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Abandoned Vehicles

Mr. Patrick Hall: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions when he plans to review the operation of the mechanisms available for the removal and disposal of abandoned vehicles from (a) public land and (b) certain categories of private land. [154714]

Mr. Hill: We are currently considering the arrangements for the removal and disposal of abandoned vehicles from public and private land as part of a review of the current legislation covering abandoned vehicles.

Train Speed Restrictions (Scotland)

Mr. Alasdair Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions if he will list the temporary speed restrictions in force on railways within Scotland on 13 March, indicating (a) their location, (b) normal line speed, (c) temporary line speed, (d) length of track affected, (e) date of imposition and (f) planned date of lifting. [154558]

Mr. Hill: As of 13 March, 38 temporary speed restrictions as identified in the National Recovery Plan were in place on five of the eight strategic route groupings of Railtrack's network in Scotland. These were:

These 38 speed restrictions had a total length of 6.14 miles. Of these eight (1.05 miles) had a speed restriction of 20mph, a further 15 (2.55 miles) were up to 40mph and a further 15 (2.54 miles) up to 60mph. Normal line speeds on these routes are typically between 35mph and 105mph.

The speed restrictions were all imposed since the Hatfield accident and are scheduled for removal at various dates over the coming weeks. Railtrack is in regular dialogue with ScotRail and other train operating companies to ensure this work is completed with minimum disruption to passengers and freight customers.

In addition, as with other parts of the network, routes in Scotland will continue to be affected by other speed restrictions needed to maintain safe operation in adverse operating conditions and to enable normal maintenance activities to be completed. Some of these additional restrictions are imposed because of gauge corner cracking.

Manchester Airport Company

Mr. Syms: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what approval

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was required from the Government for the recent takeover of Bournemouth and East Midlands airports by the Manchester Airport Company. [154710]

Mr. Robert Ainsworth: The purchase of the shares in the two companies required the consent of my right hon. Friend under section 30(1) of the Civil Aviation Act 1982, with which local authorities may establish and maintain airports, and under section 20(3) of the Airports Act 1986 with which they may acquire shares in airport companies which they do not already control. Manchester city council applied for consent on behalf of Manchester airport's 10 shareholder authorities, and the issuing of the consents to the city council empowered the airport company, which is a subsidiary of the city council, to purchase the shares. The consents were issued without prejudice to any regulatory approval which might be needed.

In addition my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry was required to consider whether to refer the proposed purchase to the Competition Commission under the mergers provisions of the Fair Trading Act 1973 for a full investigation. He took a decision not to do so, in accordance with the recommendation of the Director General of Fair Trading. The primary consideration in the Director General's advice, and in the decision whether to make a reference, was the likely effect of the proposed purchase on competition in the market for airport services.

Mr. Syms: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what changes in the last 12 months the Government have made to the financial guidelines of Manchester airport. [154711]

Mr. Robert Ainsworth: None.

Mr. Syms: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions if he will make a statement on the purchase of East Midlands airport and Bournemouth airport by the Manchester Airport Company. [154709]

Mr. Robert Ainsworth: The New Deal for Transport White Paper (Cmnd 3950) stated that the Government's

While the sale by National Express of their UK airports has taken place before the completion of our new air transport strategy my right hon. Friend, in considering the application for the necessary consents, noted that the proposed sale to Manchester airport was the result of competitive tendering and judged that it was likely to bring benefits of the type summarised above.

Departmental Policies (Truro and St. Austell)

Mr. Matthew Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions if he will set out, including statistical information relating as directly as possible to the Truro and St. Austell constituency, the effects on Truro and St. Austell of his Department's policies and actions since 2 May 1997. [154536]

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Ms Beverley Hughes: The principal funding that this Department has provided to Restormel and Carrick district councils in the years 1997-98 to 2001-02 is shown in the tables. These include grants and borrowing approvals for revenue and capital expenditure.

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It is not possible to determine how much of this money has been spent on Truro and St. Austell constituency. It is for the local authority to decide where within its boundary these resources are applied.

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£ million
Nature of funding1997-981998-991999-20002000-012001-02(21)
Carrick district council
Revenue Support Grant(22)2.9982.8242.8212.6942.927
Income from National Non-Domestic Rates(22)2.6842.7222.9263.2483.231
Housing Investment Programme(23)1.3571.3241.092(24)2.885(25)3.390
Housing Revenue Account Subsidy2.7932.3072.122(28)2.152--
Capital Receipts Initiative0.2060.6310.677n/an/a
Cash Incentive Scheme0.0540.0380.000n/an/a
Loan Charges Defective Housing0.0060.0060.006(29)0.006(29)0.006
Capital Challenge (Supplementary Credit and Basic Credit Approvals)0.0770.6250.49800
Restormel borough council
Revenue Support Grant(22)4.3863.7843.8363.6724.057
Income from National Non-Domestic Rates(22)2.8632.8703.1103.4763.477
SSA Reduction Grant (SSA Review)0.0000.2520.0550.0000.000
Housing Investment Programme(23)1.0471.0051.007(24)2.123(25)1.063
Housing Revenue Account Subsidy2.3832.5142.053(26)n/a(26)n/a
Capital Receipts Initiative0.2120.6300.564n/an/a
Cash Incentive Scheme0.0800.0800.000n/an/a
Loan Charges Defective Housing0.0070.0070.007(29)0.007(29)0.007
Cornwall county council
Revenue Support Grant(22)129.412133.560139.493135.599146.727
Income from National Non-Domestic Rates(22)93.49198.020107.287122.050120.054
Transport Supplementary Grant3.4741.2051.63100
Transport Annual Capital Guideline3.4741.2051.63100
Transport Block Supplementary Credit Approval0.8750.9942.4727.13814.920
Rural Bus Challenge Grant(27)000.1570.845n/a
Rural Bus Subsidy Grant01.0981.1151.2211.559
Capital Challenge (Supplementary Credit and Basic Credit Approvals)2.0572.8303.01300

(21) Where known

(22) The amounts of Revenue Support Grant and Income from National Non-Domestic Rates shown for 1997-98 and 1998-99 are the revised amounts allocated under "The Local Government Finance Report (England) 1997-98 Amending Report 1999" and "The Local Government Finance Report (England) 1998-99 Amending Report 2000" respectively.

(23) 1997-98 HIP allocation inherited from the previous Government's spending plans. Present Government introduced CRI from 1997-98.

(24) Single Housing Pot introduced from 2000-01 resulting in CRI being merged with HIP.

(25) Resource accounting has resulted in a change to the way capital resources are allocated for 2001-02, with the introduction of a new Major Repairs Allowance (MRA) to cover the cost of maintaining local authority housing in a sound condition. Carrick's MRA allocation for 2001-02 is £2.03 million and, for comparison purposes, is included in the 2001-02 HIP allocation above. Restormel is a transfer authority and is not entitled to MRA.

(26) Restormel borough council completed the transfer of its housing stock in February 2000.

(27) Rural Bus Challenge figures represent awards--actual spend profiles for schemes may cover more than one year.

(28) Provisional

(29) Estimated

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Single Regeneration Budget (SRB)

Truro and St. Austell constituency is not included in awards that have been made since May 1997. Parts of the constituency are included in two SRB schemes, Cornwall Developing in Partnership approved in Round 1 and CHEERS (Restormel) in Round 3. Funding provided for these schemes since 1997-98 is included in the table as follows:

£ million

SRB schemeCornwall Developing in PartnershipCHEERS (Restormel)

(30) Where known

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European Funding

Truro and St. Austell constituency was included in the South West Objective 5b programme that closed for new applications at the end of 1999. Major projects in the constituency which have received funding since 1997-98 include Eden (£10.5 million), Truro College IT Centre (£2.3 million) and Lemon Quay Redevelopment, Truro (£0.5 million).

Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly have been designated an Objective 1 area, of which Truro and St. Austell constituency is a part, and stands to benefit from £315 million of European Funds over the next seven years.

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