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12 May 2008 : Column 1359W—continued

Stonehenge

12. Robert Key: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what plans he has for the future of Stonehenge; and if he will make a statement. [204460]

Margaret Hodge: The Department for Culture, Media and Sport's plans for the future of Stonehenge remain to find a new solution to improve the setting for this iconic World Heritage Site, including new visitor facilities, in time for the Olympics in 2012. To this end, the Stonehenge Project Board has been reconvened and has met twice since December.

National Museums

13. Mr. Neil Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what assessment he has made of recent trends in visits to national museums. [204461]

Margaret Hodge: The most recent figures show that visits to the former charging sponsored museums in England have almost doubled since the introduction of free access in December 2001. This represents an extra six million visits a year or 37 million visits over the six years since entry charges were abolished.

Overall, visits to the national museums are continuing to increase each year, with number of visits rising from 24 million in 1997-98 to over 40 million in 2007-08.

Digital Switchover

16. Mrs. James: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what progress has been made on digital switchover, with particular reference to assistance for vulnerable people. [204465]


12 May 2008 : Column 1360W

Andy Burnham: Figures from the Ofcom Digital Television Update October to December 2007 showed that nationally, 86.7 per cent. of homes had converted their primary set to digital.

Help will be available from the Digital Switchover Help Scheme for those aged 75 or over and those with disabilities. Those outside the scheme who may still need some additional assistance can get help from the digital outreach programme set up by Digital UK.

Women and Girls' Sport

18. Barbara Keeley: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what steps his Department is taking to increase participation by women and girls in sport and fitness activities. [204467]

Mr. Sutcliffe: The Department is committed to ensuring that people from all sections of society are given the opportunity to participate in sport; and to breaking down the barriers that prevent them from doing so.

Sport England provides annual funding to the Women's Sport and Fitness Foundation, which works to improve and promote opportunities for women and girls in sport.

Sport England is developing a new strategy to deliver a world leading community sport system, to sustain and increase participation in sport, and allow everyone to develop their sporting talent to the full. Sport England will encourage more people from under-represented groups to get involved in sport, including women and girls.

Through the joint DCMS and DCSF PE and Sport Strategy for Young People the Government are investing an additional £100 million to offer five hours of high quality PE and sport to all pupils aged five to 16 and three hours for those aged 16 to 19. This will bring our total investment to at least £755 million over the next three years and will enable the provision of further sporting opportunities that recognise and respond to girls’ needs and abilities.

Pistol Shooters

Mr. Crabb: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what recent representations he has received on arrangements for target pistol shooters to train and compete in the UK; and if he will make a statement. [204462]

Mr. Sutcliffe: I have had no recent meeting to discuss the issue of Olympic target pistol shooters. This issue is being taken forward by colleagues at the Home Office who have secured agreement in principle from the Ministry of Defence on use of their ranges by a small squad of elite pistol shooters. Home Office Ministers have also agreed to allow a small number of elite shooters to possess their pistols at home for ‘dry training’, subject to satisfactory checks under section 5 of the Firearms Act 1968.


12 May 2008 : Column 1361W

Amusement Arcades

Mr. Gale: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what assessment his Department has made of the impact of the provisions of the Gambling Act 2005 on the (a) seaside amusement arcade and (b) bingo industries. [204587]

Mr. Sutcliffe: I intend to issue a written ministerial statement very shortly, setting out the Government’s position on this and a number of related issues.

Arts Council England: Finance

Mr. Hunt: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport how much grant in aid Arts Council England received in each year since 1997. [203091]

Margaret Hodge: The Department for Culture, Media and Sport gave Arts Council England the following grant in aid in each year since 1997. The figure for 2007-08 is the forecast outturn. Figures for 2008-09 - 2010-11 are the Arts Council’s resource grant in aid allocation.


12 May 2008 : Column 1362W
GIA income (£000) (outturn figures)

1997-98

179,026

1998-99

179,337

1999-2000

212,248

2000-01

238,179

2001-02

252,455

2002-03

290,405

2003-04

325,955

2004-05

369,859

2005-06

409,178

2006-07

427,862

2007-08

422,610

2008-09

428,955

2009-10

443,455

2010-11

466,955


Consultants

Greg Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what payments the Heritage Lottery Fund made to (a) Lexington Communications, (b) Morgan Allen Moore, (c) Stratagem and (d) Greenhaus Public Communications in each of the last five years; and on what dates and for what purpose the payment was made in each case. [202277]

Margaret Hodge: The Heritage Lottery Fund has provided the following information about the dates, amounts and purpose of payments made by them to Lexington Communications, Morgan Allen Moore, Strategem and Greenhaus Public Communications during the last five years:

Date Agency Net amount (£) Purpose/service

Between 1 April 2005-31 March 2008

Lexington Communications

330,066.13

Strategic communications advice in the UK, and information monitoring of the UK Parliament, Scottish Parliament, Welsh Assembly, Northern Ireland Assembly and Greater London Assembly

Between 1 April 2005-31 March 2008

Morgan Allen Moore

17,340.63

Strategic communications advice in Wales

Between 1 April 2005-31 March 2008

Stratagem

4,112.50

Strategic communications advice in Northern Ireland

Between 1 April 2005-31 March 2008

Greenhaus Public Communications

160,179.73

Strategic communications advice in Scotland


The Heritage Lottery Fund has stated that providing a breakdown of individual payments or annual figures may compromise its ability to secure value for money in future tenders and that figures for financial years 2003-04 and 2004-05 could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Greg Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what payments the Gambling Commission made to Grayling Political Strategy in each of the last five years; on what dates; and for what purpose in each case. [202278]

Mr. Sutcliffe: The Gambling Commission has confirmed it made one payment of £11,374.00 (including VAT) on 27 March 2008 to Grayling Political Strategy for the purpose of communications support and media monitoring services.

Greg Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what payments English Heritage made to (a) Citigate Public Affairs and (b) Grayling Political Strategy in each of the last five years; on what dates; and for what purpose in each case. [202279]

Margaret Hodge: English Heritage has provided the following information about the dates, amounts and purpose of payments made by them to Citigate Public Affairs and Grayling Political Strategy during the last five years:


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12 May 2008 : Column 1364W
Date Agency Purpose Amount (£)

2003-04

Citigate Public Affairs

Parliamentary monitoring

(1)3,265

2004-05

Citigate Public Affairs

Parliamentary monitoring

3,300

2005-06

Citigate Public Affairs

Parliamentary monitoring

3,300

2005-06

Grayling Political Strategy

Communications consultants for Stonehenge project

(2)43,479.99

2006-07

Citigate Public Affairs

Parliamentary monitoring

3,300

2006-07

Grayling Political Strategy

Communications consultants for Stonehenge project

(3)15,481.34

2007-08

Citigate Public Affairs

Parliamentary monitoring

3,300

Cover for absence of English Heritage's parliamentary relations manager

1,3754

4,675

Citigate Public Affairs

Total

(5)7,840

Grayling Political Strategy

Total

(6)58,961.33

(1) Payment for Citigate's parliamentary monitoring service is made monthly. The rate increased in May 2003 so the 2003-04 total is the sum of one month at £240 and 11 months at £275.
(2) This is the total of four invoices as follows: dated 20 December 2005 for £5,170; 22 February 2006 for £9,047.50; 28 March for £28,505.81 and 31 March for £756.68. The first three were in respect of communication and stakeholder management advice and the fourth for costs associated with an exhibition and reception for parliamentarians.
(3) This is the total of two invoices, one dated 16 May 2006 for £9,647.46 and the other dated 20 December 2006 for £5,833.88; both are for communication and stakeholder management advice.
(4) Two payments of £687.50 were added to the October and November 2007 regular parliamentary monitoring invoices.
(5) Net
(6) Including VAT

Greg Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what payments the Museums, Libraries and Archives Council made to Citigate Public Affairs in each of the last five years; on what dates; and for what purpose in each case. [202280]

Margaret Hodge: The Museums, Libraries and Archives Council (MLA) has provided the following information about the dates, amounts and purpose of payments made by them to Citigate Public Affairs during the last five years. They also confirmed that they cancelled their contract with Citigate Public Affairs in July 2007.


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