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Mr. Edward Davey: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions how many unused allotment plots there were in each local authority in 1999. [142067]

Ms Beverley Hughes: The information requested is not currently held centrally. However, the "English Allotments Survey--1997", which was commissioned by

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my Department, provides information on the number of vacant statutory allotments in each of the following areas:

AreaNumber of vacant statutory plots
Inner London57
Outer London4,189
Greater Manchester496
South Yorkshire874
Tyne and Wear190
West Midlands2,449
West Yorkshire463
East Sussex642
Hereford and Worcester301
Isle of Wight87
North Yorkshire368
West Sussex315

Park and Ride Schemes

Mr. Edward Davey: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what assistance his Department intends to give to local authorities wishing to initiate permanent park and ride schemes. [142064]

Mr. Hill: Park and ride schemes developed by local authorities as part of their Local Transport Plans can help reduce congestion while maintaining accessibility to town and city centres. Outside London my Department provides funding to local authorities for transport infrastructure through the Local Transport Plan system. This can be used for park and ride schemes but it is for local

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authorities to determine priorities within their programmes. Inside London the allocation of funds in response to Boroughs' Interim Transport Plans is a matter for the Mayor and Transport for London.

Our revised planning guidance note PPG13 on Transport, which is due to be published soon, will give further guidance on planning aspects of park and ride proposals. Advice on other aspects of setting up and operating bus-based park and ride schemes is given a Good Practice Guide published earlier this year by the English Historic Towns Forum with the support of the Department.

The Secretary of State has already made clear that he will give priority to well designed and well conceived park and ride schemes. The Department's 10-year plan "Transport 2010" published in July shows that we expect up to 100 new park and ride schemes to be implemented during the next 10 years.

Local Government Functions

Caroline Flint: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what recent advice his Department has offered to local authorities with respect to clear separation of the cabinet and scrutiny functions in local government. [142051]

Ms Beverley Hughes: As my right hon. Friend the Minister for Local Government and the Regions announced to the House on 26 October 2000, Official Report, columns 173-74W, we have now published guidance on new council constitutions for English local authorities, which includes guidance on setting up executive arrangements involving separate cabinets and overview and scrutiny committees.

National School Bus Strategy

Caroline Flint: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what recent representations he has received in favour of a national school bus strategy. [142049]

Mr. Hill: None.

Regeneration Funding (Doncaster)

Caroline Flint: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what is the total sum of public funds secured for regeneration purposes for the Borough of Doncaster since 1997; and if he will make a statement. [142050]

Ms Beverley Hughes: Doncaster has secured the following resources for regeneration activities since 1997:

Single Regeneration Budget (SRB)

A total of £47.9 million for a wide range of projects. The total includes a notional allocation of resources for the South Yorkshire Coalfields scheme and the Dearne Valley scheme, both of which go wider than Doncaster. The total also includes the Round 3 Scheme (£14.2 million) that was approved in 1996-97 but began the following year.

Land and Property

A total of £50.1 million for a range of Yorkshire Forward (RDA) and English Partnerships reclamation/ development projects.

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New Deal for Communities (NDC)

Doncaster has secured £200,000 under Phase 2 of the NDC programme, which facilitates delivery plan development, up to March 2001. A further £90,000 has also been paid for early win projects and there are others in the pipeline, but not yet approved. If Doncaster wins resources following submission of its delivery plan in March, we expect funding to be around £50 million over 10 years, starting in 2001-02.

Neighbourhood Renewal Fund (NRF)

Doncaster has been allocated £17.5 million over the next three years through NRF to help it improve services in its poorest communities. This funding is dependent on Doncaster having a satisfactory Best Value Performance plan, making a commitment to setting up a Local Strategic Partnership and a commitment to a local Neighbourhood Renewal strategy.

European Funding

A total of £25.6 million was secured under Objective 2, Konver 2 and RECHAR 2 for a wide range of projects, including some operating on sub-regional basis.

Doncaster also stands to benefit from the £700 million of structural funds that will be spent in South Yorkshire under the Objective 1 programme over the next seven years.

The following resources, although not primarily concerned with regeneration, are also likely to bring wider regeneration benefits.


Since 1997 a total of £32.9 million has been allocated under the Housing Investment Programme (HIP), which included funds allocated through the Capital Receipts Initiative from 1997-98 up to and including 1999-2000, for all housing purposes. A breakdown of how much Doncaster used to support specific regeneration activity is not available, but the council has used housing investment to underpin neighbourhood renewal activity within priority areas.


Funding has been approved for the following major transport schemes that are likely to bring wider regeneration benefits. Denaby Main Diversion (near Conisborough)--£9 million over the next three years. Doncaster North Bridge--£18 million 2000-01, further £30 million over the next three years.

London Transport (Investment)

Mr. Syms: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what discretion the Mayor of London will have as to where the money allocated to London Transport in the 10-Year plan is spent. [141670]

Mr. Hill: The remaining responsibilities of London Transport will in due course be transferred to Transport for London (TfL) under the control of the Mayor of London. The Mayor is free to decide priorities for spending the money we have allocated to London in the 10-Year Plan subject to certain constraints. The Government will determine the precise level of the GLA Transport Grant each year following consultation with the Mayor. The Mayor must consult the London Assembly about his budget for TfL and the Assembly can amend it by a two-thirds majority. TfL must meet all its contractual

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commitments and the requirements of the Best Value regime. The Mayor must prepare a Transport Strategy which my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State may direct the Mayor to revise if he considers it (or any part of it) inconsistent with national policies and detrimental to any area outside Greater London. The Mayor must obtain my right hon. Friend's approval to a general plan for applying the net proceeds from any road user charging or workplace parking levy scheme.


Mr. Syms: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what plans for bypasses have been (a) cancelled and (b) proposed since May 1997. [141485]

Mr. Hill [holding answer 11 December 2000]: Twenty of the 40 schemes in our Targeted Programme of trunk road improvements are bypasses. This does not include any bypasses approved under the Local Transport Plan process. On trunk roads we cancelled two projects in 1997--Hereford and Salisbury--because of their serious impact on environmentally sensitive sites.

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