Mr Knight: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will take steps to instruct or encourage local authorities to (a) allow taxis, motorcycles and electrically-powered vehicles into bus lanes and (b) remove non-contra-flow bus lane restrictions at non-peak times. 
Norman Baker [holding answer 8 February 2011]: Bus lanes are provided to give buses priority at times of congestion. It is for local highway authorities to determine which, if any, other classes of vehicle may be allowed to use bus lanes in their area.
Decisions on bus lane operating hours are also for the local highway authority, taking into account local factors such as bus timetable frequency and patterns of traffic congestion. Many bus lanes operate at peak hours only, and outside these hours, any vehicle can use the lane.
Mark Tami: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment he has made of the merits of requiring vehicle owners to display proof of insurance on the windscreen of their vehicles; and if he will make a statement. 
Mike Penning: A system of requiring vehicles to display evidence that a vehicle is insured by means of a windscreen disc has been considered. However, UK law requires the driver to be insured, rather than the vehicle; a disc would not guarantee that the person behind the wheel was insured to drive. In addition, the disc would only be evidence that somebody had insurance cover for the use of the vehicle at the time when the disc was issued and would not demonstrate whether insurance was currently valid.
Esther McVey: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what steps his Department is taking to ensure that Network Rail completes the planned electrification of rail lines between Manchester, Liverpool, Preston and Blackpool; and what estimate he has made of the likely (a) cost to the public purse and (b) completion date of the project. 
The Department for Transport and the Office of Rail Regulation meet Network Rail formally every month to discuss the progress of the electrification programme. I expect that the first electric trains will start running in 2013 and the project will be completed by 2016 at an estimated cost of up to £300 million. This will be funded using the Network Rail Regulated Asset
Base, which is financed as part of the five yearly determinations by the Office of Rail Regulation that establishes the grant paid to Network Rail by the Department.
Mrs Villiers: There are no plans to introduce a measure to encourage rail freight in passenger franchise obligations. However, the Department will take freight into full account in franchise specification, and in any reforms to Network Rail and operator relationships that may be implemented as a result of Sir Roy McNulty's recommendations on value for money.
Peter Aldous: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) whether his Department has made an assessment of the likely economic effects on Lowestoft of the removal of direct train services from Lowestoft to London; 
Mrs Villiers: Direct services between London and Lowestoft ceased operation in December 2010. This was part of a wider package of service changes which provided more seats across the Anglia network as a whole. The analysis carried out by the Department for Transport focused on the financial impact across the whole franchise. It did not carry out a specific analysis of the impact on Lowestoft.
The Department for Transport does not intend to include a specific provision about through services between Lowestoft and London in the new long-term Greater Anglia franchise. Bidders will, however, be encouraged to develop timetable proposals which maximise the value of the franchise and the benefit for passengers. It is possible that these might include new journey opportunities should there be a case for doing so.
Albert Owen: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what potential procurement options are now in place for search and rescue helicopters in the UK; whether these options include maintaining continuity of search and rescue services in the short and mid-term; and if he will make a statement. 
Mike Penning: I refer the hon. Member to the written statement made to the House by the Secretary of State for Transport on 8 February 2010, Official Report, column 7WS. The Department for Transport and the Ministry of Defence will now consider the potential procurement options to meet future requirements for search and rescue helicopters in the United Kingdom and we will make an announcement once a way forward has been agreed.
Esther McVey: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what plans his Department has to make (a) new and (b) additional rolling stock available to operate on electrified rail lines between Manchester, Liverpool, Preston and Blackpool. 
Mrs Villiers: It is currently planned that the rail industry will lead on the procurement of new trains for Manchester airport to Preston and Scotland services due to operate from December 2013 and that the remainder of electrified services are expected to be operated by cascaded electric trains freed up as a result of the Thameslink project.
Graeme Morrice: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of changing information technology infrastructure as part of the proposed reorganisation of coastal emergency services. 
Mike Penning: The proposal to reorganise HM Coastguard is not based on implementing new technology. The technology element of this programme uses the latest version of existing technology currently installed in the Maritime Rescue Co-ordination Centres. It seeks to fully exploit functionality that is currently not used.
The total capital cost of the rationalised HM Coastguard infrastructure over the four-year period (2011-12 to 2014-15) and 25 years is £14 million and £74 million respectively. Of these figures the information technology infrastructure element is £2.5 million over the four-year period (2011-12 to 2014-15) and £12.6 million over 25 years. These figures include capital spend of £0.65 million over the four-year period (2011-12 to 2014-15) and £3.5 million over 25 years which is not directly delivering, but necessary for, the changes as outlined in the document 'Protecting our Seas and Shores in the 21st Century'. The remaining capital costs relate to the reconfiguring of the HM Coastguard communications infrastructure and estate.
Graeme Morrice: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether he has undertaken a cost-benefit analysis in respect of the change of information technology infrastructure as part of the proposed reorganisation of coastal emergency services. 
Mike Penning: The proposal to reorganise HM Coastguard is not based on implementing new technology. The technology element of this programme uses the latest version of existing technology currently installed in the Maritime Rescue Co-ordination Centres. It seeks to fully exploit functionality that is currently not used.
The cost/benefit of the refresh, together with other factors, was taken into account in the efficiency and value for money assessment set out at pages 37 and 38 of the consultation document "Protecting our Seas and Shores in the 21(st) Century".
All elements of this proposal would deliver a fully integrated national network that can be more resilient and more capable of managing a major incident with the flexibility to match workforce to workload. This will at the same time reduce long term running costs and capital expenditure and generate a total saving, in net present value terms, of some £120 million over 25 years.
Ms Ritchie: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what recent discussions he has had with the (a) Office of First and Deputy First Minister, (b) Northern Ireland Coastguard and (c) Irish Coast Guard on the HM Coastguard Proposals for Modernisation consultation. 
Mike Penning: I am to visit staff at the Belfast Maritime Rescue Co-ordination Centre on 17 February 2011 to discuss the HM Coastguard proposals for modernising the Coastguard. I will be meeting both the First and Deputy First Ministers on the same day.
The Maritime and Coastguard Agency are arranging a briefing session through the Office of the First and Deputy First Ministers for Members of the Northern Ireland Assembly. In addition, they have regular discussions with the Director of the Irish Coastguard on coastguard issues including on the proposals for modernisation.
Lady Hermon: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many (a) UK-registered ships and (b) foreign flagged ships were inspected by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency in each of the last 12 months; what the country of registration was of each such foreign-flagged ship; at what location each such inspection took place; and whether prior notice of inspection was given in each instance. 
Prior notice is not normally given for an inspection. However, in the case of UK registered vessels, prior notice is given if an inspection is to be carried out in conjunction with a survey. However the number of such cases is not held.
Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what regulations apply to pilots remotely flying unmanned aircraft in UK airspace that is under the jurisdiction of the Civil Aviation Authority from within a foreign nation. 
Mrs Villiers: The regulations applicable to the operation of unmanned aircraft in UK airspace are explained in the Civil Aviation Authority's publication CAP 722: Unmanned Aircraft System Operations in UK Airspace-Guidance. This can be downloaded from:
Tim Loughton: Information on librarians who hold Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) approved academic qualifications, including certified and chartered status, in the Department and its predecessors is set out in the following table:
|Permanent||Temporary agency contract|
Mr Iain Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what (a) directorates and (b) teams there are in his Department; what the responsibility of each is for (i) policy formation and (ii) policy delivery; and how many people at each payband work in each team. 
Thomas Docherty: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 4 February 2011, Official Report, column 980W, on armed forces: education, what figures have been provided to his Department by (a) the Department for Education and (b) the Scottish Executive on the likely capacity to receive children of returning service personnel of schools situated in the vicinity of each base considered for the stationing of such personnel to be withdrawn from Germany; and if he will publish the data he has received. 
Nick Harvey: The Ministry of Defence has not received any figures on the likely capacity of schools situated in the vicinity of each base considered for the stationing of armed forces personnel to be withdrawn from Germany, to receive children of returning troops.
Nicholas Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the establishment and structure of the infantry is; and what its establishment will be after the implementation of the outcome of the strategic defence and security review. 
In addition to the battalions shown above, there are three incremental guards companies whose primary role is public duties but which can also be used to augment the other guards battalions as required:
Nijmegen Coy Grenadier Guards
7 Coy Coldstream Guards
F Coy SCOTS Guards
Mr Kevan Jones:
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list all seizures of narcotics by the
Royal Navy in the Caribbean in each of the last five years. 
Nick Harvey: The primary purposes of the Royal Navy's deployment to the Caribbean (Atlantic Patrol Task (North)) are the promotion of UK interests in the region and the provision of security to UK Overseas Territories, including support to humanitarian operations and disaster relief. Counter-narcotic activities are carried out as operational commitments and resources allow and we will continue to provide this capability through the use of a Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) vessel enhanced with an additional naval party, a helicopter and law enforcement detachment.
|Month||Unit||Quantity||Estimated value (£ million)|
|(1) Assessed by RMP.|
1. Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA) estimates, as at June 2009, of UK street values have been applied to all seizures, unless stated otherwise.
2. Where only the number of bales is known/estimated but not their weight, no street value can be estimated retrospectively.
Mr Kevan Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what estimate he has made of the likely level of savings to his Department following the withdrawal of the Royal Navy from anti-narcotic and disaster relief work in the Caribbean; 
Nick Harvey: The decision not to send a destroyer or frigate to the Caribbean region during 2011 was taken on the basis of available capability and not as a savings measure. The ship that had been identified for this task will be redeployed elsewhere and will, therefore, continue to incur operational costs. The financial implications are still being assessed.
For 2011, it is assessed that a destroyer or frigate is not required for the Atlantic Patrol Task (North) and that a Royal Fleet Auxiliary ship, enhanced with a naval party, law enforcement detachment and helicopter during the core hurricane season, has the necessary capabilities to provide support to UK Overseas Territories
in the Caribbean region. This will provide a permanent presence, able to respond to the full range of foreseeable contingencies, including disaster relief, and to contribute to counter narcotics where spare capacity allows. I am confident that this will enable the UK to meet its commitment to the region and, as such, no discussions with representatives of Caribbean nations are planned.
We expect that the Royal Navy will continue to meet commitments in priority regions such as the north and south Atlantic, the Indian ocean, as well as in home waters. Maritime commitments are regularly reviewed and adjusted where necessary to reflect changing requirements.
Nick Harvey: The primary purposes of the Royal Navy's deployment to the Caribbean (Atlantic Patrol Task (North)) are the promotion of UK interests in the region and the provision of security to UK Overseas Territories, including support to humanitarian operations and disaster relief. We will continue to provide support to disaster relief through the presence of a Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) vessel.
Nick Harvey: The Government published a Green Paper in December 2010 on "Equipment, Support and Technology for UK Defence and Security: a Consultation Paper". The Green Paper asked for views on the ways in which the Government can ensure that the UK creates and retains the skills necessary to support essential national security capabilities; which skills and capabilities are most vulnerable and what might be done to protect them. The outcomes of the current consultation process on the Green Paper will be taken forward in to a White Paper which will be published later this year.
Jon Trickett: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether all new contracts his Department has tendered over £10,000 have been published with associated tender documents on the Contracts Finder website since its inception. 
Nick Harvey: As at 31 January 2011, the Ministry of Defence (MOD) had published nine tenders and 10 contracts. Publication of a further 63 tenders and 72 contracts has been delayed by system issues between the contracts finder (the Efficiency Reform Group (ERG) Transparency web portal) and the MOD's information networks.
By agreement with the ERG, the MOD is currently not publishing tenders and contracts relating to: Warlike Stores (as defined under article 346 of the treaty of the functioning of the European Union), and information exempt under section 23 of FOI Act (Intelligence Agency or Special Forces).
Stephen Gilbert: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what his policy is on the proposal for a team of wise men on European defence co-operation considered by EU Defence Ministers in December 2010; and if he will make a statement. 
Nick Harvey: There has been no decision yet to appoint a team of wise men. As part of the wider analysis of pooling and sharing of military capabilities in Europe, the European Defence Agency has been asked to examine proposals to take this initiative forward and to consider the use of such a team. We will study the business case for the team in due course. We are clear that work done in the EU must be co-ordinated with work under way in NATO and elsewhere.
Stephen Gilbert: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what criteria he plans to use to assess the performance of the European Defence Agency against (a) its objectives and (b) future UK membership of the agency. 
Mr Gerald Howarth [holding answer 10 February 2011]: We will assess whether the European Defence Agency (EDA) is supporting participating member states by delivering outputs to develop military capability. Any future UK decision regarding our membership of the EDA will be based on our national priorities and interests, including whether we are achieving value for money for the UK taxpayer through our participation.
Mr Kennedy: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what steps his Department has taken to implement the Defence and Security Co-operation treaty since the UK-France summit of 2 November 2010; and if he will make a statement. 
There have been regular bilateral discussions including between Defence Ministers, the National Security Advisor, the Chief of Defence Staff, and the Vice Chief of Defence Staff and their counterparts. We have discussed
co-operation in the areas of operations, equipment, and capabilities. We have agreed a set of common objectives for this calendar year.
We will build on the existing close links between our armed forces in the coming months with a number of bilateral exercises with France aimed at increasing the levels of interoperability between our armed forces.
Stephen Gilbert: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether any other nations apart from France and the UK may be involved in the Franco-British joint brigade announced in November 2010; and on what basis. 
Dr Fox [holding answer 10 February 2011]: We confirmed at last year's bilateral summit that we would develop a Combined Joint Expeditionary Force with France and not a Brigade. It will foster closer links between our armed forces and improve their ability to deploy together on operations in the future. It will not involve standing forces. We currently have no plans to involve other nations in this initiative.
Stephen Gilbert: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what progress has been achieved by the Senior Level Group on Franco-British defence co-operation to date; and if he will make a statement; 
Dr Fox [holding answer 10 February 2011]: Since the UK-France summit last November there have been regular bilateral discussions on defence and security co-operation with France including between Defence Ministers, the National Security Advisor, the Chief of Defence Staff, and the Vice Chief of Defence Staff and their counterparts. The Senior Level Group will meet formally later in the year to review progress on co-operation and to prepare the defence and security elements of this year's annual bilateral summit.
Hywel Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many payments of compensation in respect of low flying have been made to recipients in (a) Wales, (b) England and (c) Scotland in each of the last three years; and what the monetary value of each such payment was. 
Nick Harvey: The number of payments of compensation (including legal costs) made in respect of military low flying aircraft to claimants in Wales, England and Scotland in each of the last three financial years is shown in the following table, together with the total amount of compensation paid. I will write to the hon. Member shortly giving details of the monetary value of each payment.
|Number of claims||Amount paid (£)||Number of claims||Amount paid (£)||Number of claims||Amount paid (£)|
Nick Harvey: No new organisational structures have been put in place. The work to address the range of issues affecting the Defence Estate following the strategic defence and security review is being carried out by Ministry of Defence (MOD) civilian and service personnel across the Department. It is being undertaken under their normal responsibilities as part of the MOD's annual planning round.
Albert Owen: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what his most recent assessment if of the extent of future provision of search and rescue helicopters at RAF bases; what plans he has for the future provision of such services at RAF bases; and if he will make a statement. 
Nick Harvey: I refer the hon. Member to the written statement made the Secretary of State for Transport, my right hon. Friend the Member for Runnymede and Weybridge (Mr Hammond) on 8 February 2010, Official Report, columns 7-8WS. The Department for Transport and the Ministry of Defence will now consider the potential procurement options to meet future requirements for search and rescue helicopters in the United Kingdom and we will make an announcement once a way forward has been agreed.
Nicholas Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the establishment and structure of the Royal Armoured Corps is; and what its establishment will be after the implementation of the outcome of the Strategic Defence and Security Review. 
Nick Harvey: The Household Cavalry and Royal Armoured Corps personnel are grouped as one arm because they perform similar roles. The total liability for all Household Cavalry and Royal Armoured Corps personnel is 5,778.
Household Cavalry Regiment
Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment
Queens Dragoon Guards
SCOTS Dragoon Guards
Royal Dragoon Guards
Queens Royal Hussars
Kings Royal Hussars
Queens Royal Lancers
Joint Chemical Biological Radiological and Nuclear Regiment
1 Royal Tank Regiment Armoured Squadron
2 Royal Tank Regiment
Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what permissions are required for unmanned aerial vehicle flights by aircraft over 150kg in airspace controlled by the Civil Aviation Authority. 
The regulations applicable to the operation of unmanned aircraft in UK airspace are explained in the Civil Aviation Authority's publication CAP 722: Unmanned Aircraft System Operations in UK Airspace-Guidance. This can be downloaded from:
Ms Ritchie: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what proportion of primary energy consumption in (a) England, (b) Scotland, (c) Northern Ireland and (d) Wales was accounted for by natural gas in the last year for which figures are available. 
Charles Hendry: The Digest of UK Energy Statistics (DUKES), shows that in 2009 natural gas accounted for 39.4% of primary energy consumption in the UK. No breakdown of primary energy consumption is available for the individual UK nations.
Caroline Nokes: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change if he will bring forward proposals to protect consumers from anti-competitive practices in the heating oil industry. 
I refer the hon. Member to the written ministerial statement I gave on 21 January 2011, Official Report, column 55WS. I am keen that the reasons for the high heating oil prices and supply issues this winter are thoroughly investigated by an independent authority. I have written to the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) on 19 January to ask it to bring forward its competition and consumer study into off-grid energy. I also asked the OFT if the study could explore longer term consumer issues such as lifetime payback, consumer standards and labelling for alternative energy sources or supplies.
I welcome the independent assessment of the off-grid market to be made by the OFT, and we look forward to seeing its conclusions in advance of next winter so the lessons from this winter can be learned and any necessary changes made.
Stephen Timms: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what plans he has to publish further information on the technologies to be supported by the Renewable Heat Incentive scheme. 
Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change on what date the Government first introduced subsidies to encourage the development of wind power; and what estimate he has made of the total subsidy provided for wind power since that date. 
Charles Hendry: The renewables obligation (RO) is currently the Government's main mechanism for incentivising large scale renewables deployment. Between its introduction in April 2002 and March 2010 it has provided approximately £2.2 billion of support (in 2010-11 prices) to 34.7 million megawatt hours (MWh) of wind power generation.
The Offshore Wind Capital Grants Scheme announced in 2001 by the DTI awarded capital grants totalling £97 million from the Department (of which £36.95 million was disbursed) and a further £10 million from the New Opportunities Fund in the years 2004-05 to 2009-10. Further details are available in the National Audit Office's report 'Government Funding for Renewable Energy Technologies', published in June 2010, which considered the Government's direct support for renewable energy from 2000 to 2009:
Gloria De Piero:
To ask the hon. Member for Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross, representing the House of Commons Commission, (1) how much
funding the Commission has allocated for the acquisition of new works of art for the House of Commons art collection in (a) 2010-11 and (b) 2011-12; 
John Thurso: In recent years, up to and including 2009-10, the annual allocation for acquisition of items for the House of Commons Art Collection has been £100,000. The funding allocated in 2010-11 is £50,000. The planned allocation for 2011-12 is also £50,000. The latest valuation of the works of art acquired between 1 April 2000 and 31 March 2010 is £1.47 million. No valuation exists for works of art acquired before April 2000.
Caroline Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions pursuant to the answer of 14 December 2010, Official Report, column 698W, on child benefit, whether he has now considered the full implications of the changes announced to child benefit to ensure that those entitled continue to receive national insurance credits towards their state pension; and if he will make a statement. 
Steve Webb: We are continuing to consider the full implications of the changes announced to child benefit to ensure that those entitled continue to receive national insurance credits towards their state pension.
Gareth Johnson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many people in the weather station area covering Dartford constituency received cold weather payments in each of the last two years. 
|Estimated number of benefit units that received at least one cold weather payment for weather stations linked to postcode districts in Dartford constituency|
1. The information provided is Management Information. Our preference is to answer all parliamentary questions using Official/National Statistics but in this case we only have Management Information available. It is not quality assured to the same extent as Official/National Statistics and there are some issues with the data, for example, figures given are estimates. Actuals are not available. Estimates for 2010-11 may be revised after the end of the cold weather payment season, but will still be estimates not actuals.
2. A cold weather payment is made to an eligible customer when the average temperature has been recorded as, or is forecast to be, 0° C or below over seven consecutive days at the weather station linked to the customer's postcode. (When the temperature criterion is met, the weather station is said to trigger.)
3. Each of Charlwood and Gravesend weather stations is linked both to an area within Dartford constituency and also to an area outside Dartford constituency. Estimated numbers given are for the weather station as a whole, not for the part of Dartford constituency linked to the weather station.
4. Estimates of potential qualifiers for each weather station for 2010-11 were made at the beginning of the winter. Both Charlwood and Gravesend weather stations have already triggered this winter, so the estimated number of benefit units that received at least one cold weather payment in 2010-11 will not change during the rest of the winter. The estimates for 2010-11 may be revised once the national out-turn for the winter is known.
|5. Cold weather payments are made to benefit units. A benefit unit can be a single person or a couple and can include children.|
6. Some benefit units received more than one payment in a year.
7. Estimated numbers have been rounded to the nearest 100.
1. Postcode districts in the Dartford constituency: analysis of National Statistics Postcode Directory
2. Postcode district to weather station links: Department for Work and Pensions records
3. Records of triggers and estimates of potential qualifiers by weather station: Department for Work and Pensions records
Jon Trickett: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions whether all new contracts his Department has tendered over £10,000 have been published with associated tender documents on the Contracts Finder website since its inception. 
Chris Grayling: DWP has only had access to Contracts Finder from the beginning of January 2011 and thus has a backlog of cases to load. We are urgently working through the backlog and expecting to be fully up to date by March 2011.
Jon Trickett: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions which persons not employed by Government departments or agencies hold passes entitling them to enter his Department's premises. 
Chris Grayling: Passes may be issued to those who are required to make regular visits to specific Government sites, subject to relevant security checks. For security reasons it would not be appropriate to provide details of the individuals who hold such passes.
Dame Anne Begg: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions whether claimants who have migrated from non-means-tested incapacity benefit to employment and support allowance (ESA) will lose their entitlement to contributory ESA if they have been in receipt of it for 12 months as at April 2012. 
Chris Grayling: As part of the spending review announcement, we have set out our intention to introduce a time limit of one year for those claiming contributory employment and support allowance (ESA) and who are placed in the Work Related Activity Group (WRAG) only. This includes those people who have been converted from incapacity benefits as part of the reassessment programme.
Mr Gordon Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many (a) young and (b) disabled people resident in Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath constituency have found employment through the New Deal in each year since 2001. 
Mr Gordon Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what assessment he has made of the likely change in employment rates in Scotland among those (a) aged 16 to 24 and (b) of all age groups between (i) 2008 and 2013 and (ii) 2013 and 2020; and whether he has had discussions with the Scottish Government on its forecasts for such groups. 
Chris Grayling: The Department does not produce forecasts of employment. The Office for Budget Responsibility publishes forecasts of employment, the most recent being in the autumn statement, but these are at United Kingdom level only, covering all age groups.
Mr Donohoe: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many people resident in Central Ayrshire constituency were awarded industrial injuries disablement benefit for osteoarthritis in the latest period for which figures are available. 
We do not have information on the numbers of successful claims for either disease at constituency level, but can provide the numbers of successful claims for osteoarthritis of the knee in coal miners at the national level. The number of farmers paid benefit for osteoarthritis of the hip is not currently available.
Since the addition of osteoarthritis of the knee to the list of prescribed industrial diseases on 13 July 2009, 18,605 customers received an award of, or an increase in, Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit.
Alison McGovern: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many disabled people resident in Wirral South constituency have found employment through the New Deal in each year since 2001. 
Mr Stewart Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many people resident in Peterborough constituency are participating in (a) the New Enterprise Allowance Scheme, (b) Work Clubs and (c) Work Choice; and if he will make a statement. 
Chris Grayling: The new enterprise allowance is not yet available in Peterborough. Precise roll out plans are still being finalised but we intend to begin rolling out the new enterprise allowance from April. Work Clubs provide support on an entirely voluntary basis and we do not hold the information on numbers accessing individual Work Clubs. We do not gather information by constituency on numbers accessing Work Choice.
|Number of pension credit claimants over 60 by gender as a proportion of the population aged 60 or over as at May 2010|
|Number in receipt of pension credit||Population figures (aged 60 and over)||Percentage of population (aged over 60) in receipt of pension credit|
1. Caseload figures are rounded to the nearest 10.
2. The pension credit qualifying age is gradually increasing to 65. The current pension credit qualifying age is between 60 and three months and 60 and four months dependant upon a person's date of birth. This means a small proportion of the over 60's population will be unable to claim pension credit because they have not yet reached the qualifying age.
3. Caseload figures represent the benefit claimants, some of whom may have partners aged under 60.
4. Mid 2009 population estimates used for males and females aged 60 and over.
DWP Information Directorate: Work and Pensions Longitudinal Study
ONS Mid 2009 Population Estimates
This Government believe all Departments, including non-departmental public bodies, need to show restraint in the current economic climate. The Department, therefore, requested that Remploy apply the Government's bonus cap.
A recent employment tribunal upheld the previous Administration's remuneration settlement and found that Remploy were contractually obliged to pay the company's 2009-10 performance year bonuses. The Department therefore has no power to restrict the payment of these bonuses to Remploy managers and executives.
Notwithstanding this, all public sector bodies are reminded of the need for financial restraint and we have made clear that Remploy executives and managers should reflect this consideration in their pay and bonuses.
Stephen Timms: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) what estimate he has made of the level of annual savings to expenditure on benefits which will accrue from universal credit sanctions; 
(2) what assessment he has made of the effects on attainment of the targets in the Child Poverty Act 2010 of the application of proposed sanctions in respect of universal credit contained in the White Paper on welfare reform. 
Chris Grayling: In the Welfare Reform Bill we will be introducing a claimant commitment, which will set out the responsibilities of benefit recipients, alongside a clear and robust set of sanctions. Claimants will therefore know what they are expected to do and the consequences of failing to meet those expectations. These changes will be introduced under the current benefit system and will continue to apply under universal credit.
The proposed model of sanctions could lead to longer sanctions for some claimants, particularly claimants who have repeatedly failed to meet their responsibilities. For other claimants-those who fail to meet lower level requirements-sanctions could be shorter depending on how quickly they re-engage.
The overall effect on benefit costs will depend on the response of claimants to the proposed sanctions system. If-as is hoped-claimants are encouraged to comply in the first place and re-engage more quickly where they do fail to meet their responsibilities, there are unlikely to be any savings in comparison with the current system as a result of more sanctions being imposed. However, there could be savings from people moving off benefit more quickly as a result of greater compliance with the system.
Overall, we have estimated that universal credit will have a substantial positive impact on poverty and could lift as many as 350,000 children out of relative income poverty. This is a combined impact of all measurable universal credit factors, and does not identify the impact of the sanctions regime. This will help to meet the four 2020 income poverty targets in the Child Poverty Act.
The Government are currently considering whether changes to carer's allowance will be necessary to take account of the introduction of universal credit and provide clearer, more effective support for carers.
Chris Grayling: The Government have a commitment to commission an independent review of the WCA annually for the first five years of its operation. The first of these, which was conducted by Professor Malcolm Harrington and reported last November made a substantial series of recommendations, a number of which relate to the medical assessment which we have accepted and are implementing. We have now appointed Professor Harrington to conduct a second independent review, which will also look at elements of the assessment. We look forward to receiving his recommendations later this year.
Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions pursuant to the answer of 24 January 2011, Official Report, column 103W, on social security benefit: medical examinations, what discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Health on the suitability of a GP to provide independent advice to a patient on the determination of an entitlement to a health-related benefit; and what consideration of this issue was undertaken before publication of the NHS White Paper. 
Chris Grayling: It would not be appropriate for GPs to fulfil this role. GPs are not routinely trained in the assessment of disability in relation to the entitlement criteria for health related benefits and are not necessarily independent insofar as their primary role is to act as an advocate for the patient.
Steve Webb: Estimates of the number of women affected by the proposed changes to the state pension age were published in the equality impact assessment that accompanied the Government's White Paper 'A sustainable State Pension: when the State Pension age will increase to 66'.
Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions whether his Department has estimated the average cost (a) in total and (b) per minute of a call from a mobile telephone to the 0800 number provided by his Department to contact Atos in relation to the work capability assessment. 
Chris Grayling: This information is not held by the Department for Work and Pensions or Atos Healthcare as mobile phone tariffs vary depending on the type of contract the caller has with their service provider (all inclusive contract, or pay as you go etc.).
Mr Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs pursuant to the answer of 2 June 2010, Official Report, column 10W, on anti-Semitism, what steps he has taken to protect the Jewish community from anti-Semitic attacks since June 2010; what recent meetings he has had with representatives of the Jewish community on the issue; and if he will make a statement. 
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office supports the Cross-Government Working Group to Tackle anti-Semitism which is chaired by the Department of Communities and Local Government and regularly receives representations from the Jewish community on issues of concern. In addition the Government published a three years on progress report to the All Party Parliamentary Inquiry in December which highlighted the steps we have taken to combat anti-Semitism.
Mr Jeremy Browne: The decision by the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my right hon. Friend the Member for Richmond (Yorks) (Mr Hague), to authorise the closure of five language services was the result of discussions with the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) World Service.
Bridget Phillipson: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what the staff cost of the British high commission in Bangladesh (a) was in each of the last five years and (b) is projected to be in each year to 2015. [R] 
Alistair Burt: Salary costs for our high commission in Dhaka in the financial year 2008-09 were approximately £2.76 million, for 2009-10 they were approximately £2.26 million and for 2010-11 the in-year forecast is £2.14 million. Figures for FY 2006-07 and 2007-08 are unavailable.
Staffing decisions are made on an ongoing basis therefore we are unable to provide costs up to 2015. Although year-on-year costs can vary for a variety of reasons including exchange rate fluctuations, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office is continually trying to drive down costs worldwide through increased efficiencies. The fall in staff costs does not represent a reduction of the UK's effort in Bangladesh.
Mr Offord: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions officials of his Department have had with their counterparts overseas on planned changes in the level of spending in embassies, high commissions and consulates. 
Alistair Burt: In preparation for the spending review 2010, officials from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office spoke to counterparts in other Ministries of Foreign Affairs. They used these conversations to understand the common challenges faced by the UK's diplomatic network and those of our international partners, and to exchange ideas on how to deliver an effective and efficient service. The Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs is determined to ensure that we concentrate our resources where they are needed most, to protect and promote British interests worldwide.
Mr Cash: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs with reference to the conclusions of the February 2011 European Council, what the terms are of the limited treaty change to be adopted at the March 2011 European Council. 
"the March European Council will also adopt the final decision on the limited treaty change to set up the European Stability Mechanism".
The proposed treaty change is set out in the draft European Council decision of 20 December 2010 (document EUCO 33/10) which seeks to amend, using the simplified revision procedure, Article 136 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union to enable member states in the euro area to set up a permanent mechanism to safeguard the financial and economic stability of the euro area as a whole. The EU document was deposited in Parliament on 22 December 2010, and submitted for scrutiny under the Explanatory Memorandum of 10 January 2011 (reference EUCO 33/10). Under the terms of the EU (Amendment) Act 2008, parliamentary approval from both Houses is required before the Government can signal agreement to adopt the draft decision at the March European Council. We will therefore introduce a motion and look forward to debating this further before the March European Council.
Mr Offord: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent steps he has taken with the Secretary of State for International Development in response to the political and economic situation in Somalia. 
Mr Bellingham: The Government works actively both with Somalis and the international community to address the political and economic situation in Somalia. I met the Foreign Minister of the Transitional Federal Government on 18 January 2011 to discuss the upcoming end of the transition period. I also opened a Foreign and Commonwealth Office funded conference on Somalia at Wilton Park on 7 February 2011. The conference helped to increase international coherence around a united approach to building long-term stability in Somalia. This included discussion on development, humanitarian and security approaches to improving the political and economic situation. Officials from both the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the Department for International Development also took part.
The Secretary of State for International Development announced during a visit to Somaliland and the region that UK aid to Somalia will increase by up to three times over the next three years. This will result in 340,000 more people getting jobs and better services because of British aid over the next four years, in addition to over 500,000 people a year who will benefit from emergency humanitarian assistance.
Greater stability, stemming from an end to conflict at national and local levels, is the underlying driver of all our objectives. Working across Government we want to: encourage mutually reinforcing and complementary governance structures; enable a permissive security environment which offers stability for citizens; reduce incentives to participate in violence and crime and; shift expectations towards official and legitimate authorities.
Jim Fitzpatrick: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs when her Department expects to conclude its discussions with the Department for Transport on the publication of airport noise action plans. 
Richard Benyon [holding answer 8 February 2011]: The completion and formal adoption of the airport noise action plans are the final elements that DEFRA needs to complete in order to fulfil completely its obligations under this phase of the implementation of the Environmental Noise Directive 2002/49/EC (END). DEFRA officials have been working closely with their counterparts in the Department for Transport in reviewing the draft plans submitted by the airports. A number of final draft plans have now been received, and I anticipate that I will be in a position to adopt the first tranche of airport noise action plans in March. Following this, DEFRA officials expect that work on the other airport plans will be completed by early summer.
Jim Fitzpatrick: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether she has assessed the risk of EU infraction proceedings occurring as a result of the time taken to produce airport noise action plans. 
Richard Benyon [holding answer 8 February 2011]: The Environmental Noise Directive 2002/49/EC (END) required member states to submit summaries of all the adopted airport noise actions plans to the European Commission by January 2009. Given the possible risk of infraction, DEFRA officials have ensured that the Commission has been kept regularly informed of progress and of the timetable for completion of the process. The Commission has recognised that its timetable was very tight and, thus, the reasons for the delay. It is understood that some member states have yet to report any information on action plans. Furthermore, the devolved Administrations have completed their action plan reporting, and England has already reported summaries of the action plans for its agglomerations, major roads and major railways. As a result, our current assessment is that the risk of infraction proceedings is minimal. DEFRA is planning to report to the Commission in the early summer, following the adoption of the action plans for the 17 English airports.
Andrew Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps she is taking to protect the natural environment and nesting sites inhabited by farmland birds identified by her Department as declining in number. 
Mr Paice: Nearly 70% of English farmland is in Environmental Stewardship schemes which improve farmland bird habitats, thus helping to increase population numbers. The Government are reviewing these schemes to deliver better outcomes, and DEFRA's funding of the Campaign for the Farmed Environment is also supporting the farming sector's commitment to increase farmland bird numbers.
Thomas Docherty: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what proportion of questions tabled in the House to her for answer on a named day did not receive a substantive answer on the day named for such answer in the period from 27 May 2010 to 7 February 2011. 
Mr Bain: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what her Department's policy is on the revision of restrictions on the number of days in which fishermen may catch fish. 
Richard Benyon: Restrictions on the number of 'days at sea' fishermen may catch fish are in place under a number of management plans within EU waters. UK vessels are affected by restrictions in place for certain gear types in the western English Channel (ICES sub-area VIIe) under the multi-annual management plan for Western Channel sole; in the North Sea (ICES area IV) under the multi-annual plan for plaice and sole, and; in the North Sea (ICES area IV) and Eastern English Channel (ICES sub-area VIId), Irish Sea (ICES sub-area VIIa) and West of Scotland (ICES sub-areas VIa and Vb) under the long-term management plan for cod.
For the Western Channel, the number of days member states may allocate to individual vessels are detailed within the annual fishing opportunities regulation. The Government successfully argued that there should be no further cut to the number of days in 2011 as the conditions of the management plan, to reduce fishing mortality to the maximum sustainable yield level, have been met. For all other areas, there is a reduction in
fishing effort required in line with provisions of the management plan. The Government are working with fishermen's representatives and other interested parties to implement these reductions in a way that provides sufficient time at sea for vessels to catch their quota, including additional time for more sustainable fishing activity, while ensuring that the UK remains within its EU limits.
Bill Esterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will carry out an overall assessment of the effects of fracking on underground water supplies; and if she will issue guidance to industry on the practice. 
Richard Benyon: The impact of hydraulic fracturing on the water environment in England and Wales would be assessed on a site specific basis by the Environment Agency. This would happen via its role as a statutory consultee in the planning process, or as part of its consideration of the need for, and response to, an application for an environmental permit (under the Environmental Permitting Regulations 2010). The Environment Agency has its own in-house technical expertise which is used to support its role in protecting and managing water quality and resources.
The UK has a robust regulatory regime in place to ensure that any environmental risk from these activities would be controlled. This regulatory regime is backed up by both Government and Environment Agency guidance. Based on experience to date in the UK, we do not consider there is a need to modify any formal guidance or regulations, but this will be kept under review.
Mary Creagh: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what discussions she has had with (a) departmental officials, (b) Natural England and (c) environmental charities on the future of national nature reserves. 
Richard Benyon: Natural England has been investigating different management options for National Nature Reserves and have had a number of discussions with officials and Natural England at which these have been covered. Ministers have been briefed by Natural England and have frequently had meetings with environmental charities. At some of these National Nature Reserves have been discussed among other issues.
Mike Weatherley: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many owners of sites of special scientific interest were served restoration orders in (a) 2007, (b) 2008, (c) 2009 and (d) 2010. 
Mr Marcus Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what duties are placed on British Waterways in consequence of the operation of the Water Framework Directive. 
Richard Benyon: The water framework directive (WFD) is transposed in most of England and Wales by the Water Environment (Water Framework Directive) (England and Wales) Regulations 2003. Regulation 17 requires that the Secretary of State, Welsh Ministers, the Environment Agency and certain public bodies (including British Waterways):
"must, in exercising their functions so far as affecting a river basin district, have regard to...the river basin management plan for that district as approved...".
There are other duties on public bodies in these regulations in relation to the provision of information and assistance to the Environment Agency (Regulation 19), and in relation to compliance with any directions or guidance issued by the Secretary of State, or Welsh Ministers (Regulation 20). Other regulations make similar provision in the cross-border Northumbria and Solway Tweed river basin districts. This is a devolved matter in Scotland.
British Waterways discharges its duties under Regulation 17 by means of its Environmental Management System. This system ensures the environmental appraisal of all British Waterways' activities, assessing impacts in terms of the WFD 'no deterioration' objective. It also checks that there is a process to deal with the actions in each river basin management plan for which British Waterways is responsible.
Cathy Jamieson: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how much Barnett consequential funding his Department has provided to each devolved Administration in (a) 2010-11 to date and (b) each of the last three years; and with which programmes such funding was associated. 
Robert Neill: In the 2010 spending review changes in the DEL budgets of the devolved Administrations were determined by the Barnett formula in the normal way. The settlements for the years 2011-12 to 2014-15 were published in table 2.22 of the 2010 spending review document (Cm 7942).
Barnett consequentials relating to each of the devolved Administrations for the years 2008-09 to 2010-11 are published as part of the Public Expenditure Statistical Analyses Supplementary Material on the Treasury's website under the heading "House of Lords Select Committee on the Barnett Formula".
Updated tables taking account of adjustments since the publication of the 2010 edition of Public Expenditure Statistical Analyses will be published alongside the next edition of the analyses later this year.
Graham Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) which local authorities he estimates will (a) gain and (b) lose financially as a result of the implementation of his proposals for a New Homes Bonus system over the next six years; and if he will make a statement; 
(2) what his estimate is of the number of local authorities which would (a) gain and (b) lose financially as a result of the implementation of his proposals for a New Homes Bonus system over the next six years; and if he will make a statement; 
(3) which local authorities were assessed as likely to (a) gain and (b) lose financially in the retrospective modelling carried out by his Department as part of the New Homes Bonus consultation paper; and if he will make a statement; 
(4) what assessment he has made of the geographic areas in which the estimated 14,000 additional new homes predicted by the New Homes Bonus impact assessment will be built; and if he will make a statement. 
The consultation stage impact assessment published alongside the scheme consultation makes an estimate of the potential supply impact, but the relative financial position of an authority compared to others will depend on the final scheme design and the behavioural response of local authorities and their communities.
We are giving communities and neighbourhoods new rights, powers and tools that they could use to drive forward local regeneration and growth, enhancing their ability to benefit from the New Homes Bonus. We are also giving local communities and councils greater control over what happens locally, and greater ability to secure and channel public resources, and to attract private and social investment.
The distribution and behavioural response of local authorities will largely determine the geographical spread but our analysis suggests a potential increase of 8-13% nationally. This represents a total of approximately 144,000 additional homes built over the initial 10 years. The impact assessment also provides an illustration of the impact by demand and attitude to growth. This can be found at
To disclose the retrospective modelling would be inappropriate. The modelling was done on the basis of retrospective housing supply data which cannot take account of future policy changes. In addition the Government have not yet made an announcement on the final scheme design. This will be made shortly.
We have however, published a calculator alongside the consultation document where individual local
authorities are given an indicative allocation for year 1 and can estimate future years funding from the New Homes Bonus scheme. This can be found at:
Under the consultation proposals we are also incentivising local authorities to bring empty homes back into use. This also means the authorities demolishing homes classified as long-term empty homes would not be penalised.
Mr Stewart Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government when he expects to publish proposals for funding arrangements for registered providers under the affordable rent scheme; and if he will make a statement. 
Jon Trickett: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport which persons not employed by Government departments or agencies hold passes entitling them to enter his Department's premises. 
John Penrose: Such passes are held by: 54 people who work for companies that provide IT, facilities management, security guarding and related services to the department; 30 staff who work for a private tenant in our main building in Cockspur street (whose passes do not allow access to DCMS occupied floors); and 24 agency and interim staff working in the Department.
Gloria De Piero: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport how much funding the Government Art Collection plans to allocate to the acquisition of new works of art in (a) 2010-11 and (b) 2011-12. 
Mr Vaizey: It is not possible to give an accurate estimate of the value of the Government Art Collection, which has no current market valuation. The current monetary value of a work of art can be accurately assessed only at the time of purchase or sale or by professional valuation. In the former case, the collection is not actively traded; in the latter, it would not be justifiable expenditure of public funds to have the whole collection valued professionally.
Stephen Barclay: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what the name was of the consultancy on whom Ofcom spent £2.7 million in 2009-10 on that consultancy's role as a thought partner; what the (a) number of hours worked, (b) number of staff provided, (c) hourly rate per member of staff for the consultancy, for the provision of these services were. 
Mr Vaizey [holding answer 8 February 2011]: The matter raised is an operational one for the independent regulator, the Office of Communications (Ofcom), which is accountable to Parliament rather than Ministers. Accordingly, my officials spoke to Ofcom, who advised that the £2.7 million referred to was not spent on one consultancy, rather it was the total sum spent across 2009-10 on work provided by 31 different suppliers providing a range of services to Ofcom including research and specialist technical expertise on a range of projects as part of Ofcom's overall annual programme of work. The table sets out the suppliers used and total sums paid.
According to Ofcom, information provided as part of its tendering process is commercially sensitive. Ofcom was therefore unable to provide a more detailed breakdown of the number of hours worked, staff provided and hour rate by each supplier since disclosure of this may compromise future tendering processes. A breakdown of the figure in question is as follows:
Brandon Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport whether Visit England has provided to the Department its annual review on the opportunities arising from the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic games. 
John Penrose: VisitEngland has not been asked by this Department to undertake an annual review on 2012 opportunities, but has (naturally) done extensive analysis to underpin its strategies and marketing plans for 2012 and beyond.
Stephen Timms: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport whether he has plans to compensate businesses whose premises will be temporarily inaccessible because of security measures associated with the London 2012 Olympics. 
Hugh Robertson: Operational planning for the Olympic and Paralympic Games aims to minimise disruption to individuals and businesses as far as possible. London 2012 delivery partners have been working together for some time to ensure clear and co-ordinated communications and consultation well in advance of the games to enable businesses to assess how games operations might affect their own operations and plan accordingly. Any compensation claims that do arise will be dealt with on a case by case basis.
Graeme Morrice: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport which companies based in Scotland have been awarded contracts to provide supplies and services to the London 2012 Olympics to date. 
This figure only accounts for the contracts awarded by the ODA to its own top tier of contractors (tier one contractors), such as Barr, based in Glasgow, who are building the basketball arena. The figure does not include contracts further down the supply chain, in tiers two, three and so on, which are awarded by the tier one contractors and not by the ODA. The names of the companies, that have won Games-related contracts, can be found at the business section of the London 2012 website at the following link:
Rosie Cooper: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what assessment he has made of the contribution to the economy of the use by deaf people of video relay services. 
Ofcom is currently undertaking a review of relay service provision for hearing- and speech-impaired users of electronic communications. A consultation document will be published in the spring which will include Ofcom's analysis on the costs and benefits associated with video relay services and an impact assessment.
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