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Departmental Advertising

Grant Shapps: To ask the Minister for the Olympics how much has been spent by (a) her Office and (b) each body for which she has responsibility on advertising in the last 12 months. [243727]

Tessa Jowell: In the period from 1 December 2007 to 30 November 2008, the amounts spent on advertising (inclusive of VAT) were as follows:

All advertising expenditure by the Government Olympic Executive (GOE), the Olympic Delivery Authority and the Olympic Lottery Distributor was for recruitment purposes, except for £2,731.16 spent by GOE to promote two regional “London 2012: Ask the Team” public question-time events.

Departmental Official Hospitality

David Simpson: To ask the Minister for the Olympics what records her Office maintains of its expenditure on (a) official hospitality and (b) alcohol for official hospitality. [240457]

Tessa Jowell: My office keeps a log of ministerial gifts and hospitality given and received each year.

There is no departmental requirement to separately monitor expenditure on alcohol for hospitality purposes and therefore no mechanism for this information to be recorded.

All spending on official entertainment is made in accordance with the principles set out in Managing Public Money. This document is available on HM Treasury’s website.

Inland Waterways

Mr. Sheerman: To ask the Minister for the Olympics what steps she is taking to ensure that the Olympic Delivery Authority accomplishes the dredging of the canal access routes to the Olympic sites. [244989]

Tessa Jowell: The Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) has an agreed programme of waterways works. A wharf is currently being built on the Lee Navigation Canal adjacent to the on-site logistics centre at Bow East and a further wharf is scheduled for construction by Q2 2009 on the Waterworks River. The ODA has recently carried out successful trials in the use of two 100 tonne
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fully loaded barges to the wharf locations. A dredging scheme is currently being evaluated for dredging the river from Bow locks up to the Waterworks River wharf to facilitate 350 tonne barges with dredging scheduled for Q1 2009. The ODA will report progress on these works in its monthly and quarterly reports.

Olympic Games 2012: Construction

Hugh Robertson: To ask the Minister for the Olympics what alternative sources of funding for the athletes’ village (a) she and (b) the Olympic Delivery Authority is considering; and if she will make a statement. [246120] [Official Report, 3 February 2009, Vol. 487, c. 8MC.]

Tessa Jowell: As a consequence of recent turmoil in the global financial markets, less private sector investment is available than originally envisaged, meaning that the Olympic Village deal needs to be restructured and additional public sector investment will need to be made. The details of that restructured deal are being worked through between the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) and Lend Lease under the terms of an exclusivity agreement and it would not be appropriate to reveal the details until that deal is concluded in the spring of next year. Under the exclusivity agreement, the ODA may not negotiate with alternative development partners.

Olympic Games 2012: Economic Situation

Dr. Kumar: To ask the Minister for the Olympics what assessment she has made of the effect of the current economic situation on the 2012 London Olympics. [245871]

Tessa Jowell: The turmoil in global financial markets and the economic developments of recent months have affected the financing of the Olympic Village and International Broadcast Centre/Main Press Centre projects.

However, the venues and infrastructure for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic games, including the Olympic Village and the International Broadcasting Centre/Main Press Centre are still on track to be delivered within the £9.325 billion public sector funding package. In addition, the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games has already secured over half the funding necessary to stage the games.

The substantial progress that has been made both in the delivery of the venues and infrastructure and in the raising of funds to support the staging of the games means that, while recognising the risks, we remain in a good position to manage delivery on time and on budget.

Olympic Games 2012: Gun Sports

Mr. Malins: To ask the Minister for the Olympics whether the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games have presented their requirements for the venue of the Olympic shooting events in respect of (a) ranges and facilities, (b) security, (c) costs, (d) transport facilities, (e) accommodation and (f) legacy to the authorities at Bisley shooting ground; and if she will make a statement. [245802]

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Tessa Jowell: The London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) together with the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) met British Shooting on 9 December to discuss the use of Bisley for the shooting competition at the London 2012 games. They discussed a wide-range of issues including facility requirements, the legacy benefit, safety and security issues, transport and accommodation provision, and whether the venue can be delivered efficiently and cost-effectively. The ODA has subsequently written to British Shooting requesting further clarity on a number of issues. This work on the shooting venue is ongoing and final decisions are yet to be made by the Olympic Board.

Olympic Games 2012: Lend Lease

Hugh Robertson: To ask the Minister for the Olympics pursuant to the Answer of 8 December 2008, Official Report, column 3W, for what reasons exclusivity has been granted to Lend Lease; and if she will make a statement. [243762]

Tessa Jowell [holding answer 15 December 2008]: Lend Lease were appointed after a competitive tender process under the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) and remain a committed partner in the delivery of the Olympic Village. The exclusivity agreement has been granted in order to finalise funding arrangements and legal documentation.

Olympic Games 2012: North East

Dr. Kumar: To ask the Minister for the Olympics what assessment she has made of the legacy to the North East from the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. [245858]

Tessa Jowell: I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave him on 15 December 2008, Official Report, column 342W.

In addition, nine of the Olympic Delivery Authority’s (ODA) suppliers are businesses registered in the North East. Over 700 businesses from the region have registered on CompeteFor, the electronic brokerage service for buyers and suppliers. In February 2009, One North East (the Regional Development Agency) will host the ODA at a ‘Meet the Buyer event’ at Newcastle Racecourse where a range of business support activity with be available and 2012 opportunities will be promoted to around 2,000 business organisations.

I am also delighted to say there are a number of projects in the North East that have been awarded the London 2012 Inspire Mark (the non-commercial 2012 brand available for exciting new cultural projects inspired by the Games). So far this includes:

The Personal Best programme uses Games-inspired volunteering to help people to develop their skills for
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work. Building on the success of London, the North East will be one of the first regions to benefit by introducing this programme.

Dr. Kumar: To ask the Minister for the Olympics what steps are being taken to ensure that (a) the North East and (b) Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland constituency are able to meet the goals and objectives set for the London 2012 Olympics. [245860]

Tessa Jowell: The Government and the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) are working hard to ensure the benefits of 2012 reach across the UK and have established a Nations and Regions Group (NRG) to oversee this work. The North East representative is Peter Rowley, Chair of the Regional Sports Board.

At a regional level, all London 2012 games-related activity is led by One NorthEast (the regional development agency) and Sport England North East and includes a structure involving partners from across the public, voluntary and private sectors. These arrangements provide the groundwork for delivering a strong legacy in the North East and will ensure that the region contributes to the overall UK-wide legacy ambitions of 2012. Through the effective delivery of the Legacy Action Plan, we aim to maximise the social, economic and cultural opportunities across the UK.

We are already seeing great progress in a lot of these areas, for example, the North East has put in place a project called Beating Type 2 Diabetes. This project is active in Middlesbrough and aims to show how increased physical activity can help prevent type 2 diabetes. It uses 2012 as a key driver for behavioural change.

Additionally, there are also a number of groups in the Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland region who work in partnership with Sport England to promote the wider benefits of the London 2012 games. This includes Tees Valley Olympic and Paralympic Games Working Group which has identified a draft action plan of activities that it intends to carry out between now and 2012. It is organising an events-based programme which aims to use the Olympics and Paralympics to encourage involvement in sport and identify talented performers. The group is also utilising Sport England funding to match strong performers with talented coaches to enable them to fulfil their potential.

Home Department

Airguns: Crime

Chris Huhne: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when she plans to (a) collate and (b) publish as a separate category statistics on offences committed with airsoft guns. [243421]

Jacqui Smith: Statistics for crimes involving BB guns/soft air weapons have been collected separately since April 2004 and were published for the first time in January 2006.

Latest data relate to 2006-07 and are available in table 2.03 of ‘Homicides, Firearm Offences and Intimate Violence 2006-07’ (HOSB 03/08), which is at:

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Alcoholic Drinks: Young People

Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many retailers have been (a) prosecuted and (b) convicted for the persistent sale of alcohol to a person under 18 years in each of the last five years. [244844]

Jacqui Smith: I refer the hon. and learned Member to the answer given on 15 December 2008, Official Report, column 504W.

Animal Experiments

Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what progress her Department has made in the replacement of animals in scientific procedures; what effect Government action to promote such replacement had on numbers of animals used in scientific procedures in the most recent year for which figures are available; what recent discussions she has had with representatives of the scientific community about this issue; and if she will make a statement. [245068]

Meg Hillier: The Government strongly support the development and use of non-animal alternatives where possible, use of animals in scientific procedures will not be licensed if alternative non-animal techniques are available. The National Centre for Replacement, Refinement and Reduction of Animals in Research (NC3Rs), which the Home Office part-funds, was established in May 2004 and acts as a focal point for research into the 3Rs. We have ongoing discussions with the NC3Rs.

The Government also continue to support the European Centre for the Validation of Alternative Methods (ECVAM), with a member of Home Office staff serving on the ESAC Scientific Advisory Committee, and through contributions to the European Union. It is ECVAM's task to monitor and co-ordinate research into alternatives and to develop the processes of validation—that is, the assessment of alternative methods to see whether they are reliable and whether they produce a level of information similar to the animal based tests they are to replace.

In addition the Home Office has established an inter-departmental group on the 3Rs to ensure other UK regulatory bodies take account of the progress with the 3Rs in their policies and practices. Home Office staff made a range of presentations on humane experimental technique at the 6th World Congress on Alternatives to Animal research in 2007. Reference is made to other relevant Home Office presentations in the 2007 Annual Report of the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Inspectorate.

The impact of progress on the uptake of suitable reduction and replacement alternatives can be seen in a number of classes of animal use reported in the Annual Statistical report series: for example reductions in numbers of rabbits used for pyrogen testing, the numbers of guinea pigs used for skin sensitisation testing, and the number of animals used for skin irritation studies.

Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what assessment she has made of whether the threshold of moderate pain in animal experimentation is being adhered to; how her Department defines moderate pain in relation to
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animal experimentation; what representations she has received since January 2008 about that definition; and if she will make a statement. [245071]

Meg Hillier: The assessment of whether the threshold of moderate pain in animal experimentation is being adhered to is mainly through the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Inspectorate’s inspection programme and a selection of reports and published work.

The severity limits of protocols are defined in Section 5.42 of the Guidance on the Operation of the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986. Moderate protocols are defined as:

We have received no formal representations on this issue since January 2008. Judicial Review proceedings in July 2007 considered four issues relating to the implementation of the 1986 Act one of which was on the severity limits for protocols. It was argued that in certain projects the severity limits should have been set at substantial rather than moderate. In its judgment issued on 23 April 2008, the Court of Appeal overturned the High Court’s earlier finding that the former Chief Inspector had erred in law in assessing severity limits in the relevant project licence. On this point, the Court found that neither the former Chief Inspector nor the Secretary of State had adopted an erroneous approach to the published Guidance on the Operation of the 1986 Act regarding the assessment of severity limits.

Furthermore, the Court of Appeal, in upholding our appeal, agreed that the severity limit is determined by the degree of suffering experienced by the animal prior to the point at which it is humanely killed.

Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps her Department (a) is taking and (b) plans to take in the next 12 months to reduce the number of animals used in scientific procedures; what recent representations she has received about this issue; and if she will make a statement. [245072]

Meg Hillier: Many factors influence trends in the use of animals under the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986, including the economic climate, global trends in scientific endeavour and strategic decisions by funding bodies. The increase in the use of genetically altered strains seen over recent years has also had an impact as advances in genetics open up new and promising avenues of medical research.

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