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20 Jan 2009 : Column 1254W—continued

Olympic Games 2012: Construction

Mr. Hollobone: To ask the Minister for the Olympics what use has been made of the advice of the London Fire Brigade in the designing out of fire and other catastrophic risks in the construction and operation of Olympic venues. [248587]

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Tessa Jowell [holding answer 19 January 2009]: There are several levels of engagement with the London Fire Brigade (LFB), much of it facilitated by the secondment of a member of the LFB to the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA)—a secondment that has been in place for over a year and ensures excellent co-operation and communication between the organisations.

The LFB is party to the development of designs for both venues and the Olympic Park—through a technical officers team, of which they are part, which is associated with the Safety Advisory Group established by the host boroughs (led in this case by London borough of Newham). This team reviews, comments on and assists in the development of designs which are aimed at reducing fire and other related risks for the venues for London 2012.

Finally, there is a Blue Light Liaison Group which ensures that emerging plans for operational responses to emergencies, both during construction and subsequently, are co-ordinated between the Metropolitan Police, London Ambulance Service, London Fire Brigade and other relevant parties including the ODA.

Miss McIntosh: To ask the Minister for the Olympics what discussions she has had with the Olympic Delivery Authority on contracts for landscaping relating to the site of the London 2012 Olympics. [248995]

Tessa Jowell [holding answer 19 January 2009]: Landscaping contracts are the responsibility of the Olympic Delivery Authority and are awarded following a competitive tendering process. The Authority is a public body whose procurements are subject to the public contracts regulations.

The landscaping management contract for the north of the Olympic Park has been awarded to BAM Nuttall Ltd., a UK-based company with offices in Surrey. The landscaping contract for the south of the Olympic Park is due to be awarded in 2009.

Mr. Hunt: To ask the Minister for the Olympics on what date the construction of the temporary roads and bridges required for traffic access to the Olympic Park was completed. [249431]

Tessa Jowell [holding answer 19 January 2009]: Construction of the temporary roads, hard standings and bridges giving access and lay out space at the Olympic Park construction site was completed up to August 2008 until the installation of the fifth (and final) temporary bridge. The completion of this work, including the establishing of the two main entrance plazas—one in the North and one in the South—fulfilled one of the 10 published key milestones set by the ODA (in Demolish, Dig, Design) to be delivered by the Beijing 2008 games.

The positioning of temporary roads and hard standings onsite, however, will continue to change in response to the needs of each of the individual venue and infrastructure construction areas within the Olympic Park construction site. This will ensure the safe, secure and efficient movement of people and materials to, through and around the Olympic Park site throughout the construction period as work develops.

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Olympic Games 2012: Disadvantaged

Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Minister for the Olympics whether there are targets to encourage people living in the most disadvantaged areas to volunteer to work on preparation for and during the London 2012 Olympics. [248368]

Tessa Jowell: The Personal Best Programme, formerly known as the Pre-Volunteer Programme, uses the excitement of the London 2012 Olympic Games and Paralympic Games to inspire the most disadvantaged people to acquire and develop their skills for work through volunteering.

The London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) has identified that up to 70,000 Games-time volunteers will be required. It has committed to recruiting up to 10 per cent. of these through Personal Best.

It is hoped that 20,000 disadvantaged people from London will be involved in Personal Best. So far, this programme has been trialled in 11 boroughs with 875 Londoners taking part. This includes the five host boroughs which are areas of significant disadvantage. Over the next six months the programme will be rolled out to every London borough. Building on the success in London this is now being offered to regions, the South East and North East being the first.

Although not all graduates of the scheme will become Games-time volunteers, they will build self esteem through community volunteering, work experience and gain transferable job skills through a nationally recognised qualification.

LOCOG has recently launched its Trailblazer volunteer scheme giving volunteers the opportunity to work within LOCOG itself. The scheme began with a three month pilot with 23 volunteers on 19 January 2009 and has been promoted in the host boroughs. If successful, LOCOG intends to involve 60-70 volunteers over the year, increasing the number of participants in the run up to 2012.

Olympic Games 2012: Security

Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Minister for the Olympics when she expects the costed security plan for the London 2012 Olympics to be published. [247591]

Mr. Coaker: I have been asked to reply.

Due to security considerations, the costed security plan for the London 2012 Olympics is necessarily a classified document. As such, the Home Office is considering proposals for publishing an unclassified version later in 2009.

Olympic Games 2012: Voluntary Organisations

Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Minister for the Olympics what mechanisms are in place to encourage existing volunteer organisations to take part in work in preparation for and during the London 2012 Olympics. [248371]

Tessa Jowell: The Government, through the Office of the Third Sector and the Government Olympic Executive, and the London Organising Committee of the Olympic
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Games and Paralympic Games have been encouraging volunteering organisations to take part in work in preparation for, during and after London 2012 since the early stages of the bid to win the games, through hosting a number of events at both ministerial and official level.

The Government’s ambition to maximise the opportunities for a volunteering legacy from the games is reflected in our legacy promise to get thousands more young people giving time to their communities as a result of 2012. This has recently translated into my launch of the “2012 Challenge” in December 2008, a public commitment by Government and key third sector organisations to work together to ensure this ambition is realised.

House of Commons Commission

Industrial Health and Safety

Mr. Allen: To ask the hon. Member for North Devon, representing the House of Commons Commission what measures have been undertaken to address the moth infestation in T block; and when the operation is expected to be completed. [247327]

Nick Harvey: Significant numbers of the Common House Moth ( Tineola bisselliella) were first reported in the House in early 2008 and preventative treatment has been undertaken since then. In order to minimise the use of pesticides and the consequent risk of exposure to potential toxicants, a process involving moth pheromone has been employed.

Monitoring of moth activity shows that moth numbers within the House of Commons estate are generally reducing. However, activity in T block remains an issue and alternative methods of eradication are being considered. Measures are likely to involve spraying within offices and heat treatment of items contained in them in order to kill larvae. Members with offices in areas affected will be consulted in due course.


Grant Shapps: To ask the hon. Member for North Devon, representing the House of Commons Commission how much has been spent by the House of Commons Commission on staff reward and recognition schemes in each of the last three years. [248726]

Nick Harvey: The amounts spent on staff reward and recognition schemes have been:

Actual Forecast
2006-07 2007-08 2008-09

Non-consolidated performance pay




Staff recognition schemes








In addition, there are long service and other staff awards, which include non-cash rewards. The amounts involved are not collated centrally, but are modest in nature.

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Mr. Roger Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what discussions he has had with (a) the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport and (b) the Welsh Assembly Government on (i) the future of public sector broadcasting and (ii) the implementation of digital switchover in Wales; and if he will make a statement. [246810]

Mr. Paul Murphy: My hon. Friend, the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, and I regularly meet ministerial colleagues and Welsh Assembly Government colleagues to discuss issues affecting Wales, including broadcasting and digital switchover.

As Minister with responsibility for digital inclusion, I am keenly aware of the various issues that surround these subjects and have also met with representatives of various stakeholders—such as the Office of Communication (Ofcom), the BBC, ITV and S4C—to hear their views.

In addition, my officials are actively involved in a number of cross-Government groups, which include representation from the Welsh Assembly Government, that discuss and monitor the ongoing Switchover process. The Wales Office was also involved in discussions that surrounded the recent review of public service broadcasting being undertaken by Ofcom. Through this work, we will continue to ensure that Wales has a strong voice in these important issues.

Departmental Buildings

Mr. Baron: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how much has been spent on (a) maintaining, (b) decorating and (c) otherwise improving departmental buildings in the last five years; how much has been spent on wallpaper since 2001; and what plans there are for further spending on departmental decoration. [248050]

Mr. Paul Murphy: Care and maintenance of the Wales Office's two offices (one in London and one in Cardiff) were, until 2005-06, managed by the Welsh Assembly Government. Specific costs for the Wales Office were not systematically identified.

Since 2005, the premises have been managed within the Ministry of Justice (previously the Department for Constitutional Affairs). The following tables give the available information by year for maintenance, decoration, and other improvements.

Maintenance (including electrical and mechanical engineering and plumbing works)









Decoration (the 2006-07 figure includes carpet tile replacement on health and safety grounds, and renewed sanitation)







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Improvement works (the 2005-06 figure includes £79,809 to replace a lift to meet health and safety and disabled access standards. The 2007-08 figure includes the cost of specialist exterior stonework cleaning of the listed London building, which was recommended on heritage preservation grounds).








We have no wallpaper. There are no plans for further spending on departmental decoration at this time.

Departmental Catering

Mr. Scott: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales which (a) food and (b) drinks companies have supplied his Department in each of the last three years; and how much was paid to each of those suppliers in each of those years. [248793]

Mr. Paul Murphy: None.

Mr. Philip Hammond: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what (a) directly-operated and (b) franchised catering outlets his Department provides for staff. [249085]

Mr. Paul Murphy: None.

Departmental Data Protection

Paul Holmes: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many members of staff in his Department have been (a) investigated, (b) suspended and (c) dismissed for losing (i) memory sticks, (ii) laptop computers, (iii) desktop computers and (iv) mobile telephones belonging to his Department in each year since its inception. [248258]

Mr. Paul Murphy: Since the inception of the Wales Office in 1999, there have been four losses of mobile telephones. After ascertaining the facts, the Department had no reason to take action against the individuals concerned. There have been no losses of laptop computers, memory sticks, or desktop computers.

Departmental Languages

Mr. Philip Hammond: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many (a) Ministers and (b) civil servants in his Department received coaching in a foreign language in the last 12 months; what expenditure his Department incurred in providing such coaching; and in what languages such coaching was provided. [248071]

Mr. Paul Murphy: The Wales Office has not provided coaching in any foreign language to either Ministers or staff in the last 12 months. However, my Department has paid £335 for two civil servants to learn the Welsh language.

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Departmental Ministerial Policy Advisers

Mr. Tyrie: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what expert advisers have been commissioned by his Department since its inception; on what topic each was commissioned; and whether the adviser so appointed made a declaration of political activity in each case. [246965]

Mr. Paul Murphy: The Wales Office has not commissioned any expert advisers since it's inception.

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