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Mr. Ben Chapman: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will make a statement on the establishment of direct air links from the UK to Ercan airport in the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus. 
Charlotte Atkins: After statements of support made earlier this year from both the United Nations and the European Union to end the isolation of Turkish Cypriots, the Government are looking at measures they might be able to take and the possibility of direct air services between the UK and the northern part of Cyprus is one of the options being considered.
Mr. Darling: Under the Railways and Transport Safety Act 2003, it is the responsibility of the Office of Rail Regulation to appoint a Chief Executive having consulted the Secretary of State. In October the Office appointed Keith Webb as Chief Executive, for a period of at least nine months and up to a year by agreement. The Office plans to start the process of recruiting a successor in the new year.
Mr. McNulty: The personal security of passengers is the responsibility of the rail industry. Re-franchising provides an opportunity for Government to buy improvements were appropriate to station and train environments, CCTV, staffing and other personal security issues. For example the recently awarded Greater Anglia franchise requires the franchisee to gain Secure Station accreditation at its worst stations and Secured Car Park awards at its worst station car parks. Key Performance Indicators (KPI) can also be built into franchise agreements in relation to station and car park security, station environment and the on train environment. If the train operator falls below a set benchmark enforcement action can be taken.
Industry led initiatives include Network Rail youth education programmes on trespass and graffiti, Special Constables and TravelSafe Officers sponsored by train operating companies. The British Transport Police is a specialist police force for the railways, largely funded by the rail industry but also receiving grants from Government for specific projects. The force has specialist skills which benefit the travelling public, including improving the safety of passengers and tackling antisocial behaviour.
Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when he expects to report the Rail Safety and Standards Board findings on the health and safety effects on rail passengers of crowding and standing on trains. 
The Rail Safety and Standards Board (RSSB) have informed me that they expect to publish the results from the first phase of their research project examining the health and safety effects of crowding in January 2005.
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Richard Ottaway: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport which recreational boating interests were consulted on the amendments to the original draft of the Merchant Shipping (Vessel Traffic Monitoring and Reporting Requirements) Regulations 2004. 
Mr. Jamieson: Once the original draft of the Merchant Shipping (Vessel Traffic Monitoring and Reporting Requirements) Regulations 2004 had been finalised, a consultation exercise took place. Consultees for recreational boating interests included:
Mrs. Shephard: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what the timetable is for the consultation by a regional transport body on the development of the dualling schemes for the (a) A47 and (b) A11 in Norfolk and Suffolk; 
Charlotte Atkins: The timetable and detailed arrangements for the submission of advice to the Department from the region on the prioritisation of these schemes will be announced in due course and will be subject to the outcome of the current consultation about long term funding guidelines. Copies of the consultation document "Devolving decision making: A consultation on regional funding allocations' are available in the House Libraries.
Under the proposals in the document, the East of England Regional Assembly and the East of England Regional Development Agency would advise on the relative priority of these schemes alongside other transport proposals in the region and on the basis of long term regional funding guidelines. These bodies would be expected to consult widely within the region, including with local transport authorities, in framing their advice on priorities.
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) whether the Strategic Rail Authority has determined
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its response to the request from South West Trains regarding a temporary derogation to allow implementation of the 12 December timetable; 
Mr. Darling: The Strategic Rail Authority (SRA) has completed its consultation concerning proposed Passenger Service Requirement (PSR) changes and anticipates the imminent issue of a temporary derogation to South West Trains in advance of 12 December 2004 to allow implementation of the revised timetable from that date. The SRA will not normally grant temporary derogations from the Passenger Service Requirement for more than the period of operation of two consecutive timetables (timetables usually cover a period of six months). Any variation to the PSR in excess of this time would be expected to be contractualised through a formal change to the PSR, in accordance with the procedures specified in the Directions and Guidance issued to the SRA.
(2) how many appeals were made by civil servants to the Civil Service Commissioners regarding special advisers in his Department between 31 March 2003 and 31 March 2004; and when each appeal was lodged. 
Mr. Jamieson: The DVLA consultation document on driver licensing and vehicle registration contains a range of proposals, including the possibility of an annual charge for maintaining the vehicle register, which also applies to those vehicles that have registered with a statutory off road notification. At this stage, no decision has yet been taken on whether a fee will be introduced and whether or what exemptions will apply.
The consultation period only ended on 8 November and DVLA have received hundreds of responses to this. DVLA is currently in the process of evaluating these and the conclusions and a report have to go to HM Treasury and Ministers, there will then be a further consultation period before introduction of any new fee structure. DVLA is also preparing a summary of the findings from the consultation document, for those who provided a response.
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