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Press Office

Mr. Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions (1) what are the total running costs of his Department's Press Office, including staff salaries, for the year 1999-2000; and what is the estimated cost for the next two years; [115761]

Ms Beverley Hughes [holding answer 21 March 2000]: The running costs are:

Year£ million

(1) Forecast outturn

(2) Provision

(3) Estimate provision

These include the staff salaries, overtime, travel and subsistence, training and other administrative costs including regional media activity and press cuttings.

The number of press officers (full-time equivalent) currently employed by DETR(C) grade is:

Press officersNumber
Senior Civil Service1
Band 7(4)0.8
Band 65
Band 511
Band 418
Band 35

(4) Part-time

The number of press officers who have joined or left the Media Centre since April 1999 is:


Figures are not available in this format for earlier years.

Marine Pollution

Mr. Wigley: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what plans he has to introduce a marine environment Bill to protect the United Kingdom's marine environment from oil spills. [115784]

Mr. Mullin: None at present. Shipping is an internationally regulated business and accordingly my Department is in discussion with counterparts in the International Maritime Organisation and with the European Union to determine practical measures for enhanced protection against maritime pollution.

On 10 February my Department also published a consultants' report as the first stage in a consultative process which could lead to the setting up of Marine

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Environmental High Risk Areas (MEHRAs) to help protect sensitive marine and coastal environments at particular risk from pollution from shipping.

Departmental Contracts

Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions if he will list for the financial year 1998-99 the number and total value of contracts let by his Department with external consultants and advisers that (a) have been put out to competitive tender, (b) have not been put out to competitive tender and (c) have been let on a non-commercial basis, stating in each case the names of the individuals or organisations that have carried out the work. [115809]

Ms Beverley Hughes [holding answer 22 March 2000]: The information that has been requested as parts (a) and (b) of the question is not held centrally and cannot be provided without incurring disproportionate cost. All contracts are awarded using competition unless there are compelling reasons for using single tender action.

As for part (c), it is a requirement that all my Department's contracts are awarded on a commercial basis in accordance with Government Accounting, Departmental Procurement Guidance, and the UK and EU Regulatory Framework.

Local Government Bill

Mr. Jack: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions for what reasons the Local Government Bill [Lords] is not compatible with the European Convention on Human Rights; and if he will make a statement. [115655]

Ms Armstrong: There are considerable doubts whether section 2A of the Local Government Act 1986 is compatible with the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). Clause 91 of the Local Government Bill amends, but also reaffirms, the provisions of section 2A. It is for this reason that it is doubtful whether the Bill is compatible with the ECHR.

This Government have already said that they intend to remove clause 91 of the Bill and, in its place, provide for the repeal of section 2A of the 1986 Act. The Bill will then be compatible with the ECHR.

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Second Homes

Mr. Rendel: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions (1) what change there was in the number of second homes owned between January 1995 and January 2000; and if he will make a statement; [115940]

Mr. Mullin: The following table shows estimates from the DETR Survey of English Housing of the number of second homes in England. Like all estimates from sample surveys, they are subject to a certain amount of random variation and are not precise to the level of detail shown. The change between one year and the next should not be regarded as a reliable estimate of longer term trends. Statistics on the number of second homes in Wales are incomplete. No projections of the number of second homes are made.

Second homes in England: 1994-95 to 1998-99



The table shows second homes in England owned or rented by households with their main residence also in England. It excludes second homes which are the main residence of another household, and those which the owners are intending to sell. Second homes may be either owned or rented.


1994-95 onwards--DETR Survey of English Housing


Millennium Dome

Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport if he will list the design consultants contracted to undertake work on each of the zones in the dome. [109722]

Janet Anderson [holding answer 11 February 2000]: The companies involved in the design and content of each exhibit zone are set out as follows. The contractual terms of each vary, reflecting the different nature and type of exhibit--both in terms of structure and content.

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ZoneDesign consultants
(1) Home Planet
Zone design and buildPark Avenue
Flying creatures, airframe and engineeringSkyships
External design of flying creaturesFiT
SoundtrackDavid A. Stewart and Steve McLaughlin
FilmHugh Hudson
(2) Living Island
DesignerAt Work Ltd.
Remarkable Pencil MachineEdward Miller
(3) Shared Ground
Architectural designPhilip Gurmuchdjian and Shigeru Ban
ArchitectStephen Spence Associates
Initial designHP:ICM
Exhibition designerAt Work Ltd.
WebsiteCommon Purpose
(4) Play
Design of zone, exhibits and fit-outLand Design Studio
Games suppliers are subcontracted to Land Design Studio
(5) Body
Initial concept designHP:ICM
Design and build of zone and exhibits in ExploreHP:ICM
Architect and designer of Body structureBranson Coates Architects
Body Show designSting Ltd.
Exhibition fit-outMice and BNW
Production designerAndrew MacAlpine
Production teamThe Production Office
Special effectsAsylum
Film (Explore)Produced by HP:ICM
(6) Work and Learning
DesignerAt Work Ltd.
Film (Old Work)CIC
Film (Learning)BBC and Tesco
Visuals and computer software (Learning)StudioFish Ltd.
Schoolnet2000 access and equipmentTesco
(7) Money
Design of zone and exhibits and fit outCaribiner
(The Bank of England provided the £50 notes on display; and the data feed is provided by Reuters)
(8) Rest
DesignRichard Rogers Partnership
(9) Mind
Design and selection of exhibitsOffice of Zaha Hadid (OZH)
Design of Engineering our FutureJohnnie Ball
Art installationsActivmedia, Andrew Stevenson, Butterworth and Storm, Debut de Siecle/Big Projects, Escape, Simon Pope, Gavin Turk, GEC Marconi, Helen Chadwick, Hussein Chalayan, Langlands and Bell, Nancy Burson, Neville Brody, New Renaissance, Oven Digital, Richard Brown, Richard Deacon, Ron Muerck, Ryoji Ikeda, Smart Fibres, University of West England, Urs B. Roth
(10) Faith
Architectural DesignEva Jiricna Architects
Design of exhibitsJasper Jacob Associates
SculptureDavid Begbie
Lighting installationJames Turrell
PhotographsZo-oid and others commissioned by NMEC
(11) Timekeepers
Foam factory equipmentSRS Interactive
Construction and assemblyMice
Character creationFoundation and Cosgrove Hall
(12) Self Portrait
Design, exhibits and fit outCaribiner
The National PortraitDavid Mach
Sculpture designGerald Scarfe
(13) Journey
The sponsor of this zone, Ford, has been responsible for its design, build and fit-out
(14) Talk
The sponsor of this zone, BT, has been responsible for its design, build and fit-out
(15) Our Town story
DesignRichard Rogers Partnership
ContentCommunities across the UK developing performances for their day in the dome

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