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Civil Service College

Volume 940: debated on Wednesday 30 November 1977

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asked the Minister for the Civil Service whether he will give details of the luncheon which he gave at Lancaster House on 18th November; who attended; what was the cost; what is the annual or weekly upkeep cost of the Civil Service College; and what is the purpose of the college.

The purpose of the Civil Service College is to improve the efficiency of the Civil Service by high quality training in disciplines central to its work including economics, statistics, public administration, social policy and administration, management studies, computers and management services. To help United Kingdom civil servants to develop their understanding of Community matters the College co-operates with our main European partners in an annual programme of reciprocal training courses, on a pattern established in 1971. The recent visit of a group of senior Dutch civil servants was the latest in this series. As part of the normal reciprocal arrangements I gave a luncheon for them and their Ambassador, to enable them to meet socially British people in public life, some of whom had helped the visitors during their two-week study of this country's machinery of government, industry and regions. These included Members of Parliament and representatives of the TUC, industry, the Press, the academic world, organisations concerned with Anglo-Dutch relationships and some of the Government Departments concerned with the course. Although some bills have still to be presented the estimated cost is something under £850; the level of hospitality was comparable with that offered to British civil servants on equivalent exchange visits.For the 12 months ended 31st August 1977 the cost of the Sunningdale and London centres of the College was £3·754 million offset by £0·589 million appropriations-in-aid mainly in the form of charges to students from non-Exchequer bodies.