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|<1> Amount Department |Activity |£ -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Department of |Property-related work, mainly Transport |in relation to road schemes, |actions for possession and |actions against trespassers |310,930 Ministry of Defence |Work in relation to possession, |debt and personal injury |actions |8,400 <1> Amounts paid to the agency to date in the financial year 1994-95.
Mr. Morley: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what was the number of cases of ectoparasitic infestation in sheep for (a) the two years before compulsory dipping was abolished and (b) the two years since compulsory dipping has been abolished.
Other ectoparasitic infections of sheep have never been notifiable in Scotland and consequently information on the number of cases of these diseases is not available.
Mr. Charles Kennedy: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many representations he has received in favour of the withdrawal of the Fort William and Carlisle to London sleeper services and of the withdrawal of Scotland to London Motorail services. 
Mr. Maclean: The convictions of two samples of men born in 1953 and 1958 have been traced up to the ages of 39 and 33 respectively. The samples included 75 men convicted of rape for the first time. The median age for this group was 22 years old.
Letter from Derek Lewis to Mr. Elfyn Llwyd, dated 23 March 1995: The Home Secretary has asked me to reply to your recent Question asking for the number of convicted rapists imprisoned in English and Welsh prisons in 1994 and if he will make a statement.
Provisional information for 1994 shows that 446 persons were received into a Prison Service establishment in England and Wales under sentence for rape.
Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) how many convicted prisoners were admitted to a prison hospital or a general hospital in (a) 1993 and (b) 1994; what these figures are as percentages of the general hospital population; and if he will make a statement; 
(2) how many convicted rapists were admitted to a prison hospital or a general hospital in (a) 1993 and
Column 309(b) 1994; what these figures are as percentages of the total number of convicted rapists in prison; and if he will make a statement. 
Letter from Derek Lewis to Mr. Elfyn Llwyd, dated 23 March 1995: The Home Secretary has asked me to reply to your recent Questions about admissions of convicted prisoners to prison or general hospitals.
I regret that information on admissions for in-patient care is not collected by remand and convicted prisoner categories, or by type of offence.
Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what was the average sentence given to men convicted of rape in (a) 1990, (b) 1992 and (c) 1994: and if he will make a statement; 
(2) what was the average sentence given to men convicted of rape in 1980; what was the average duration of the sentence served by these men; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Maclean: The information on the average sentence length given for adult males convicted of rape for the years 1980, 1990, 1992 and 1993 is given in the table. 1994 data will not be available until the autumn.
Precise information on the average duration of the sentence served by men convicted of rape in 1980 is not available, but those given determinate sentences would have served up to two thirds of their sentence depending on whether and at what stage they were granted parole.
Average sentence length imposed at the Crown Court on adult males-aged 21 and over-for rape offences, 1980, 1990, 1992 and 1993 England and Wales |Average sentence Offence |Year |length(months) -------------------------------------------------------------------- Substantive rape |1980 |50.9 |1990 |75.9 |1992 |78.9 |1993 |77.9 Attempted rape |1980 |41.2 |1990 |58.7 |1992 |60.4 |1993 |53.0 Other rape<2> |1980 |12.0 |1990 |15.0 |1992 |10.0 |1993 |15.0 Total rape |1980 |48.7 |1990 |73.3 |1992 |76.6 |1993 |74.2 <1> Excludes life sentences. The proportion sentenced to Life of those given an immediate custodial sentence for total rape in 1993 was 3.4 per cent. <2> Includes offences under the Sexual Offences Act 1956, Sec. 7, Mental Health Act 1959, Secs. 127, 128(1)(a) and 128(10) (b).
(2) if he will make the provision of coastal lifeguards and beach safety procedures a statutory duty of local authorities;  (3) if he will establish a central body to control and standardise the provision of coastal lifeguards and coastal safety procedures. 
Mr. Nicholas Baker: The Government acknowledge the considerable efforts of voluntary bodies, such as the Royal Life Saving Society and the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents which encourage the provision of coastal lifeguards and coastal safety procedures; and the efforts of beach operators, including local authorities in coastal areas, to improve beach safety. We particularly welcome the provision of appropriately trained lifeguards and the introduction of beach safety procedures. However, we are not presently persuaded that it is necessary for these matters to be regulated by statute or by a Government-appointed central body.
Mr. Hinchliffe: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what progress he has made with the National Water Safety Committee towards guidelines for local authorities on coastal safety. 
Mr. Nicholas Baker: The National Water Safety Committee was consulted in the course of the preparation of the joint publication by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents and the Royal Life Saving Society UK of the report entitled "Safety on British Beaches--Operational Guidelines". The Government welcomed that publication, which was circulated free of charge to each local coastal authority, and commend it to all those responsible for the safety of visitors to the British coast.
Mr. Hinchliffe: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what plans he has to reduce the number of drownings on Britain's coastal resorts; and if he will make a statement;  (2) what resources are made available to local authorities in order to provide coastal safety guidance and procedures towards the cost of coastal lifeguard provision; 
(3) if he will introduce a national standardised flag system to enable bathers in coastal areas to gauge tidal and other water hazards; 
(4) what encouragement and guidance he issues to local authorities in coastal areas on the issue of coastal safety and lifeguard provisions. 
Mr. Nicholas Baker [holding answers 20 March 1995]: The Government support the water safety efforts of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents with a grant. We hope that the campaign which ROSPA proposes to launch at the beginning of the summer covering general water safety will help to reduce the number of drownings on Britain's coastal resorts.
The publication "Safety on British Beaches--Operational Guidelines" published in 1993 jointly by ROSPA and the Royal Life Saving Society offers guidance and advice to local authorities and other beach
Column 311operators on coastal safety and lifeguard provisions. That publication also includes details of the two interacting flag systems which have been adopted in many countries worldwide to warn bathers about sea conditions and designating specific activity areas within a supervised system. Central Government do not make any resources available to local authorities in coastal areas specifically to assist them with their work in connection with coastal safety.
Mr. Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to his answer of 20 March, Official Report , column 796 , on reforms into the legal process of inquiry, what conclusions the inter departmental group of officials reached; when the group next expects to make further recommendations; and if he will make a statement. 
Sir Ivan Lawrence: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when the Government submitted to the United Nations their latest periodic report under the convention against torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. 
Mr. Howard: The United Kingdom's second report under the convention against torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment was today submitted to the United Nations. Copies of the report have also been placed in the Library.
Ms Walley: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what inquiries he has made as to the likely policing costs for 1995 96 of proposals to tranship live animals and veal calves from the port of Folkestone; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Forman: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what was the number of police officers on active duty in the Metropolitan police area (a) at the present time and (b) in 1979. 
Mr. Maclean: In December 1993--the latest period for which figures are available--operational police strength in the Metropolitan police area was 19,932 and support strength 7.211. Comparable figures are not available for 1979 as data were not collated in this format. The total police strength of the force is now nearly 25 per cent. greater than in 1979.
Mr. David Nicholson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department for what reasons recent criminal justice legislation has not removed or amended the assumption that a person aged from 10 to 14 years cannot be convicted of a crime without proof that he or she knew
Column 312what they were doing was wrong; and if he will make a statement on the Law Lords' ruling of 16 March. 
"proper allowance for the fact that children's understanding, knowledge and ability to reason are still developing"
between the ages of 10 and 13.
Following the judgment of the House of Lords given on 16 March, the Government are now giving careful consideration to that judgment.
Mr Wilson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department on what grounds mail sent by members of the group known as inner sanctum to the Bank of England is being intercepted; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Howard: It has been the long-standing policy of successive Governments not to confirm or deny whether interception of communications has been authorised in any particular case. Persons who believe that their communications have been intercepted may apply to the tribunal established under section 7 of the Interception of Communications Act 1985 for an investigation.
Mr. Straw: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to his answer of 28 February, Official Report , columns 547-48 , if he will now place in the Library a copy of the research into public attitudes towards the Prison Service carried out by MORI. 
Mr. Michael Forsyth: Further to my reply of 28 February, the research into public attitudes toward the Prison Service carried out by MORI was undertaken to guide the work of the service. There are, therefore, no plans to publish it or to place a copy in the Library.
Letter from Derek Lewis to Ms. Janet Anderson, dated 23 March 1995:
The Home Secretary has asked me to reply to your recent Question asking how many women served custodial sentences in each year since 1989, broken down by type of offence committed.
Information for the years 1982 to 1992 is published in "Prison statistics, England and Wales" (Tables 3.10 (young offenders) and 5.9 (adults) of the 1992 edition, Cm 2581), a copy of which is in the library of the House of Commons.
Information for 1993 and 1994 is given in the attached table, a copy of which will be placed in the House of Commons library.
Females received under immediate custodial sentence into Prison Service establishments: by type of offence for England and Wales 1993-94 Type of Offence |1993 |1994 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- All offences |2,379 |2,952 Violence against the person |326 |392 Sexual offences |14 |7 Burglary |106 |125 Robbery |98 |112 Theft and handling |785 |1,059 Frauds and forgery |215 |223 Drug offences |295 |283 Other offences |350 |461 Offences not recorded |190 |290 Note: Excludes any prisoners held solely in police cells. Excludes fine defaulters.
Mr. Michael Forsyth: I understand that the Treasury will shortly be consulting on the terms of a draft amendment to exclude certain non- financial spread betting from the scope of the Financial Services Act 1986. Decisions on the form of any future monitoring will be taken in the light of that consultation.
Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what is the staff to prisoner ratio for each prison in England and Wales (a) at the latest date available and (b) for each of the last 20 years.
Letter from Derek Lewis to Mr. Doug Hoyle, dated 23 March 1995: The Home Secretary has asked me to reply to your recent Question concerning the staff:inmate ration for prisons in England and Wales. The attached tables provide a breakdown of the staff:inmate ratio for each prison in England and Wales by category. Copies of these tables have been placed in the Library. Sub totals, and the staff:inmate ratio are provided for each category of prison. The inmate figures exclude those in police cells. Both the inmate figures and the staff figures are for 31 January 1995. The staff figures include all prison officers, senior officers and principal officers and, in the case of private sector prisons, all prisoner custody officers.
The information required to provide a similar breakdown for each of the last 20 years is either not available, or not readilny available and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost, but a second
Column 314table is attached which supplies the available total staff:inmate ratio since 1975.
Mr. Dorrell: The creation of separate United Kingdom and England Sports Councils was warmly welcomed by those who responded to the Government's proposals, and I can confirm that, subject to the grant of royal charters, we intend to proceed to set up both councils from 1 January 1996. As previously announced, Mr. Rodney Walker, the current chairman of the Sports Council, will in due course become the chairman of the English Sports Council. I am pleased to be able to announce today that Sir Ian MacLaurin has agreed to join the Sports Council and to serve in due course as chairman of the United Kingdom Sports Council. I am also pleased to be able to announce the other members-designate of the United Kingdom Sports Council:
UK Sports Council
Mr. Rodney Walker, Chairman-designate of the English Sports Council
Mr. Graeme Simmers, Chairman of the Scottish Sports Council Mr. Ossie Wheatley, Chairman of the Welsh Sports Council Mr. Don Allen, Chairman of the Northern Ireland Sports Council Mr. Gary Lineker
Mr. Rob Andrew
Mr. Clive Lloyd
Dr. Sarah Springman
Mr. Craig Reedie
I would expect the UK Sports Council to work closely with all the appropriate bodies of British sport throughout the UK and in particular with the Central Council of Physical Recreation, the Scottish and Welsh Sports Associations and the Northern Ireland Council of Physical Recreation.
I can also announce today the Government's intention to produce in early summer a White Paper setting out the broader strategic framework for Government policy on sport. It will focus on the development of sporting opportunity for young people, within and outside formal education, and on creating pathways through every stage of sporting activity, including the elite level. This will allow talent to achieve its fullest expression. I have asked the chairmen-designate of the English and UK councils to prepare and submit to me precise definitions of the functions of their respective bodies, taking account of White Paper policies.
Mrs. Dunwoody: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will make a statement on the criteria for assessing the competitive bids for the channel tunnel rail link and the Euro passenger services which will ensure that (a) the successful bidder is demonstrably competent to run as well as build the railway and (b) safety and security against terrorist and other dangers. 
Mr. Watts: The bidders for CTRL and EPS demonstrated these competences at the pre-qualification stage. The successful promoter will be obliged to comply fully with the requirements of existing legislation on railway security and safety, and the requirements of Her Majesty's railway inspectorate and my Department's transport security directorate.
Sir John Stanley: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will be issuing his revised guidelines for operating section 62 of the Planning and Compensation Act 1992 before the Select Committee examining the Channel Tunnel Rail Link Bill finishes taking evidence. 
Mr. Hardy: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many intermodal lorries were checked, and if the accuracy of their consignment notes were considered at the intermodal truck depots in each of the last three years; and how many of these inspections were carried out at the nearest depot to the points of the lorries' departure. 
Mr. Norris: The regulations in question were intended to encourage combined road/rail freight through the channel tunnel. The delayed start of full freight operations through the tunnel meant that, in the half year to 30 September 1994, no vehicles were found to be operating at the higher weight limit. The vehicle inspectorate will shortly be compiling figures for checks carried out up to 31 March this year and I will forward them to the hon. Member as soon as they are available.
Mr. Meacher: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will now reconsider the decision regarding the regulation of lorry braking safety and introduce a mandatory test of braking safety at the six month interim between the annual MOT tests of general roadworthiness; what is the current availability of the equipment for such tests; and what is the cost per axle tested. 
Mr. Norris: I have no plans at present to introduce a mandatory six month brake test, although I will keep that option under review. It is the responsibility of vehicle operators to look after their vehicles properly and there are plenty of test facilities available to help them do so. The vehicle inspectorate's current charge to operators for voluntary roller brake testing is £6 per axle.
Mr. McLeish: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will give the prospective bidders for the first eight passenger train operators who have sought to pre-qualify for franchises in respect of the announcement
Column 316made in December 1994. 
Mr. Watts: The Franchising Director announced today that 37 organisations have applied to pre-qualify for the first group of eight passenger rail franchises, and that many applicants are interested in more than one franchise, taking the total number of applications to more than 160. Under section 145 of the Railways Act 1993 the identity of any individual applicants cannot be disclosed for reasons of commercial confidentiality.
Mr. McLeish: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when he expects OPRAF to agree the criteria against which a passenger scheme requirement will be determined for each of the train operating units. 
Mr. Charles Kennedy: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, following his instructions of 22 March 1994 if he will place in the Library a copy of the criteria which were submitted to him by the Director of Passenger Rail Franchising in respect of deciding appropriate service specifications for loss-making services; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Watts: The guidance issued to the Franchising Director requires him to ensure that passenger service requirements for the first franchises are based upon the timetable being operated by BR immediately prior to franchising. A copy of an explanatory note setting out the Franchising Director's approach to and criteria for setting these passenger service requirements has been placed in the Library of the House.
In addition, the guidance requires the Franchising Director to develop criteria for evaluating the benefits obtained from the provision of loss making services. These criteria are intended to detail the long term basis on which the Franchising Director will make decisions about support for loss-making services as the passenger network develops over time. The Franchising Director expects to submit proposed criteria to the Secretary of State in due course.
Mr. Watts: The Franchising Director has announced today that 37 organisations have applied to be pre-qualify for the first group of eight passenger rail franchises, and that many applicants are interested in more than one franchise taking the total number of applications to over 160. To preserve commercial confidentiality individual applicants will not be named, nor will the number of applicants for each franchise be given.
Mr. McLeish: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what discussions took place with OPRAF and British Rail when decisions were taken to exclude (a) the Motorail service and (b) the Fort William sleeper from the passenger scheme requirement of ScotRail; and what discussions took place before the decision to end bookings
Column 317for these services.