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Euro (Teaching and Information Materials)

Mr. Denzil Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what steps he is taking to monitor the content of teaching and information materials about the Euro currency funded by the European Commission supplied to schools in Wales and to ensure its compliance with the terms of the Education Act 1996. [42680]

Mr. Hain: It is important that there is a full understanding of the euro currency but under section 407 of the Education Act 1996 schools must offer a balanced presentation of political issues.

Factory (Buckley)

Mr. Barry Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what progress has been made in finding a tenant for the factory at Drury, Buckley in Flintshire which was previously occupied by the Optec D.D. [42453]

Mr. Hain: As I indicated in my reply to my hon. Friend on 25 March 1998, Official Report, column 172, the Welsh Development Agency is actively marketing the company's premises at Buckley and will continue to do so until a tenant has been found.

Training and Enterprise Councils

Mr. Rowlands: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales (1) how many modern apprenticeships will be available in each training and enterprise council area for 1998-99; [42682]

20 May 1998 : Column: 418

Mr. Hain: I will write to my hon. Friend with this information when contracts with TECs for 1998-99 have been finalised, and place a copy of my reply in the Library of the House.

Agricultural Grants and Payments

Mr. Wigley: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will list the terms of reference for the consultants he has engaged to make recommendations on a new system of administering agricultural grants and payments in Wales; and if he will make a statement. [42434]

Mr. Win Griffiths: The terms of reference of the study, as set out in my right hon. Friend's letter of 15 March to all Welsh MPs, a copy of which has been placed in the Library of the House are


Public Appointments

Jackie Ballard: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales when his Department's action plan for increasing the number of women holding public appointments will be published; and if he will place a copy in the Library. [42875]

Mr. Ron Davies: My Department's action plan to increase the number of women holding public appointments in Wales will be published shortly. Copies will be placed in the Library of the House.

AGRICULTURE, FISHERIES AND FOOD

Antibiotics

Mr. Flynn: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what action he proposes to reduce the use of antibiotics in farming. [41615]

Mr. Rooker: We take this matter very seriously and are considering very carefully the recent reports of the Select Committee on Agriculture and the House of Lords Select Committee on Science and Technology.

As with all such matters, our policy will be based on the best available scientific advice. The independent scientific Veterinary Products Committee will be considering the use of antibiotics in animal production at its meeting on 18 June, and the Advisory Committee on the Microbiological Safety of Food is expected to report later in the year.

I invited the noble Lord who chairs the House of Lords Select Committee, Lord Soulsby of Swaffham Prior, to meet me and officials for a preliminary discussion a few days after the report was published. We had a useful discussion.

20 May 1998 : Column: 419

Research Stations

Mr. Livsey: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (1) how many staff were made redundant from agricultural research stations in England and Wales in each year between 1980 and 1997; [42295]

Mr. Rooker: ADAS, the Agricultural Development and Advisory Service and formerly a "Next Steps" Agency of MAFF, was privatised on 1 April 1997. It now operates as ADAS Consulting Ltd. There have been no other privatisations of Ministry-owned agricultural research stations in the period specified. As part of the privatisation, laboratories and offices at Wolverhampton were sold to the new company. It also currently leases a number of research stations from MAFF, as set out in the table.

Research stations
Arthur RickwoodCambridgeshire
BoxworthCambridgeshire
BridgetsHampshire
Brimstone FarmOxfordshire
Drayton (part only)Warwickshire
GleadethorpeNottinghamshire
High MowthorpeYorkshire
PwllpeiranDyfed
RedesdaleNorthumberland
RosemaundHereford
TerringtonNorfolk

The following Ministry-owned agricultural research stations were closed in the years noted:

Research stationsClosed
Great House Experimental Husbandry Farm, Rossendale, Lancs1981
Rosewarne Experimental Horticulture Station, Camborne, Cornwall1989
Lea Valley Experimental Horticulture Station, Hoddesdon, Herts1989
Luddington Experimental Horticulture Station, Nr Stratford on Avon1989
Liscombe Experimental Husbandry Farm, Nr Dulverton, Devon1989
Brogdale Experimental Horticulture Station, Nr Faversham, Kent1990
The Cattle Breeding Centre, Shinfield, Nr Reading, Berkshire1991
Trawgoed Experimental Husbandry Farm, Nr Aberystwyth, Dyfed1993

Note:

The Trawsgoed Experimental Husbandry Farm was sold to the then Agriculture and Food Research Council and is now part of the Institute of Grassland and Environmental Research.


20 May 1998 : Column: 420

A number of laboratories, listed in the table, were closed during the period specified. In most cases the work was transferred to other facilities, with some minor research or analytical work continuing to a later date.

Research stationsClosed
Shardlow, Nottingham1980
Bangor, North Wales1985
Cardiff, Glamorgan1985
Bristol1988
Leeds1993
Wye, Kent1993
Starcross, Nr Exeter1993
Reading1995
Newcastle1995
Cambridge1995
Trawsgoed, Nr Aberystwyth1995

I regret that records of the number of any individuals made redundant as a result of particular closures of former ADAS sites are no longer held by MAFF.

Veterinary Inspection Centres

Mr. Livsey: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (1) if he will list the veterinary inspection centres in England and Wales that were closed in each year between 1980 and 1997, the overall aggregate number and the location of each centre closed; [42305]

Mr. Rooker: The information requested is a matter for the Veterinary Laboratories Agency. I have asked its Chief Executive to reply to the hon. Member direct.

Letter from T. W. A. Little to Mr. Richard Livsey, dated 20 May 1998:



    The attached table lists the VICs that were closed between these dates as well as new ones opened.

20 May 1998 : Column: 419

Centres were closed and new ones opened as follows:

YearClosedOpenedTotal
198024
Aberystwyth
Bangor
Barton Hall (Preston--moved from Liverpool)
Cambridge
Cardiff
Carmarthen
Gloucester
Langford (Bristol)
Leeds
Lincoln
Moulton (Northampton)
Newcastle
Norwich
Penrith
Reading
Shrewsbury
Starcross (Exeter)
Sutton Bonington (Loughborough)
Thirsk
Truro
Weybridge
Winchester
Worcester
Wye (Kent)
1981Weybridge23
1982Chester (Sub centre of Shrewsbury)24
198324
198424
198524
1986Cardiff19
Chester
Gloucester
Leeds
Moulton (Northampton)
198719
198819
198919
199019
1991Bangor16
Lincoln
Wye (Kent)
199216
1993Cambridge Norwich WorcesterBury St. Edmunds Luddington (Stratford-upon-Avon)15
1994Reading14
1995-98
Aberystwyth14
Barton Hall (Preston)
Bury St. Edmunds
Carmarthen
Langford (Bristol)
Luddington (Stratford-upon-Avon)
Newcastle
Penrith
Shrewsbury
Starcross (Exeter)
Sutton Bonington (Loughborough)
Thirsk
Truro
Winchester

20 May 1998 : Column: 421

20 May 1998 : Column: 423




    The Minister has asked me to reply to your request for information on how many staff were made redundant from Veterinary Investigation Centres (VICs) in each year between 1980 and 1997.
    The VICs merged with the Central Veterinary Laboratory (CVL) in October 1995 to form the Veterinary Laboratories Agency (VLA). Staff made redundant in VICs since the merger are as follows:
    1996-97: 5 redundancies
    1997-98: 0 redundancies.


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