Written Answers To Questions
Monday 1 April 1985
Anglo-Irish Intergovernmental Council
asked the Prime Minister if she will list all of Her Majesty's Ministers who have taken part in meetings of the Anglo-Irish Intergovernmental Council since October 1983 and the dates and locations of such meetings, together with the names of Ministers from the Irish Republic who were present.
I met the Irish Taoiseach at Chequers on 7 November 1983 and again on 19 November 1984 within the framework of the Anglo-Irish Intergovernmental Council. On both occasions I was accompanied by my right hon. and learned Friend the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs and my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland. Dr. Garret FitzGerald was accompanied by the Tanaiste, Mr. Dick Spring, TD, and the Irish Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mr. Peter Barry TD. Other meetings under the auspices of the council have taken place as stated on the attached list.
|2 November 1983 London||Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food and Republic of Ireland Minister for Agriculture (Mr. Austin Deasy TD)|
|29 November 1983 Dublin||Secretary of State for Transport and Republic of Ireland Minister for Transport (Mr. Jim Mitchell TD)|
|10 January 1984 Dublin||Secretary of State for Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland Minister for Justice (Mr. Michael Noonan TD)|
|20 January 1984 Belfast||Under-Secretary of State, Northern Ireland Office and Republic of Ireland Minister for Education (Mrs. Gemma Hussey TD)|
|7 February 1984 Dublin||Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Republic of Ireland Minister for Foreign Affairs (Mr. Peter Barry TD)|
|17 February 1984 London||Secretary of State for the Environment and Tanaiste and Republic of Ireland Minister for Energy (Mr. Dick Spring TD)|
|21 February 1984 Dublin||Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Northern Ireland Office and Republic of Ireland Minister for the Environment (Mr. Liam Kavanagh TD)|
|22 February 1984 Dublin||Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Northern Ireland Office and Republic of Ireland Minister for Communications (Mr. Jim Mitchell TD)|
|15 March 1984 London||Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs and Republic of Ireland Minister for Foreign Affairs (Mr. Peter Barry TD)|
|16 March 1984 London||Secretary of State for Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland Minister for Foreign Affairs (Mr. Peter Barry TD)|
|19 April 1984 Belfast||Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Northern Ireland Office and Republic of Ireland Minister for Health (Mr. Barry Desmond TD)|
|6 June 1984 Dublin||Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport and Republic of Ireland Minister for Communications (Mr. Jim Mitchell TD)|
|20 June 1984 Belfast||Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State Northern Ireland Office and Republic of Ireland Minister of State, Department of the Environment (Mr. Fergus O'Brien TD)|
|20 June 1984 Dublin||Minister of State, Department of Trade and Industry and Republic of Ireland Minister of State for Industry, Trade, Commerce and Tourism (Mr. John Bruton TD)|
|21 June 1984 Dublin||Minister of State, Department of Trade and Industry and Republic of Ireland Minister for Foreign Affairs (Mr. Jim O'Keefe TD)|
|4 July 1984 Dublin||Minister of State, Northern Ireland Office and Tanaiste and Republic of Ireland Minister for Energy (Mr. Dick Spring TD)|
|31 August 1984 Dublin||Secretary of State for Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland Minister for Foreign Affairs (Mr. Peter Barry TD)|
|18 October 1984 London||Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Republic of Ireland Minister for Foreign Affairs (Mr. Jim O'Keefe TD)|
|25 October 1984 Dublin||Secretary of State for Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland Minister for Foreign Affairs (Mr. Peter Barry TD)|
|29 October 1984 London||Secretary of State for Transport and Republic of Ireland Minister for Communications (Mr. Jim Mitchell TD)|
|28 November 1984 Belfast||Under-Secretary of State, Northern Ireland Office and Republic of Ireland Minister for the Environment (Mr. Liam Kavanagh TD)|
|5 December 1984 Dublin||Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health and Social Security and Republic of Ireland Minister for Health and Social Affairs (Mr. Barry Desmond TD)|
|12 December 1984 London||Secretary of State for Transport and Republic of Ireland Minister for Communications (Mr. Jim Mitchell TD)|
|28 January 1985 London||Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food and Republic of Ireland Minister for Agriculture (Mr. Austin Deasy TD)|
|4 February 1985 London||Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, Secretary of State for Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland Minister for Foreign Affairs (Mr. Peter Barry TD)|
|28 February 1985 London||Secretary of State for Employment and Republic of Ireland Minister of Labour (Mr. Ruairi Quinn TD)|
|15 March 1985 Belfast||Under-Secretary of State, Northern Ireland Office and Republic of Ireland Minister for Agriculture (Mr. Austin Deasy TD)|
|15 March 1985 London||Under-Secretary of State, Department of Environment and Republic of Ireland Minister of State, Department of the Environment (Mr. Fergus O'Brien TD)|
|22 March 1985 Dublin||Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, Secretary of State for Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland Minister for Foreign Affairs (Mr. Peter Barry TD)|
|26 March 1985 Dublin||Under-Secretary of State, Northern Ireland Office and Republic of Ireland Minister for Education (Mrs. Gemma Hussey TD)|
asked the Prime Minister if she will publish figures for the current year's rates increase for a sample of Scottish districts with comparable English local authority areas; and if she will arrange for these statistics to be allowable in appeals against the new revaluations in Scotland.
Information on rates in individual local authorities is contained in 'Rating Review", which covers Scotland, and in "Finance and General Statistics" for England. Both publications are produced by CIPFA and are available in the Library.
The average domestic rate bill in Scotland, including water rates, in 1984–85 was £328, as compared with £393 in England for domestic rates and water charges. It is estimated that the corresponding figures in 1985–86 will be £397 and £429 respectively.
The fixing of rateable values, and the handling of appeals against the assessors' decisions, have to take account of statutory provisions, and I have no power to intervene in these processes.
Air Services (Far East)
asked the Prime Minister if she will be discussing the current dispute between the Malaysian airline system and British Airways when she makes her official visit to Malaysia on 5 April.
I expect to do so. There have been constructive discussions between the two airlines about the scope for increased services, but it must be on the basis of equal opportunity; it will be necessary to resolve the problems created by the discriminatory tax measures introduced by the Malaysian Government.
asked the Prime Minister whether the subject of air services between Manchester and Colombo by Air Sri Lanka will be on the agenda for discussion during her forthcoming visit to the far east.
The Sri Lankan authorities have not indicated that they wish to discuss civil aviation during my visit. Arrangements for air services are usually in the first instance discussed bilaterally between the aeronautical authorities.
asked the Prime Minister if she will list and date all the visits to schools that she has made during the last 12 months.
In the past year I have made visits to schools on two occasions:
- 21 September 1984 — Maes Garmon comprehensive school, Mold.
- 15 March 1985—St. Bartholomews, school, Newbury.
Agriculture, Fisheries And Food
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what is the total quantity of organophosphorus pesticides manufactured in the United Kingdom and imported; and if he will make a statement as to its distribution and handling and the present precautions advised by his Department in regard to its handling and usage.
The manufacture and import of pesticides are matters for my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, while the safe handling of pesticides in the distribution trade is a matter for my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Employment.As regards advice on precautions to be taken when the pesticide is used, I should explain that many factors can affect the safety in use of a pesticide and formulated organophosphorus pesticides vary greatly from product to product. The precise active ingredient contained in the product, its concentration and the nature of the formulation (eg liquid, powder or granule) can all affect the safety of the product and hence the precautions which should be taken in handling and using it. Under the pesticides safety precautions scheme all the advice and recommendations necessary to ensure the safe use of a pesticide product, including, where necessary, the appropriate provisions of the Poisonous Substances in Agriculture Regulations, are clearly printed on the product labels.
Common Agricultural Policy
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what estimate he has made, or is available to him, of the impact of the possible accession to the European Economic Community of Spain and Portugal on the total level of financial support within the common agricultural policy for wine, olive oil and tomatoes; and what are the implications of the proportion of the total budget of the common agricultural policy represented by this figure in terms of support for dairy products, cereals, beef and sheepmeat.
Estimation of these future costs is beset by a number of major uncertainties about developments between now and the end of the 10-year transition period. Among these are the response of production in the acceding States to changes in national support prices towards Community levels; the evolution of CAP prices themselves in the light of resources available; and the impact on costs of future modifications in individual regimes, notably that for olive oil.
Agricultural Land (Milk Quotas)
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what information he has concerning the buying of agricultural land with quota and its subsequent disposal; and if he will estimate the effective value of quota in the market place in terms of £s per tonne of liquid milk.
All transfers of land with quota attached require amendments to the quota registers which the Milk Marketing Board maintain on my behalf. From the forms which producers submit to amend the register it is possible to identify the names and addresses of both parties to the transaction, together with the addresses of all their farms supplying milk, and the amount of quota which has been transferred. When part of a holding has been transferred information on the area of land to which the quota is attached is also collected. No information is collected on the extent to which quotas affect land prices, which is the only way that any asset value of quotas in private transactions can be expressed at present.
Exchange Rate (Budget Calculations)
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether he will publish in the Official Report the rate of exchange for the dollar against the European currency unit assumed in the 1983 and 1984 budgets, together with the actual rates in those years; and what is the assumed rate for the current year in the current budget.
The Commission's assumptions on the rate of exchange for the 1983 budget are not available, but the 1984 budget was based on a rate of $1 = 1·1 ecu. The actual rates in those years were $1 = 1·1 ecu and $1 = 1·3 ecu respectively. The 1985 budget has not yet been adopted.
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what are the objections which the salmon farmers' sector of the salmon trade has made to a system of salmon tagging.
Salmon farmers have said that they are generally opposed to the idea of tagging all Atlantic salmon, including farmed salmon, particularly in view of the difficulties which they see arising over tagging salmon taken from sea cages and the burden they consider it would place on their industry in terms of additional costs and decreased efficiency.
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (1) what proposals he has to reduce the present levels of salmon and sea trout theft by poaching;(2) what practical problems need to be overcome before a system of salmon tagging is introduced; and if he will make a statement.
The taking of wild salmon and sea trout by illegal means is a matter to which the Government have given a great deal of attention, including a very thorough examination of the possibilities of controlling salmon sales by a tagging scheme. This has involved discussions with the interested parties which have identified particular difficulties over the successful implementation of such a scheme, including the control of imports, the handling of our own farmed salmon and
Sources: 1973–1983 EC Commission Financial Reports. 1984 EC Commission figures.
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will list the total expenditure on the common agricultural policy for each year since 1973
control over the issue and use of tags. I will make an announcement as soon as we have been able to reach a conclusion.
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what estimate he can make of the percentage of European Economic Community intervention butter that was purchased by commercial retail organisations.
It is unlikely that commercial retail organisations will have purchased butter originating from intervention stocks except under the EC special sale scheme. 142,800 tonnes of intervention butter was made available at the end of 1984 in the Community under this scheme. This is equivalent to 14 per cent of Community interventions stocks of butter in the week that the EC commission regulation authorising the special sale entered into force. This butter was initially made available to packers and importers who are obliged to sell it for direct consumption and in general it will have been sold through commercial retail organisations.
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will list for each year since 1973 the total expenditure on each farm product for the European Economic Community as a whole under the common agricultural policy.
The following table sets out the expenditure on each farm product under the guarantee section of the European agricultural guidance and guarantee fund from 1973 to 1984. CAP expenditure incurred under the guidance section of the fund is normally not related to specific farm products.for the EC as a whole and as a percentage of the total EC expenditure, and the United Kingdom's gross and net contributions in each of the years.
The table sets out the information requested:
Total CAP expenditure
CAP as percentage of total EC expenditure
UK gross contribution
UK net contribution
* Net receipt.
1973–1983 CAP details from EC Commission Financial Reports and Court of Auditors Reports. 1984 from EC Supplementary and Amending Budget.
Surplus Farm Products
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will list all the main European Economic Community farm products in store (surplus) for each of the past five years (a) by quantity, (b) by estimated days' supply and (c) by estimated value for the European Economic Community as a whole and for the United Kingdom separately.
I refer my hon. Friend to the reply given to my hon. Friend the Member for Gainsborough and Horncastle (Mr. Leigh) on 14 January, at column 30. The note referred to in that reply was updated on 13 March and I am sending my hon. Friend a copy. For details of quantities of EC stock levels of previous years I refer my hon. Friend to the further reply given to my hon. Friend the Member for Southend, East (Mr. Taylor) on 23 January, at column 451–52. Recent values of EC and United Kingdom food stocks were given in the reply to the hon. Member for Falkirk, West (Mr. Canavan) on 14 March, at column 423. Information on the value of Community stocks in previous years is provided in the Commission's annual reports on the agricultural situation in the Community which are available in the Library of the House.I will write to my hon. Friend with the other information as soon as possible.
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food how many days from receipt by milk producers of his most recent offer to them to participate in the outgoers scheme he has allowed for (a) acceptance and (b) for ceasing to produce.
Since 25 March, 187 producers with over 500,000 litres of quota have been invited to join the scheme. All of these had been told during February that if they were invited to join they would be required to stop production within three weeks. On this basis, they had indicated that they still wished to join the scheme. They have therefore now been asked to return their claim forms within one week and to cease milk sales within three weeks.
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will list the average market prices and intervention prices (or equivalent) for all the main European Economic Community farm products for each year since 1973 (a) for the European Economic Community as a whole and (b) for the United Kingdom separately.
I will reply to my hon. Friend as soon as possible.
Education And Science
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science (1) what information he has as to the number of students in the United Kingdom who have received awards from public funds for the purpose of postgraduate study in each of the last 20 years; and what was the total cost;(2) what information he has as to the number of students in the United Kingdom who have received awards from public funds for the purpose of postgraduate study in each of the last 20 years, by gender;(3) what information he has as to the number of postgraduate student awards which have been made in each of the last 20 years from public funds from each award-making body.
The table provides for Great Britain, in 1982–83 and 1983–84, the number of postgraduate students in receipt of bursaries, studentships and fellowships from the Department and the research councils, and the costs to those bodies thereof.Similar information for earlier years was published in Statistics of Education (vol. 5) Finance and Awards (HMSO), up to and including 1978–79, and thereafter in "Statistics of Finance and Awards" (DES), copies of which are available in the Library.
Number of postgraduates awards
Number of postgraduates awards
|Department of Education and Science (England and Wales)‡||—||—||3,077||11,244||—||—||2,475||9,758|
|Agricultural and Food Research Council||62||51||113||538||61||51||112||558|
|Medical Research Council||899||509||1,408||5,715||869||592||1,461||6,694|
|Natural Environment Research Council||904||183||1,087||5,221||864||254||1,118||5,612|
|Science and Engineering Research Council||6,003||1,327||7,330||35,071||6,923||1,585||8,508||40,771|
|Economic and Social Research Council||1,163||651||1,814||9,031||1,154||669||1,823||8,044|
* Academic years
|† Financial years|
|‡ Figures for men and women are not available separately in respect of awards made by the Department of Education and Science.|
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science (1) what information he has as to the number of children of European Communities migrant workers who have received awards from public funds for the purpose of postgraduate study in the United Kingdom in each year since the United Kingdom joined the European Communities; and what was the award-making body;(2) what information he has as to the number of students from member countries of the European Communities who have received awards from public funds for the purpose of postgraduate studie in the United Kingdom under the provisions of the Education (Fees and Awards) Act; and what was the award-making body in each case.
This information is not collected by the Department.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what percentage of Government spending on education in the United Kingdom in each of the last 20 years was represented by awards to postgraduate students.
In both 1981–82 and 1982–83, the cost to the Department and the research councils of bursaries, studentships and fellowships to postgraduate students amounted to 0·5 per cent. of the total programme expenditure on education for Great Britain. Later information is not yet available, and that for preceding years could be provided only at disproportionate cost.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science how many students deemed to be overseas students have received retrospective awards from public funds for the purpose of postgraduate study in the United Kingdom as a consequence of the judgment given in the House of Lords on 16 December 1982; and what was the award-making body in each case.
According to information available to the Department, there has been only one such award made to a postgraduate student. The award-making body in that case was the Scottish Education Department.
Equal Opportunities Officer
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science whether he will now appoint a departmental equal opportunities officer with responsibility for co-ordinating the Civil Service policy of non-discrimination within his Department.
As was made clear in answers given to the hon. and learned Member on 26 April 1984 and 14 May 1984, at columns 60 and 19 respectively, a departmental equal opportunities officer was appointed within the Department on 30 March 1984. He has responsibility for providing advice on the full scope of equal opportunities' matters as they concern race and sex discrimination.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will introduce legislation to require each local education authority to submit for his approval its policy statement on multicultural education; and if he will make a statement.
No. It is for individual local education authorities and schools to formulate their response to ethnic diversity in the light of their own circumstances.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if, with reference to paragraph 106 of his White Paper, "Better Schools", Cmnd. 9469, he will publish in the Official Report a list of all those organisations and individuals who have expressed a view to him on the establishment of AS level courses; and which of those have expressed support and which have expressed opposition to the proposal.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science (1) if he will estimate the additional costs for (a) central Government and (b) local education authorities of implementing his proposals on education of ethnic minority pupils published in Cmnd. 9469, "Better Schools";(2) if he will estimate the additional costs for local education authorities of implementing his proposals on governing bodies and the legal framework published in Cmnd. 9469, "Better Schools";
(3) if he will estimate the additional costs for implementing his proposals on monitoring published in Cmnd. 9469, "Better Schools";
(4) if he will estimate the additional costs for (a) central Government and (b) local education authorities of implementing his proposals on in-service training published in Cmnd. 9469, "Better Schools";
(5) if he will estimate the additional costs for (a) central Government and (b) local education authorities of implementing his proposals on teaching quality published in Cmnd. 9469, "Better Schools";
(6) if he will estimate the additional costs for (a) central Government and (b) local education authorities of implementing his proposals on education of the under-fives published in Cmnd. 9469, "Better Schools";
(7) if he will estimate the additional costs for (a) central Government and (b) local education authorities of implementing his proposals on examinations and assessment published in Cmnd. 9469, "Better Schools";
(8) if he will estimate the additional costs for (a) central Government and (b) local education authorities of implementing his proposals on primary and secondary education published in Cmnd. 9469, "Better Schools";
(9) if he will estimate what additional expenditure on (a) books, (b) equipment, (c) science equipment and (d) school maintenance will be necessary to implement his proposals in Cmnd. 9469, "Better Schools".
The costs to central Government of following-up the objectives set out in the White Paper "Better Schools" (Cmnd. 9469) will fall to be met within the planned provision for the Department of Education and Science and Welsh Office, described in Cmnd. 9428. The costs to local education authorities are discussed in general terms in chapter 11 of Cmnd. 9469. References are also made in other chapers to the resources implications of particular policies and proposals, for example those on the education of the under-fives (paragraph 130), the proposed new specific grant to support local education authority expenditure on most aspects of in-service training (paragraph 176) and the proposed new arrangements for school government (paragraph 262).
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science (1) what additional measures and staffing will be required to implement his proposals on monitoring published in Cmnd. 9469, "Better Schools";(2) what additional staffing will be required to implement his proposals on governing bodies and the legal framework published in Cmnd. 9469, "Better Schools";(3) what additional resources and staffing will be required to implement his proposals on education of ethnic minority pupils published in Cmnd. 9469, "Better Schools";(4) what additional resources and staffing will be required to implement his proposals on in-service training published in Cmnd. 9469, "Better Schools";(5) what additional resources and staffing will be required to implement his proposals on teaching quality published in Cmnd. 9469, "Better Schools";(6) what additional resources and staffing will be required to implement his proposals on education of the under-fives published in Cmnd. 9469, "Better Schools";(7) what additional resources and staffing will be required to implement his proposals on examinations and assessment published in Cmnd. 9469, "Better Schools";
(8) what additional resources and staffing will be required to implement his proposals on primary and secondary education published in Cmnd. 9469, "Better Schools";
The possible implications for the number of teachers employed by local education authorities of the Government's policies for the schools were explored in the Department's discussion paper "Schoolteacher Numbers and Deployment in the Longer Term", and in the light of that analysis "Better Schools" (Cmnd. 9469) acknowledges that there is a need for some further limited improvement in the overall pupil to teacher ratio for England and Wales. The extent to which this can be achieved, and the pace of any change, must depend on future public expenditure plans.The employment of non-teaching staff in schools is a matter for individual local education authorities. I look to them to continue to seek greater efficiency in this area taking account, for example, of recent advice from the Audit Commission and within the resources available to support provision in the classroom in pursuance of the policies in Cmnd. 9469.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if, in respect of paragraph 106 of Cmnd. 9469, "Better Schools", he will list those organisations or bodies which have supported or opposed the introduction of the AS level examinations.
Over 200 responses were received to the proposals published in May 1984. Those who responded included higher education bodies (the Committee of Vice-Chancellors and Principals, the Standing Conference on University Entrance, the Committee of Directors of Polytechnics, the Council for National Academic Awards and about 15 individual universities and polytechnics); the local authority associations; local education authorities (35); local advisers (5); colleges of further and higher education (20) and schools (about 50); all the GCE boards; the main teachers' associations; subject associations (9); employers' organisations (3); the TUC; professional and learned societies (15); and a variety of other bodies and individuals. No simple tally of those who supported and opposed the proposals is possible because many responses supported some aspects of the proposals while criticising others. Paragraph 105 of the White Paper summarises the tenor of the responses.
Human Embryo Research
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what resources are being made available through the Medical Research Council to finance its voluntary monitoring committee on human embryo research.
The voluntary licensing authority for human in vitro fertilisation and embryo transfer has been set up jointly by the Medical Research Council and the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists. I understand from the MRC that the resources it needs to finance the authority will be found from within the council's grant-in-aid. It is still too early to estimate with any accuracy what the cost will be, but it is likely to be modest.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will list the members of the voluntary monitoring committee on human embryo research set up by the Medical Research Council.
I understand that the full membership of the voluntary licensing authority set up jointly by the Medical Research Council (MRC) and the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) is as follows:
- Chairman: Dame Mary Donaldson, CBE.
- MRC Nominees: Anne McLaren, DPhil, FRS — Director, MRC Mammalian Development Unit.
- Sir Douglas Black, MD, FRCP — Formerly Professor of Medicine, Manchester University. Formerly Chief Scientist, Department of Health and Social Security. Past President of the Royal College of Physicians.
- Professor G. S. Dawes, CBE, DM, FRCP, FRCOG, FRS—Director of Nuffield Institute for Medical Research, Oxford.
- Dame Cicely Saunders, DBE, FRCP — Founder and Medical Director, St. Christopher's Hospice.
- RCOG Nominees: Professor M. C. Macnaughton, MD, FRCP (Glas), FRCOG, FRSE — President of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, Professor of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Glasgow University.
- Professor R. W. Shaw, MD, FRCS, MRCOG — Professor Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Royal Free Hospital School of Medicine, London.
- J. D. 0. Loudon, MB, ChB, FRCSE, FRCOG — Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist, Edinburgh. Chairman, RCOG Ethics Committee.
- Professor W. Thompson, MD, FRCOG — Professor of Midwifery and Gynaecology, Queen's University, Belfast. Chairman, RCOG Fertility Committee.
- Joint MRC/RCOG Nominees: Penelope Leach, PhD, DipSocSci — Social Psychologist, Journalist, Broadcaster, Author.
- Rev. Professor G. R. Dunstan, FSA — Formerly Professor of Moral and Social Theology, King's College, London. Chaplain to the Queen. Member, RCOG Ethics Committee.
- Sir Cecil Clothier, KCB, QC — Formerly Parliamentary Commissioner for Administration. Formerly Health Service Commissioner for England, Scotland and Wales.
- Susan Hampshire — Actress, Authoress, Executive Committee of Population Concern.
- Secretary: K. I. Gibson, PhD—Medical Research Council Headquarters Office.
Education Welfare Service
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science when he proposes to issue a circular on school attendance and the role of the education welfare service, as announced on page 7 of the Government response to the second report from the Social Services Committee, Session 1983–84, Cmnd. 9298, and paragraphs 192–3 of the White Paper on "Better Schools", Cmnd. 9469.
As my right hon. Friend said in reply to a question from my hon. Friend the Member for Richmond and Barnes (Mr. Hanley) on 22 March at column 626, a draft circular was sent on 21 March to local authority and teacher associations, and other relevant organisations. Copies of the document have been placed in the Library. Comments on the draft have been sought by 30 June. My right hon. Friend hopes that the final version of the circular will be issued soon after that date.
Undergraduate Degree Courses
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what is the average cost per year to the Exchequer of an undergraduate degree course, including maintenance.
It is not possible to identify separately the costs of courses for undergraduates, nor to identify precisely the share of the cost of courses met from Exchequer funds. Approximate average annual expenditure per student for the financial year 1982–83 (the latest year for which information is available) was about £5,200. This figure is composed of the average institutional expenditure per student for universities in Great Britain and polytechnics and other major institutions of advanced further education in England, plus the average maintenance allowance per student for mandatory award holders.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what proportion of teachers in schools are graduates in the age groups (a) under 30, (b) 30 to 40, (c) 40 to 50 and (d) over 50 years.
The proportions of full-time qualified teachers in maintained nursery, primary and secondary' schools in England and Wales on 31 March 1984 who were graduates are as follows:
|30 and under 40||47|
|40 and under 50||32|
|50 and over||23|
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science: (1) what proportion of teachers of (a) physics, (b)chemistry and (c) biology in secondary schools are graduates;(2) what proportion of mathematics teachers in
(a) primary schools and (b) secondary schools are graduates.
No information is available about the proportion of graduates among mathematics teachers in primary schools. Information from the the 1977 sample survey of staffing in maintained secondary schools in England and Wales indicated that of the full-time teachers recorded as teaching those subjects the approximate percentages who were graduates were, for mathematics, physics and chemistry respectively: 45; 70; 75. Comparable information is not readily available for teachers of biology.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what proportion of teachers in (a) primary schools and (b) secondary schools are graduates; and what were the figures for 1979 and 1974.
The proportions of full-time qualified teachers in maintained schools in England and Wales who were graduates are as follows:
|Year (at 31 March)||Primary (including Nursery) Schools||Secondary Schools|
|per cent.||per cent.|
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what proposals he has to increase the proportion of graduate teachers in schools.
The Government's policy is to move as quickly as possible towards an all-graduate teaching profession. Since 1980, with a limited number of exceptions, entry to initial teacher training has been through courses which are either designed for graduates on entry or lead to degree level qualifications. As a result, all new entrants to the teaching profession are now normally graduates. The Government commend the efforts made by many serving teachers who trained on non-graduate certificate courses to obtain in-service bachelor of education qualifications.
asked the Secretary of State for Transport if the Government have received any representations concerning the greater deregulation of taxis.
I have received over 500 representations concerning the Government's proposals for the taxi industry.
Singapore Airlines (Manchester Airport)
asked the Secretary of State for Transport what is the most recent representation which he has received from Singapor Airlines about its request for landing rights in Manchester; and what response he is making.
I have not had a formal approach from Singapore Airlines since September 1984. I am however considering an approach which I received on 18 March from the Singapore Government about the proposed Singapore Airlines service to Manchester.
Road Accident Statistics
asked the Secretary of State for Transport what were the numbers of fatal and non-fatal road traffic accidents, respectively in Hampshire, caused by excessive intake of alcohol, for the 12 months ended December 1984; and what were the comparative figures for 1983.
Causes of accidents are not identified in statistical reports. The numbers of injury accidents in Hampshire in which a driver gave a positive breath test were as follows:
|Other Injury Accidents||333||307|
Motor Cycles (Fairings)
asked the Secretary of State for Transport if he will introduce legislation to make it mandatory for manufacturers of motor cycles to fit energy absorbing fairings on the machines.
Research into energy absorbing devices for motor cycles is currently being conducted by the transport and road research laboratory. The devices being investigated include fairings for the protection of the rider's lower limbs. The research is not sufficiently far advanced for mandatory application to be considered at present.
asked the Secretary of State for Transport if he has any plans to introduce a requirement for front under-run guards on commercial vehicles.
My Department's transport and road research laboratory is conducting practical tests on the effectiveness of front under-run guards, and when the results are available I shall consider whether these devices should be required on all new lorries.
asked the Secretary of State for Transport if he will list the stretches of the M4 motorway at present without a crash barrier and the dates such crash barriers are scheduled for installation.
The whole of M4 in England has central reserve safety fencing installed in accordance with normal standards.
asked the Secretary of State for Transport if he has any plans to increase the traffic carrying capacity of the M4 motorway between London and Reading.
The M4 motorway is at present being widened between the Heathrow Spur (juntion 4) and the new M25 interchange. I have no plans for further improvement at this stage but the capacity of the remainder of the motorway between London and Reading will be kept under review.
East London Assessment Study
asked the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what he estimates will be the cost of the East London assessment study which he has set up;(2) what will be the cost to the taxpayer of his employing
(a) Ove Arup and Partners, (b) Llewelyn Davies Planning and (c) Lovejoy and Partners as consultants for the East London assessment study.
This will depend upon how much work the successive stages of the studies require and the extent to which the GLC and the boroughs make available relevant data.
asked the Secretary of State for Transport if the questionnaire issued by the consultants for the East London assessment study has been distributed on the basis of a random sample or as quota sample; and if anyone is responsible for checking the statistical validity of the sample.
I understand that the consultants have distributed leaflets inviting views on transport-related problems to as many as possible of the households within the study area and have also invited views in general advertisements.
asked the Secretary of State for Transport if he will instruct the consultants carrying out the East London assessment study to seek advice from independent consultants versed in survey techniques.
I am satisfied they have access to all the relevant skills necessary.
asked the Secretary of State for Transport what is the latest position regarding the proposed bypass of the A52 trunk road at Bottesford, Leicestershire; and when a date for any public inquiry will be announced.
Draft line, side roads and compulsory purchase orders are due to be published during the summer of this year. If a public inquiry is necessary, the date will be announced about two months before it is due to start.
asked the Secretary of State for Transport what are his intentions in dealing with cross subsidisation of bus services; and if he will make a statement.
I refer the hon. Gentleman to the answer I gave the hon. Member for Cambridgeshire, North-East (Mr. Freud) on 14 January, at column 50.
asked the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to his answer of 21 March, Official Report, column 542, when the report of his Department's inquiry into the disappearance of the South Stack in the North sea was completed; on what date he received a copy of the report; what evidence the report adduces to suggest that the most probable reason for the vessel's loss was capsizing; whether the inquiry had available to it any evidence of the presence of British or other submarines in the vicinity of the South Stack immediately prior to her loss; and if he will make available a copy of the report to the hon. Member for Warrington, North.
The inspector's report on the disappearance of the South Stack in the North sea was completed on 19 January 1984.At the time of the vessel's disappearance the weather was good and there was no distress signal. Both facts suggest a sudden catastrophe such as capsizing.
|Motorway||Junction numbers||Details of work||Timing|
|M4||4–5||Addition of fourth lane in each direction||In progress, completion December 1985|
|M5||4–5||Addition of third lane in each direction; construction of M5/M42 junction.||In progress completion mid 1987|
|M6||4–5||Construction of M6/M42 junction||In progress, completion early 1986|
asked the Secretary of State for Transport what plans he has to improve the A21 between Sevenoaks and Hastings; and if he will make a statement.
We have schemes in our national programme for bypasses of Pembury, Lamberhurst and Robertsbridge, at different stages of preparation. Three smaller improvements — at the southern end of the
The vessel was less than 12 metres in length and therefore did not come within the scope of the survey and certification regulations. It was, however, surveyed for insurance purposes by an independent surveyor. The vessel was known to carry two tons of permanent ballast but there is no record of the adequacy of its stability. It had been fitted for stern trawling and the outriggers are believed to have been subsequently extended. Such arrangements in small vessels can give rise to dangerous heeling forces when carrying the weight of gear and fish, particularly if the gear becomes snagged on the sea-bed. At the time of the loss there was no evidence of the presence of any submarine in the vicinity.
In accordance with normal practice a copy of the factual statement based on the inspector's report has been made available to the next of kin.
Air Services (Far East)
asked the Secretary of State for Transport if he will make a statement on the dispute existing between the Malaysian airline system and. British airways.
I have nothing to add to the answer given by my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister today.
asked the Secretary of State for Transport what representations he has received concerning the Britain-Singapore air service agreement.
I am considering an approach which I received on 18 March about the proposed Singapore Airlines service to Manchester.
Motorways (Repairs And Construction)
asked the Secretary of State for Transport if he will list in the Official Report all planned motorway repairs and construction work in April; and if he will detail all planned work for the next six months.
I have placed in the Library of the House a copy of my Department's major motorway maintenance programme for 1985–86. That provides the information my hon. Friend is seeking on motorway maintenance.In addition, during the first half of 1985–86 the following major improvements to the network will be in progress:Tonbridge bypass, at Lindridge north of Lamberhurst, and Coopers Corner, north of Hurst Green—are included in the regional programme.In addition, I shall be taking account of the results of a comprehensive study into further measures which might be needed along the A21 between Tonbridge and Hastings, in our current review of the trunk road programme.
Second Severn Crossing
asked the Secretary of State for Transport if he will make a statement about the progress of the study for a second Severn crossing.
On 7 February 1984 I announced the setting up of the study and I have today published the report on the first phase which has been received from the consultants Messrs. W. S. Atkins & Partners and G. Maunsell & Partners. Copies of the report have been placed in the Libraries of both Houses.As my hon. Friend informed the House on 13 December 1984 at column 578, many possibilities have been investigated for the location and type of river crossing and the link roads to the M4-M5 motorways. The consultants recommended for further study nine crossing options together with 21 route options for linking a new crossing to the existing highway network. The recommended crossing options are all situated south west of the existing bridge and north of Avonmouth and include a mix of bridges, driven tunnels and immersed tunnels.They fall into three broad corridors — one between the existing bridge and the Dun Sands, one across the English Stones and the third corridor south of the English Stones but to the north of Avonmouth.I agree with the consultants' recommendation not to consider further possible crossings north of the existing
|Local Authority Capital Expenditure and Income: England|
|Gross capital expenditure†||3,669||3,926||3,806||3,518||3,628||4,206||4,456||3,896||4,875||5,374|
|Other expenditure charged to capital account and changes in balances‡||152||216||404||455||535||612||871||1,196||2,033||1,519|
|Contributions from revenue | |||183||236||257||285||309||369||454||325||321||277|
|Government grants and reimbursements||128||177||249||255||351||385||318||321||416||397|
|Transfers from special funds•||113||142||177||200||256||369||507||380||475||547|
|† Excluding double counting of flows between authorities|
|‡ Mostly repayment of debt and changes in balances|
||| Revenue contributions to capital outlay and uncapitalised expenditure|
|¶ Including internal loans|
|• Including advances from capital funds|
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment when he last met the local authority associations to discuss spending targets for the financial years 1985–86 and 1986–87.
My right hon. Friend discussed the 1985–86 expenditure targets, and other aspects of the 1985–86 rate support grant settlement, with the local
crossing nor south of Avonmouth. Also as the options in the third corridor are clearly more expensive in terms of capital costs I have decided it would be wrong to pursue these options further, and that it is fair to remove now any uncertainty in the minds of those who may fear planning blight.
Approval has been given to the consultants continuing further detailed work on the recommended options in the first two corridors. They will be having further consultations with interested local authorities and other bodies.
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will publish the sources of finance for (a) gross and (b) net capital expenditure by local authorities in total in England for each year from 1974 to 1985.
Based on returns from local authorities, the information requested for England is as follows, where net capital expenditure equals gross capital expenditure less capital receipts. Information for 1984–85 is not yet available.authority associations on 11 December 1984, at a meeting of the Consultative Council on Local Government Finance. We have not yet formally discussed with the associations the question of targets for 1986–87.
Conservation (Special Grants)
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will outline the source or sources of funds made available to voluntary organisations in the conservation field in relation to his Department's special grants programme; and if he will list the extent of each of the contributions.
The Countryside Commission has been informed of 64 management agreements that have been concluded by local authorities under the provisions of the 1981 Act. Of these, 38 involve no financial consideration.
International Conference Centre
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what has been the total cost to date of the new international conference centre in Westminster; what is his latest estimate of the total cost; and if he will list the references or describe (a) the uses to which it will be put, (b) the charge to non-Governmental organisations, if it is made available to them and (c) his estimate of the annual revenue cost.
Expenditure to 22 February 1985 on the construction and fitting out of the superstructure of the international conference centre (including the fitting out of the extention to the parliamentary telephone exchange) was £26·073 million. The current total estimated cost, at cash prices, including the estimated total cost of variation of price payments, is £46·4 million. The estimated cost of furnishings is £5·3 million. The current estimate of total cost of £54·775 million in Supply Estimates 1985–86 at constant 1985–86 prices includes furnishings.The centre's primary function will be to accommodate Government conferences, at both national and international level. At other times its facilities will be available on commercial terms to other users, including private sector bodies. The precise charges for these facilities have not yet been settled. Further market research is in hand as a basis for making estimates of the likely annual revenue.
Community And Parish Councils
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment whether he is satisfied with the current operation and role of community and parish councils; and if he will make a statement.
Parish councils have operated as part of local government since 1894. They continue to perform a useful role in community representation and in administering a limited range of local government services.Community councils are the responsibility of my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Wales.
Urban Development Corporations
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if, in respect of section 12 of the New Towns and Urban Development Corporations Act 1985 and schedule 31 to the Local Government Planning and Land Act 1980, he will state the amounts borrowed by each of the urban development corporations; and what is the upper limit in each case.
I refer the hon. Gentleman to "Accounts relating to issues from the National Loans Fund" for the years 1981–82 (HC 146 (1982–83) p. 76); 1982–83 (HC 159 (1983–84) p. 78); and 1983–84 (HC 106 (1984–85) p. 72). These accounts include a statement of cumulative grant paid as well as borrowing in relation to the financial limit then in force. There is no separate upper limit on borrowing.
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will make a statement on what has happened following the consultation paper reviewing dog licences and proposing new legislation to give local authorities the power to increase licence fees.
The closing date for comment on the consultation paper was 28 February. Some 1,400 representations from a wide range of organisations and individuals have been received and are being considered.
Agricultural Land (Rating)
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will estimate the yield from the imposition of a rate on agricultural land at the full rate charged by local authorities on commercial and business undertakings.
I refer the hon. Member to the answer given by my right hon. Friend to the hon. Member for Copeland (Dr. Cunningham) on 22 March, at column 637.
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what was the amount of derelict land in Bradford from 1979 to 1983 and the latest figures available by ownership under the headings of private, nationalised industry, local authority and Government or public corporation.
The information on the amount of derelict land in England is not compiled in the precise form requested by my hon. Friend. The 1982 survey of derelict land in England shows that there were 326 hectares of such land in the metropolitan district of Bradford at 1 April 1982. The details of ownership are as follows:
|Other public bodies||24|
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what was the percentage increase in housing starts in Bradford in both the private and public sectors for 1984 compared with 1983 and compared with the United Kingdom as a whole.
The following percentage changes are calculated from the reported number of starts in Bradford published in "Local Housing Statistics" issues 68 and 72, and starts in the United Kingdom published in table 1.2 of "Housing and Construction Statistics" No. 20.
|Housebuilding Starts January to September of 1983 and of 1984: percentage changes|
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment (1) what was the amount of urban development grant money allocated for economic projects in Bradford for the years 1982–83 and 1983–84; and what proportion that was of the total;(2) what has been the number of jobs created by urban development grant projects since 1979 in Bradford.
The city of Bradford metropolitan district council is a programme authority for the purposes of the Government's urban programme. Total urban programme expenditure in Bradford in 1982–83 was £6·33 million. Economic projects made up 10 per cent. of the approved programme for that year. Total expenditure in 1983–84 was £5·56 million. Economic projects made up 21 per cent. of the approved programme.The council is in addition one of the authorities which have been invited to put forward schemes for urban development grant. Although one offer of UDG has been made, and other schemes are under discussion with officers of the city, no expenditure has yet been incurred.Information about the number of jobs created in Bradford since 1979 in consequence of this expenditure is not available.
Crisis Management Measures
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if, pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Merionnydd Nant Conwy (Mr. Thomas) on 12 February, Official Report, column 86, he will make a statement on how, and why, his Department takes part in corporate exercises of testing crisis management measures; and if he will list all such forthcoming exercises planned and all those which have taken place in the last two years.
Officials of my Department attended inter-departmental meetings during WINTEX-CIMEX 85 at which crisis management measures were discussed. This was done because we would be responsible for taking decisions in a crisis which would affect other Departments, and vice versa. Such exercises have taken place early in the year for many years. It is likely that this pattern will continue in future.
Waste Disposal (Energy)
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment (1) what action he proposes to help develop energy from waste schemes in those local authorities where disposal costs for landfill are higher than the cost of mass incineration with heat and electricity recovery or refuse-derived fuel production;(2) what steps his Department is taking to define investment opportunities involving private sector finance for local authority waste into energy recovery schemes.
Guidance for local authorities and others on waste disposal options including incineration and the production of waste derived fuel is contained in my Department's publication "Mechanised Household Waste Sorting in the United Kingdom — A General Guide" published by HMSO in 1984; a copy is in the Library of the House of Commons. This document includes information on waste disposal options currently in use; costs and financing; opportunities for the private sector; and marketing of products.
My Department will shortly be publishing a report of the landfill practices review group which will include advice on the control, extraction and distribution of landfill gas as an energy source. We are continuing to support research and development into the recovery of energy from waste.
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if his Department collates case study information on schemes in other countries which convert waste into energy.
My Department has acquired information from various sources on some of the schemes used for recovering energy from waste in other countries. The Department of Energy also has a certain amount of similar information. However, a more comprehensive collection of such data is held by the Harwell waste management information bureau which is partly funded by my Department.
Control Of Mineral Working
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment when he intends to publish his revised memorandum on the control of mineral working as outlined in circular 3/84.
Representatives from the minerals industry and the local authority associations have agreed that to be of long-term use the revised edition of the memorandum needs to await both Parliamentary approval of regulations for the abatement of compensation as provided for in the Town and Country Planning (Minerals) Act 1981 and the making of certain minerals amendments to the Town and County Planning General Development Order 1977. The compensation regulations were laid before the House on 27 March 1985, and I hope that the GDO amendments can be introduced later in this Parliamentary Session. The new edition of the memorandum will be published as soon as possible thereafter.
Ethnic Minority Projects (Funding)
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will list the projects which are being funded by inner city partnership money in respect of social and community facilities for Bangladeshi communities in England and Wales.
In 1984–85 the urban programme is supporting the 18 social and community projects listed as follows which specifically address the needs of Bangladeshi communities in Partnership areas. Members of these communities will also benefit from more than 100 UP funded social and community projects, costing over £2·5 million, aimed more generally at Asian and Muslim communities in the Partnership areas.
|Partnership Authorities: Urban Programme Social and Community Projects of Special Benefit to Bangladeshi Communities|
|1. Bangladesh Women's Association—Welfare Project||1,500|
|2. Jalabad Bangla School—Bengali Teaching Classes||1,000|
|3. Bangladesh Islamic Organisation—Bangla Language Teaching Project||1,500|
|4. Bangladesh Women's Association Welfare Project||500|
|5. Bangladesh Welfare Organisation—Welfare Advice/Mother Tongue Teaching||2,000|
|6. Bangladesh Welfare Association—Family Welfare Works||7,000|
|1. Bangla Education and Cultural Association||6,800|
|2. Mother Tongue Teaching Partnership||68,000|
|3. North London Muslim Youth Centre||400|
|4. Hackney Asian Association||6,200|
|1. Bangladesh Women's Association||31,000|
|2. North London Bangladesh Welfare Association||23,400|
|3. Bengali Women's Group||17,300|
|4. Islington Muslim Association||12,800|
|5. Patidal Samaj||27,600|
|6. Asian Centre||40,000|
|1. Greater Manchester Bangladesh Association||34,000|
|2. Bangladesh Women's and Children's Welfare Project||29,000|
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will list the projects which are receiving partnership funding for ethnic minority communities in Liverpool at the most recent date.
Projects of particular benefit to ethnic minority communities being funded through the Liverpool inner city partnership in 1984–85 are as follows.
|Urban Programme Funding for Ethnic Minority Communities|
|Estimated Outturn 1984–85|
|Charles Wootton Centre|
|Hindu Cultural Organisation Centre|
|Sports Hall (Phase 2)||70·0||—|
|Merseyside Asian Social & Cultural Organisation|
|Social and Cultural Events and Music Lessons||—||1·0|
|Merseyside Caribbean Council||111·9||43·5|
|Merseyside Somali Community Association Centre||—||9·0|
|Pakistan Association Centre||116·9||26·8|
Estimated Outturn 1984–85
Princes Park Methodist Centre
|Elimu Wa Nane||—||11·0|
Liverpool Sikh Community Centre
Liverpool Muslim Society
Liverpool 8 Law Centre
|Refurbishment of 34–36 Princes Road Office Accommodation for Law Centre South Liverpool Personnel and Rialto Community Centre|
South Liverpool Personnel
|Job Placement Agency||—||40·0|
Merseyside Community Relations Council
|Electrical Improvements and Additional Security||5·0||—|
|Public Education Officer||—||8·8|
Circle of Literary Friends URDU Speaking Project
|Equipment and Books etc||4·9||0·6|
|Crown Street Language Centre||—||31·5|
|Merseyside Chinese Community Centre—Running Costs||—||34·0|
|Foundation Courses to Improve Basic Skills||—||85·8|
|Courses for the Unemployed (Access Programme)||—||136·3|
|Black Social Work Project||—||175·0|
|Home Help Service for the Black Community||—||134·0|
|Domiciliary Meals for Muslims||—||9·4|
|Total Voluntary Projects||552·20||227·20|
|Total Statutory Projects||Nil||606·20|
|Grand Total Partnership Funding 1984–85||552·20||833·20|
Figures as at 3 December 1984.
Local Government (Staff)
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will set out in descending order for each London borough the number of local authority employees per 100 inhabitants allowing for the Inner London education authority and the Greater London council.
The information is as follows.
|Staff per hundred population Inner London Boroughs (including GLC and ILEA)|
|Kensington and Chelsea||3·86|
Information is not available for Southwark.
Coolscar Quarry, Wharfedale
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if, in view of the fact that limestone quarrying operations have begun at Coolscar quarry in Wharfedale, without the necessary planning permission, he will take steps to secure the immediate cessation of those operations until after he has reached a decision on the planning application in relation to which the public inquiry reopens on 21 May.
No. The question whether to initiate enforcement action is for North Yorkshire county council, as the mineral planning authority, to determine in the first instance.
Society Of Engineers Incorporated
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he has included the Society of Engineers Incorporated on the list of approved inspectors for checking and carrying out site supervision under the Housing and Building Control Bill; and if he will make a statement.
The bodies which my right hon. Friend has in mind to designate for the purposes of approving inspectors under section 49 of the Building Act 1984 are as follows:
- The Chartered Institute of Building
- The Faculty of Architects and Surveyors
- The Incorporated Association of Architects and Surveyors
- The Institution of Building Control Officers
- The Institution of Civil Engineers
- The Institution of Structural Engineers
- The Royal Institute of British Architects
- The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment why the consultation paper on improvement policy, whose publication was announced in paragraph 23 of Vol. II of the 1985 public expenditure White Paper, has still not been made available to the public or placed in the Library.
I refer the hon. Member to my reply to my hon. Friend the Member for Tatton (Mr. Hamilton) on 18 February at column 333.
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will arrange a meeting with Shelter to discuss the findings of his Department's report on local authority empty dwellings regarding the current shortfall of public sector dwellings for rent.
The Department invited Shelter's comments on the empty dwellings report and on the draft circular to local authorities setting out ways in which better management can reduce numbers of empty dwellings. No response has so far been received.
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what assumptions about future housing demand he makes in determining the level of provision for capital expenditure on housing; and on what factual information he bases those assumptions.
The Government's decisions on the level of provision for capital expenditure on housing are based on a judgment of what can be afforded, having regard to household projections and information about the needs of individual local authorities, the views of the local authority associations and representatives of the voluntary housing movement, and wider economic considerations.
Home Ownership Scheme
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he intends to change the price limits that restrict the purchase of property under the home ownership scheme for tenants of charitable housing associations.
The price limits have been reviewed in the light of changes in house prices and the following limits will apply to all purchases completed after 1 April 1985:
- Greater London—£45,000
- South East—£40,000
- Elsewhere in England and Wales—£30,000
- Isle of Wight
- East Sussex
- West Sussex
The rules for the scheme have also been amended so that tenants may now buy a dwelling outright even if it costs more than the price limit provided that they pay all the excess from their own resources. I believe that these changes will help more people to buy homes that are suitable for their individual needs under the scheme.
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment how many football matches the Minister for Sport has attended since taking office.
[pursuant to his reply, 25 March 1985, c. 12]: I list below all the football matches which I have attended since September 1981:
- England v Hungary
- Manchester City v Swansea City
- Tottenham Hotspur v Liverpool
- England v Northern Ireland
- Millwall v Chester
- Liverpool v Swansea City
- Tottenham Hotspur v Ipswich Town
- Liverpool v Manchester United
- England v Holland
- England v France
- Northern Ireland v Yugoslavia
- Scotland v Brazil
- England v West Germany
- Bayern Munich v Tottenham Hotspur
- Swansea City v Tottenham Hotspur
- Ipswich Town v Tottenham Hotspur
- West Bromwich Albion v Liverpool
- Ipswich Town v Manchester United
- Liverpool v Manchester United
- West Ham United v Aston Villa
- Sutton United v Bishops Stortford
- England v West Germany
- Holland v Spain
- Arsenal v West Bromwich Albion
- Brighton and Hove Albion v Everton
- Queen's Park Rangers v Everton
- West Ham United v Manchester United
- Ipswich Town v Arsenal
- Fulham v Tottenham Hotspur
- Everton v Gillingham
- Everton v Liverpool
- Wycombe Wanderers v Sutton United
- Norwich City v Sunderland
I shall be attending the Stoke City v Everton match on 20 April. In addition to those matches, I was also to have attended two matches which were cancelled due to bad weather.
I assume the hon. Member refers to association football matches, but since September 1981 I have also attended some 20 rugby football league and rugby football union matches at club and international level. If the hon. Member requires that additional detail I shall write to him.
Contempt Of Court Act 1980
asked the Attorney-General when he proposes to bring section 13 of the Contempt of Court Act 1980 into force.
The Lord Chancellor is giving further consideration to the best arrangements for improving the provision of legal aid for contempt of court cases. He hopes to introduce these this year.
Mr Alan Lowther
asked the Attorney-General if he will make a statement concerning the prosecution of Mr. Alan Lowther under section 2 of the Official Secrets Act.
Alan Lowther was a member of a working group within the Home Office tasked to assist members of the Metropolitan police fraud squad investigating alleged irregularities in contractual dealings between the Directorate of Industries and Farms and a supplier. He was alleged to have communicated to one of those whom he believed to be under investigation, and contrary to express instructions, parts of a report identifying transactions which were to be the subject of that investigation.I considered that proceedings were appropriate and granted my consent. However, evidence given at the committal indicated that the information would have been of less assistance to the recipient than it first appeared to be. I therefore decided that it would not be in the public interest for the prosecution to proceed further. This was not a case which involved national security but a possible interference into a criminal investigation.
Student Demonstrators (Manchester)
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will list the charges brought against those persons arrested while demonstrating against himself at Manchester university students' union this month, the date of appearance in court and the verdict and sentence, where applicable.
The chief constable of Greater Manchester informs me that the following charges have been brought in connection with the demonstration at Manchester university students union on 1 March:
|Section 5 of the Public Order Act 1936 (conduct conducive to a breach of the peace)||19|
|Obstruction of the police||6|
|Obstruction of the highway||6|
|Theft of a policeman's helmet||1|
|Common law breach of the peace||1|
Children In Care
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department when he intends to announce the new guidelines relating to safeguards for children in care.
For details of the review into disclosure of convictions in relation to those seeking positions of responsibility for children I refer my hon. Friend to the answer I gave to a question from my hon. Friend the Member for Surrey, South-West (Mrs. Bottomley) on 27 March at column 247.
Life Sentence Prisoners
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many prisoners are currently serving life sentences.
I refer the hon. Member to the reply given to a question from the hon. Member for Tooting (Mr. Cox) on 28 March at column 276.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) how many defendants appealed against the size of a fine imposed by courts during (a) 1981, (b) 1982, (c) 1983 and (d) 1984, respectively;(2) what was the total number of appeals against all forms of sentence during
(a) 1981, (b) 1982, (c) 1983 and (d) 1984, respectively;
(3) how many defendants who were fined during (a) 1981, (b) 1982, (c) 1983 and (d) 1984 eventually had all or part of that fine remitted.
The information available on appeals against sentence is published annually in "Criminal Statistics, England and Wales, Supplementary Tabled Vol. 4". The total number of persons appealing against sentence and the number appealing against a fine is given in tables S4.12c and S4.13b of the issues for 1981 and 1982 and tables S4.8c and S4.9b of the issue for 1983; the number of persons whose fine was varied on appeal is given in tables S4.12d-e and S4.13d of the issues for 1981 and 1982 and tables S4.8d-e and S4.9d of the issue for 1983. Corresponding information for 1984 is not yet available.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what is the current membership of the Home Office advisory committee on animal experimentation; and if he will list the reasons why each member was appointed.
The current membership of the advisory committee is as follows:
- Baroness Warnock of Weeke
- Lord Adrian
- Dr. M. Balls
- Professor D. Blackman
- J. Price
- Dr. C. Coid
- Professor A. Dayan
- Professor G. Dunstan
- T. Field-Fisher
- Dr. J. Hampson
- C. Hollands
- Dr. S. Jennett
- Lady Lloyd
- Dr. B. Newbould
- Sir William Paton
- N. Snodgrass.
The membership reflects a wide range of disciples necessary for consideration of the scientific and ethical questions referred to the committee. But each member is appointed for the personal contribution he or she is expected to make to discussion, not as a representative of particular interests.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will permit the Home Office inspector who visited the research establishment of the Royal College of Surgeons at Downe, Kent, to give evidence at the forthcoming appeal of the Royal College of Surgeons against its recent conviction for cruelty; and if he will make a statement.
No inspector has been asked to give evidence. My right hon. and learned Friend would, of course, raise no objection if an inspector was asked.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) if a Home Office inspector visited the research establishment of the Royal College of Surgeons at Downe, Kent, on 18 June; if any other official of his Department visited on the same date; and if he will make a statement;(2) if he will list the visits his Department's inspectors have made to Buckston Bourne farm in each of the last five years.
In my reply to a question from my hon. Friend the Member for Holland and Boston (Mr. Body) on 12 December 1984 at column 483, I listed the visits made by the inspector in the five years up to 16 May 1984. Between then and the end of 1984, inspections were carried out on 18 June, 30 August, 29 and 30 October and 17 December. The inspection of 18 June was carried out by the inspector alone; he inspected the experimental animals for which my right hon. and learned Friend has responsibility under the Cruelty to Animals Act 1876, not the breeding colony which is not currently subject to statutory controls.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if Home Office inspectors make it their policy to look at all incident reports relating to establishments they inspect; and if he will make a statement.
During an inspection, it is the usual practice of inspectors to inquire about the general health of experimental animals and any particular problems which may have arisen since their last visit. They may also ask to seen any relevant records relating to animal health and welfare. I see no need for them to examine every record in every case.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what recent changes there have been in the personnel in his Department's inspectorate relating to experiments on living animals; for what reasons; and if he will make a statement.
Four new inspectors were appointed between October 1983 and February 1984 to fill vacancies. There have been no changes since then.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will publish the disciplinary code applying to staff of his Department's inspectorate relating to experiments on living animals; and if he will make a statement.
Members of the cruelty to animals inspectorate are subject to the same disciplinary procedures as other civil servants. These are set out in the Civil Service pay and conditions of service code, a copy of which is available in the Library of the House.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what is his policy regarding the conditions in which social primates kept for animal experimentation should be kept in licensed establishments; what conditions he lays down regarding (a) cage size and (b) meeting their behavioural needs; and if he will make a statement.
It is my right hon. and learned Friend's policy for all experimental animals to be kept under the best possible conditions consistent with the method of the experiment and the characteristics of the species. He requires them to be kept in cages large enough for them to be able to move freely and to see and associate with others of their species if it is practicable and appropriate. Primates, as highly intelligent, wild animals, pose special problems which licensees try to overcome and, particularly in the case of small primates, do overcome with skill and imagination.The Royal Society is currently devising guidelines on animal accommodation, including that of primates. My right hon. and learned Friend hopes to be able to incorporate guidelines in a code of practice which he would be empowered to issue under the new legislation planned to replace the Cruelty to Animals Act 1876.
asked the Secretary for the Home Department if he will introduce legislation to prohibit individuals and bodies taking in or otherwise obtaining custody of unwanted and abandoned animals from disposing of them directly or indirectly for the purpose of vivisection; and if he will make a statement.
The new legislation which is planned to replace the Cruelty to Animals Act 1876 will as a general rule, require animals used in laboratories to be purpose-bred and will prohibit the use of stray dogs and cats. We do not intend to debar the use of other unwanted animals — for instance, farm animals—in scientific procedures.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether any member of his Department has had discussions with the Royal College of Surgeons about the implications of its conviction for cruelty involving a monkey, Rage; and if he will make a statement.
Yes. The content of discussions between officials of the Department and licensees or responsible authorities under the Cruelty to Animals Act 1876 are confidential to the parties concerned. The Royal College of Surgeons has appealed against the conviction.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if Her Majesty's Government will seek powers to ensure that tests for eye irritancy are carried out using the non-animal alternatives recently developed rather than using conscious rabbits as at present; and if he will make a statement.
There is not yet any proven non-sentient alternative which can safely be used in place of a live animal. However, before any substance which may cause eye irritation is tested in one eye of a live animal, screening tests involving alternatives such as an isolated eye, or skin are normally carried out. Published guidelines, such as the DHSS guidelines for the testing of chemicals for toxicity, remind researchers of the desirability of in vitro tests to ensure that corneal irritants are not applied unnecessarily to animals' eyes. Active research into this area is being carried out in this country and abroad, with a view to identifying further alternatives to these tests.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will list in the Official Report all those organisations which have made formal representations following the publication of the last White Paper on experimental procedures on living animals.
The major organisations which have submitted comments on the White Paper are as follows:
- Committee of Vice Chancellors and Principals of the Universities of the United Kingdom
- Aberdeen University
- Birmingham University
- Cambridge University
- Glasgow University
- Liverpool University
- London University
- Guy's Hospital Medical School
- Hammersmith Hospital
- Royal Postgraduate Medical School
- Imperial College of Science and Technology
- Middlesex Hospital Medical School
- St. Mary's Hospital Medical School
- Newcastle upon Tyne University
- Surrey University
Scientific and Professional Societies
- Association of Veterinary Anaesthetists
- Biochemical Society
- Biological Council
- British Laboratory Animals Veterinary Association
- British Psychological Society
- British Toxicology Society
- British Veterinary Association
- Institute of Biology
- Laboratory Animals' Science Association
- Mammal Society
- Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain
- Physiological Society
- Research Defence Society
- Royal College of Pathologists
- Royal College of Surgeons of England
- Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons
- Society for Experimental Biology
Industry and Associated Organisations
- Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry
- Association of Independent Contract Research Organisations
- Beecham Pharmaceuticals
- Boots Company plc
- British Agrochemicals Association
- British Industrial Biological Research Association
- Celltech Limited
- Chemical Industries Association
- Ciba-Geigy Pharmaceuticals Division
- Cosmetic, Toiletry and Perfumary Association Ltd.
- FBC Ltd.
- Fisons plc
- Glaxo Group Research Limited
- Hazelton Laboratories (Europe) Ltd.
- Hoechst UK Ltd.
- ICI plc
- Miles Laboratory Ltd.
- Roche Ltd.
- Searle Research and Development
- Wellcome Research Laboratory
Animal Welfare Organisations
- Animal Aid
- British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection
- Committee for the Reform of Animal Experimentation
- Crusade Against All Cruelty to Animals Ltd.
- Farm Animal Welfare Co-ordinating Executive
- Flesh and Blood
- Fund for the Replacement of Animals in Medical Experiments
- National Anti-Vivisection Society Ltd.
- Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
- Scottish Anti-Vivisection Society
- Scottish Society for the Prevention of Vivisection
- Universities Federation for Animal Welfare
- Agricultural Research Council
- British Association for Cancer Research
- General Synod of the Church of England
- Medical Research Council
- Medical Research Council (MRC Radiobiology Unit)
- Natural Environment Research Council
- Nature Conservancy Council
- Pharmaceuticals Economic Development Committee
- University Grants Committee
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what are the current review procedures for young people sentenced to be detained at Her Majesty's pleasure under section 53 of the Children and Young Persons Act 1933.
The release of a person sentenced to be detained during Her Majesty's pleasure is subject to the provisions of section 61(1) of the Criminal Justice Act 1967, and my right hon. and learned Friend may authorise the release of such a person if recommended to do so by the Parole Board and after consultation with the Lord Chief Justice and, if available, the trial judge. The review procedures for such cases are the same as those for life sentence prisoners described in reply to a question from my hon. Friend the Member for Hampshire, East (Mr. Mates), on 30 November 1983 at columns 513–15.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether the procedure of fixing of target dates for parole after early consultation with the Lord Chief Justice is being applied to all life prisoners or only to those convicted of murder.
The procedure applies to all life sentence prisoners.
Dogs (Wirral Park)
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department when he expects to approve the draft byelaws submitted by Wirral council giving park rangers greater power over dogs and dog owners using Wirral's park.
Wirral council has submitted draft byelaws to regulate its pleasure grounds and open spaces which cover a wide range of matters. The Department wrote to the council on 28 March with a number of comments on its proposals and we shall consider when provisional approval for the byelaws can be granted once the council has replied to these points.
Victims Of Crime (Compensation)
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what administrative arrangements are being made for the distribution of leaflets to all victims of crime, who have suffered injury, informing them of the compensation powers of the courts; and whether he has any plans to supplement these arrangements with publicity material to be displayed in such places as hospitals, surgeries and advice centres.
The text of the proposed leaflet and the arrangements for distribution have yet to be settled, but we hope it will be possible for the police to hand copies to victims of crime. My right hon. and learned Friend has no present plans for further publicity material, but this will be considered.
Equal Opportunities Officer
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he will now appoint a departmental equal opportunities officer with responsibility for co-ordinating the Civil Service policy of non-discrimination within his Department.
Two heads of personnel management divisions (grade 5) have been designated as equal opportunity officers, responsible for advising on the full scale of equal opportunity matters as they concern both sex and racial discrimination. One officer is concerned with staff in the Prison Department and Prison Department establishments, and the other with staff in the rest of the Home Office.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what representations he has received on the subject of cropping dogs' ears; and if he has proposals to eliminate this practice;(2) what is his policy with regard to tail docking of dogs; and whether such docking is necessary to prevent damage to the tails of the breeds which are presently docked.
We have received no recent representations about ear-cropping or tail-docking. These operations may be performed only in accordance with the provisions of the Protection of Animals Act 1911 and the Protection of Animals (Anaesthetics) Act 1954, which require that all operations on animals be performed with due care and humanity and, if appropriate, under anaesthetic. In some cases docking of dogs is performed for therapeutic purposes.The Council of Europe Ad Hoc Committee for the Protection of Animals is currently preparing a draft convention on the protection of pet animals. Among the draft articles is one to prohibit the performance of surgical procedures for the modification of external appearance or other non-curative purposes unless it is considered necessary by a veterinary surgeon. The United Kingdom has supported the inclusion of this Article.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will set up an investigation into the practice of using dogs with inherited defects to breed puppies which become blind.
We have no present plans to do so.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what information he has as to the number of Sharpeis dogs, whether imported or not, which suffer from (a) chronic mange resulting in ulceration of the skin, (b) umbilical hernias and (c) thyroid deficiency symptoms, as a result of deliberate breeding of dogs with inherited defects.
Mr Eric Alley
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what was the purpose of Mr. Eric Alley's recent visit to Wales.
Mr. Alley, the Home Office civil defence adviser, is visiting local authorities to discuss their civil defence planning and to advise them on its completion. His recent visits have included a number of Welsh authorities.
British Union For The Abolition Of Vivisection
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to his reply of 26 March, how many lists of names of hon. Members were removed from the offices of the British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection on 20 March; and if copies were made and retained by the Metropolitan police.
The Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis informs me that a single list was removed and that no copies of it were made.
Styal Prison (Member's Correspondence)
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department when his noble friend the Minister of State will reply to letters from the hon. Member for Tatton, dated 13 February and 18 March, in which he requested urgent information about Styal prison.
My noble Friend replied to the letters from my hon. Friend today.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will set out in the Offical Report, for each of the last five years, the expenditure by his Department under section 11 of the Local Government Act 166 with regard to multicultural advisers; and if he will make a statement.
I regret that the information requested is not readily available and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost. All posts supported under section 11 must meet the criteria set out in Home Office circular No. 97/1982, a copy of which is in the Library of the House.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what is the starting level of pay for a graduate entering the police force.
The basic annual pay of all police officers in their first year of service is £8,442 for those who were aged 22 or over and £6,708 for those who were under 22 on joining the service.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what representations he has received advocating legislation to stop the sale of the kung fu weapon known as Death Stars.
[pursuant to his reply, 29th March 1985]: These devices have been drawn to my attention by two of my right hon. and hon. Friends and a county council. It is already an offence under the Prevention of Crime Act 1953 to have an offensive weapon in a public place without lawful authority or reasonable excuse; and the definition of "offensive weapon" is sufficiently wide to cover such things as kung fu "Death Stars". The Act provides for a penalty of up to two years imprisonment or an unlimited fine, or both. Controls on such articles are aimed at the point of possession and use rather than at the point of sale, because there are many items sold for legitimate purposes which can be used as, or converted into, weapons.
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how much of the total sum to date made available by Her Majesty's Government for famine relief measures for Africa has been paid by the contingency reserve in the Estimates for 1984–85; what sums have been made available from other sources; and what was the balance in the contingency reserve on 31 March.
I expect spending in 1984–85 on famine relief measures for Africa to be funded as follows:
|£ million||£ million|
|Contingency reserve allocations||17|
|Food aid national actions and European development fund allocations||27|
|Reallocations from slippage elsewhere in the aid programme||10|
|Total from within voted aid funds||54|
|United Kingdom share of allocations from EC budgetised aid (non-voted)||35|
|Cost to Ministry of Defence of RAF Hercules operation in Ethiopia*||6|
|* The extra costs of mounting operation Bushel are currently estimated at up to £1·5 million per month. As an exceptional case, MoD agreed to bear the costs for the first three months of the deployment (to the beginning of February 1985). Since then the costs have been shared equally between MoD and ODA.|
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to his answer of 7 November 1984, Official Report, column 4, how much of the £100,000 made available to the Salvadorean Government for emergency civilian supplies under the United Kingdom's aid programme has been used; and if any additional civilian aid or military assistance has been offered.
There have been no disbursements from the grant of £100,000, pending a decision by the Government of E1 Salvador on their precise requirements. Apart from the military training already announced (Hansard, 7 November 1984, column 4), the only other British assistance offered has been £200,000 for relief supplies for displaced persons.
Foreign And Commonwealth Affairs
Council Of Ministers (Majority Voting)
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs which provisions of the treaty of Rome and the United Kingdom treaty of Accession to the European Economic Community containing requirements about majority voting in the Council of Ministers are not at present operated in the Council.
Outside the agricultural and budgetary fields the Council's practice has been, in all but a few isolated instances, to proceed by consensus.
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if, pursuant to the answer of 20 March, Official Report, column 534, he will state what limitations there are upon the full autonomy of Bophuthatswana and upon its full freedom of action in respect of external relations.
It is our judgment, after taking all factors into account, including the circumstances of Bophuthatswana's creation, the agreements then concluded, its fractured territory and its relationship with South Africa, that Bophuthatswana does not meet our criteria for recognition as a independent state.
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs when representatives of the British Government last visited Namibia; whom they met; and what conclusions were reached from the visit.
Her Majesty's ambassador in South Africa visited Namibia on 9–13 March. He met, inter alia, leaders of the Namibian internal parties, the Administrator-General and representatives of the British business community. The visit enabled him to assess the latest political, economic and social developments in the territory.
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs whether Her Majesty's Government will make representations condemning the South West Africa People's Organisation and its President Sam Nujoma for the placing and detonation of a bomb in Ondangwa post office, Northern Namibia, on 31 December