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23 Jun 2010 : Column 235W—continued

Nuclear Weapons

Mr Mike Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether his re-examination of the UK declaratory nuclear policy will include consideration of compliance with the commitments in the final document of the 2010 Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference. [3613]

Dr Fox: The Strategic Defence and Security Review will examine all relevant elements of the UK's nuclear
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declaratory policy. It is not the purpose of this review to examine compliance with the Non Proliferation Treaty Review Conference (NPT RevCon), which sets out action plans for the international community to make progress against the three pillars of the NPT. The outcome of the NPT RevCon was a good result, and the Government fully support the Chairman's record and agreed action plan from the NPT RevCon.

Caroline Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 7 June 2010, Official Report, column 511W, on Trident, what the re-examination of the UK's declaratory nuclear policy will include; and what issues related to the replacement of Trident in addition to value for money issues will be considered within the framework of the Strategic Defence and Security Review. [3809]

Dr Fox: The Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR) will re-examine all the constituent parts that together form the UK's declaratory nuclear policy. This will be done against a background of the political and security environment facing the UK.

In addition to the Trident value for money review, the SDSR will look at wider maritime and other conventional forces required to support the nuclear deterrent and the sustainability of the UK submarine industrial base.

RAF Kinloss

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many incidents there have been involving wildlife on the runways at RAF Kinloss in each of the last five years. [2624]

Nick Harvey: The number of incidents involving wildlife on the runway at RAF Kinloss over the last five years are shown in the table:

Number of incidents












John Woodcock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what assessment will be made of the merits of alternatives to the Trident successor deterrent programme in his Trident value for money review; and if he will make a statement. [3838]

Dr Fox: The alternatives to a submarine launched ballistic missile submarine have previously been analysed comprehensively and discounted, either because they could not provide an effective deterrent capability or because they cost more. The value for money study is reviewing the existing plan for the Trident successor.


Ann Coffey: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many ships of each class there are in the Royal Navy. [3569]

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Peter Luff: The information requested is provided in the following table:


Aircraft Carriers


Amphibious Ships


Type 42 Destroyers


Type 45 Destroyers


Type 22 Frigates


Type 23 Frigates


Antarctic Patrol Ship


Hunt Class Minehunters


Sandown Class Minehunters


Survey Ships


Offshore Patrol Vessel


River Class Patrol Vessels


Gibraltar Squadron


Faslane Squadron


Archer Class Fast Training Boats (University Royal Navy Units)


In addition, the Royal Navy has 11 submarines (ballistic and fleet).



Ed Balls: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how many full-time equivalent civil servants in his Department are engaged in work on policy development and programme delivery in relation to academy schools. [1210]

Michael Gove: There are currently around 115 civil servants in the Department for Education engaged directly in work on policy development and programme delivery related to academy schools. There is a substantial number of other civil servants in the Department who make a significant contribution to policy development and programme delivery related to academy schools as part of their wider role. In addition there are 47 staff in the Young People's Learning Agency involved in funding and supporting open academies.

Departmental Manpower

Mr Anderson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what his estimate is of the cost to the public purse of proposed reductions in numbers of non-frontline staff in his Department and its agencies. [487]

Michael Gove: The Department for Education is subject to the same recruitment restrictions as all other Government Departments. It has not yet identified any necessary additional reductions to its non-frontline staff and therefore cannot provide any estimate in relation to cost.

The cost to the Department of any release payments this year will be disclosed in the Department's resource accounts for 2010/11.

Departmental Reorganisation

Mr Watson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education whether his Department has (a) taken on new responsibilities and (b) transferred responsibilities to other departments since its renaming. [1918]

Michael Gove: The Department for Education has retained the same responsibilities for schools, children services and families-the renaming reflects the new
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Department's core purpose of supporting teaching and learning. At the same time we remain committed to supporting children and families, so that all can achieve their potential. We are clear that whilst school reform is a priority so is strengthening and reforming children's services. We are determined to give parents more support and make Britain the most family-friendly country in Europe.

The only change to the Department's responsibilities since the renaming is the agreement with the Justice Secretary that the Ministry of Justice would have sole responsibility for youth justice in the new coalition Government. Responsibility for youth justice was previously shared between departments supported by a Joint Youth Justice Unit. We agreed that it was important that one Department, the Ministry of Justice, was clearly accountable for this important area of reform.

Carers: Children

Mr Stewart Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what his most recent estimate is of the number of grandparents and extended kin providing unpaid care for children in England and Wales; and if he will make a statement. [2934]

Sarah Teather: The Department does not collect figures on the numbers of grandparents and extended kin who provide child care. However in 2008, the Childcare and Early Years Survey of Parents found that: 26% of all families had used grandparents to provide child care; 5% had used an older sibling; and, 6% had used another relative. The number of families in 2008 using informal childcare as a whole (which included grandparents, ex-partners, older siblings, other relatives and a friend or neighbour) was estimated at 2,116,000.


Debts: Interest Charges

Kate Hoey: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will estimate the revenue that would be raised in 2010-11 if the tax deductibility of interest payments on debt were removed from (a) financial and (b) private non-financial corporations. [3409]

Mr Gauke: The revenue that would be accrued in 2010-11 if the tax deductibility of net interest payments on debt were removed for private non-financial corporations is estimated to be around £5.5 billion. No estimate has been made for financial corporations.

Northern Rock

Katy Clark: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what his policy is on the eligibility for compensation of former shareholders in Northern Rock consequent upon the transfer of shares to public ownership. [3502]

Mr Hoban: The Northern Rock plc Compensation Scheme Order 2008 provides that the compensation payable to

(on 21 February 2008) shall be determined by an independent valuer in accordance with that order.

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On 30 March 2010, the independent valuer, Andrew Caldwell, issued Assessment Notices to shareholders, setting out his final determinations as to the amount of any compensation payable. He found there was no value in Northern Rock's shares prior to the company being taken into temporary public ownership, and therefore no compensation is payable by the Treasury to former shareholders or other persons affected by the Transfer Order.

Under the Northern Rock Compensation Scheme Order 2008 any persons affected by a determination of the valuer may require the valuer to reconsider his decision. Mr Caldwell is currently considering the requests for reconsideration that he has received and will in due course issue Revised Assessment Notices to those who submitted requests. If any affected party is dissatisfied with a Revised Assessment Notice, he may refer the matter to the Upper Tribunal.

Taxation: Aviation

Catherine McKinnell: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will undertake an economic impact assessment of the proposed adoption of a per-plane tax on regional airports. [3604]

Justine Greening: The Government will explore changes to aviation tax, including switching from a per-passenger to a per-plane duty. Major changes will be subject to consultation.

Work and Pensions

Departmental Public Expenditure

Gordon Banks: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the monetary value is of the planned reductions in his Department's spending. [3780]

Chris Grayling: HM Treasury announced on 24 May that the Department for Work and Pensions would make efficiencies of £535 million to contribute towards the £6.243 billion of cross-Government savings for the current year. The emergency Budget on 22 June set out the overall envelope for Government spending for the years 2011-12 to 2014-15 and detailed departmental allocations for the spending review will be announced on 20 October 2010.


Yvette Cooper: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions which welfare to work and employment projects will be replaced by his Department's work programme. [3901]

Chris Grayling: We are finalising the details but the majority of current welfare to work programmes will be replaced by the new Work Programme; for example, the Flexible New Deal and Pathways to Work will be folded into the Work Programme.

This Government are committed to providing targeted support and will be introducing a single, integrated work programme to deliver personalised support for the unemployed and ensure that the right kind of support is available to all who need it. We will publish further details as the design and implementation of the Work Programme progresses.

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Employment Schemes: Homelessness

Mark Lazarowicz: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what plans he has to support homeless people seeking employment. [3324]

Chris Grayling: The Government have announced that they will introduce the Work Programme, which will offer a single, integrated programme of personalised support to unemployed people, regardless of the benefit they claim. Within this, we will ensure that homeless people and other disadvantaged groups have access to the levels of support that they need.

In order to ensure the best support from providers for the harder-to-help, we will offer stronger incentives for them to work with these groups, and will pay them out of the additional benefits they realise by moving people into work.

We aim to have the Work Programme in place by summer 2011.

The first cross-government Ministerial Working Group on Preventing and Tackling Homelessness met on 16 June. The working group will explore how we can improve on current arrangements and equip greater numbers of homeless people to come off benefits and into work, through better co-ordination of local services.

Employment: Young People

Yvette Cooper: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions on what estimate of the number of 18 to 24 year olds reaching the (a) six-month and (b) 10-month threshold under the youth guarantee scheme his estimate of the cost of delivering that scheme in (i) 2010-11 and (ii) 2011-12 is based. [3903]

Chris Grayling: The DWP does not forecast unemployment. In 2010-11 the Young Person's Guarantee will be offered to every eligible young person when they reach the six month point of their claim to jobseeker's allowance.

Yvette Cooper: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions on what estimate of his Department's expenditure on (a) Routes Into Work, (b) the Future Jobs Fund, (c) Work-focused Training, (d) the Community Task Force, (e) internships and (f) New Deal places his Department's plans for the Young Person's Guarantee in 2010-11 are based. [3904]

Chris Grayling: The Young Person's Guarantee is demand-led therefore a breakdown of the expected expenditure is not available.

The Government are committed to providing targeted support and will be introducing a single, integrated work programme to deliver personalised support for the unemployed, delivering long lasting benefits with a greater focus on sustained employment.

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