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Prime Ministerial Apartments

Mr. Chope: To ask the Prime Minister if he will list the public expenditure incurred on refurbishment of the Prime Minister's private apartments at Nos. 10 and 11 Downing street in each of the last 10 years. [151430]

The Prime Minister: Figures are only available since 1993.

For the years 1993-98, I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to the right hon. Member for Bromley and Chislehurst (Mr. Forth) on 26 January 1998, Official Report, column 66W. For 1998-99 I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to the hon. Member for Lewes (Mr. Baker) on 28 July 2000, Official Report, columns 969-70W. For 1999-2000 I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to the hon. Member for Lewes on 5 June 2000, Official Report, columns 49-50W.

The cost of works in the No. 11 flat (expenditure paid or committed) to date this financial year is £44,063 including recoverable VAT. No further work is planned for this financial year.

Mr. Lansley: To ask the Prime Minister how much was spent on (a) renovation, (b) repair, (c) improvements and (d) additions to the residential flats for his occupation at Nos. 10 or 11 Downing street in (i) 1997-98, (ii) 1998-99 and (iii) 1999-2000; and what his estimate is for 2000-01. [151373]

The Prime Minister [holding answer 27 February 2001]: It is not possible to disaggregate expenditure in the manner requested as no distinction is made between maintaining, decorating and otherwise improving residential accommodation at Nos. 10 or 11 Downing street as projects frequently cover two or more of these categories of work. For details of expenditure on

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refurbishment of the flat at No. 11 Downing street, I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to the hon. Member for Christchurch (Mr. Chope) today.


Legal Aid

Mr. Matthew Taylor: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what assessment he has made of the potential savings arising from the Community Legal Service receiving a portion of the damages awarded in civil cases funded by legal aid. [151548]

Mr. Lock: A contingency fund was considered during the passage of the Access to Justice Act 1999, and the Act contains a power to create one. However, the Government have no plans to do so.

It would be virtually impossible to operate a contingency fund in relation to family litigation or cases where victims are seeking injunctions to prevent domestic violence. Costs are often not awarded at the end of these cases, or they are unlikely to be enforced, or there may be no damages out of which costs could be recovered from the funded client. Such a fund cannot operate where funding is provided for some Children Act cases, since funding is granted without a merits test. It would also be impossible to operate Legal Help (formerly Green Form advice) on a contingency fund basis, since cases rarely become formal proceedings where costs or damages would become recoverable.

The Government believe that, as far as possible, litigants should receive the full amount of compensation to which they are entitled. That would not be the case with a contingency fund.

The Government also doubt the practicality of operating a contingency fund where the private funding of litigation through conditional fee agreements and after-the-event insurance is possible. Adverse selection would result in cases with higher prospects of success funded privately on a conditional fee basis, leaving cases with weaker prospects of success to be supported by the contingency fund. That would leave the fund vulnerable to significant financial problems.

Accordingly, and while not ruling out the possibility of operating a contingency fund in any circumstances, the Government have no plans to introduce such a fund in England and Wales.

Mr. Matthew Taylor: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what his estimate is of the total financial awards from successful civil cases funded by legal aid in the latest financial year for which figures are available. [151549]

Mr. Lock: Due to changes to the Legal Services Commission's computer systems the latest available figures are for 1997-98. The total amount of moneys awarded or agreed in publicly funded civil cases was £1.37 billion. This information relates principally to one-off payments, and excludes most payments by instalment, whether in matrimonial or non-matrimonial cases.

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Jury Service

Mr. Cox: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department how many (a) men and (b) women were selected for jury service at courts covering the Greater London area during the last 12 months. [150442]

Jane Kennedy: Jurors are selected on a random basis from among those people who are registered on the electoral rolls for England and Wales. The total number of people summoned for jury service at courts covering the Greater London area in the last 12 months was 135,858. The breakdown of how many men and how many women were summoned is not recorded, and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Deputy Stipendiary Magistrates

(General Election)

Mr. John M. Taylor: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what instructions (a) she and (b) her Department have given to deputy stipendiary magistrates concerning the avoidance of party political activity during the next General Election; and if she will make a statement. [151771]

Jane Kennedy: Neither I nor my officials have given any instructions to Deputy District Judges (Magistrates Courts), as they are now called, specifically in relation to political activity during the next General Election. However, the memorandum on conditions of appointment and terms of service issued to every Deputy District Judge (Magistrates Courts) states plainly that they are expected to refrain from any activity, political or otherwise, which would conflict with their judicial office or be seen to compromise their impartiality. They are advised that in the event of any doubt they should contact my officials in the Judicial Group for advice.


GM Crops

Mr. Yeo: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office what the assessment was by MISC6 of the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food report on separation for GM field trials; which Ministers were given it; and if she will make MISC6's assessment of the report publicly available. [151538]

Marjorie Mowlam: It is established practice under exemption two of Part II of the Code of Practice on Access to Government Information not to disclose information relating to the proceedings of Cabinet Committees.


Flu Vaccine

Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will publish the take-up rates for flu vaccine as at (a) 1 November and (b) 1 December for each health authority. [141403]

Yvette Cooper: The information requested is in the table.

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These figures are based on returns sent by health authorities to the Department and represent data collected to 30 November 2000. Uptake on 1 November in several health authorities was affected by delays in supplies from one manufacturer. Nevertheless, the data before 30 November do not reflect the work done by HAs and in primary care to promote uptake.


Region/HA65 and over uptake
East and North Hertfordshire60
North Essex62
South Essex62
West Hertfordshire56
Northern and Yorkshire
Calderdale and Kirklees64
County Durham61
East Riding64
Gateshead and South Tyneside63
Newcastle and North Tyneside58
North Cumbria54
North Yorkshire68
South East
East Kent59
East Surrey55
East Sussex, Brighton/Hove62
Isle of Wight64
North and Mid Hants62
Portsmouth and South East Hants66
Southampton and South West Hants67
West Kent67
West Surrey54
West Sussex49
North West
Bury and Rochdale58
East Lancashire60
Morecambe Bay62
North Cheshire62
North West Lancashire60
Salford and Trafford53
South Cheshire66
South Lancashire61
St. Helen's and Knowsley59
West Pennine56
Wigan and Bolton49
Barking and Havering63
Bexley and Greenwich60
Brent and Harrow48
Camden and Islington34
Ealing, Hammersmith and Hounslow52
East London and City54
Enfield and Haringey51
Kensington, Chelsea, Westminster46
Kingston and Richmond61
Lambeth, Southwark and Lewisham50
Merton, Sutton and Wandsworth59
Redbridge and Waltham Forest60
South and West
Cornwall and Isles of Scilly62
North and East Devon64
South and West Devon63
North Derbyshire67
North Nottinghamshire61
South Derbyshire67
South Humber71
West Midlands
North Staffordshire66
South Staffordshire66
England average61

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