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Mr. Ingram: The Ministry of Defence and its rail freight contractor, English, Welsh and Scottish (EWS) Railway Ltd, has a range of measures in place to protect MOD-owned ammunition when it is being transported by rail within the UK.
All trains carrying MOD ammunition are notified to the British Transport Police, including their itinerary and anticipated stops. The progress of each train is closely monitored using a number of methods, including satellite tracking by the EWS Railway Control Room. When consignments of military explosives are planned to be held or stored on the contractor's property for a period exceeding 48 hours, the contractor is responsible for providing comprehensive security at that location and for notifying the appropriate civil police authority. When a stop is unplanned, the contractor is required to provide adequate security arrangements at the location and inform MOD.
Derek Twigg: I have not had any discussion with the Ministry of Defence Police Federation about the strength of the force at Colchester. The Department is currently considering the size of the MOD police complement at Colchester and the chief constable will consult with the Ministry of Defence Police Federation in the usual way before any final decision is reached.
Des Browne: As the White Paper we published on 4 December makes clear, even with a life extension, our existing Vanguard boats will leave service from the early 2020s. Unless we participate in the life extension programme for our existing Trident D5 missiles, it will not be possible to retain the missiles in service much beyond 2020, except at much greater cost and technical risk.
22. Alan Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what technical steps need to be taken by United States personnel prior to the UK being able to fire a Trident missile at an independently identified target. 
Des Browne: I regularly discuss with my NATO counterparts aspects of the International Security Assistance Force mission in Afghanistan. Military advice on the force and capabilities required to achieve the ISAF mission is provided by the Supreme Allied Commander Europe. I and my ministerial colleagues in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the Department for International Development take every opportunity to reinforce the need for all of us to live up to the collective commitment made to Afghanistan in military, financial and political terms.
Derek Twigg: All three services undertake numerous and varied initiatives, both at national and local level, aimed at sustaining and increasing the level of recruitment to the armed forces. Included amongst the many current initiatives are:
The use of multi-media advertising campaigns;
Services recruiting teams' attendance at schools, careers fairs and graduate recruitment seminars, road shows, exhibitions, youth clubs and organisations;
Specialist teams to attract doctors, dentists, nurses, lawyers and padres by promoting service careers within specialist recruitment shows and through professional bodies;
Work experience placements within service establishments;
Personal development courses and look at life courses for young people who express an interest in the armed forces;
Taster day visits to HM ships and service establishments;
A dedicated careers website for each of the services complete with a dedicated information support call centre;
An Army on-line recruiting office, with plans for this to be replicated by the other services;
Specialist ethnic minority recruiting and diversity action teams aimed at promoting armed forces careers amongst the UK's ethnic minority and faith communities;
A partnership with Jobcentre Plus, making use of its network (totalling in excess of 1,100) of local outlets.
Retention measures such as commitment bonuses, re-engagement packages, financial retention initiatives and initiatives to improve work/life balance and working conditions at the front line, continue to be used with the aim of discouraging outflow.
Our aim is to maintain stable levels of retention through policies that genuinely reflect the priorities of our people and their families whilst optimising their operational effectiveness. For example, the terms and conditions of service in the armed forces are continually being reviewed to ensure that they are appropriate to the requirements and that entitlements are best targeted to enhance recruitment and retention. There are a number of specific initiatives currently being undertaken such as the strategic remuneration review and the defence living accommodation strategy which will contribute towards this effort. In addition, we have made improvements to travel allowances to permit personnel to get home more easily and continue to refine the operational welfare package while also promoting measures such as work/life balance and career breaks to improve the day-to-day lives of service personnel and their families.
| Notes: 1. Due to the rounding methods used, totals may not always equal the sum of the parts. When rounding to the nearest 10, numbers ending in the nearest multiple of 5 have been rounded to 20 to prevent systematic bias. 2. The figures in the table are the latest published version available. Over the period 1982-2006 it is possible that these figures have subsequently been revised and also that definitions of strength have changed slightly. UK regular forces includes nursing services and excludes full-time reserve service personnel, Gurkhas, the Home Service battalions of the Royal Irish Regiment and mobilised reservists.|
Mr. Harper: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence when he will place in the Library the documents referred to in the answers of (a) 8 November 2006, Official Report, column 1558W, on price indices, (b) 7 November 2006, Official Report, column 1482W, on the negotiators briefing pack and (c) 8 November 2006, Official Report, column 1551W, on downgrading reports. 
Derek Twigg: The documents relating to price indices and the negotiators briefing pack were placed in the Library of the House on 12 January 2007. The downgrading reports were placed in the Library of the House on 17 January.
Derek Twigg [holding answer 16 January 2007]: Expenditure on Phase 1 of the Single Living Accommodation Modernisation Project (Project SLAM) over the period of the contract is set out in the following table. In addition to providing details of expenditure approved as part of the original SLAM programme the table also sets out expenditure in support of projects separately funded by the services but delivered through Project SLAM.
|SLAM programme||Separately funded||Total|
Further funding of around £100 million (excluding projects separately funded by the services) has been allocated to SLAM in FY 2007-08 for completion of the Phase 1 programme. Phase 2 of SLAM has been approved with funding of £335 million over the five years 2008-09 to 2012-13 for the delivery of up to a further 3,800 bed spaces.
Dr. Gibson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what assessment he has made of the specific security threats that will be facing the UK between 2020 and 2050; what form he expects them to take; from which country or countries he expects them to come; and if he will make a statement. 
Des Browne: The 2003 Defence White Paper: Delivering Security in a Changing World described the nature of the security challenges facing the United Kingdom and the defence response to them. The paper highlighted the complex and inter-related threats posed by international terrorism, the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD), and the range of risks associated with weak and failing states. We expect these to remain the security priorities for the UK. However, we also recognise that there are a number of pressures which may complicate or exacerbate this picture up to and beyond 2020, and that unexpected strategic shocks might also alter these priorities. We have therefore developed balanced and flexible armed forces which are able to respond to the inherent uncertainty of the future. This assessment informed the recent White Paper, The Future of the United Kingdoms Nuclear Deterrent (Cm 6994), published on 4 December 2006.
Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether Major General Tim Cross has used his Department's (a) road, (b) sea and (c) air transport on personal business over the last three years. 
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