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25 Jan 2010 : Column 531Wcontinued
Mr. Drew: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport whether there are mechanisms in place to compensate local authorities in circumstances in which companies contracted by them to provide salt have not fulfilled their contractual obligations as a result of the intervention of the Salt Cell. 
Mr. Khan: This is a matter for salt suppliers and their customers. The Salt Cell has been established only to advise salt suppliers which areas of the nation's road network have the greatest need for salt.
To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport (1) whether he has received
recent representations on (a) damage to roads in Wirral caused by ice and (b) (i) main roads and (ii) side roads in Wirral which have not yet been cleared of snow; 
(2) whether he has received recent representations on the damage caused to pavements on (a) main and (b) side roads in Wirral caused by ice and snow. 
Mr. Khan: The Department for Transport has not received any representations relating to local roads or pavements in Wirral, since the start of 2010, on (a) damage caused by ice and (b) main and side roads which have not yet been cleared of snow.
Anne Milton: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport how frequently the Government's Salt Cell meets during periods of extreme weather; how many times it has met since 19 December; and how frequently it plans to meet in 2011. 
Mr. Khan: The Salt Cell usually meets twice a week, although it will meet more or less frequently as the situation demands. In response to the current severe weather, the Salt Cell was convened on 6 January and has since met four times. The frequency of Salt Cell meetings in 2011 will be determined by the need for meetings, which will in turn be determined by the circumstances.
Mr. Stewart Jackson: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport what changes have been made to the requirements on local highways authorities to clear (a) roads and (b) pavements of snow and ice since 1997. 
Mr. Khan: Local highways authorities have a duty, under s41 of the Highways Act 1980 to maintain the highways in their charge, including footways. This duty had long been held to include keeping the highway serviceable in winter. However, in 2000 the House of Lords, in Goodes v . East Sussex CC ruled that the duty did not include an absolute requirement to clear snow and ice. The insertion in the 1980 Act, in 2003, of s41(1A) to specify that
"a highway authority are under a duty to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, that safe passage along a highway is not endangered by snow or ice"
established the present position.
Mr. Stewart Jackson: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport with reference to the contribution of Lord Davies of Oldham of 2 February 2004, Official Report, House of Lords, column 444, on footpaths and roads: de-icing, what guidance his Department has given to local authorities on (a) the personal liability of householders who seek to clear the pavement or highway of ice or snow and (b) whether local authorities should seek to discourage householders from clearing highways. 
Mr. Khan: The Department for Transport has given no guidance to local authorities on either matter.
Ben Chapman: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport how many requests the Highways Agency has received from Royal Mail to clear the roads (a) in Wirral, South constituency and (b) elsewhere in the last two months. 
Chris Mole: The Highways Agency is responsible only for the strategic road network (i.e. motorways and trunk roads) and has not received any requests from Royal Mail to clear the roads in either Wirral, South constituency or elsewhere on its network in the last two months.
Derek Wyatt: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport what recent reports he has received of fires appearing above the SS Richard Montgomery in the Thames Estuary; and if he will make a statement. 
Paul Clark: The wreck of the SS Richard Montgomery is kept under 24-hour surveillance by Medway Ports, under contract to the Maritime and Coastguard Agency. No such fires have been observed or reported.
Norman Baker: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport what scenarios have been run under the National Transport Model in the last five years. 
Mr. Khan: The National Transport Model (NTM) has been used to analyse scenarios with varying assumptions about: GDP growth, oil prices, fuel prices, population, vehicle fuel efficiency and several forms of transport policies and investment.
The latest forecasts from the NTM under several scenarios are available in "Road Traffic Forecasts 2008: Results from the Department for Transport's National Transport Model", which is available at:
Michael Fabricant: To ask the hon. Member for North Devon, representing the House of Commons Commission pursuant to the answer of 14 January 2010, Official Report, column 1065W, on 14 Tothill Street, what consideration the House of Commons Commission gave to siting the proposed nursery in the premises leased by the House of Commons at vacant space available at (a) 14 Tothill Street and (b) Number 4 Millbank leased by the House of Commons. 
Nick Harvey: 14 Tothill street and 4 Millbank, both of which are to be used as accommodation for House staff, were considered to be too far from the Palace to be sufficiently practical as the site of the nursery. In addition neither building allows a safe drop-off area which would lead to the children being exposed to higher risk from traffic incidents.
Grant Shapps: To ask the Leader of the House how much was spent on (a) strategy and planning, (b) design and build, (c) hosting and infrastructure, (d) content provision and (e) testing and evaluation for the Leader of the House's website in each of the last three years; and how much has been allocated for each such category of expenditure in 2009-10. 
Barbara Keeley: The Office of the Leader of the House joined the Cabinet Office in 2007. Information prior to 2007 and for the full 2007-08 financial year can therefore be provided only at disproportionate cost.
During the 2008-09 financial year, £24,155.39 was spent on the design and build of the Leader of the House of Commons website. £18,625 was spent on hosting and infrastructure. £1,170.79 was spent on content provision. No costs were incurred for the testing and evaluation and strategy and planning of the website.
The amounts include total external costs and do not include internal staff costs. Figures for the 2009-10 financial year will be available only when the Department's resource accounts have been fully audited and laid before Parliament. The position of the office website continues to be reviewed.
Mr. Hunt: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport when he expects Ofcom to designate the Advertising Standards Authority as the regulator for video on demand advertising under the Audiovisual Media Services Regulations 2009. 
Mr. Simon: The information requested is not held by my Department and relates to matters that are the responsibility of Ofcom.
Accordingly, I have asked the chief executive to write direct to the hon. Member for South West Surrey.
Copies of the reply will be placed in the Libraries of both Houses.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport (1) how many sites and monuments are in the guardianship of local authorities under the provisions of the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979; 
(2) which sites and monuments in the guardianship of the Secretary of State are covered by local management agreements with local authorities. 
Margaret Hodge: There are 32 sites and monuments in the guardianship of the Secretary of State that are covered by local management agreements with local authorities. Details of these sites by region have been supplied by English Heritage and are provided in the table:
East Sussex County Council together with Rye Harbour Nature Board
The information requested on sites and monuments in the guardianship of local authorities under the provisions of the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 is not held centrally but held at local level by individual local authorities.
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport how many times compulsory purchase powers under (a) the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 and (b) other legislation to protect sites and monuments of national importance
have been used by local authorities in the last 10 years; what sites have been so purchased; and on what dates. 
Margaret Hodge: The information is as follows:
(a) The Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 does not give local planning authorities compulsory purchase powers.
(b) Under the 1990 Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act, if it appears to the Secretary of State that reasonable steps are not being taken to properly preserve a listed building, he may authorise the appropriate authority to acquire compulsorily the building and any relevant land, or may himself compulsorily acquire them, although this is a reserve power used only in the case of nationally significant buildings.
There are a number of routes by which local authorities may acquire heritage buildings through compulsory purchase Order, the 1990 Act being only one. The Department for Culture, Media and Sport does not hold comprehensive information on all compulsory purchase powers enjoyed by local authorities for the purpose of protecting sites and monuments of national importance.
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