Previous Section Back to Table of Contents Lords Hansard Home Page



6 Feb 2008 : Column WS87



6 Feb 2008 : Column WS87

Written Statements

Wednesday 6 February 2008

Afghanistan: Roulement

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Defence (Baroness Taylor of Bolton): My right honourable friend the Secretary of State for Defence (Des Browne) has made the following Written Ministerial Statement.

The next roulement of UK forces in Afghanistan will take place in April 2008. The force package that we currently plan to deploy will see the lead formation, 52 Infantry Brigade, replaced by 16 Air Assault Brigade, which will provide the majority of the units serving in Afghanistan. The forces deploying include:



6 Feb 2008 : Column WS88

16 Air Assault Brigade Headquarters and 216 Signal Squadron

Elements of 845 Naval Air Squadron

Elements of 846 Naval Air Squadron

Elements of 847 Naval Air Squadron

7th Parachute Regiment, Royal Horse Artillery

23 Engineer Regiment (Air Assault)

The Royal Highland Fusiliers, 2nd Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland

The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders, 5th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland

1st Battalion The Royal Irish Regiment (27th [Inniskilling], 83rd, 87th and The Ulster Defence Regiment)

2nd Battalion, The Parachute Regiment

3rd Battalion, The Parachute Regiment

The Pathfinder Platoon

6 Supply Regiment, The Royal Logistic Corps

13 Air Assault Support Regiment, The Royal Logistic Corps

16 Close Support Medical Regiment

7 Air Assault Battalion Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers

156 Independent Provost Company, Royal Military Police

Elements of the Household Cavalry Regiment

Elements of 3rd Regiment, Royal Horse Artillery

Elements of The Royal Scots Dragoon Guards (Carabiniers and Greys)

Elements of The Queen's Royal Lancers

Elements of 5th Regiment, Royal Artillery

Elements of 32nd Regiment, Royal Artillery

Elements of 39th Regiment, Royal Artillery

Elements of 47th Regiment, Royal Artillery

Elements of 33 Engineer Regiment (Explosive Ordnance Disposal)

Elements of 63 Works Group Royal Engineers

Elements of 42 Engineer Regiment (Geographic)

Elements of 170 (Infrastructure Support) Engineer Group

Elements of 10th Signal Regiment, The Royal Corps of Signals

Elements of 14th Signal Regiment (Electronic Warfare), The Royal Corps of Signals

Elements of 16th Signal Regiment, The Royal Corps of Signals

Elements of 21st Signal Regiment (Air Support), The Royal Corps of Signals

Elements of The Highlanders, 4th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland

Elements of 3 Regiment, Army Air Corps

Elements of 4 Regiment, Army Air Corps

Elements of 5 Regiment, Army Air Corps

Elements of 9 Regiment, Army Air Corps

Headquarters 104 Logistic Brigade

Elements of 11 Explosive Ordnance Disposal Regiment, The Royal Logistic Corps

Elements of 2 Logistic Support Regiment, The Royal Logistic Corps

Elements of 7 Transport Regiment, The Royal Logistic Corps

Elements of 24 Postal Courier and Movement Regiment, The Royal Logistic Corps

Elements of 27 Transport Regiment, The Royal Logistic Corps

Elements of 29 Postal Courier and Movement Regiment, The Royal Logistic Corps

Elements of 2 Close Support Battalion, Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers

Elements of 104 Military Working Dog Support Unit

Elements of 1 Military Intelligence Brigade

Elements of Joint Civil Military Co-operation Group

Elements of 15 (UK) Psychological Operations Group

Elements of 4th Battalion, The Duke of Lancaster's Regiment (King's, Lancashire and Border)

Elements of 4th Battalion The Yorkshire Regiment (14th/15th, 19th and 33rd/75th Foot)

Elements of 2nd Battalion The Royal Irish Regiment (27th [Inniskilling], 83rd, 87th and The Ulster Defence Regiment)

Elements of 4th Battalion, The Parachute Regiment

Elements of 148 Expeditionary Forces Squadron, The Royal Logistic Corps (Volunteer)

Hospital Squadron formed from 203 Field Hospital (V) and 204 Field Hospital (V)

904 Expeditionary Air Wing Royal Air Force

1 Force Protection Wing Headquarters Royal Air Force

3 Regiment Field Squadron Royal Air Force

Elements of 1 Squadron Royal Air Force

Elements of 4 Squadron Royal Air Force

Elements of 18 Squadron Royal Air Force

Elements of 27 Squadron Royal Air Force

Elements of 30 Squadron Royal Air Force

Elements of 39 Squadron Royal Air Force

Elements of 47 Squadron Royal Air Force

Elements of 70 Squadron Royal Air Force

Elements of 1 Air Movements Wing Royal Air Force

Elements of 85 (Expeditionary Logistic) Wing Headquarters, Royal Air Force

Tactical Supply Wing

Joint Helicopter Support Unit

Elements of 1 Air Control Centre Royal Air Force

Elements of 90 Signals Unit Royal Air Force

Elements of 2 Motor Transport Squadron, Royal Air Force

Elements of 5001 Squadron, Royal Air Force

Elements of Mobile Catering Support Unit

Elements of Tactical Medical Wing

Elements of Tactical Armament Squadron

Elements of Tactical Imagery Intelligence Wing

The bulk of these units represent direct replacements for previously announced deployments to Afghanistan and overall force levels will be broadly unchanged.

The House will also wish to be aware that 16 Air Assault Brigade's deployment will last until October 2008. On current plans, the brigade will then be replaced by 3 Commando Brigade, Royal Marines. I shall make a further Statement on the units we expect to deploy in October in due course.



6 Feb 2008 : Column WS89

Crossrail

Lord Bassam of Brighton: My honourable friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport (Tom Harris) has made the following Ministerial Statement.

On the 22 February 2005 the then Secretary of State for Transport (the right honourable Member for Edinburgh South West, Alistair Darling) introduced a hybrid Bill to provide for the construction, maintenance and operation of Crossrail. At this time, directions were also issued for the safeguarding of the main Crossrail route, from Maidenhead to Shenfield and from Whitechapel to Abbey Wood, for the associated construction worksites, and for the possible extension of Crossrail from Abbey Wood to Hoo Junction. This safeguarding protects the route from any conflicting developments which could interfere with the construction or operation of Crossrail.

As a result of negotiations with affected parties and the development of engineering design works, there have been changes to the land needed for the construction and operation of Crossrail. This means that some land that has been safeguarded will no longer be needed, while we are proposing to use other sections of land that are not currently safeguarded. Accordingly, my right honourable friend the Secretary of State has issued revised safeguarding directions for the main route that reflect these changes.

In July 2005, the department consulted on the possibility of safeguarding land between Maidenhead and Reading West Junction, which would protect land potentially required, should it be decided to extend Crossrail services to Reading. The department also consulted on updating the safeguarding directions in the Abbey Wood to Hoo Junction corridor, to allow for additional works considered necessary for an extension of Crossrail services to Ebbsfleet. A decision was deferred following an instruction by the House to the Select Committee, where it considered appropriate, to consider any petitions on the extension of Crossrail to Reading (and Ebbsfleet) and to report to the House whether there was a case for the extension to be made by an order under the Transport and Works Act 1992. The committee heard some evidence but did not make any recommendation on these matters in its Special Report, published on 23 October 2007.

I have now decided to safeguard additional land between Maidenhead and Reading. While I am clear that Crossrail services will terminate at Maidenhead and have no plans to extend them to Reading, this measure gives the flexibility to be able to extend Crossrail in the future, should there be a business case. This safeguarding of the route would also protect the possibility of undertaking electrification works on the route to Reading, even without the extension of Crossrail. Again, this keeps this option available should a decision be taken to electrify the railway beyond Maidenhead.

There is no need for works powers to extend to Reading to be included in the Crossrail Bill, which would seriously delay the passage of the Bill through Parliament. If such powers were needed these could

6 Feb 2008 : Column WS90

be sought by means of a Transport and Works Act Order. There is also sensible advance planning through designing station improvement works at both Reading and Maidenhead to allow for the possibility of the future extension of Crossrail services.

The next step on safeguarding is to consult Network Rail on which sites should be protected if any works were to be undertaken on the safeguarded route.

The department is still considering updating the safeguarded route to Ebbsfleet and will continue to discuss this matter with Cross London Rail Links and the relevant local authorities further. The department will make an announcement regarding this in due course.

Export Controls

The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office & Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (Lord Jones of Birmingham): My honourable friend the Minister of State for Energy (Malcolm Wicks) has made the following Written Ministerial Statement.

The Government will today—Wednesday 6 February 2008—publish their initial response to the public consultation on UK Strategic Export Controls.

On Monday 18 June 2007, I announced to the House the launch of a public consultation on strategic export controls. In this consultation, the Government sought views both on the controls they introduced in 2004 under the Export Control Act 2002—to establish whether they are having the intended effect without imposing unnecessary or disproportionate burdens on business—and on a range of options for further change.


Next Section Back to Table of Contents Lords Hansard Home Page