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Angela Watkinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what arrangements have been made to consult and inform (a) neighbouring local authorities, (b) private motorists and (c) commercial users on plans to increase charges for using the M25 Dartford Crossing; 
Dr. Ladyman: I refer the hon. Member to my written statement to the House on 19 October 2006, Official Report, columns 59-60WS, and the consultation document on Proposed changes to charges at the Dartford-Thurrock River Crossing that we published, which is in the Libraries of the House and on the Departments website.
Chris Grayling: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much his Department has spent on services from Waverley Management Consultants in the past three years; and who within the Department has used the reports prepared by the firm. 
Gillian Merron: Waverley Management Consultants were awarded a contract in February 2006 by the Department for £15,000 to develop a scenario planning toolkit. The toolkit was published on the internet in January 2007 at the following address
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what the expenditure by his Department on
buying, operating and supporting (a) all commercial software products and (b) software products produced by Microsoft was in each of the last three years. 
The central Department and its Executive Agencies use separate accounting systems that record expenditure in different ways. To obtain the information in the format requested would incur disproportionate cost.
|Summary of the cost of Software Purchases|
|Organisation||Total cost of all ICT Softwareincluding the cost of the licence, maintenance and upgrade protection||Total cost of all Microsoft ICT Softwareincluding the cost of the licence, maintenance and upgrade protection||Total cost of all ICT Softwareincluding the cost of the licence, maintenance and upgrade protection||Total cost of all Microsoft ICT Softwareincluding the cost of the licence, maintenance and upgrade protection|
|Organisation||Total cost of all ICT Softwareincluding the cost of the licence, maintenance and upgrade protection||Total cost of all Microsoft ICT Softwareincluding the cost of the licence, maintenance and upgrade protection||Total cost of all ICT Softwareincluding the cost of the licence, maintenance and upgrade protection|
|n/a = not available|
(1) DVLA is unable to provide a breakdown in the format requested but can provide a total cost of annual software expenditure.
(2) Maintenance and upgrade protection costs for DSA are included within the capital purchase price and are excluded from these totals.
(3) VOSAs IT services are managed by a contractor who purchases all software on their behalf. This contractor has provided figures for software and maintenance costs for calendar year 2005 (see 2004-05) and calendar year 2006 (see 2005-06). Figures for calendar year 2004 and separate figures for Microsoft purchases are not available.
(4) GCDA became an Executive Agency of DfT in November 2005.
Geraldine Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency failed to send out reminder notices for car tax renewal to residents of the Morecambe and Lunesdale constituency in the last 12 months. 
Dr. Ladyman: There were no widespread instances in the last 12 months where the DVLA failed to issue the vehicle licence application reminder (V11) notices in the Morecambe and Lunesdale constituency or any other.
There have been no processing or dispatch difficulties that could account for any significant problems. However, changes to the rate of vehicle excise duty (VED) announced in the March 2005 Budget did cause discrepancies to some vehicle records. This resulted in V11 forms not being forwarded for
those vehicles whose licenses needed renewing in April 2006. This problem only affected licences due in this particular month.
Mrs. James: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what the cost is for First Great Western to hire an (a) Mark III first class carriage, (b) Mark III standard class carriage and (c) Mark III buffet bar carriage. 
Mr. Sanders: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will make it his policy to set a ceiling on the level of charges imposed by private clamping companies; and if he will make a statement. 
Gillian Merron: When considering the charges levied for vehicle clamping services on local authority owned land, including the highways for which they are responsible, local authorities are directed by Circular 1/95 (Guidance on Decriminalised Parking Enforcement Outside London) to set charges according to the cost of providing the service. Local authorities are obliged to keep a record of the charges levied for clamping and removal services, and to avoid setting charge levels that will result in a surplus income being generated.
With regard to the clamping of vehicles on privately owned land, the Private Security Industry Act 2001 provides for the Security Industry Authority (SIA) to licence individuals who carry out licensable vehicle immobilising activities as defined by the Act and to ensure that they comply with the licensing requirements. It does not provide for the regulation of fees or other commercial matters. We have discussed this matter with the Home Office and I understand that there are no plans to regulate this area further.
Gillian Merron: Park and ride schemes are playing an important part in helping to reduce congestion in many localities. During the first Local Transport Plan (LTP) period (2001-06), local transport authorities in England (outside of London) spent a total of £72.5 million of LTP funding on improving 92 existing park and ride facilities and delivering 76 new park and ride schemes. In recognition of this, the Department gave credit in its assessment of delivery of the first Local Transport Plans to those authorities that delivered substantial increases in park and ride facilities.
In the full guidance on the second Local Transport Plans (2006-11), published in December 2004, the Department indicated that tackling congestion remained a key priority and that a range of policy tools
should be considered by local authorities. It then assessed how convincingly local authorities considered the range of available tools (including park and ride) before determining the final distribution of funding support for the Local Transport Plans.
Gillian Merron: The Government are encouraging people to use public transport through sustained investment to improve services and by providing better information on journeys, for instance through Transport Direct. This is helping make public transport a realistic and attractive option for more journeys. We have also set out new proposals to create the right framework for the delivery of better bus services to meet the needs of passengers.
Mr. Tom Harris: The Transport Select Committee published the Governments response to their report on passenger rail franchising (14(th) report of Session 2005-06) on 29 January 2007 (first special report of Session 2006-07), copies of which are available from the Vote Office.
Mr. Lancaster: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what estimate he has made of the change in numbers of passengers on Virgin Trains heading south from (a) Manchester, (b) Birmingham and (c) Liverpool through Milton Keynes in each of the next 10 years. 
Mr. Tom Harris: Virgin West Coast Trains is planning on an increase in the number of passenger journeys, principally from the long distance destinations of Manchester, Birmingham and Liverpool as well the north west and Scotland, from a total of 20 million a year in 2006-07 to more than 30 million a year by 2011-12. The Department expect further and similar growth, year by year, on the route in the period beyond 2012.
Mr. Tom Harris: This is an operational matter for Network Rail, as the owner and operator of the national rail network. The hon. Member should contact Network Rail's chief executive at the following address for a response to his question.
40 Melton Street
London NW1 2EE
Mr. Tom Harris: This information is not held by the Department. Responsibility for stations rests with Network Rail (who operate 17 principal stations) and with the train operating companies. Although the Association of Train Operating Companies maintains current records, they have advised that they do not hold historical information on station staffing. I refer the hon. Member to my reply of 18 December 2006, Official Report, column 1448W on Railway Stations: "According to the records of the Association of Train Operating Companies (ATOC) 1187 stations are unmanned Monday to Saturday and 1649 on Sundays."
Mr. Tom Harris: Station operators are required to maintain station facilities to an acceptable condition and Network Rail to maintain the station structures to a safe, operational condition. Where renovation is required it is funded by the operator or Network Rail.
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