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28 Jan 2003 : Column 847W—continued

Rough Terrain Fleet

Mr. Keetch: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many fully trained (a) operators and (b) maintenance engineers with operational experience of container handling rough terrain there are in his Department; and how many are fit for active service. [92663]

Mr. Ingram: The Ministry of Defence has sufficient trained and fit operators and engineers to run the Container Handling Rough Terrain fleet.

Sea Cadet Corps

Dr. Julian Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will make a statement on the role and structure of the Sea Cadet Corps. [92967]

Dr. Moonie: The Sea Cadet movement is a national youth charity based on the customs and traditions of the Royal Navy. It provides young people from 10 to 18-years-old with life skills of teamwork, self-respect and social responsibility. It has a training programme ranging from seamanship and maritime skills to music, cookery and computing, and aims to provide teenagers with a serious, but fun, alternative to the youth leisure industry at the heart of the local community.

The Sea Cadet Corps has approximately 400 units. Each unit is a registered charity in its own right run by a management committee and supported by the Sea Cadet Association (SCA) which has branches around the country. The SCA is a fundraising charity which, along with the Ministry of Defence, provides essential

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resources for the corps. The MOD provides financial support for the running of the SCA HQ and a national training organisation.

Each Sea Cadet Unit becomes a member of the corps by act of affiliation with the SCA. It then becomes eligible for the umbrella support provided by MOD and the SCA, including management through six area offices.

Dr. Julian Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many (a) professional and (b) voluntary personnel there are in the Sea Cadet Corps. [92968]

Mr. Ingram: The professional personnel associated with the Sea Cadet Corps are the Royal Navy and Civil Service personnel employed nationally in support of the Corps, and employees of the Sea Cadet Association (SCA) which is the fund raising charity to which each Sea Cadet Unit is affiliated. There are 21 RN and Civil Service personnel and 204 full and part-time employees of the SCA.

The voluntary personnel associated with the Corps are the uniformed and civilian instructors that provide the training at the individual Sea Cadet Units. There are 3,247 uniformed instructors and 1,562 civilian instructors.

Sennybridge Range

Mr. McNamara: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many soldiers from what regiments have been (a) killed and (b) injured at the Sennybridge Range in each year since 1990; what safety recommendations were made by the Special Investigation Branch and the Health and Safety Executive on each occasion; and what steps he has taken to ensure these were acted upon. [92783]

Dr. Moonie: The number of soldiers killed at the Sennybridge Range since 1990 and their regiments is as follows:

RegimentYearNumber of deaths
Royal Regiment of Wales19911
Cheshire Regiment19921
Royal Green Jackets19931
Queen's Gurkha Engineers19951
Grenadier Guards19981

A number of agencies may be involved in the investigation of range incidents resulting in death or injury including the Royal Military Police Special Investigation Branch (RMP SIB) and Land Accident Investigation Team (LAIT), who are responsible for liaising with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) as required. Further work is required to identify the number of injuries and any resulting safety recommendations, and I will write to my hon. Friend on these points and a copy of my letter will be placed in the Library of the House.

Although the RMP SIB would normally attend the scene of a range incident resulting in death or serious injury, they would only carry out an investigation if a criminal offence or negligence is suspected and, in the case of a death, if responsibility for the investigation was

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ceded by the civilian police. It is not, however, within the remit of RMP SIB to make recommendations about matters of range safety.

Service Chaplains

Sandra Gidley: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the cost of the chaplaincy was in each of the three services in the last 12 months, broken down by (a) uniformed and (b) civilian chaplains. [92676]

Dr. Moonie : I will write to the hon. Member and a copy of my letter will be placed in the Library of the House.

Suez Medal

Mr. Martlew: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence when he expects the sub-committee chaired by General Lord Guthrie of Craigiebank to report regarding the issue of a Suez Canal Zone medal; and if he will make a statement. [93632]

Dr. Moonie: I refer my hon. Friend to the answer I gave on 13 January 2003, Official Report, column 404W to the hon. Member for Mid-Dorset and North Poole (Mrs. Brooke).


Dr. Julian Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what his (a) current and (b) expected warship orders are for the Royal Navy by 2015; and what their scheduled completion dates are. [92894]

Mr. Ingram: The United Kingdom has the largest programme of new warship building for decades.

Current warship orders are for:

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Detailed ordering plans for the period up to 2015 remain subject to review in the normal way. However, future planned orders include:

A formal announcement of the placing of these orders will be made at the appropriate time.