Previous Section Index Home Page

Army Overstretch

Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will make a statement on Army overstretch over the past three years. [145901]

Mr. Spellar: I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave on 30 October 2000, Official Report, column 276W, to the hon. Member for Buckingham (Mr. Bercow). Since that time, the percentage of the Army committed to operations has fallen a further percentage point to 21 per cent.

Forces Numbers

Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list the (a) trained strength and (b) trained requirement of the UK (i) regular armed forces, (ii) reserve forces and (iii) Territorial Army. [145902]

Mr. Spellar: The information is as follows.

Full timed trainedAll servicesNaval serviceArmyRAF
Full time trained strength189,31838,604100,44250,272
of which:
Trained UK Regulars184,67138,12796,52350,021
FTRS personnel(8)1,312477584251
Trained Gurkhas3,335--3,335--
Trained requirement198,04339,921106,13351,989
Trained UK Regulars194,79539,921103,08651,788
FTRS personnel(8),(9)201----201
Trained Gurkhas3,047--3,047--

(8) FTRS: Full Time Reserve Service personnel. Royal Air Force FTRS personnel are divided into Full Commitment (FC), Limited Commitment (LC and Home Commitment (HC)

(9) FC individuals serve in vacant regular posts, but LC and HC individuals count towards a separate requirement. The RAF requirement for FTRS personnel is for LC and HC only


Figures at 1 December 2000


The reserve forces are split into Volunteer Reserves (which include the Territorial Army) and Regular Reserves. There is a requirement for the Volunteer Reserves but not for the Regular Reserves.

Figures for the Volunteer ReservesStrengthRequirement
Naval service(10)2,5743,887
Territorial Army(11)41,67141,204

(10) Naval service comprises Royal Naval Reserve at 31 December 2000 and Royal Marine Reserve at 10 January 2001

(11) Territorial Army figure does not include Non-Regular Permanent Staff in the TA

(12) RAF Figure is for the Royal Auxiliary Air Force. Strength at 1 December 2000, Requirement at 1 July 2000

Figures for the Regular Reserves(13)Strength
Naval service(14)9,870

(13) Excludes Pensioners and Army Long Term Reserve

(14) At 1 December 2000

16 Jan 2001 : Column: 146W


Mr. Kilfoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what discussions he has had with American officials on (a) the upgrading of Fylingdales and (b) the upgrading of early warning facilities other than Fylingdales. [145244]

Mr. Hoon: The Government have had a regular dialogue with the US Administration on the issue of National Missile Defence, and looks forward to continuing this with the next US Administration. The current US Administration has not sought our agreement to the use of facilities in this country for National Missile Defence. Nor would we expect any such request from the United States until and unless the next Administration decided to proceed with deployment of such a system.

Ro-ro Contract

Mr. Kilfoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if the ro-ro ship construction contract recently awarded to the winning consortium can be sub-contracted from the German Flensburg yard to a Polish sub-contractor. [145245]

Mr. Hoon: The ro-ro shipbuilding contracts are a commercial matter between AWSR Shipping, the preferred bidder for the Strategic Sealift competition, and its subcontractors. However, I understand that Flensburger Shiffbau-Gesellschaft intend to build all of the four ships ordered from them by AWSR in their Flensburg yard.

Vanguard Submarines

Mr. Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many fatal accidents have occurred on board Vanguard-class submarines since they entered into service; and what health and safety procedures have been introduced following such accidents. [145359]

Mr. Spellar: Since the introduction of the Vanguard class, there has been only one instance of an onboard fatality. This was on 6 October 2000. As is usual in these circumstances, rigorous formal inquiries were instigated. These included a Board of Inquiry. The report from the Board of Inquiry is currently being considered by Senior Officers. Following the accident, and in advance of final recommendations, some additional precautionary measures have been introduced.

Territorial Army

Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will make a statement on the size of the Territorial Army. [145900]

Dr. Moonie: The latest available official figures give the strength of the Territorial Army as 41,671.

Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will make a statement about trends in (a) Territorial Army centre closures since 1992 and (b) proposed closures of Territorial Army centres in 2000-01. [145904]

Dr. Moonie: Between 1992 and the Strategic Defence Review (SDR), the number of Territorial Army Centres (TAC) remained almost constant, with any closures part of routine management of the Volunteer Estate. SDR resulted in a fundamental reorganisation, reduction and in some cases redeployment of the Territorial Army. Prior to SDR, there were 455 TACs. 342 have been retained for

16 Jan 2001 : Column: 147W

use by the TA, and 27 to accommodate cadet forces units. Of the 86 that will be disposed of, 14 of these have already been sold and a further 42 were scheduled for disposal in financial year 2000-01. It is now unlikely that all these will be sold in the current financial year.


Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many people were recruited into the (a) RAF, (b) Army and (c) Royal Navy on cadetships and how many of them (i) had their fees paid and (ii) received a salary, in each of the last five years; and if he will make a statement. [145903]

Mr. Spellar: I will write to the hon. Member and a copy of my letter will be placed in the Library of the House.

Defence Spending (Scotland)

Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how much of the defence budget was spent in Scotland in the most recent year for which figures are available (a) in actual terms and (b) as a percentage of the total defence budget. [145898]

Mr. Spellar: The Department is organised financially into Top Level Budgets reflecting major outputs rather than geographical location. Expenditure records reflect this organisation and are maintained for only commodities and Top Level Budgets. While we do not record all departmental expenditure by region, the Defence Bills Agency paid defence contractors based in Scotland some £691 million during 1999-2000, some 3 per cent. of Defence expenditure. The figures do not take account of purchases by sub-contractors.

Scottish Personnel

Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many people from (a) Scotland and (b) the United Kingdom are serving in Her Majesty's armed forces. [145905]

Mr. Spellar: Examination of available personal records of currently serving personnel 1 has revealed the following information:

(a) Scotland
Naval service2,534
(b) The United Kingdom
Naval service(16)42,505

(15) Naval service data are based on current place of residence. This information is provided at the individual's discretion, therefore the records are unlikely to be complete. Army and RAF details are based on nationality at birth.

(16) Naval service total strength as at 1 December 2000 was 42,505 but this includes an unspecified number of Commonwealth citizens and Republic of Ireland nationals.

16 Jan 2001 : Column: 148W

Next Section Index Home Page