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15 Dec 2009 : Column 956Wcontinued
Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the (a) inflow and (b) outflow of cadet forces staff has been in each month of 2009 to date. 
Mr. Kevan Jones: This information is neither held centrally nor in the format requested, and could be provided only by a manual search of records thus incurring a disproportionate cost.
Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what the (a) inflow and (b) outflow has been of each cadet and combined cadet force in each month of 2009 to date; 
(2) what the (a) required and (b) actual number of cadet staff has been in each month of 2009 to date. 
Mr. Kevan Jones: Statistics on the strengths of the Adult Volunteers for cadet forces and each cadet and combined cadet force is contained within the document "TSP 7 Annual Publication UK Reserves and Cadets as at 1 April 2009." This is available in the Library of the House and at the following link:
Monthly information is neither held centrally nor in the format requested and could only be provided by a manual search of records at disproportionate cost.
We are greatly indebted to the superb commitment of the adult volunteers who continue to provide such a rewarding experience for the cadets in detachments throughout the country. I am extremely grateful to the Cadet Force Adult Volunteers for the commitment and leadership they continue to display.
Mr. Gerald Howarth: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what the (a) trained requirement, (b) trained strength and (c) fit for duty strength is of each pinch point trade; 
(2) what percentage of each pinch point trade is in breach of its harmony guidelines on individual separated service; 
(3) what the percentage shortfall of (a) trained requirement, (b) trained strength and (c) fit for duty strength of each pinch point trade is. 
Bill Rammell: Information detailing pinch point trades has been reclassified. I am withholding the information as its disclosure would, or would be likely to prejudice the capability, effectiveness or security of the armed forces.
The House of Commons Defence Committee will continue to be provided with information on the armed forces manning situation, including pinch point trades, under normal security exemptions.
John Battle: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many soldiers have been diagnosed with mental health problems following active service in Iraq. 
Mr. Kevan Jones: The MOD's Defence Analytical Services and Advice (DASA) organisation publishes statistics on first attendances to MOD's out-patient Departments of Community Mental Health (DCMHs) and its in-patient contractor, in the UK Armed Forces Psychiatric Morbidity reports. Quarterly and annual reports for the whole of 2007 and 2008, and quarterly reports for January to March and April to June 2009, are now available both in the Library of the House and on the DASA website at:
Equivalent verified data prior to 2007 are not available and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.
Mr. Lidington: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what his policy is on the funding of competitive sport as an element of adventurous training courses for members of the armed forces; whether this policy has changed during the last six months; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Kevan Jones [holding answer 14 December 2009]: Both competitive sport and adventurous training in the armed forces make a vital contribution to operational effectiveness, fighting spirit and personal development. They play an important part in service life including recruiting and retention. While some physical activities (canoeing, gliding, mountaineering, parachuting and sailing) can be authorised either as sport or adventurous training, a clear dividing line is drawn. If the activity is 'competitive' it is designated as 'sport' and conducted under the regulations of the relevant national governing body; non-competitive adventurous training is undertaken under the services' adventure training policy. Consequently, publicly-funded adventurous training courses do not involve competitive sport. This policy has not changed in the last six months.
Mr. Lidington: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the policy of his Department is on the funding of competitive sport involving (a) teams and (b) individuals from the armed services; whether that policy has changed during the last six months; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Kevan Jones [holding answer 14 December 2009]: Sport in the armed forces makes a vital contribution to operational effectiveness, fighting spirit and personal development. It plays an important part in service life including recruiting and retention. Consequently encouragement is given to service personnel to participate in a full range of sporting activities both as team members and individuals. For major sports facilities are provided at units and for all eligible sports public funding is provided, within laid down criteria, for equipment, travel and cash in lieu of rations. Sport is also supported by non-public funds. There has been no change to this policy in the last six months.
Mr. Lancaster: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether the training restrictions placed on the Officer Training Corps apply to (a) University Air Squadrons and (b) University Royal Naval Units. 
Bill Rammell: There are currently no training restrictions in place on the Officer Training Corps (OTC). Payments for officer cadets attending training have been suspended since October 2009 as part of a range of budgetary measures put forward by the Army this year. OTC activities are continuing on a voluntary basis, although travel and subsistence costs are being met and all cadets will have the opportunity to earn their annual bounty.
The Royal Air Force has made a 10 per cent. reduction in its university Air Squadron ground training budget for this financial year, the flying training budget has not
been affected. This has reduced some adventurous training activities, and annual paid training days for cadets have been reduced from 35 to 31.
No training restrictions have been placed on university Royal Navy units this year.
Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) whether his Department plans to continue using Bailey bridges; 
(2) how long it takes on average to construct a Bailey bridge in ideal conditions. 
Bill Rammell: The Bailey bridge is no longer used by the British Army. The requirement for long, clear span, high load class bridges is now met by the Logistic Support Bridge (LSB), which is a development of the Bailey bridge. While sharing some characteristics of the proven Bailey bridge system, the LSB has significantly improved performance; primarily due to improvements in design, manufacturing processes and raw materials.
The time taken to construct a LSB is dependant upon a myriad of different factors including the length of span required, the weight of. traffic that must be supported and crucially the conditions of, and access to the site where the bridge is required. As an illustrative example a 12 bay (36 m) bridge on a pristine site in ideal conditions would take 40 hours to erect. The bridge that was recently constructed in Cumbria (a 52 m span) took three and a half days of bridge construction, within a wider window of almost 10 days for all the associated preparation and support. Given the challenging conditions of this particular task, this is a considerable achievement.
Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the load capacity is of the Bailey bridge recently constructed over the River Derwent; and whether his Department plans to build a temporary road bridge over the River Derwent. 
Bill Rammell: The load capacity of the temporary footbridge built across the River Derwent is 4.5 tonnes. We are not aware of any plans for Cumbria county council or central Government to ask the Ministry of Defence for the construction of a road bridge, temporary or otherwise.
Mr. Carmichael: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence which of his Department's locations in the UK have recorded (a) laptop computers, (b) desktop computers and (c) memory sticks as having been (i) lost and (ii) stolen in each of the last 10 years. 
Mr. Kevan Jones [holding answer 14 December 2009]: This information is not held in the format requested and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.
Mr. Harper: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many and what percentage of parliamentary questions tabled for written answer by his Department on a named day in session 2008-09 received a substantive Answer on that day. 
Mr. Kevan Jones: I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave on 9 December 2009, Official Report, column 367W, to the hon. Member for Glasgow, East (John Mason).
Central guidance on answering parliamentary questions is now available in the "Guide to Parliamentary Work", at the following link:
In the response to the Procedure Committee Report on written parliamentary questions, the Government accepted the Committee's recommendation that Departments will be required to provide the Procedure Committee with sessional statistics in a standard format on the time taken to respond to written parliamentary questions, accompanied by an explanatory memorandum setting out any factors affecting their performance. This will be taken forward as soon as possible.
Sir Peter Viggers: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what plans there are to continue the activities of those Army Cadet Force units which use the Browndown military accommodation following its planned closure. 
Mr. Kevan Jones: Cornwall Army Cadet Force (ACF) was the only ACF which used Browndown for its annual camp. This will now take place at Penhale or St. Mawgan. 145 Brigade's central training camps for adults and senior cadets were formerly held at Browndown. These will now be run at Bicester Garrison, Longmoor or Malta Lines in Aldershot, depending on availability.
Mr. Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the order of battle of the Naval Strike Wing is; where it is based; and what its command structure is. 
Bill Rammell: The Naval Strike Wing (NSW) is part of Joint Force Harrier (JFH) which is based at RAF Cottesmore. NSW flies the Harrier GR9 aircraft and comprises 197 personnel, including 16 pilots. Commanding Officer NSW, a Royal Navy (RN) Commander, is directly responsible to the JFH Force Commander (FC), a RAF Group Captain, who is also Station Commander at RAF Cottesmore.
The JFH FC is responsible to Air Officer Commanding (AOC) No. 1 Group, RAF Air Command, through Captain Harrier, a RN manned position within HQ No. 1 Group, RAF Air Command-AOC 1 Gp is the Aircraft Operating Authority for all JFH aircraft, aircrew and support personnel.
Mr. Crabb: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many times a search and rescue helicopter from RMB Chivenor was operational off the coast of Pembrokeshire in (a) day time and (b) night time in each of the last five years. 
Bill Rammell: The number of search and rescue call outs from RMB Chivenor off the coast of Pembrokeshire are shown in the following table. Day time call outs have been interpreted as between 0800 and 1959. Call outs have been defined as those within a 25 mile radius of the Pembrokeshire coastline.
|(1) Up to 30 September.|
Mr. Crabb: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what estimate he has made of the helicopter flying time from (a) RMB Chivenor, (b) RAF Valley, (c) RNAS Culdrose and (d) Solent Coastguard to Pembrokeshire. 
Bill Rammell: The current average helicopter flying times, to the risk areas covering Pembrokeshire and its surrounding coastal waters, together with the estimated flying times for the future UK Search and Rescue-Helicopter (SAR-H) service are provided in the following table.
|Current (minutes)||Future (minutes)|
We continue to meet our national requirement of reaching all very high, all high and 75 per cent. of medium risk areas well within one hour of take off.
David T.C. Davies: To ask the Minister for the Olympics how many Christmas trees were purchased by her Office in each year since its was established; what the cost was of those trees in each year; from where the trees were sourced; what account was taken of the sustainability of the sources of the trees; and by what process the trees were disposed of. 
Tessa Jowell: My office has not purchased any Christmas trees since it was established.
Mr. Baron: To ask the Minister for the Olympics which conferences held overseas have been attended by civil servants based in her Department since its inception; and what the cost to the public purse was of such attendance at each conference. 
Tessa Jowell: Information on overseas conferences attended by civil servants in the Cabinet Office and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) will be covered in the answers provided by the Minister of State, Cabinet Office and the Under-Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, my hon. Friend the Member for Birmingham, Erdington (Mr. Simon) respectively.
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