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Dr. Ladyman: At current cycle helmet wearing rates, making them compulsory would cause enforcement difficulties and without greater public acceptance could have an adverse effect on the levels of cycling. The Department believes that it is sensible for cyclists, and especially children, to protect themselves by wearing a cycle helmet, and we encourage them to do so. A review commissioned by the Department concluded that overall there is evidence that bicycle helmets can be effective at reducing the incidence and severity of head, brain and upper facial injuries and that they can be effective in reducing injury for users of all ages, though particularly for children. The report also concludes that there is evidence that compulsory helmet wearing may discourage some people from cycling, leading to decreased bicycle use.
Chris Grayling: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what discussions he has held about the potential sale of surplus regional Eurostar rolling stock to the Société Nationale des Chemins de Fer for use on domestic French rail services. 
Mr. Tom Harris: The trains are owned by Eurostar UK Ltd (EUKL), but EUKL requires the consent of the Secretary of State for Transport before transferring them to a third party. EUKL sought consent in February to a proposal to lease the trains to SNCF and the Department confirmed in March that consent had been given. I expect the transfer to be completed shortly.
Dr. Ladyman: The number of fatal casualties as a result of personal injury road accidents that were reported to the police and occurred on motorway hard shoulders or lay-bys in England was (a) four in year 2004 and (b) 14 in 2005.
Mr. Tom Harris: As set out in both the transport and rail White Papers, the Government are keen to devolve greater decision making to local and regional bodies. Local decision making can only be effective and efficient where the body making the decision is exposed to the financial implications of that decision.
The published DfT guidance note The new system for the role of English PTEs in the rail franchising process sets out how PTEs can procure changes to local rail services in their areas without being co-signatories to franchise agreements. Centro PTE is seeking to make an economic case for retaining co-signatory status in relation to the West Midlands franchise. In order to establish the costs of such status more clearly, a view will be sought on the cost implications from the successful bidder for the franchise prior to conclusion of the franchise agreement.
As Registrar General for England and Wales, I have been asked to reply to your recent Parliamentary Questions concerning the number of deaths of British nationals overseas were registered in the UK in each year since 1997 (92845, 92846).
There is no provision for the registration in this country of births, deaths or marriages of British nationals abroad. However, these events may be registered at HM Consuls and High Commissions and by HM Forces registering officers abroad, and copies of these registrations are deposited with my Office. Such registration is not compulsory, nor does the facility exist in every country, but the number of returns of deaths registered for the years 1997 to 2005 were as follows:
Ed Balls: The Government concluded that a requirement for an enhanced business review, in line with the requirements of the European accounts modernisation directive, is preferable to a requirement for a statutory operating and financial review for quoted companies. This is consistent with the Governments approach to company law reform of simplifying company law, reducing the regulatory burden on business and promoting effective shareholder engagement. The enhanced business review will meet key narrative reporting requirements and preserve the appropriate financial and other key reporting requirements of the OFR, specifically including information relating to employee and environmental issues, where these are relevant to an understanding of the business, while imposing considerably less cost than the operating and financial review. The new reporting regime demonstrates the Governments ongoing commitment to strategic forward-looking narrative reporting.
John Healey: The Government believes in open and fair competitive markets. To help deliver that it has reformed the competition framework through the Competition Act 1998 and the Enterprise Act 2002. These Acts made significant improvements to the competition framework including making the Competition Commission and the Office of Fair Trading independent, introducing criminal sanctions for dishonest involvement in serious, organised cartels, and giving the OFT a proactive role to investigate any markets it considers may not be working well for consumers, but where competition or consumer regulation enforcement action dc not appear, immediately, to be the appropriate response.
Jo Swinson: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many confirmed security breaches of databases controlled by his Department occurred in each of the last five years; whether the breach resulted from internal or external sources in each case; how many records were compromised on each occasion; and what estimate was made of the total number of records accessible to the individuals concerned. 
Dawn Primarolo: HM Revenue and Customs sent out 441,000 R40 forms in 2005-06. The total cost of the envelopes to send the forms is estimated at £5,750.64. The total cost of the reply envelopes contained with the forms is estimated at £4,652.55.
Mr. Hunt: To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer what proportion of (a) staff and (b) new staff employed since April 2005 in (i) his Department and (ii) each of the agencies for which he has responsibility is recorded as disabled. 
John Healey: The number of staff recorded as disabled, including joiners and leavers since 2003, is published on the Cabinet Office website: http://civilservice.gov.uk/management/statistics/reports/index.asp. The number of leavers and joiners recorded as disabled prior to 2003 is as follows:
|Percentage of total|
David Simpson: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer pursuant to the answer of 28 June 2006, Official Report, column 414W, on sickness absence, how many staff in his Department have had (a) more than two and (b) five or more periods of sickness of less than five days in two or more of the years for which he has provided figures. 
|Spells of sickness absence|
|(a) Two, three or four spells||(b) Five or more spells|
Mr. Meacher: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the level was of average real personal disposable income each year since 1976; and what the year on year percentage increase was in that period. 
As National Statistician, I have been asked to reply to your Parliamentary Question on what the level of average real personal disposable income was in each year since 1976; and what the year on year percentage increase was in that period. (92797)
The information requested is shown in the table below. Further data are available from table 2.4 (Income, product and spending per head) in Economic Trends which is available at the following address: http://www.statistics.gov.uk/StatBase/Product.asp?vlnk=308&Pos=&ColRank=l&Rank=422
We have calculated average real disposable income as real disposable income per head. The population figure used to derive this is the total resident population for the United Kingdom.
The estimates for real household disposable income is the national accounts series for the combined household and non-profit institutions serving households (NPISH) sectors. Estimates for households alone are not available. NPISHs are legal entities which are principally engaged in the production of non-market services for households and whose main resources are voluntary contributions by households. For example,
charities; relief and aid organisations; educational establishments; trade unions; professional associations, political parties and religious organisations, and sports clubs and associations.
|Average real disposable income per head (£)||Percentage change in average real disposable income per head|
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