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Tetra Masts

Mr. Edwards: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what the average annual payment was to landowners for the siting of Tetra masts in the last three years. [37744]

Mr. John Denham: The Home Office does not make payments to landowners for the siting of Terrestrial Trunked Radio System (Tetra) masts. The location of the sites, and agreements with site owners, are the responsibility of Tetra network operators. For the Airwave service this is Airwave mm02, (formerly British Telecom Airwave). Payments for the use of sites are a commercial matter between the network operator and the site owners.

Job No: 713438 Folios: 2022

Mr. Edwards: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what recent evaluation has been made of the health risks associated with Tetra masts.[37745]

Mr. Denham: In early 2001, the Home Office commissioned a report from the National Radiological Protection Board on the potential health risks from Terrestrial Trunked Radio System (Tetra) technology.

The report concluded that it was unlikely that the special features of Tetra posed a hazard to health, and made recommendations for further research in the remaining areas of uncertainty. The Home Office has accepted the report and is taking forward all its recommendations in a comprehensive programme of work which is already well underway. This includes a large study commissioned by the Home Office from the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory on the possible effects of Tetra signals on cell biology. The initial results of this work are expected by April, 2002.

Antiosocial Behaviour Orders

Mr. Hendry: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many antisocial behaviour orders have been issued in each police authority area. [37626]

Mr Denham: I refer the hon. Member to the reply I gave the hon. Member, for the Isle of Wight (Mr Turner) on 11 February 2002, Official Report, column 48W.

Entitlement Card

Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what discussions his Department

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has had with private companies on the feasibility of introducing an entitlement card for UK citizens; and if he will make a statement. [37671]

Angela Eagle: My officials have met with trade associations representing the financial services, retail and computer software and services industries. In the context of discussions with Post Office Ltd, officials have also met representatives of N M Rothschild & Sons who invited the ALCO Partnership to one meeting. No discussions have been held on the feasibility of an entitlement card scheme with individual private companies. However, the Association for Payment Clearing Services (APACS) (Administration) Ltd, which is a non-profit private company owned and financed by the United Kingdom's major financial institutions, was present at the discussions with the financial services industry. Also a number of Information Technology companies were present at the meeting with that industry group, the contents of which was reported to its very wide membership.

Prisoners (Self-Harm)

Mrs. Brooke: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many (a) attempted hangings and (b) other acts of deliberate self-harm were recorded in prisons in England and Wales in the last two years. [37790]

Beverley Hughes [holding answer 27 February 2002]: There have been 2,986 attempted hangings and 9,700 other acts of self-harm in prisons during the last two years as set out in the table.

Table showing the number of attempted hangings and other acts of deliberate self-harm in prisons in England and Wales in the last two years

YearAttempted hangingOther acts of deliberate self-harmTotal
20001,395 (27 per cent.)3,826 (73 per cent.)5,221
20011,591 (21 per cent.)5,874 (79 per cent.)7,465

A downward trend in the reduction of self-harm, including attempted hangings, is being sought within the Prison Services holistic three-year safer custody programme. Key elements of the programme include better identification and case management by trained staff of prisoners at risk; the establishment of mental health in-reach teams; and improved physical environments within prisons.

Job No: 713438 Folios: 2024

Police Authorities (Research)

Mrs. Curtis-Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people were employed in a research capacity in each police authority in each year since the inception of the CPS as a percentage of (a) turnover and (b) the number of people employed. [37778]

Mr. Denham [holding answer 27 February 2002]: The information requested is not collected. The deployment of resources within a police force is a matter for individual Chief Officers of Police.

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Broadspring Wood, (Buckinghamshire)

Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions (1) if he will make a statement concerning the proposed sale of Broadspring wood, Denham, Buckinghamshire by the Highways Agency; [36090]

Mr. Jamieson: The decision was taken by the Highways Agency to sell Broadspring Wood, Denham, Buckinghamshire to the Uxbridge and District Rifle Club on 16 August 2001 following professional advice and opinion on its status, condition and potential. The Club had operating on the land under Licence since 1 June 2000. There were no concerns raised about their activities.

The Highways Agency learned that the Uxbridge and District Rifle Club were bringing spoil material into Broadspring Wood, Denham Buckinghamshire and were creating car parking areas and bunds in November 2001.

A letter was sent to the Uxbridge and District Rifle Club on 21 November 2001 requesting that no further activity of any sort was carried out on site. A letter was also sent from our solicitors on 23 November 2001 addressed to the solicitor acting for the Rifle Club requesting that the depositing or permitting to be deposited of waste material on the site and access ways leading to it be stopped immediately. A second letter was sent by the Highways Agency on 1 February 2002 pointing out that we were aware that the Rifle Club had changed the use of the land by the inclusion of bunding on the land and using it as a combat area, that this should stop and the Rifle Club should use the land as set out in their licence. The Highways Agency was unaware of the introduction of pre-fabricated buildings in Broadspring Wood until now. The Highways Agency have arranged for their Managing Agent to urgently inspect the land and provide a report.

The sale of this land from the Highways Agency to the Uxbridge and District Rifle Club was agreed in good faith last summer. However, following these most recent events officials in the Highways Agency are conducting a full review of the case.

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Tramway Service

Mr. Cox: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what plans he has to encourage the development of a tramway service within the Greater London area. [38201]

Ms Keeble: The Government's Ten Year Plan for Transport envisages at least two tram or guided bus schemes in London. However, this is a matter for the Mayor of London and Transport for London. I understand that Transport for London (TfL) is considering four new Xintermediate mode schemes", so called because they are neither bus nor rail but share some characteristics of both. They are: Cross-River Transit; Uxbridge Road Transit; Greenwich Waterfront Transit; and East London Transit.

TfL has made no decision yet on whether to take any of these forward. TfL's Business Plan only provides for one to be taken forward as a tram scheme. TfL will need to review their priorities and take firm decisions on the four proposals in the light of the forthcoming Spending Review settlement.

State Aid Funding

Ms Walley: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions how many applications for state aid funding have been refused in the last three years; and if he will make a statement. [38054]

Ms Keeble: Without doing an exhaustive search of Departmental records, I am aware of only one occasion in the last three years on which the European Commission withheld approval for state aid in the field of the Department of Transport, Local Government and the Regions or its predecessor the Department of Environment, Transport and the Regions (excluding environment functions transferred to DEFRA). This was the state aid relating to the Partnership Investment Programme.

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