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24 Apr 2006 : Column 849W—continued

Queen's Flight

Mr. Andrew Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the cost was of overnight accommodation for the crew of a BAe146 of The Queen's Flight at Sharm
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el Sheikh in December 2004; for how many crew and for how many nights such accommodation was required; and which Department met the cost. [64807]

John Reid: Ministerial use of 32 (TR) Squadron is charged at an hourly rate calculated on an annual basis. This hourly rate includes a component covering aircrew accommodation, which is not recovered separately. The overall costs of the trip were included in the annual list of Cabinet Ministers' visits overseas for 2004–05 published in July 2005, a copy of which is in the Library of the House. The Prime Minister's Office met the costs. Five crew members remained at Sharm el Sheikh for eight nights.

Royal Irish Regiment

Andrew Mackinlay: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the projected numbers of the bands of the Royal Irish Regiment are over the next five years; and if he will make a statement on the future of military music in Northern Ireland. [64189]

Mr. Ingram [holding answer 18 April 2006]: Pursuant to my written ministerial statement on 9 March 2006, Official Report, column 69WS, the band of the Royal Irish Regiment will be disbanded by 1 April 2008. We will continue to provide military music in Northern Ireland via the Northern Ireland Territorial Army Band which will be renamed The Royal Irish Regiment Band (TA).

Royal Ordnance Chorley

Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what role the Minister of State for Defence (a) has played and (b) is playing in deciding the future of Royal Ordnance Chorley; [63178]

(2) what role each Minister in his Department has played in the run down of (a) Royal Ordnance Chorley and (b) Royal Ordnance Bridgwater. [63175]

Mr. Ingram: Defence Ministers have played no direct role in decisions taken by BAES Land Systems concerning the future of their sites at Chorley and Bridgwater.

Minister for Defence Procurement did, however, endorse the signing of the Partnering Principles between MOD and BAES (LS) in October, which informed the company of MOD's long term capability requirement as set out in the Defence Industrial Strategy.


Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many times Royal Navy submarines have docked at Southampton in each of the last five years. [64779]

Mr. Ingram: No Royal Navy submarines have docked at Southampton in the last five years.

Nick Harvey: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what estimate he has made of the cost of upgrading and extending the life-cycle of Vanguard class submarines to accommodate Trident II D5 (A) missiles. [64246]

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John Reid: Initial preparatory work is being undertaken by officials on possible options for the future of the UK's nuclear deterrent. However, Ministers have not yet begun to consider the position on this issue in any detail and it would be inappropriate to speculate on the range of options that might be available and their potential costs.

The term Trident II D5 (A) is not recognised by either the Ministry of Defence or the US Department of Defence as a current variant of the Trident D5 missiles.

Trident Replacement

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what his strategy is for ensuring the fullest possible debate on the replacement for Trident; and if he will make a statement. [64041]

John Reid: I refer the hon. Member to the answer that I gave previously to the hon. Member for Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey (Danny Alexander) on 7 December 2005, Official Report, column 1352–53.

Since then, the House of Commons Defence Committee has published a detailed memorandum, which was provided by my Department, and the issue has been raised on other occasions in the House of Commons. But Ministers have not yet engaged in this issue in any detail and it therefore remains the case that it is too early to say what further formal or informal procedures might be used to underpin future decision making by the Government in this area.


Delivery Unit

Norman Baker: To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster on what Government (a) top delivery and reform priorities and (b) targets the Delivery Unit is focusing. [63160]

Mr. Jim Murphy: The Prime Minister's Delivery Unit (PMDU) is focusing on providing support to civil service departments on aspects of delivery of:

as well as leading a programme of departmental reviews designed to improve departments' performance in pursuing their current missions and tackling future challenges.

The PMDU is also focusing on monitoring and providing challenge and support to the following public service agreement (PSA) targets arising from SR04. These include:

Department of Health

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Department for Education and Skills

Home Office

The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister

The unit also monitors a number of targets from the previous spending review including:

All PSA targets are monitored either by HMT or PMDU. PMDU regularly reviews its contribution to target areas in conjunction with HMT and No. 10, and would normally continue to be involved in workstreams until the target was met or where it could be confident that the target was on target to be met.



Grant Shapps: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what representations he has made to the military government of Burma on behalf of political prisoners (a) U Saw Naing Naing and (b) U Soe Han, who are incarcerated in that country. [64420]

Ian Pearson: I have been asked to reply.

The UK and EU have repeatedly called for the release of all political prisoners in Burma. Our Embassy in Rangoon monitors the general human rights situation in Burma, including the arrest and detention of political prisoners. We have not made any specific representations on behalf of U Saw Naing Naing or USoe Han.

Community Service Orders

David T.C. Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many offenders who have been handed community service orders by the court have subsequently failed the conditions of their order in each of the past 10 years for which figures are available. [64385]

Fiona Mactaggart: Community service orders were renamed community punishment orders from April 2001. They also formed one element of the combination order, renamed community punishment and rehabilitation order from the same date. For offences
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committed since 4 April 2005, unpaid work has been imposed as a community order with an unpaid work requirement.

The readily available information (covering the years 1994 and 1999 to 2004) is published in Table 4.13 of 'Sentencing Statistics 2004, England and Wales' (Home Office Statistical Bulletin No 15/05), a copy of which is in the Library.

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