|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
Mr. Lancaster: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport pursuant to the answer of 14 October 2008, Official Report, column 1043W, on railways: Milton Keynes, how many more southbound Virgin trains will call at Milton Keynes during (a) peak and (b) off-peak times once the platform upgrade is complete than did so before the work commenced. 
Paul Clark: On weekdays between 0600 and 0900, the number of southbound Virgin trains calling at Milton Keynes Central will increase from four to seven trains once the upgrade is completed. In off-peak periods, the number will increase from two to three per hour.
Mr. Lancaster: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport pursuant to the answer of 14 October 2008, Official Report, column 1043W, on railways: Milton Keynes, what the aggregate number of Virgin trains stopping per day at Milton Keynes will be once the platform upgrade is completed and a new timetable introduced; and what change this will represent from the previous aggregate number. 
Paul Clark: The number of trains, operated by Virgin Trains and stopping at Milton Keynes Central station, once the enlargement work is completed, is likely to be 110 on a normal weekday. This will represent a 31 per cent. increase from today's number of 84 services operated by Virgin Trains and stopping at Milton Keynes.
Paul Clark: The High Level Output Specification, published in July 2007, required an improvement in the Public Performance Measure (PPM) to an average of 92.6 per cent. by the end of 2013-14, with associated reductions in significant lateness and cancellations. Delay hours are reported periodically by Network Rail, but are not separately estimated by the Department for Transport.
Mr. Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what recent discussions he has had with Lancashire county council on improving safety on (a) the A59 and (b) other roads in the council's area. 
Jim Fitzpatrick: The Department for Transport has not held formal meetings with Lancashire county council specifically about the A59. The A59 is a non-trunk principal road. The county council is primarily responsible for safety on the road, and other similar roads, within its administrative area.
Departmental officials have talked with Lancashire county council officials about work supported by a road safety partnership grant not specific to the A59, about major (costing more than £5 million each) road projects and about local transport planning and delivery more generally.
Jim Fitzpatrick: This information is not held by the Department. Local traffic authorities are responsible for setting local speed limits and have powers to introduce 20 mph speed limits and 20 mph zones if they believe it appropriate to do so. They are not required to inform the Department when they change a speed limit.
The Department has recently commissioned a new research project on local road safety policy and practice. Some of the information gathered from local authorities as part of this project includes details about the implementation of 20 mph zones. The project will take three years with an interim report due in March 2009.
Mr. David Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when he proposes to amend the Road Vehicles (Display of Registration Mark) Regulations 2001 so as to permit the display of the Union Flag and the national flags of Wales, England and Scotland. 
Mr. Roger Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the (a) lowest, (b) highest, (c) median and (d) mean value was of claims under the 2007 Single Payment Scheme. 
Mr. Paice: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many work permits were allocated under the Seasonal Agricultural Workers Scheme in each of the last five years. 
The UK Border Agency has a Seasonal Agricultural Workers Scheme (SAWS) that enables the provision of short term, low skilled workers to be employed in the agricultural industry. The permit to work that is issued to SAWS participants is known as a work card.
Mr. Roger Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many livestock disease reactors were identified through pre-movement testing in each year such testing has been in operation. 
|Number of TB reactors identified in England by pre-movement testing|
Animal Health database (10 September 2008)
Cumulative TB pre-movement statistics are updated monthly and are published on the DEFRA website. The published figures are an underestimate of the impact of the policy and show the minimum benefits. The number of reactors identified does not take into account the benefits of herd owners utilising Government paid TB surveillance tests as pre-movement tests or the number
of inconclusive reactors identified by pre-movement testing which have ended up as reactors when retested.
Mr. Roger Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment he has made of the prevalence of deformed wing virus in the bee population in England; and what assessment he has made of the potential impact of this virus on bee productivity. 
Jane Kennedy: Deformed Wing Virus (DWV) is a virus associated with varroa, a parasitic mite infesting bees. Varroa is widespread in the UK and while it cannot be completely eradicated, beekeepers can keep productive bees despite its presence, providing they operate effective controls. Controlling the varroa mite vector by means of a careful programme of integrated pest management is the most effective way of controlling virus infections. DEFRA has published detailed advice for beekeepers on this.
Mr. Roger Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what strains of (a) avian influenza and (b) bluetongue were confirmed in the UK in each of the last three years; where such cases occurred; and how many animals were slaughtered in each case, broken down by region. 
|(a) Avian Influenza|
|Type of Avian Influenza/location||Animals culled|
|(1) Cases were in wild not domestic birds.|
|(1) No circulating Bluetongue disease has been found in the UK in 2008. The 80 cases confirmed this year in England comprise 73 that involve animals infected in 2007 but confirmed as infected in 2008, and seven that were detected through post-import tests on livestock imported from abroad. (2) This case was detected as a result of post-import testing.|
On 28 September 2007, it was confirmed that BTV-8 was circulating in the local midge population in the affected area of East Anglia. Since Bluetongue is spread by midges, the culling of animals infected by Bluetongue would no longer have been an effective measure to control disease spread, and in line with the Bluetongue Control Strategy, the decision was taken not to slaughter further infected animals.
Andrew Stunell: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what consideration his Department has given to the use of contra bait or other measures to control breeding in the management of badger populations infected with tuberculosis. 
Jane Kennedy: DEFRA is funding proof-of-concept research into fertility control for managing animal populations. As part of this research, we are evaluating this approach specifically for the management of urban badger populations. The research is focused on population control, not disease control. Lowering population numbers in itself does not necessarily mean that disease transmission risks are lowered.
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|