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National Lottery: Historic Buildings

Mr. Touhig: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what criteria are used to assess applications for Lottery funding for renovations to historical buildings. [223321]

Andy Burnham: The Heritage Lottery Fund assesses all applications against its strategic aims. In addition, the Heritage Lottery Fund considers project planning and delivery, project costs and partnership funding, long-term viability and value for money.

Mr. Touhig: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport how much Lottery funding was awarded to preserve historical buildings built (a) before 1900 and (b) after 1900 in the last 12 months. [223322]

Andy Burnham: The information is not held in the format requested and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.


Mrs. Riordan: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what steps his Department has taken to encourage people to undertake sporting activity for at least 30 minutes a day. [223097]

Andy Burnham: As part of our policy to create a world leading sporting nation, the Government want to engage a million more people in regular sport participation—a 30 minute session of sport three times a week—which represents a crucial plank of our legacy commitment to get 2 million people more active by 2012. On 10 June 2008, Sport England launched its new strategy which will create a world leading community sports system across England.

Departmental and lottery funding to promote and invest in community and grassroots sports is allocated via Sport England. Since the creation of the lottery over £2 billion has been invested by Sport England into community sport. In addition over the last six financial years (ending 2007-08) Sport England has also invested over £338 million exchequer funding directly into community sport.

Swimming Pools: Repairs and Maintenance

Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what estimate he has made of the cost of works associated with providing all municipal swimming pools with a 30-year life. [223366]

Andy Burnham: I have made no assessment of the cost of works associated with providing all municipal swimming pools with a 30-year life. Decisions on the provision and maintenance of local leisure services, including pool facilities, are primarily for local authorities.

As part of the recent free swimming initiative, capital funding will be available to help modernise pool infrastructure in support of the free swimming offer. Sport England published a prospectus for bids for funding from financial year 2009-10 which includes further information and can be found at:

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VisitBritain: Finance

Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what assessment he has made of the effect of the recent funding decisions and levels of staffing at VisitBritain on his Department's progress towards the target of creating a £100 billion tourism industry by 2010. [223478]

Andy Burnham: The funding decisions which affected VisitBritain following last year's comprehensive spending review were intended to better focus the Government's investment in areas which impact on inbound and domestic tourism. This included funding from my Department to ensure continued free entry to national museums.

Following those decisions, my Department commissioned an ambitious framework review of public sector tourism support from VisitBritain. That review will report shortly. In advance of the end of that process, VisitBritain has made its own decisions about its future levels of staffing, and is now in discussion with representatives of its work force with a view to implementing them.

My Department is confident that the results of the framework review will produce significant improvements in the service which VisitBritain and its public sector partners provide to the British tourism industry. These improvements will assist greatly in work towards the £100 billion target, and in making the most of the opportunities of the 2012 Olympic Games and Paralympic Games for tourism.

World Heritage Sites

Mrs. Riordan: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what plans he has to put forward sites to UNESCO for designation as world heritage sites. [223105]

Andy Burnham: The Government have announced their intention to nominate the following sites to UNESCO for World Heritage Site status for the next two years: Darwin at Downe in 2009, and the twin Monastery of Wearmouth and Jarrow in 2010.

Prime Minister


Harry Cohen: To ask the Prime Minister what matters were discussed at his meeting with bank representatives in April 2008; what undertakings were made by (a) him and (b) the bank representatives at the meeting; what decisions were made at the meeting; and if he will make a statement. [223488]

The Prime Minister: As set out in the press briefing given by my spokesman on 14 April 2008, this meeting was a wide-ranging breakfast with representatives from the City, prior to my trip to Wall Street later that week. It focused on the issues surrounding global finance and the financial services sector. A transcript of this press briefing is available on the No. 10 website at:

and a copy has been placed in the Library of the House.

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Departmental Internet

Mr. Hoban: To ask the Prime Minister how much the most recent redesign of the No. 10 website cost. [223563]

The Prime Minister: The No. 10 website has been updated to include more news content, videos and in-depth features. The costs associated with the redesign will be included in the overall running costs of the website. Figures for the financial year 2008-09 will be available when the Cabinet Office annual resource accounts have been audited.


Departmental Data Protection

Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many private contractors have been granted access to personal data held by his Department in the last 12 months; and if he will make a statement. [223604]

Mr. Wills: The Ministry of Justice has identified 77 contracts with external organisations which involve the processing of personal data.

These contracts involve 52 different organisations (private companies and public and other organisations).

The Ministry of Justice expects that all personal information handled on its behalf is managed in accordance with the Cabinet Office's Final Report on Data Handling Procedures in Government, the Data Protection Act 1998 and the Government's Manual of Protective Security.

Departmental Responsibilities

Mr. Hoban: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice which projects his Department has commissioned from (a) think-tanks and (b) charities in each of the last two years for which figures are available; what the aim of each project was; which think-tank or charity was commissioned; and how much was paid. [221612]

Mr. Wills: The information requested has been placed in the Libraries of the House.


Mr. Maude: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what his policy is on the Electoral Commission’s recommendation that changes to electoral law and regulation should not be introduced or commenced within the six months prior to an election. [223621]

Mr. Wills: The Electoral Commission’s report “Electoral administration in the United Kingdom”, published in August 2008, said (paragraph 6.34):

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This recommendation supports that made by Sir Ron Gould following his examination of the administration of the 2007 Scottish Parliament and local elections. The Government agree with the principle that legislation affecting the administration of elections should be in force in good time, but recognise the Commission’s suggestion that there may be instances where legislation supporting the administration of elections may be necessary within the months preceding a poll.

Electoral Administration in the United Kingdom

Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what assessment he has made of the Electoral Commission's recent report “Electoral Administration in the United Kingdom”. [223485]

Mr. Wills: We welcome the Electoral Commission's report and will give careful consideration to its recommendations.

Magistrates Courts: ICT

Mr. Bellingham: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many magistrates courts have access to full Libra functionality; and when he expects all magistrates courts to have such access. [220771]

Maria Eagle: 243 out of approximately 370 magistrates courts are now operating with full Libra functionality. Libra will be deployed to all magistrates courts in England and Wales by the end of December 2008.

Political Levy

Mr. Tyrie: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice if he will bring forward proposals to require trade unions to inform members and putative members of their right to opt out of the political levy prior to joining or renewing membership. [221419]

Mr. McFadden: I have been asked to reply.

The establishment and operation of trade union political funds are tightly regulated. We have no plans at present to extend the regulatory requirements further.

Political Parties and Elections Bill 2007-08

Mr. Maude: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what timetable he proposes for the (a) parliamentary passage of the Political Parties and Elections Bill and (b) the (i) commencement and (ii) implementation of the Bill’s provisions once enacted. [223622]

Mr. Wills: The Political Parties and Elections Bill, which the Justice Secretary introduced to this House on 17 July, will progress through Parliament in the usual way. The commencement arrangements for the provisions are set out in clause 19 of the Bill. The provisions listed in subsection (4) will come into force on Royal Assent; all other clauses will be commenced by order. The timetable for implementation will depend upon the nature of the clause.

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Political Parties: Finance

Mr. Maude: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice if he will make it his policy to ensure that the proposed new trigger rules on election candidates spending will not come into force until final guidance on the application and operation of the rules has been issued by the Electoral Commission. [223623]

Mr. Wills: The Political Parties and Elections Bill (Bill 141), introduced to the House of Commons on 17 July 2008, includes provision for the reintroduction of triggering in relation to a candidate’s expenditure limit at a parliamentary general election. The Bill provides that the rules on triggering will come into force on the date of Royal Assent.

Schedule 4A of the Representation of the People Act 1983 (RPA), as inserted by the Electoral Administration Act 2006 (EAA), sets out in detail the matters which are and are not to be regarded as counting towards a candidate’s expenditure limit. The schedule also states that the Electoral Commission may issue a code of practice giving guidance on candidate spending. Such a code must be laid in draft before both Houses and is regarded as having been approved by Parliament provided that neither House resolves not to approve it within 40 days. It may then be published. Schedule 4A of the RPA has been in effect since 11 June 2006 without a code of practice having been produced (though the Commission has published other documents providing guidance for parties, candidates and agents on election spending).

The Bill provides that in addition to the existing power to issue a code of practice, the Commission may also include in any code of practice guidance on when expenditure will be for election purposes (i.e. the circumstances in which the candidate spending limits are triggered). This is not a prerequisite to the legislation coming into force.

Prison Service: Ethnic Groups

Keith Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many senior staff in the Prison Service are from an ethnic minority background. [220874]

Mr. Hanson: Information in the following table shows the total figures for public and contracted establishments.

N umber and proportion of BME senior staff( 1,2,3) public sector only


Number of senior BME staff


Proportion of senior staff recorded as BME (Percentage)


(1 )Ethnic minority background has been classified as those staff from a black and ethnic minority background (BME). (2 )Senior staff has been classified as senior civil servants, senior managers, managers, medical officer and senior medical officers in operational and non-operational posts. (3) Percentage as a proportion of those with known ethnicity.

As the 11 contracted prisons do not use the same grading structure as the public sector and as each individual provider has their own variations, it is not possible to provide an exact comparison. However, of the directors, deputy director and those on the senior management teams at eight of the eleven contracted establishments a total of five staff are from an ethnic minority background.

Information from one provider was not available at the time of the request.

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Prisons: Crime

Mr. Garnier: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many incidents of (a) a sexual nature other than sexual assault, (b) sexual assault, (c) violence, (d) theft and (e) other offences occurred in prisons in England and Wales in each of the last 10 years for which figures are available; and how many of these incidents were (i) prisoner on prisoner, (ii) prisoner on staff and (iii) staff on prisoner. [223349]

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Maria Eagle: The information requested is as follows:

Incidents of a sexual nature other than sexual assault

Data are only available centrally in the category ‘sexual assaults’. No further breakdown is available.

Incidents of sexual assault

The following table summarises the numbers of sexual assault incidents. These will include some unproven allegations. A small number refer to incidents that may have occurred before prison custody.

Prisoner on prisoner Prisoner on officer Prisoner on other Other Total





























































(1) Due to improved recording over the years, figures from 1998 to 2001 are not directly comparable with those from later years.
1. The numbers supplied refer to the number of individual assault incidents. Assault information is recorded at establishment level in four categories: Prisoner on Prisoner, Prisoner on Officer, Prisoner on Other and Other (i.e. non-prisoner perpetrators).
2. The ‘Prisoner on Officer’ and ‘Prisoner on Other’ categories mostly refer to sexual assaults on staff; however the latter category may include some non staff victims for example visitors.
3. The ‘Other’ category includes assaults or allegations of assault by non prisoners including any by staff, visitors etc.

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