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25 Nov 2002 : Column 74Wcontinued
Mr. Spellar: Details of the amount spent on enhancements and renewals relating to the railway network by Railtrack plc (in Administration) for the period to 31 March 2002, are contained in the company's accounts published on 31 October 2002 and details of expenditure for the period including the balance of the administration, will be included in the accounts for the year ended 31 March 2003, which are expected to be published around June 2003.
Mr. Jamieson: No specific funding has been allocated for platform refurbishment in connection with access for disabled passengers. Access for wheelchair users between platforms and trains is currently achieved by the use of ramps.
Access to railway stations, as with other public transport infrastructure, is covered by the provisions of Part III of the Disability Discrimination Act. From 2004, station operators will have to take reasonable steps either to remove or alter impediments to access, to find ways of avoiding them or to provide the service by a reasonable alternative means.
Mr. Jamieson: Improving the accessibility of the underground system is an essential part of the plans to modernise the system. 29 of the 253 stations owned by London Underground are currently step free, and a further eight step-free stations are served by underground services. By 2020 over 100 stations will have step free access, opening up large areas of London to many people previously unable to use the network.
Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport which officials in his Department who were responsible for the re-appointment of board members of Shoreham Port Authority at the end of 2001 had their duties switched to deal with movement of military personnel and supplies for the Afghanistan campaign. 
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Mr. Gray: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what consideration was given to Hullavington in the site search for the South East Region Airfield Study; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Jamieson: Around 400 new and existing sites in southern England were considered in the SERAS preliminary site search study. Hullavington was taken forward into the latter stages of the site search study where it was assessed against a range of criteria. These included topography, obstacle limitation surfaces, airspace, noise, air quality, environment, RPG/economics, commercial demand, travel times and quality of surface access.
Hullavington and Alconbury were taken forward for more detailed appraisal into the main SERAS study as prospective sites for small-scale airport development. Following the conclusion of the first stage of the SERAS study, Ministers agreed that Alconbury should be taken forward, and that Hullavington should not.
Mr. Jamieson: White and brown signs giving directional information about tourist destinations are controlled by traffic authorities as part of their statutory responsibility for securing the safe and efficient movement of traffic. The main purpose of white and brown signs is to guide visitors to their intended tourist destination along the most appropriate route during the latter stage of their journey, particularly where the destination may be difficult to find. The design of signs to direct traffic to tourist attractions and facilities, and of directional traffic signs generally, is controlled through the Traffic Signs Regulations and General Directions (TSRGD). Revised TSRGD, which we
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expect to lay within the next few weeks, will add to the range of symbols and designs available for traffic authorities to use.
Decisions about the provision of signs at particular locations are the responsibility of the relevant traffic authority in the light of their local circumstances and signing policies. My Department consulted earlier this year on proposals for updated guidance to local authorities and the Highways Agency on dealing with applications for new white and brown signs. We recognise the importance of getting an appropriate balance between the needs of local tourism, safety, efficient traffic management and the environment. The draft guidance has been further revised in the light of the responses to the consultation and to take account of the revisions to the TSRGD, and we expect it to be available early next year.
Dr. Naysmith: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether the Trinity House Lighthouse Service has been successful in obtaining further maintenance work under contract from other bodies; and if he will list contracts (a) entered into and (b) pending and their financial value. 
|Customer||Scope of services|
|Anglian Water Services||Buoy Rental|
|ABPCardiff||Buoy Maintenance Services|
|ABPSwansea||Buoy Maintenance Services|
|Brightlingsea Harbour Commissioners||Buoy Servicing Agreementcommenced March 2002|
|Brighton West Pier Trust||Buoy Hire Agreementcommenced November 2001|
|Cardiff Harbour Authority||Intensity, range and sector checks|
|CEFAS||Charter of Vessels|
|Cowes Harbour Commissioners||Purchase and Hire of Moorings|
|Environment Agency (Welsh Regions)||Annual Ship Services|
|Falmouth Harbour Commissioners||Ship Services|
|First Corporate Shipping t/a The Bristol Port Company||Buoy Maintenance Agreementcommenced November 1999|
|Harwich Haven||Utilisation of Ship for Buoy Maintenance Services|
|Magnox Electric plc||Buoy Rental|
|Marine Current Turbines Ltd.||Supply of Fog Detector and Lantern|
|Maritime and Coastguard Agency||Hire of Wreck Marker Buoys|
|Ministry of Defence||Buoy Rental|
|Milford Haven Port Authority||Buoy Maintenance Services|
|National Power plc||Maintenance Services to Navigation Light|
|National Wind Power||Siting of anemometry equipment on Pan Sand Beaconcommenced September 1998|
|Neg Micon UK Ltd. (formerly Wind Energy Group Ltd.)||Siting of anemometry equipment on three existing buoy stationscommenced June 1998|
|Noordzeewind||Data Collection Agreement|
|Penwith District Council||Navigation Light Maintenance Agreementcommenced April 2002|
|Ramsgate Royal Harbour||Ship Services|
|Scarborough Borough Council||Buoy Maintenance Agreementcommenced April 1998|
|Sedgemoor District Council||Navigation Light Maintenance Agreementcommenced September 2000|
|Sovereign Harbour Marina Ltd.||Launch Services|
|States of Guernsey||Ship Services|
|States of Jersey||Ship Services|
|Tendring District Council||Sale of Scrap Buoy and Chain|
|Wells Harbour Commissioners||Buoy Servicing Agreementcommencing March 2002|
|Yorkshire Water Services||Buoy Maintenance Agreementcommenced January 2001|
|The following contracts are commercial in confidence:|
|Commercial in Confidence||Charter of THV Patricia 10 August 2001 to 15 August 01|
|Commercial in Confidence||Data Collection Servicescommencing December 2002|
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The contracts have utilised spare capacity in the THLS fleet and include both maintenance contracts and one-off project based contracts. THLS are working on a number of positive leads for additional work but are unable to identify at this stage if any are likely to become firm orders.
Rates of pay are matters for negotiation between employers and employees, subject to the national minimum wage. Foreign nationals on UK registered ships are not covered by the national minimum wage except when in UK waters.
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