asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will now make a statement on the chairmanship of the Sports Council.
Following the resignation of Mr. Dick Jeeps, my right hon. Friend has appointed Mr. John Smith as the next chairman of the Sports Council. Well-known in Mersey side, in business, in football and in tennis, John Smith has been a member of the Sports Council since 1980; I feel sure that his well-known expertise in financial and corporate management, added to his unrivalled experience as chairman of Liverpool football club, will enable him to lead the Sports Council successfully towards the 1990s.The new chairman will give two days a week. John Smith has other responsibilities which he wishes to maintain. He will, as chairman, oversee the business and direction of the Sports Council, and he will be supported by two vice chairmen, each with executive responsibilities. Ian McCallum, the present vice chairman, will continue in his post. My right hon. Friend has appointed Mr. James Harvie-Watt as a second vice chairman. A member of the Council since 1980, Mr. Harvie-Watt's financial expertise and good sense have already made a strong impression. I believe that he and Ian McCallum will give John Smith first-class support, and that they will make a very strong team, giving the council a fresh impetus for the future.These new appointments take effect from 20 May 1985. The cost of the new team to public funds is less than the present arrangement.I will continue to review the membership and structure of the council, with the advice of the chairman and vice chairmen.