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Lord McIntosh of Haringey: My Lords, I understand from what was said by the noble Baroness that her purpose in moving Amendment No. 549 is to ensure that we achieve our objective of seeing that the list of topics that may be included in the culture strategy remains exemplary and that no proper topics are excluded from the consideration. I am happy to repeat that it is our intention that in Clause 329 the list of topics is exemplary. However, we have taken legal

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advice on this matter, and the advice is that that is unnecessary. I hope that the noble Baroness will not feel it necessary to press the amendment.

As the noble Baroness knows, we have resisted additions to the list because it is already very long. However, I now propose to make one very small exception. Amendment No. 550 adds only one line and only one word. I confirm what was said by my noble friend Lord Whitty; that is, that we regard archives as an important part of the cultural life of the nation and we wish to raise the profile of archives. That is why we have included them among the strategic responsibilities and in the name of the new museums, libraries and archives council. London in particular is the home of many unique and important archive collections which play a vital role in defining the capital city's cultural identity.

Therefore, we have listened to what was said in Committee and in another place. We have reached the conclusion that we should acknowledge the weight of sentiment expressed on this matter and include archives in the illustrative list of subjects which may be contained in the cultural strategy for London.

I am grateful to the noble Lord, Lord Teviot, for tabling the amendment, and we shall accept it. The effect will be to insert archives on a new line as a separate sub-heading underneath library services. I am sure that the House will understand that we should be very reluctant indeed to make further additions to the list because that might well be interpreted, however incorrectly, as implying that the list should be seen as exclusive.

As I said, I hope that the noble Baroness will not press Amendment No. 549.

Baroness Anelay of St Johns: My Lords, I thank the Minister for his response. I am grateful that the Government took legal advice regarding Amendment No. 549. I will not press that amendment. However, I thank the Minister for his remarks about the archives. I am sure that such remarks will be heard with great pleasure, not only within but outwith this House. I beg leave to withdraw the amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Lord Teviot moved Amendment No. 550:

Page 181, line 11, at end insert--
("( ) archives;").

On Question, amendment agreed to.

Lord McIntosh of Haringey moved Amendment No. 551:

Page 181, line 28, at end insert--
("( ) In this Act, references to the culture strategy include, except where the context otherwise requires, a reference to the culture strategy as revised.").

On Question, amendment agreed to.

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Clause 330 [Grants by the Mayor for museums, galleries etc.]

The Deputy Speaker: My Lords, before calling Amendment No. 551ZA, I must inform the House that if that amendment is agreed to, I cannot call Amendment No. 551A tabled in the names of the noble Baroness, Lady Hamwee, and the noble Lord, Lord Tope.

Lord McIntosh of Haringey moved Amendment No. 551ZA:

Page 181, line 29, leave out ("pay grants") and insert ("provide financial or other assistance").

The noble Lord said: In moving Amendment No. 551ZA I shall speak also to Amendments Nos. 551A to 551C. In introducing the government amendments in this group I express my gratitude to the noble Baroness for tabling Amendment No. 551A and, indeed, to the noble Lord, Lord Phillips of Sudbury, who made this proposal in Committee.

The changes will extend the authority's power to pay grants to cultural institutions in London under Clause 302, permitting the authority to give assistance in a way other than financial.

I said in Committee that we would consider the proposal. We have done so and agree that it is a useful addition to the powers of the mayor. We prefer a slightly revised wording. Our amendments, therefore, differ in that way. There are also some minor consequential amendments the effect of which will be to introduce the extended power originally sought. I beg to move.

Baroness Hamwee: My Lords, we thank the Minister for taking the point on board. As regards Amendment No.551B, what is the rationale for inserting a reference to "financial assistance" rather than "financial or other assistance"? This provision deals with making a grant or financial assistance subject to conditions. It does not seem to me that other assistance should necessarily not have conditions attached to it.

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: My Lords, the noble Baroness is entitled to an answer. The references to financial assistance apply to grants only, in line with tourism provisions. Does that make sense to the noble Baroness?

Baroness Hamwee: No, my Lords.

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: My Lords, nor it does to me. I shall write to the noble Baroness. I can assure her that there is nothing malign in the change of wording.

On Question, amendment agreed to.

Lord McIntosh of Haringey moved Amendments Nos. 551B and 551C:

Page 181, line 31, leave out ("grant under this section may be made") and insert ("financial assistance under this section may be provided").

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Page 181, line 36, leave out ("repayment of the grant") and insert ("the making of repayments in respect of the financial assistance").

On Question, amendments agreed to.

Clause 331 [Duty of the Authority to promote tourism]:

[Amendment No. 552 not moved.]

Clause 334 [Interpretation of this Part and exercise of Authority functions]:

Lord McIntosh of Haringey moved Amendment No. 552A:

Page 183, line 29, leave out ("Part") and insert ("Chapter").

The noble Lord said: My Lords, these are technical amendments. We have inserted a chapter heading which does not require amendments but, having inserted it, we want to refer to the chapter rather than to the whole parts of the Bill.

I take this opportunity of reminding the House of something that I said in Committee. We intend to provide an explicit full power for the cultural strategy group for London to act on behalf of the authority in respect of all the functions under Part X. This is a technical amendment but it will have to await Third Reading. I beg to move.

On Question, amendment agreed to.

Baroness Anelay of St Johns moved Amendment No. 553:

Page 183, line 29, at end insert--
(""improvement in tourism amenities and facilities" means a measured improvement in customer service;").

The noble Baroness said: My Lords, the Greater London Authority has a duty imposed on it by Clause 331 to,

    "encourage the provision and improvement of tourist amenities and facilities in Greater London".

Amendment No. 553 would define "an improvement" as being a measured improvement and not one simply left to guesswork and the personal preferences of members of the authority.

One might ask how such a measurement could be made. The London Tourist Board has already supplied the answer. During the summer the LTB published its London Customer Service Monitor (not the most attention-grabbing headline in the world) which is a fascinating read. It is a report about what the people who live and work in London really think about the service we receive in hotels, pubs, museums and transport--the whole range of services covered by this part of the Bill. An important aspect of the work being carried out by the London Tourist Board is that it is updating that research over the next eight months so that there will be a comparative picture of service standards in London building up over that time. That is the kind of work that is essential if the authority is to carry out its duty effectively to encourage improvements in services.

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Do the Government agree that that is a useful method of measurement and one that should and could be adopted by the authority, or do they have some other method in mind for proving that improvements have actually taken place? I beg to move.

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: My Lords, I am afraid I am not able to be so sympathetic to this amendment. It adopts a prescriptive and very restrictive approach to improvement in tourism amenities and facilities.

The effect of Amendment No. 553 is to define "improvement" in tourist amenities as meaning a measured improvement in customer services. The noble Baroness asked whether we felt that was a useful definition. It is a useful definition, but if we accepted the amendment it would be the only definition; it would be exclusive. In other words, measured improvements in customer service would be the only sense in which tourism amenities and facilities could be said to have improved.

We do not feel it is appropriate to restrict the definition of "improvement" of tourist amenities and facilities in that way. That is because it is not just tourist amenities and facilities which are under the control of our policies, but anything which is used by tourists. We cannot readily measure improvements in customer services for things which are used by tourists. Suppose, for example, we improve the pavements. Tourists use them; they are better off. But what is the measured improvement in customer service?

In any event, as I said earlier, in developing and carrying out such duties the mayor must have regard to policies at the national level. They include the tourism strategy, Tomorrow's Tourism, which sets out the key themes for the tourism industry, including the need to develop and spread quality. Ways in which that can be achieved include the need to have a trained and motivated workforce; to provide products that suit customer needs; and to provide better information for customers. All of those initiatives lead to an improvement in customer service. Therefore we do not need a separate amendment of this kind, since improvement in customer service is included at the national level and must be taken into account by the mayor in developing his strategies. I hope I have persuaded the noble Baroness that there is no advantage in our accepting this amendment.

9.45 p.m.

Baroness Anelay of St Johns: My Lords, I am, of course, disappointed that the Government cannot be quite "so sympathetic" towards this amendment. I understand they are arguing that it would be too restrictive. However, with regard to the Minister's remark about tourists using pavements, I believe that there are ways of measuring such improvements and not just flippantly saying that not so many people fall over. It is possible that some councils are better than others at putting in dropped curbs or studs for those who are partially sighted and those without sight. There are indeed measured improvements that one can make. I have listened to the Minister's response and I beg leave to withdraw the amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

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