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Constable Sketches: Theft Investigation

Lord Freyberg asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: The theft and recovery of the two oil sketches by John Constable from the V&A are the subject of police investigation and possible legal action. Until this process is concluded, it would not be right to provide further details. The museum has reviewed security and has taken additional measures to diminish the risks of a future theft.

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Museums: Security Arrangements

Lord Freyberg asked Her Majesty's Government:

    How often the security of works of art in the national museums is reviewed; and how their security arrangements compare with other national museums outside the United Kingdom.[HL977]

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: The security of works of art in national museums is kept under continuous review as part of the prudent stewardship of such national assets.

Expert advice on security matters is available to museums from the Museums and Galleries Commission. The MGC believes that the United Kingdom compares favourably with the rest of Europe and most of the rest of the world as regards the amount of investment in security arrangements.

New Opportunities Fund and Non-maintained Special Schools

Lord Baker of Dorking asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Further to the Written Answer by Lord McIntosh of Haringey on 3 February (WA 53), why non-maintained special schools which are charities and non-profit-making are not eligible for the Information and Communication Technology Training for Teachers programme of the New Opportunities Fund.[HL1032]

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: The ICT training for teachers programme is designed specifically to train state primary and secondary school teachers in the use of ICT in their subject teaching under the national curriculum. Non-maintained schools, including non-maintained special schools, do not have to follow the national curriculum and are therefore not within the priority group targeted by the initiative.

Football: Supporters Direct Scheme

Baroness Anelay of St Johns asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Further to their launch of the Supporters Direct scheme on 27 January, in what circumstances would supporters be able to take a majority stake in a football club as a result of the introduction of the scheme.[HL1057]

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: The Supporters Direct Unit, when fully operational later this year, will provide advice and assistance to those supporters groups in England which would like to establish supporters trusts as a means of taking a financial stake in their football club. The unit will provide assistance in establishing such trusts but will not be involved in the direct purchase of shares, and nor will any funding be provided by the unit for share purchases.

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Women's Incomes

Lord Dubs asked Her Majesty's Government:

    When they will publish the findings of the Women's Unit's research into women's incomes over their lifetime which was commissioned in spring 1999.[HL1135]

The Lord Privy Seal (Baroness Jay of Paddington): A report on women's incomes over their lifetime was published on 21 February. Copies have been placed in the House Library.

The research set out to examine the key features of women's incomes, drawing on existing research and undertaking new analysis. While we have information

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about income comparisons between individuals at particular points in time, these do not tell us about the impact over women's lifetimes of the pattern and level of their earnings, the effect of the tax and benefits systems and the importance to women's incomes of transfers within families. This new report examines these issues and shows the significant income a woman can expect to forgo over her lifetime in comparison with a man with an equivalent level of education, irrespective of motherhood. The report then analyses the further income forgone by women who have children. In both cases the report highlights the significant impact a woman's level of academic achievement will have on her earnings.

The Government will be looking at the implications of these findings on future policies.

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