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Mr. Maginnis: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many RUC (a) assistant chief constables, (b) chief superintendents and (c) superintendents left the force in (i) 1999 and (ii) 2000; how many are scheduled to leave in years (x) 2001 and (y) 2002; and what percentage of the establishment for those ranks during the relevant years this represents. [144691]

Mr. Ingram: The information requested is as follows:

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(a) Number of officers who left the RUC in years 1999 and 2000

Assistant chief constableChief superintendentSuperintendent
Leavers in 1999025
Leavers in 2000122
Leavers as percentage of establishment in 19990.04.3
Leavers as percentage of establishment in 200011.12.5

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(b) Number of officers who will leave under the voluntary severance arrangements up to 31 March 2001, with appropriate percentages

Assistant chief constableChief superintendentSuperintendent
Establishment as at 15 January 20019161
Police scheduled to leave January to March 200132130
Police eligible to leave from April to December 200111751
(a) As percentage of establishment33.331.7
(b) As percentage of establishment11.142.2

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It should be noted that a further 69 officers will satisfy the necessary criteria for the severance arrangements to leave up to 31 March 2002 but nominations have not yet been sought. In addition it is not possible to determine the number of officers who may apply to leave under natural wastage, for example, resignation, health grounds, termination.


Mr. William Ross: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many robberies of (a) post offices

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and (b) Royal Mail vehicles there were in each RUC division in each of the last 12 months for which figures are available; and if he will estimate the total sum so stolen in each RUC division in this period. [147044]

Mr. Ingram: The table provides details of armed robberies of post offices and postal vehicles recorded by the Royal Ulster Constabulary for the period 1 January 2000 to 31 December 2000:

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(a) Armed robberies on post offices/postal vehicles: 1 January 2000 to 31 December 2000

4 January 2000WoodbournePost Office, Andersonstown Road, Belfast
5 January 2000NewtownabbeyPost Office, Glengormley Park, Belfast
14 January 2000LisburnPost Office, Moss Road, Lisburn
16 January 2000EnniskillenPost Office, East Bridge Street, Enniskillen
19 January 2000DownpatrickPost Office, Derryboye, Crossgar
20 January 2000CookstownPost Office, Coagh
22 January 2000CastlereaghPost Office, Hillmount Drive, Moneyreagh
31 January 2000LurganPost Office, Derryola Road, Ahgalee
24 February 2000NewcastlePost Office, Letrim, Castlewellan
28 February 2000Musgrave StreetParcel Force Van, Castle Junction, Belfast
2 March 2000StrabanePost Office, Umey Road, Claudy
30 March 2000BangorPost Office, Bridge Road, Helen's Bay
5 April 2000WoodbournePost Office, Dairy Farm Shopping Centre, Belfast
21 April 2000BanbridgeLenaderg Post Office, Huntley Road, Banbridge
29 April 2000DungannonPost Office, Dungannon Road, Coalisland
6 May 2000WatersidePost Office, Ardmore Road, Londonderry
31 May 2000Grosvenor RoadPost Office, Falls Road, Belfast
6 July 2000WatersidePost Office, Ardmore, Londonderry
20 July 2000WatersidePost Office, Lettershandoney, Londonderry
27 July 2000BallymoneyPost Office, Straid Road, Bushmills
28 July 2000WoodbournePost Office, Glen Road, Belfast
10 August 2000BallymoneyPost Office, Glenshesk Road, Amoy
12 August 2000StrabanePost Office, Longland Road, Donemana
17 August 2000DownpatrickPost Office, Cloughy
25 September 2000EnniskillenComagrade Post Office, Comagrade Road, Enniskillen
10 October 2000LurganPost Office, Gawleys Gate, Lurgan
21 November 2000WoodbournePost Office, Monagh Road, Belfast
9 December 2000CarrickfergusSunnylands Post Office, Bridewell Drive, Carrickfergus


1. Robberies where a firearm or the impression of a firearm is used.

2. Does not include attempted robberies.

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(b) The total recorded cash sum taken during the listed robberies amounted to around £270,000 (this figure excludes the undisclosed value of postal orders, cheques, etc., also taken during some robberies).

Saville Inquiry

Mr. Gerald Howarth: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how much the Saville inquiry has cost to date. [145478]

Mr. George Howarth: [pursuant to his reply, 24 January 2001, c. 637W]: The text of my answer relating to the Bloody Sunday inquiry should have read:


Minimum Wage (Morecambe and Lunesdale)

Miss Geraldine Smith: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many workers are estimated to benefit from the minimum wage in (a) Morecambe and Lunesdale and (b) the United Kingdom. [148962]

Miss Melanie Johnson: The information requested falls within the responsibility of the National Statistician. I have asked him to reply.

Letter from Len Cook to Miss Geraldine Smith, dated 6 February 2001:

Departmental Duties

Mr. Cousins: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the titles, duties and functions of Mr. Martin Roberts and Mr. Robert Allan in his Department were prior to their transfer to the Financial Services Authority. [149200]

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Miss Melanie Johnson: Mr. Roberts and Mr. Allen worked in the Insurance Team of the Department during 1998 prior to their transfer to the Financial Services Authority in January 1999.

Earnings Patterns

Mr. Mitchell: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will estimate the impact on (a) GDP, (b) tax revenue and (c) savings in benefits if persons (i) over 50 and (ii) between the ages of 50 and 65 had the same patterns of employment and earnings as the average of the rest of the UK labour force. [147607]

Miss Melanie Johnson: The information is not readily available and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.


Mr. Clappison: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will publish the EMU statistics which were the subject of a progress report at the ECOFIN of 19 January. [148540]

Miss Melanie Johnson: I have deposited a copy of "Information requirements in EMU: Third progress report on the implementation of the Monetary Committee's report" in the Library of the House.

Mr. Clappison: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what conclusions were arrived at during the ECOFIN of 19 January 2001 regarding the implementation of the Stability and Growth Pact. [148541]

Miss Melanie Johnson: ECOFIN examined and agreed an Opinion on the Swedish Convergence Programme, in line with the Stability and Growth Pact. A copy of the Opinion has been deposited in the Library of the House.

Death Certificates

Mr. Clappison: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) what his estimate is of the net yield per annum from the issuing of death certificates (a) before and (b) after the decision not to authorise the photocopying of death certificates; [148546]

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Miss Melanie Johnson: Her Majesty's Stationery Office (HMSO) Guidance on the Copying of Birth, Death and Marriage Certificates (October 1999) stated that it was Government policy not to authorise the copying of certificates. I received one representation against that policy. After considering this representation, I concluded that it would be inappropriate to allow solicitors to photocopy death certificates issued in England and Wales for endorsement and use as evidence of death. One representation against this decision has been received.

No estimate of the yield per annum from the issuing of death certificates has been made and information about the fraudulent use of photocopied certificates is not held centrally. The policy is based on the potential use of photocopied certificates for fraud and not on commercial considerations.

The Government have a responsibility to reduce the potential for fraud. A death certificate is a certified copy of an entry in a death register. Under statute it may only be certified by the registrar who holds the register and the Registrar General who holds a certified copy of the register. Similar provisions apply to birth and marriage certificates. Photocopies can conceal alterations to original certificates and will by-pass the security features--watermarks, fugitive inks--so that fraudulent use is unlikely to be detected. Misrepresentation of documents is an important element in fraud relating to identity and status. Authorising any use of photocopied certificates for evidential purposes will signify Government approval of the practice and increase their potential use for fraud. For this reason, it has been decided that the photocopying of documents for evidential purposes should not be authorised. Representations by solicitors about the cost and inconvenience when administering an estate were considered. Any inconvenience is regretted but is outweighed by the public interest in limiting the opportunities for fraud.

Certificates of recent events are readily available from a registrar in England and Wales at a cost of £3.50. All income from registration fees, including certificates issued at Register Offices, is paid to local authorities. The fee levels are reviewed every year and adjusted to ensure that the income continues to recover half the costs incurred by local authorities in providing the service.

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