qualifications at NVQ levels, 1, 2, 3 and 4 or their equivalents; and what is the percentage obtaining no qualification for each of the years since 1990 for which data are available.


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Mr. Paice: The information requested is given in the following tables. Information on qualifications in


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Scotland is available only on a comparable basis up to 1992 93.


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Highest NVQ equivalent gained whilst on YT                                                                                        

Table 1: 1990-91 all leavers                                                                                                      

Per cent.                                                                                                                         

                                                                                                      |Did not                    

                                                                                                      |gain a                     

                  |Level 4      |Level 3      |Level 2      |Level 1      |Scotvec      |Other        |qualification              

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Great Britain     |<1>-         |3            |11           |11           |4            |12           |49                         

England and Wales |<1>-         |3            |13           |12           |n/a          |13           |49                         

London            |<1>-         |2            |10           |13           |n/a          |11           |53                         


Table 2: 1991-92 all leavers                                                                                                      

                                                                                                      |Did not                    

                                                                                                      |gain a                     

                  |Level 4      |Level 3      |Level 2      |Level 1      |Scotvec      |Other        |qualification              

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Great Britain     |1            |5            |14           |10           |<1>-         |4            |49                         

England and Wales |1            |5            |15           |10           |n/a          |4            |48                         

London            |<1>-         |4            |12           |11           |n/a          |4            |51                         


Table 3: 1992-93 all leavers                                                                                                      

Per cent.                                                                                                                         

                                                                                                      |Did not                    

                                                                                                      |gain a                     

                  |Level 4      |Level 3      |Level 2      |Level 1      |Scotvec      |Other        |qualification              

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Great Britain     |1            |5            |15           |6            |1            |4            |50                         

England and Wales |1            |6            |16           |6            |n/a          |4            |50                         

London            |1            |5            |14           |7            |n/a          |4            |51                         


Table 4: April 1993 to August 1993 all leavers                                                                                    

Per cent.                                                                                                                         

                                                                                                      |Did not                    

                                                                                                      |gain a                     

                  |Level 4      |Level 3      |Level 2      |Level 1      |Scotvec      |Other        |qualification              

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

England and Wales |2            |8            |20           |6            |n/a          |3            |44                         

London            |1            |5            |17           |8            |n/a          |3            |49                         

Source:                                                                                                                           

YT national follow-up survey.                                                                                                     

Notes:                                                                                                                            

n/a-not applicable                                                                                                                

<1> less than 0.5 per cent.                                                                                                       

Labour Statistics

Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what is his estimate of jobs gained and lost since 1972, as a result of Britain's membership of the EEC.

Mr. Oppenheim: I refer the hon. Member to the reply I gave him on 7 December 1994, Official Report, column 218.

Northern Region

Mr. Nicholas Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will list the enhanced range of labour market help to those affected by the closures referred to by the Minister for Industry in his statement on 12 May 1993, Official Report, columns 801-809, as being provided by the Tyneside training and enterprise council and local employment service following the receivership of Swan Hunter Shipbuilders.


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Mr. Paice: Tyneside training and enterprise council and the local employment service provided a range of additional job search assistance and training opportunities following the receivership of Swan Hunter Shipbuilders. This included:

advice and guidance on retraining, further and higher education, self- employment and resettlement assistance, leading to appropriate employment opportunities;

a training hotline between jobcentres and the TEC, a dedicated job shop and canvassing or employers;

a drive in respect of apprentices to secure the opportunity to finish their training programmes with a new employer, or exceptionally wholly within a TEC supported training centre; immediate access to training courses, with particular emphasis on adapting and developing existing skills to suit alternative employment opportunities;

a partnership with North Tyneside city challenge to provide extra support for any "high cost" skills training for North Tyneside city challenge area residents;


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the offer of training vouchers to each individual to help them secure jobs with new employers. Employers can then use the vouchers to implement customised training for these new recruits;

business skills training for those preparing for entry into self- employment.

Mr. Nicholas Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will list the measures taken by his Department in the northern region in response to redundancies and closures in the shipbuilding, ship repair, offshore technology, heavy engineering, mining, utility and construction industries.

Miss Widdecombe: A range of measures has been introduced in response to redundancies and closures in north-east traditional industries. These have focused on helping those affected to find jobs and access training, further and higher education opportunities and, in appropriate cases, enter self-employment.

Tyneside training and enterprise council and the Employment Service have worked closely with local authorities, Tyne and Wear development corporation, further and higher education institutions and local employers in developing and implementing the measures.

The measures cover:

advice and guidance about employment opportunities, training opportunities and further and higher education opportunities; efforts by ES to build up job banks and find vacancies for redundant workers;

provision of additional training opportunities: additional funds have been allocated to Swan Hunter and coal closures;

further and higher education institutions have responded readily to requests for information from redundant workers.

Tyne and Wear development corporation and local city challenge companies have also been involved in the creation of new opportunities for redundant workers. In the wider context of the Government office for the north-east, the Employment Department works closely with the Department of the Environment and the Department of Trade and Industry in ensuring that the needs of redundant work people are taken into account.

In addition to the above specific measures, efforts have been made to ensure that people affected by redundancies have ready access to the existing range of TEC and ES services. In particular, arrangements have been made to ensure the speedy processing of claims for unemployment benefit and advice on benefit entitlements and the normal eligibility conditions for access to training for work have been waived for redundant employees.

Mr. Nicholas Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what special initiatives he has undertaken to respond to high levels of male unemployment in Newcastle, East and Wallsend following the closure of Swan Hunter and further redundancies at NEI Parsons.

Miss Widdecombe: Following the receivership of Swan Hunter, Tyneside training and enterprise council and the local employment service have provided a range


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of additional job search assistance and training opportunities: advice and guidance on retraining, further and higher education, self-employment and resettlement assistance leading to appropriate employment opportunities;

a training hotline between jobcentres and the TEC, a dedicated job shop and canvassing of employers;

a drive in respect of apprenticeships to secure the opportunity to finish their training programmes with a new employer, or exceptionally wholly within a TEC supported training centre; immediate access to training courses, with particular emphasis on adapting and developing existing skills to suit alternative employment opportunities;

a partnership with North Tyneside city challenge to provide extra support for any "high cost" skills training for North Tyneside city challenge area residents;

the offer of training vouchers to each individual to help them secure jobs with new employers. Employers can then use these vouchers to implement customised training for these new recruits;

business skills training for those preparing for entry into self- employment.

Following the announcement of the redundancies at NEI Parsons, Tyneside TEC and the local ES have given those people affected immediate eligibility to their range of job search assistance and training opportunities.

Unemployment

Mr. Ronnie Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many people in the Blyth Valley constituency, for each year since 1988, had been unemployed (a) for less than six months, (b) for six months to one year, (c) for one year to two years and (d) for over two years.

Mr. Oppenheim: Unadjusted claimant unemployment statistics by duration are available for the months of January, April, July and October and can be obtained from the NOMIS database in the Library.

Mr. Wigley: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many unemployed people are currently seeking work but receive no unemployment benefit because of the length of their period of unemployment, and no social security payments because of the income of a spouse or partner in work.

Miss Widdecombe: Responsibility for the subject of the question has been delegated to the Employment Service agency under its chief executive. I have asked him to arrange for a reply to be given. Letter from M.E.G. Fogden to Mr. Dafydd Wigley, dated 17 January 1995:

The Secretary of State has asked me to reply to your question about the number of unemployed people who are currently seeking work, but have exhausted their entitlement to unemployment benefit (UB) and who do not receive social security payments because of the income of a spouse or partner in work.

Unfortunately this information is not fully available.

There are 641,000 people who are currently seeking work and have exhausted their entitlements to UB, but continue to sign at an Employment Service (ES) local office. While most clients registered with the ES would be entitled to and in receipt of some form of social security payment such as Housing benefit, family credit or National Insurance contributions credits, 97,099 of the above figure were not receiving any payment in respect of Income Support. Social security data are not held on the reasons why a person does not receive an income related benefit so I am afraid I am unable to be more helpful.


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Mr. Bradley: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what was the level of unemployment in each year since 1979.

Mr. Oppenheim: Unemployment statistics on both the claimant count basis and on the internationally recognised standard definition of the International Labour Organisation can be obtained from the NOMIS database in the Library.

Ms Harman: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment (1) what is the current (a) unemployment rate and (b) number of persons unemployed among black people under 25 years of age in (i) London and (ii) Tottenham, in each case breaking the total rate down by gender; (2) what is the current (a) unemployment rate and (b) number of persons unemployed among black people in (i) London and (ii) Tottenham, in each case breaking the total down by gender.

Mr. Oppenheim [holding answer 16 January 1995]: The following table gives the latest information available from the labour force survey:


ILO unemployed people in London from the black ethnic group           

summer 1994 (not seasonally adjusted)                                 

                      |All persons|Men        |Women                  

----------------------------------------------------------------------

ILO unemployment rate                                                 

  (per cent.)         |28         |34         |22                     

Numbers unemployed                                                    

  (000s)              |72         |46         |26                     

                                                                      

Of which aged 16-24                                                   

ILO unemployment rate                                                 

  (per cent.)         |48         |62         |<1>                    

Numbers unemployed                                                    

  (000s)              |21         |15         |<1>                    

<1> Estimates below 10,000, therefore not shown.                      

Training

Mr. Denham: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what was the percentage of those leaving youth training schemes who progressed to (a) full-time work, (b) part-time work, (c) self-employment, (d) further education and training and (e) unemployment, in Southampton, Itchen, in Southampton and in Hampshire in each of the last five years.

Mr. Oppenheim: The information requested can be obtained from the NOMIS database in the Library. Claimant unemployment statistics by duration are only available, only on the unadjusted basis and for the months of January, April, July and October.

Ms Harman: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment (1) what are the results of the youth training leavers survey for each region and for Great Britain as a whole, for the period December 1992 to January 1994, for all leavers and separately for male and female, for each ethnic group and for those with a disability or health problem, the number and proportion of trainees who six months after leaving were (a) in a full-time job with their work experience employer, (b) in a full-time job with another employer, (c) employed in their own business, (d) in a part-time job, (e) in voluntary work, (f) on another Government training programme, (g) on a full-time education or training course, (h) unemployed and


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claiming benefit, (i) unemployed and not claiming benefit, (j) in a jobclub and (k) doing something else;

(2) what are the results from the training for work leavers survey for the period December 1992 to January 1994 for each training and enterprise council area in England and Wales and each local enterprise company area in Scotland broken down to show the number and proportion of leavers who had (a) been entered for a vocational qualification, (b) obtained a vocational qualification, (c) had failed to obtain a vocational qualification and (d) were awaiting their results; and what is the number and proportion of training for work leavers who, six months after leaving, were (i) in a full -time job with their work experience employer, (ii) in a full-time job with another employer, (iii) employed in their own business, (iv) in a part-time job, (v) in voluntary work, (vi) on another Government training programme, (vii) on a full-time education or training course, (viii) unemployed and claiming benefit, (ix) unemployed and not claiming benefit, (x) in a jobclub and (xi) doing something else, and the number and proportion of training for work leavers who had completed the training agreed in their initial action plan; (3) what are the results of the youth training leavers survey for the period December 1992 to January 1994 for each training and enterprise area in England and Wales and each local enterprise council area in Scotland broken down to show the number and proportion of youth training leavers who were (a) in full-time work with the same employer, (b) in full- time work with a different employer, (c) in part-time work, (d) on a full- time course at a college/training centre, (e) on another youth training scheme, (f) doing something else, (g) who were unemployed and (h) who had obtained a vocational qualification; and what were (i) the number of questionnaires issued, (ii) the usable percentage response rate and (iii) the percentage or respondents who were early leavers; (4) what are the results of the training for work leavers survey for each region and for Great Britain as a whole, for the period between December 1992 and January 1994, for all leavers and separately for male and female, for each ethnic group, and for those with a disability or health problem, the number and proportion of training for work leavers who had (a) been entered for a vocational qualification, (b) obtained a vocational qualification, (c) had failed to obtain a vocational qualification and (d) were awaiting their results; and what was the number and proportion of training for work leavers who six months after leaving were (i) in a full-time job with their work experience employer, (ii) in a full-time job with another employer, (iii) employed in their own business, (iv) in a part-time job, (v) in voluntary work, (iv) on another Government training programme, (vii) on a full-time education or training course, (viii) unemployed and claiming benefit, (ix) unemployed and not claiming benefit, (x) in a jobclub and (xi) doing something else, and the number and proportion of training for work leavers who had completed the training agreed in their initial action plan.

Mr. Paice [holding answer 8 December 1994]: I have recently written to the hon. Member and placed a copy of my reply in the Library.


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Public Appointments

Mr. Milburn: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many of the individuals appointed by his Department to public positions in the last year were first identified by the Public Appointments Unit.

Miss Widdecombe: In 1994, 23 individuals who were first identified by the Public Appointments Unit were appointed to the public bodies which are the responsibility of the Employment Department group.

Minimum Wage

Ms Harman: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what independent evidence is available which examines the employment effects of the minimum wage.

Mr. Oppenheim [holding answer 16 January 1995]: There is a large body of evidence which examines the effects of minimum wages on employment. This includes most recently the Organisation for Economic Co- operation and Development's jobs study, the International Monetary Fund's world economic outlook, and the European Commission's White Paper on competitiveness.

Details of earlier studies and reports were given in the reply to my hon. Friend the Member for Eltham (Mr. Bottomley) by the then Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, my hon. Friend the Member for West Derbyshire (Mr. McLoughlin), on 4 November 1992, Official Report, column 299.

SCOTLAND

Scottish Universities

Mr. Wallace: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what information he has on the number of students attending Scottish universities in the academic year 1994 95; and if he will give the figures for attendance at the same institutions in 1984 85 and 1989 90.

Mr. Lang: Information for 1994 95 is not yet available. Figures for universities alone would not be directly comparable because five higher education institutions in Scotland have been awarded university title since 1992.

For the other academic years requested and for 1993 94, the numbers of students undertaking higher education courses in higher education institutions in Scotland, by mode of study, are as follows:


Year      |Full-time|Part-time|Total              

--------------------------------------------------

1984-85   |71,030   |13,333   |84,363             

1989-90   |81,496   |17,043   |98,539             

1993-94   |112,167  |20,306   |132,473            

Sea Freight Subsidies

Mr. Macdonald: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will publish the 1994 KPMG report on sea freight subsidies to the Scottish islands.

Lord James Douglas-Hamilton: After full and careful consideration, my right hon. Friend concluded that as the


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report was commissioned to inform consideration of policy options by Government and contains a considerable amount of commercial confidential information, it would not be appropriate to publish it.

Housing

Mr. McAllion: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many homeless applications to local authorities in Scotland there were in 1978 and in the latest year for which figures are available.

Lord James Douglas-Hamilton: The most recent information on homelessness applications for 1992 93 is published in statistical bulletin HSG/1994/3. The 1978 79 figure was published in the "Scottish Housing Statistics" No. 6. Copies of both can be obtained from the House Library.

Mr. McAllion: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland (1) what were the levels of (a) new build starts and (b) new build completions by (i) Scottish local authorities, (ii) new towns and (iii) Scottish Special Housing Association-Scottish Homes in 1978 and in the latest year for which figures are available;

(2) what were the levels of new build starts and completions by housing associations and co-operatives in Scotland in 1978 and in the latest year for which figures are available.

Lord James Douglas-Hamilton: The most recent information is published in the Scottish Office statistical bulletin HSG/1994/9. The 1978 figures were published in "Scottish Housing Statistics". Copies of both can be obtained from the House Library.

Mr. McAllion: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what were the levels of Government financial support for housing associations and co- operatives in 1978 and in the latest year, expressed in 1994 95 prices.

Lord James Douglas-Hamilton: The levels of Government financial support to housing associations and co-operatives in 1978 79 and 1993 4, expressed in 1994 95 prices, were £91.9 million and £268.3 million respectively.

Mr. McAllion: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what was the total number of (a) local authorities, (b) new town and (c) Scottish Special Housing Association dwellings in Scotland in 1978, and in the latest year for which figures are available.

Lord James Douglas-Hamilton: The most recent information is published in the Scottish Office statistical bulletin HSG/1994/9. The 1978 79 figures were published in the "Scottish Housing Statistics" No. 6. Copies of both can be obtained from the House Library.

Mr. McAllion: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what percentage of the total capital spend by (a) Scottish local authorities, (b) new towns and (c) Scottish Special Housing Association-Scottish Homes was (i) new build and (ii) modernisation in 1978 and in the latest year for which figures are available.

Lord James Douglas-Hamilton: The available information for new towns and SSHA-Scottish Homes is contained in the tables. Figures for capital expenditure by local authorities on new build and modernisations in 1978 79 and 1993 94 are published annually in "Scottish Local Government Finance Statistics" which is available in the Library of the House.


Table 1: (New Towns)                                    

              |New build    |Modernisation              

              |Per cent.    |Per cent.                  

--------------------------------------------------------

1978-1979     |Unavailable  |Unavailable                

1993-1994     |48           |52                         


Table 2: (SSHA-Scottish Homes)<1>                       

              |New Build    |Modernisation              

              |Per cent.    |Per cent.                  

--------------------------------------------------------

1978-79       |68.5         |31.5                       

1993-94       |-            |100                        

<1>Own stock expenditure only.                          

Mr. McAllion: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what was (a) the total capital spend and (b) the total revenue spend on local authority, new town and Scottish Special Housing Association housing in


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Scotland in 1978 and in the latest year, expressed in 1994 95 prices; and how much of the total revenue spend in each year was financed by direct central Government grant.

Lord James Douglas-Hamilton: The available information is set out in the following table. Comparable information on local authority revenue expenditure in 1978 79 was not readily available and I shall write to the hon. Member.

The reduction in revenue and capital expenditure between 1978 79 and 1993 94 largely reflects the substantial reduction in size of the public sector housing stock. The reduction in central Government grant is in line with the policy of moving away from indiscriminate general subsidies and targeting tenants in greatest need through the housing benefit system. The expenditure attributed to Scottish Homes is on its own stock and excludes support for housing associations.


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                           Local Authority     SSHA/Scottish       New Towns                    

                                     homes                                                      

                          |1978-79  |1993-94  |1978-79  |1993-94  |1978-79  |1993-94            

                          |£ million|£ million|£ million|£ million|£ million|£ million          

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Revenue Expenditure       |-        |1,064.0  |156.0    |89.5     |142.6    |70.8               

Capital Expenditure       |683.3    |580.4    |94.6     |51.7     |99.2     |35.3               

Central Government Grants |451.2    |36.6     |79.9     |Nil      |105.1    |21.7               

All figures are expressed in 1994-95 prices.                                                    

Mr. Welsh: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will detail the total number of residential property sales in Scotland for each of the complete years since 1982 83 indicating for each year how many were as a result of public sector tenants exercising their right to buy.

Lord James Douglas-Hamilton [holding answer 16 January 1995]: Statistical information is not held centrally on residential property transactions in Scotland.

School Inspectors

Mrs. Fyfe: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if all inspectors of schools have personal, practical experience of teaching in the sector and subjects they are inspecting.


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