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John McDonnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will ensure that no changes affecting the terms and conditions of staff will be made to the contractual parts of any staff handbooks within his Department without the consent of a recognised trade union. 
John McDonnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport for what reason the status of the tender notice entitled UK-London: Reward Strategy and Benefits Project detailed on his Department's Procurement Portal has changed to closed. 
Mr. Goodwill: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what steps he plans to take to recover funds due to the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency identified in the Central London employment tribunal case between Mr Geoff Topliss and NCP Services Ltd. 
Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will make it his policy to refuse paper requests to the Driver Vehicle Licensing Agency for the release of driver information unless such requests meet the requirements applicable to requests submitted electronically. 
Jim Fitzpatrick: The procedures in place for the release of vehicle keeper details from DVLAs vehicle register are kept under review. An announcement will be made shortly on the additional measures DVLA intend to introduce for car park enforcement companies requesting vehicle keeper details manually.
Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what his policy is on the specification of restaurant car services in rail franchises let by his Department, with particular reference to franchises held by National Express. 
Paul Clark: For the recently-let rail franchises, the policy of the Department for Transport has been not to specify restaurant car services. This policy was applied to franchises now held by National Express.
Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many incidents of theft of British military equipment supplies during transit from the port of disembarkation in Pakistan to the final destination in Afghanistan have been reported since 18 July 2008. 
Mr. Hutton: Two incidents of theft of British military supplies during transit from the port of disembarkation in Pakistan to the final destination in Afghanistan have been reported to the Royal Military Police between 18 July 2008 and 26 January 2009 inclusive.
Willie Rennie: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 26 January 2009, Official Report, column 23W, on Afghanistan: peacekeeping operations (1) how long the training will take; and what personnel will be involved in the training; 
The training of RAF Merlin Force air and ground crew will take place in the UK (at RAF Benson, on Salisbury Plain and other UK training areas), with some elements likely to be overseas as part of a rolling programme prior to deployment.
Much of the theatre-specific preparation will need to take place during the four month period between completion of deployment to Iraq and commencement of deployment to Afghanistan; but some elements of training may commence earlier.
Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many insurgents in Afghanistan were captured by British forces in each month in 2008; and how many (a) were subsequently released, (b) transferred to Afghan authorities and (c) remain in British custody. 
Mr. Bob Ainsworth: 59 aircraft of the RAF Multi-Engine fleet that are planned to be in service on 31 March 2009 have Weapons System Officers (Navigator) (WSO(Nav)) as part of the crew. These comprise the Hercules C130K, VC10, Sentry, Sentinel, Nimrod MR2 and Nimrod R1 aircraft.
63 aircraft of the RAF Multi-Engine fleet that are planned to be in service on 31 March 2009 have Air Engineers as part of the crew. These comprise the Hercules C130K, Tristar, VC10, Sentry, Nimrod MR2 and Nimrod R1 aircraft.
Mr. Bob Ainsworth: Navigators form a sub-branch of the weapon system officer specialisation and flight engineers are more correctly known as air engineers. Currently there are 285 weapon system officer (navigators) and 175 air engineers available to serve in multi-engine aircraft(1). These figures include personnel who are currently trained and qualified to serve in a multi-engine aircraft, those who occupy another type of flying appointment and those who occupy a non-flying post. Those in the last two categories would require refresher training before they would be available to serve in multi-engine aircraft.
(1) Figures have been rounded to the nearest five.
|Location||Endorsed number (at 1 January 2009)( 1)|
|(1 )Rounded to 50|
(2) On 15 December 2008, the Prime Minister announced a temporary increase in the number of British troops deployed to Afghanistan, from just over 8,050 to 8,300, Official Report, column 816. The endorsed figure for Operation Herrick 9 remains unaffected.
(3) Providing support to the Senior British Military RepresentativeIraq.
(4 )Small scale deployments in support of EU and UN missions, and headquarters liaison officers.
The precise number of personnel in each theatre at any one time fluctuates very significantly on a daily basis for a variety of reasons, including mid-tour rest
and recuperation, temporary absence for training, evacuation for medical reasons, the roulement of forces, visits and a range of other factors. We do not therefore publish actual figures for personnel deployed in theatre.
Mr. Bob Ainsworth: In the 12 month period, ending on 31 October 2008, out of a total of just over 100 personnel recruited into the General Duties (Pilot) branch of the Royal Air Force, fewer than 10 were women.
Nick Harvey: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how much his Department has spent removing asbestos from (a) single living accommodation and (b) service families accommodation since 1997. 
Occupants of service accommodation are made aware of the location of any asbestos known to be present in their accommodation and are given appropriate health and safety advice. Reports by occupants of suspected damage to any asbestos-carrying material are investigated, and, where required, action taken in accordance with the Control of Asbestos Regulations.
Mr. Bob Ainsworth: Information on strengths and requirements of the armed forces by service can be found in table 1 of Tri-Service Publication (TSP) 4UK armed forces quarterly manning report. TSP 4 is published quarterly and, the most recent publication shows figures as at 1 October 2008, can be found at:
Mr. Hutton: There are currently 18 UK armed forces personnel based in Pakistan. UK personnel undertake a variety of roles, including training and liaison. In addition, some personnel undertake diplomatic duties and fill exchange posts.
Information on outflow to civil life from the untrained strength of UK regular forces by sex and ethnic origin can be found in Table 7 of Tri-Service Publication (TSP) 4UK armed forces quarterly manning report. TSP 4 is published quarterly and, the most recent publication shows figures for the 12 months to 30 September 2008, can be found at:
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