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Mr. Douglas Alexander [holding answer 20 October 2005]: The purpose of my right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary's visit to the United States was to have extended working discussions with US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice on the full range of issues facing the UK and US; to promote the UK agenda to a southern US audience; and to visit a historically troubled area that has turned itself around. He spent Friday 21 October and the weekend in Alabama and at either end of the visit stopped off in Washington.
Mr. Douglas Alexander [holding answer 20 October 2005]: My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary spent Friday 21 October and the weekend in Alabama at the invitation of the US Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, visiting a historically troubled area that has turned itself around. The programme provided them with the opportunity to have extended working discussions on the full range of issues facing the UK and US, as well as to promote the UK agenda to a southern US audience. At either end of the visit the Foreign Secretary stopped off in Washington.
The Foreign Secretary gave a foreign policy speech at the Blackburn Institute, and met victims of Hurricane Katrina at a relief camp set up in Alabama, as well as those who helped in the hurricane relief effort. He also visited a Civil Rights institute, attended a dedication event for the victims of a bombing at a local Baptist Church, attended a local football game and toured an elementary school and a medical institute.
Mr. Iain Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what assessment she has made of the potential economic benefits to the North East arising from London hosting the 2012 Olympics. 
The Games will offer companies the opportunity to compete for billions of pounds worth of contracts, provide the opportunity to bid for preparation camps and provide a welcome boost to the tourism industry. One North East will continue to work closely with my Department and the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games to ensure they are well placed to benefit fully from these opportunities.
Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what steps her Department plans to take to ensure that businesses situated in all parts of the United Kingdom are able to tender for contracts to supply goods and services in respect of the London Olympics 2012. 
Mr. Caborn: All kinds of businesses, large and small, will be needed to deliver the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Tendering opportunities will be publicised by the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) when it is established, and the London Organising Committee for the Olympic Games (LOCOG). Until then, the London Development Agency (LDA) and Transport for London (TfL) will invite tenders for all contracts in relation to the construction or transport requirements of the Olympic Park via the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU). These opportunities will be open to businesses across the whole of the UK.
Mr. Lammy: If a DCMS employee or their line manager identifies that they may have a literacy or numeracy skills gap, the DCMS Learning and Development team can provide advice and support. If appropriate, the Department can arrange for the employee to be screened to identify the nature and extent of their learning needs. If a literacy or numeracy need is identified, the Department will then arrange and fund appropriate training and sitting of national tests.
Mike Penning: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what recent representations she has received from charities regarding the National Lottery Bill; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Caborn: I have not received any representations from charities about the National Lottery Bill. However my officials have had regular discussions on a variety of topics including Bill provisions with umbrella bodies such as the National Council for Voluntary Organisations. In addition I met senior representatives of the voluntary and community sector on 14 July to discuss their views on the Bill.
Mr. Caborn: The Government, along with Sport England and the national governing bodies for Football, Cricket, Tennis, Rugby Union and Rugby League, are continuing to discuss and examine options on how most effectively to deliver the National Sports Foundation. A further announcement will be made in due course.
Robert Key: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what assessment she has made of the effects on the construction of the Stonehenge Visitors Centre on the delay of constructing the A303 improvements. 
Mr. Lammy: The dependencies between the improvements to the A303 and the proposed Stonehenge Visitors' Centre will be taken into account in the review of options for the road scheme. The review is essential given the escalating costs of the published road improvement scheme since the Planning Inquiry last year. We plan to announce the terms of reference and arrangements for the review later this autumn.
James Purnell [holding answer 21 October 2005]: My Department works actively to promote both domestic and inbound tourism in England. At a national level, marketing and other work to promote tourism in England is overseen by the England Marketing Advisory Board, which advises on the use of grant in aid funding from my Department to VisitBritain for that purpose. Such funding will total £12.9 million this year, and is included in VisitBritain's total allocation of £49.05 million.
I have informed VisitBritain, and the Advisory Board, that my priority for tourism in England is EnglandNet, which will shortly be fully operational as a single marketing and information platform for internet users. The EnglandNet system allows users in the UK and overseas to access destination information at national, regional and local levels, and acts as a portal to the booking facilities offered by approved commercial operators. It has the full support of the Regional Development Agencies.
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With the involvement of the Advisory Board, VisitBritain runs a number of high profile, England-specific marketing campaigns each year. Recent campaigns have included Waterside England and Outdoor England. These campaigns are taken forward within Great Britain to promote visits to England and, following VisitBritain's recent re-organisation of its overseas activities, in the Irish, French, German, and Dutch markets.
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the cost to his Department of the leasing or hiring helicopters and fixed wing aircraft from
25 Oct 2005 : Column 246W
commercial contractors has been in the 200506 financial year; from which companies these aircraft are sourced; how many have been sourced in this financial year; whether the contracts include flight crew and aircaft maintenance costs; where these aircraft are based; and what duties they perform. 
Mr. Ingram [holding answer 17 October 2005]: The cost to the Ministry of Defence of leasing or hiring helicopters and fixed wing aircraft is likely to be in the region of £74 million in 200506. The information requested is shown in the following table.
The data shown in this table has been gathered from centrally held records. A number of areas within the Department hire or lease aircraft but details of these contracts are not held centrally and could be supplied only at disproportionate costs.
|Company supplying service||Aircraft Type and Number and contracted hours||Aircrew / Maintenance Status||Location||Description of Task||Notes|
|FB Heliservices Ltd., Grove House, Lutyens Close, Chineham Court, Basingstoke, RG24 8AG||3 x Bell 212HP AH Mkl 1200 flying hours per year||Military Aircrew Maintenance costs, scheduled and unscheduled, are included in the lease price||Belize||Helicopter support to the British Army Training Support Unit Belize (BATSUB)Provision of Forward AeroMedical Evacuation (FAME) in support of jungle training in Belize. Additional tasks include movement of internal and external freight, personnel movement, winching and abseiling operations.|
|FB Heliservices Ltd.||3 x Bell 212HP AH Mkl 1200 flying hours per year||Military Aircrew Maintenance costs, scheduled and unscheduled, are included in the lease price||Brunei||Helicopter Support to the Brunei GarrisonProvision of Forward AeroMedical Evacuation (FAME) in support of jungle training in Brunei. Additional tasks include movement of internal and external freight, personnel movement, winching and abseiling operations.|
|FB Heliservices Ltd.||L x Bel! 212HP AH Mkl Tasked as required. Minimum 225 flying hours per year.||Military students, Civil Instructors provided under the contract Maintenance costs, scheduled and unscheduled, are included in the lease price||Middle Wallop||Provision of Pilot Training in support of 25 FLT AAC Belize and 7 FLT AAC Brunei.||Costs also include the provision of 50 simulator hours in the USA annually. Aircraft is provided at minimal profit to company who are able to use it for third party revenue.|
|FB Heliservices Ltd.||4 x Bell 412EP (Griffin HAR Mk2) 1600 flying hours per year||Military Aircrew Maintenance costs, scheduled and unscheduled, are included in the lease price||Cyprus||Helicopter Support to British Forces Cyprus (BFC) and the Sovereign Base Areas Administration (SBAA)The aircraft provide Search and Rescue cover primarily for Fast Jet flying. Additional tasks include movement of internal and external freight, personnel movement, winching operations, water drop for firefighting|
|Contract with FBS Grove House, Lutyens Close, Chineham Court, Basingstoke, RG24 8AG||37 x Eurocopter AS350BB Single Squirrel 11 x Bell 412EP (Griffin HT Mkl) 9 x Griffins per day (7615 hrs/year) and 32 x Squirrels per day (28690 hrs/year)||The contract includes a number of support services, flight simulators and the provision of some flying instructors. Military students, military/civil instructors||Shawbury, Valley and Middle Wallop||Single/Multi-Engine Basic/Advanced Rotary Wing flying training|
|British International, Penzance Heliport.||2 x Eurocopter AS365N2 Dauphin 1500 flying hours per year||Civil Aircrew provided under the contract Maintenance costs, scheduled and unscheduled, are included in the lease price||Plymouth City Airport||Used to convey sea riding staff and equipment to and from warships primarily involved in Flag Officer Sea Training exercises on the south coast. Also used for ships aviation training, equipment calibrations and Flight Deck Training Unit activities at RNAS Culdrose. There is provision in the contract for miscellaneous airborne trials and other support tasks as well as the provision of assistance to casualty evacuation.||Cost also includes provision of further 200 flying hours capability on up to 2 civil registered S-61 helicopters based at Penzance Heliport. Used in support of Joint Maritime Courses in waters around Scotland and embarkations throughout the UK.|
|PremiAir Ltd. Hangar Lane, Denham Aerodrome, Uxbridge, Middlesex UB9 5DF||3 x Eurocopter AS355F1 Twin Squirrels 900hrs flying hours per year||Military Aircrew Maintenance costs, scheduled and unscheduled, are included in the lease price||Northolt||Military Communications|
|F.R. Aviation Bournemouth Int. Airport, Christchurch, Dorset BN23 6NE||12 x Falcon DA-20||Civil Aircrew Maintenance costs, scheduled and unscheduled, are included in the lease price||RN/ RAF Partnering Arrangement||Medium speed Electronic Warfare, Threat Simulation, Silent Target and Target Towing Service for both RN and RAF. 6 x Falcon DA-20 based at Bournemouth International Airport. 6 x Falcon DA-20 based at Durham and Tees Valley Airport. Used to provide a variety of training for ships and aircraft both in the UK and internationally, in support of national and NATO training exercises.|
|SERCO Defence Aerospace, Enterprise House, 11 Bartley Wood Business Park, Bartley Way, Hook, Hants RG27 9XB||Raytheon Beech King Air 200 to meet requirement of 6281 flying hours per year||Military crew Maintenance costs, scheduled and unscheduled, are included in the contract price||Cranwell||Station Support Services and aircraft for Flying Training|
|VT Aerospace, Bournemouth Int. Airport, Christchurch, Dorset BH23 6BF||94 Grob Tutor||Mil Trainers Maintenance costs, scheduled and unscheduled, are included in the contract price||Wyton, Colerne, Glasgow, Benson, Boscombe, Church Fenton, Cosford, Cranwell, Leeming, Leuchars, St. Athan, Woodvale||Aircraft to facilitate Elementary flying training for the RAF, Air Experience flying for cadets, flying for University Air Squadrons plus some flying for direct entrant officers.|
|Babcock, Pembroke House, Pegasus Business Park, Herald Way, Castle Donnington, Derby DE74 2TZ||24 Firefly||Mix of contractor and mil instructors. Contractor responsible for all support & maintenance costs||Barkston Heath, Cranwell, Middle Wallop||Elementary flying training for Army and Royal Navy. Ongoing training programme for RAF concentrating on crew cooperation, crew resource management and airways flying of multi engine pilots.|
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