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27 Jun 2006 : Column 256W

Territorial Army

Jim Sheridan: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many people (a) joined and (b) resigned from the Territorial Army in Scotland in 2005. [62480]

Mr. Evennett: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many people in the London borough of Bexley serve in the Territorial Army. [78964]

Mr. Watson: The information is not held centrally in the format requested. Official strength figures for the Territorial Army (TA) are collated for the United Kingdom and not its constituent nations, counties or towns. As at 1 May 2006, the total strength of the TA was 37,270.

Training (Supervisory Care)

Mrs. Humble: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the principal components are of the new policy on the provision of supervisory care in phase one and two training establishments introduced in March 2006; and if he will place in the Library a copy of the supervisory care directive applicable to (a) Deepcut barracks and (b) Catterick barracks. [79844]

Mr. Watson: The new Supervisory Care Policy for Defence Individual Training Establishments was published as a Defence Information Notice in March 2006 (2006DIN06-049). The policy mandates the determination of a Supervisory Care Directive, underpinned by a Unit Commander's Risk Assessment. The Supervisory Care Directive clearly articulates a Unit Commander's commitment to the care of trainees. It highlights areas where detailed care responsibilities are required, and cross-refers to other policies where appropriate. The Unit Commander's Risk Assessment takes account of the particular factors of the environment, the trainee population and the type of training being undertaken at each training establishment. The new policy mandates that minimum levels of supervision are determined from the Unit Commander's Risk Assessment and must be articulated against the relevant serials during the working day, out of hours, weekend and leave periods. Implementation of the new Supervisory Care Policy is subject to evaluation by the MOD HQ Defence Individual Training Capability (DITC) team in order to establish whether relevant policies have been correctly interpreted and successfully implemented.

The Risk Assessment for Deepcut has been completed and a copy of its Supervisory Care Directive will be placed in the Library of the House. Work on the more complex directive for Catterick is not yet finalised and I anticipate that it will be available for placement in the Library of the House in the coming weeks. I will write to my hon. Friend as soon as that work is complete.

Mrs. Humble: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what measures he plans to take to monitor the adoption and dissemination of a supervisory care
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directive in each unit of the Army; by what means he will ensure the minimum standards to be reached in drawing up a directive; what measures he plans to take to correct any omissions and flaws; and what his target is for compliance across the training estate. [79846]

Mr. Watson: Instructions for the implementation of the Supervisory Care Policy for Defence Individual Training Establishments were issued in March 2006. Under this policy the Unit Commander of every training establishment is required to publish a Supervisory Care Directive, which they are to review annually. This Directive is underpinned by the Unit Commander's Risk Assessment which determines the minimum acceptable levels of supervision based on a number of local factors.

The Directorate of Individual Training Capability team conducts a continuing programme of evaluation of Army training establishments looking at policy implementation to establish whether correct and consistent outcomes are being achieved.

Veterans Day

Mr. Russell Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what funding has been made available by his Department for events in celebration of Veterans Day; and how this funding has been allocated. [76285]

Mr. Watson: The Ministry of Defence has made available around £130,000 to support Veterans Day events around the United Kingdom, in addition to the funding for the national event in London. The money has been allocated to bids which best meet the objectives of publicly promoting the Veterans Day messages. The messages include: that veterans have made and continue to make a major contribution to our nation; that veterans can be any age; that the veterans' community is diverse; and that there is support and advice available to veterans from both official and voluntary sources.


Aviation (Carbon Generation)

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will meet the Chancellor of the Exchequer to discuss alternative taxation to discourage carbon generation by the aviation industry; and what his policy is on such taxation. [80386]

Gillian Merron: Tax policy is a matter for Her Majesty's Treasury. The Chancellor keeps all taxation policy under review. Any changes are announced in the context of his Budget statement after giving consideration to all relevant environmental, social and economic factors.

Biofuel Production

Anne Snelgrove: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what funding his Department has allocated to encourage biofuel production in the UK in 2006-07. [79963]

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Dr. Ladyman: The Government are committed to promoting the use of biofuels for road transport as part of our wider programme to combat climate change. The Government's main support is currently in the form of a 20 pence per litre fuel duty incentive, which has stimulated a growing market in the UK, including new UK production facilities.

The Renewable Transport Fuels Obligation (RTFO), which we announced last year, will provide significant further support to this industry by ensuring a stable, long-term market for biofuels in the UK. It should mean that by 2010, sales of biofuel will amount to over 2 billion litres, or around 5 per cent. of total petrol and diesel sales. A number of firms have reacted very positively to our announcement and are planning significant investment in UK biofuel production capacity.

In addition to the RTFO the Chancellor has announced that, subject to European Union State Aid approval, the Government will introduce a 100 per cent. first year capital allowance for the cleanest biofuels production facilities. This should help support innovation and help develop the lowest-carbon biofuels production methods.

Cargo Transfers

Mark Lazarowicz: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport pursuant to the answer of 22 March 2006, Official Report, column 377W, on cargo transfers, whether any aspect of ship-to-ship transfers of oil and other chemicals within harbour authority areas requires an order under the Harbours Act 1964. [80427]

Dr. Ladyman: It is for individual harbour authorities to determine whether they require a Harbour Revision Order (HRO) to gain powers to conduct operations within their harbours. We have received no applications for an HRO from an English or Welsh harbour authority specifically to enable ship to ship transfers of oil or other chemicals. In the case of harbours in Scotland applications would be made to the Scottish Executive.

Crash Helmets

Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many motor cyclists' lives he estimates were saved in each of the last 10 years by their crash helmets. [80204]

Dr. Ladyman: On the basis of four months' experience of compulsory helmet wearing in 1973, it was estimated that around 200 fatal and serious casualties would be saved per annum. Because helmet wearing is now so long established in the UK, it is no longer possible to calculate further effects on road safety: there is no non-helmet wearing group with which to compare.

However, US researchers are able to compare helmeted and unhelmeted riders as some states do not have helmet laws. Comparisons have concluded that the use of a safety helmet is the single critical factor in the prevention and reduction of head injury, with unhelmeted riders being 2.4 times as likely to sustain head injuries as helmeted riders.

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Departmental Websites

Charles Hendry: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many websites there are within his responsibilities; and what the total cost of maintaining such websites was in the last year for which figures are available. [79068]

Gillian Merron: The Department for Transport maintains 37 public-facing websites, including those run by our Executive agencies.

The cost of hosting, maintenance and development (excluding staff costs) of the Department for Transport websites is as follows:

Website Cost for 2005-06 (£)






















Highways Agency research compendium site


Highways Traffic Map








(3)DSA website

(3)DSA website

(3)DSA website

(3)DSA website








(1) Approximately.
(2) This is the combined figure for all DSA websites.
(3) See note 2.
(4 )Not available (costs integrated with IT partners solution)


Andrew Mackinlay: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will estimate how many bottles of water were dispensed to motorists who were trapped on the
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M25 on 9 June following the incident in the vicinity of junctions eight to 10 and the subsequent closure of the motorway; and if he will make a statement. [79312]

Dr. Ladyman: Highways Agency Traffic Officers and Surrey police mounted a joint operation, in association with Surrey county council Emergency Planning Services, to provide welfare to motorists caught in queues on the M25 on 9 June. Traffic officers and the police distributed approximately 1,500 0.5 litre bottles of water to motorists, 600 of which were flown in by police helicopter.

Andrew Mackinlay: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what the total duration in hours was of closures of the M25 (a) clockwise and (b) anti-clockwise in each of the past six months; and if he will make a statement. [79313]

Dr. Ladyman: Closures are implemented on the M25 for either planned works or in response to an incident. Closures are only implemented if they are necessary to secure the safety of the travelling public, road workers or those responding to incidents. Wherever possible closures are managed to minimise disruption to the travelling public with all planned closures being undertaken at night. The following tables show the number of planned and incident-related closures on the M25 during the last six months.

Planned works (night time)
Clockwise Anti-clockwise
Number Time (hours) Number Total time (hours)




































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