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Written Answers

Volume 115: debated on Thursday 7 May 1987

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Written Answers To Questions

Thursday 7 May 1987

Environment

Countryside Commission

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he has any plans to make more resources available to the Countryside Commission to enable it to discharge more effectively its functions in relation to the enjoyment of the countryside by the public.

Since 1979–80, we have increased the resources available to the Countryside Commission by 61 per cent. in real terms to enable them to fulfil effectively their statutory responsibilities, which include the promotion of recreation in the countryside. I expect to receive their corporate strategy, which will outline their plans for 1988–89 onwards, shortly and will consider their future resource requirements in that context.

Endangered Species

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what steps are being taken to ensure that the European Community convention on international trade in endangered species regulations are being properly implemented in the United Kingdom and other European Community states.

With the agreement of the EC member states, the wildlife trade monitoring unit of the IUCN conservation monitoring centre at Cambridge is currently carrying out an independent study for the European Commission of the implementation of the EC CITES regulations in each country of the Community. The United Kingdom will co-operate fully in this study and will shortly publish a report on the implementation of CITES in the United Kingdom to assist the conservation monitoring centre in their task. Copies of the report will be placed in the House Libraries when they are available.

National Parks Authorities

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will list the ministerial appointees on all the national park authorities and give their biographical details and their dates for reappointment.

The information in respect of the seven English national park authorities is as follows:

Dartmoor National Park Committee

  • Sir Charles Cave—1988
  • Landowner, Ex-President of CLA
  • Mr. S. Locke—1988
  • Director, South West Areas Museums Council
  • Mr. J. Turner—1988
  • Engineer, Member of Dartmoor Preservation Association
  • Mr. D. Powell—1989
  • Farmer
  • Mr. W. Scott—1989
  • Businessman-engineering
  • Mrs. F. Wilkinson—1990
  • Farmer
  • Mr. H. Williams—1990
  • Accountant

Exmoor National Park Committee

  • Mr. H. Malet—1988
  • Farmer
  • Mr. M. Scott—1988
  • Farmer
  • Mr. J. Workman—1988
  • Forestry advisor to National Trust
  • Mrs. K. Martin—1989
  • Former Chairman of SW Region of YHA
  • Mr. J. Roberts—1990
  • Director of West Country Tourist Board
  • Professor A. Straw—1990
  • Professor of Geography at University of Exeter
  • Mrs. R. Thomas—1990
  • College lecturer

Lake District Special Planning Board

  • Mrs. P. Walker—1988
  • Secretary of Windermere Civic Society
  • Mr. C. Barter—1988
  • Farmer
  • Mrs. K. Atkinson—1988
  • Member of RSPB, Works for Freshwater Biological Association
  • Mrs. J. Corlett—1989
  • Retired biologist, Chairman of Regional YHA
  • Mr. J. Baxter—1990
  • Principal at outdoor centre
  • Mr. P. Gordon-Duff-Pennington—1990
  • Landowner
  • Mr. G. Jackson—1990
  • Solicitor, Member of Friends of Lake District
  • Mrs. A. Hayton—1990
  • Farmer
  • Mr. A. Leeming—1990
  • Farmer and landowner
  • The Hon. R. Vane—1990
  • Landowner

Northumberland National Park and Countryside Committee

  • Professor G. Dickson—1988
  • Professsor of Agriculture at Newcastle University
  • Dr. A. Lunn—1988
  • Lecturer in geography and landscape at Newcastle University
  • Mr. J. Oliver—1988
  • Farmer
  • Mr. R. Spoor—1988
  • Accountant
  • Lord Vinson—1989
  • Farmer, Chairman of Development Commission
  • Mr. A. Tynan—1989
  • Curator, Hancock Museum
  • Dr. S. Linsley—1989
  • Lecturer in industrial archaeology at Newcastle University
  • Mr. I. Armstrong—1990
  • Regional Officer for RSPB
  • Mr. B. Hiley—1990
  • Retired senior retail manager

North York Moors National park Committee

  • Mrs. A. Cooper—1988
  • Conservation Officer—Cleveland Nature Conservation Trust
  • Mr. P. Fawcett—1988
  • Land agent
  • Mr. G. McGuire—1987
  • Retired Deputy Secretary, YHA
  • Mr. J. Sutcliffe—1988
  • Manager and partner of forestry and agricultural enterprise, Member of Civic Trust for North East
  • Mr. H. Ventress—1988
  • Farmer
  • Professor J. Patmore—1989
  • Professor of Geography—University of Hull
  • Mrs. B. Hood—1989
  • Secretary of local Ramblers Association
  • Viscount Downe—1990
  • Landowner and industrial manager
  • Mr. R. Pettigrew—1990
  • Educational advisor, Former President of British Mountaineering Council

Peak Park Joint Planning Board

  • Mrs. E. Andrews—1988
  • Runs a pony trekking establishment
  • Mr. K. Campbell—1988
  • Industrialist
  • Major-General P. Cavendish—1988
  • Retired Major General
  • Mr. C. Langford Mycock—1988
  • Farmer
  • Mr. L. Meadowcroft—1988
  • Retired Company Director, Ex-President of Manchester Area Ramblers Association
  • Mr. J. Cant—1989
  • YHA Warden and Warden Trainer
  • Mr. J. Elliott—1989
  • Farmer
  • Mrs. P. Mason—1990
  • President, Sheffield Association of University Women
  • Miss J. Robinson—1990
  • Deputy Head Teacher, Member of Ramblers Association
  • Mrs. J. Thornton—1990
  • Qualified teacher
  • Mr. M. Vallance—1990
  • Businessman, Former officer of Planning Board

Yorkshire Dales National Park Committee

  • Mr. L. Fallows—1988
  • Retired education advisor, Chairman, Friends of Dales Rail
  • Mr. H. Ramm—1988
  • Retired field investigator for Royal Commission on Historic Monuments
  • Miss M. Rooker—1988
  • Retired Polytechnic Librarian
  • Mr. J. Pearlman—1989
  • Hon. Solicitor to Ramblers' Association
  • Mr. D. Duffus—1990
  • Farmer
  • Dr. N. Roome—1990
  • Lecturer at University of Bradford, Secretary of West Yorkshire FWAG
  • Miss C. J. Hatcher—1990
  • Lecturer in history of architecture, Field worker for HBMC
  • Vacancy

All appointments expire on 31 March.

Appointments to the three Welsh national park authorities are the responsibility of my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Wales.

Conservation

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment how many reports have been submitted to him by the Countryside Commission during each of the past five years concerning the establishment of long-distance routes, under the provisions of section 51 of the National Parks and Access to the Countryside Act 1949.

None. The last such report, which concerned the Peddars way and North Norfolk coast path, was submitted on 27 August 1981 and approved on 8 October 1982. This route was officially opened on 8 July 1986. I understand, however, that the commission has two further reports in preparation.

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what is the average time taken to deal with appeals under paragraph 4(1) of schedule 14 to the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 and applications for directions under paragraph 3(2) of that schedule; and if he will take steps to reduce delays.

The average time between receipt of appeal, or application for a direction and determination has been 100 and 34 weeks respectively. Steps have already been taken to reduce this by provision of extra staff in the division concerned.

Empty Properties

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment how many empty Government-owned properties have been licensed to local authorities or other agencies for use either temporarily or permanently for homeless families.

Hedgehog Ladders

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what guidance is given by his Department on the construction of hedgehog ladders.

Mr Waldegrave: I Will Answer This Question Shortly

Nuclear Waste Disposal

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what representations he has made in the last year to NIREX about the relative effectiveness and economies of deep disposal of low-level waste as against shallow tunnel disposal.

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will give the cost of the legal actions initiated by NIREX to obtain and sustain access to the four sites considered for the dumping of low-level nuclear waste.

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what representations he has received from NIREX concerning his decision to stop exploratory work of shallow-trench disposal of nuclear waste.

My right hon. Friend has had no representations from NIREX since the letter of 30 April from the chairman.

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what was the total cost of the NIREX drilling and exploratory work on each of the four sites explored for the dumping of low-level nuclear waste.

NIREX estimate that £10 million has been spent on drilling and exploratory work at the four sites, and that a further £4 million may be incurred at the sites on winding up, cancellation and reinstatement work.

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what is his estimate of the total expenditure by (a) NIREX and (b) his Department in planning, considering, promoting and exploring shallow-trench disposal of low-level nuclear waste.

NIREX estimates that its total expenditure has been £17 million, with the possibility of a further £4 million yet to be incurred. Comparable details of the Department's costs are not readily available.

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will give the cost of NIREX publicity, consultation and public relations on (a) each of the four sites considered for low-level nuclear waste and (b) in general in relation to shallow-trench disposal.

NIREX estimate that £40,000 was spent at Bradwell, £310,000 at Elstow, and £200,000 at each of Fulbeck and South Killingholme. NIREX's total expenditure on publicity, consultation and public relations for shallow trench disposal has been £1·5 million.

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will give the cost of the planning work done in his Department to assess the best practicable options for the disposal of nuclear waste.

The direct costs of the assessment of best practicable environmental options for the management of low and intermediate level solid radioactive wastes published in March 1986 was £200,000. But this built on earlier research on nuclear waste strategies funded by the Department since 1982, on which expenditure averaged £300,000 per year between 1982 and 1985.

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will publish the estimated costs of (a) shallow-trench disposal of low level nuclear waste on each of the four sites surveyed by NIREX and (b) deep disposal undersea methods; and if he will indicate any changes in these calculations between 1986 and 1987.

Information about the estimated costs of shallow burial low-level waste is given in the letter of 30 April from the chairman of NIREX to my right hon. Friend. Work is continuing on undersea disposal methods, and details of costings will be published in due course.

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will give the costs of the preliminary desk and geological work done by (a) NIREX and (b) his Department before the choice of the four sites for exploration as possible sites for the storage of low-level nuclear waste.

NIREX estimate the cost of their preliminary work was £1 million. Comparable figures for the Department's costs are not available.

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will specify why the large cost differential between shallow-trench disposal and deep disposal of nuclear waste has disappeared.

This was set out by the chairman of NIREX in his letter of 30 April, a copy of which is in the Library.

Defective Housing

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will arrange for one of the Ministers in his Department to receive a deputation on Wednesday 20 May from the residents of the Wimpey no fines dwellings in the Walsall borough to discuss the present state of their dwellings; and if he will make a statement.

I refer the hon. Member to my letter to him of 9 April on the question of a deputation by residents from Blakenhall in Walsall. It is for Walsall borough council to determine its own priorities for the repair and improvement of its housing stock within the total resources available.

Nirex (Chairman)

chell asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what discussions he has had with the chairman of NIREX over the last month; and if he will make a statement.

It is customary for my right hon. Friend to have meetings with the chairman of NIREX from time to time, one of which took place after the meeting of the NIREX board on 29 April.

Wales

National Museum Of Wales

asked the Secretary of State for Wales what funds voted for the purchase of specimens by the National Museum of Wales during 1986–87 were vired for other purposes; and if he will specify the sums and the purposes for which authority to vire was granted.

£545,245. of which £456,166 was for salaries and general administrative expenditure including the costs of mounting the dinosaurs exhibition and £89,079 for capital works.

asked the Secretary of State for Wales whether he has given authority to the National Museum of Wales to vire funds voted for the purchase of specimens during 1987–88; and if he will specify the sums and the purposes for which the authority to vire was granted.

asked the Secretary of State for Wales if he will specify the departmental operating budgets of the curatorial departmemts of the National Museum of Wales in 1986–87; and those approved for 1987–88.

Decisions on departmental operating budgets are a matter for the National Museum within the total grant in aid allocation.

asked the Secretary of State for Wales how many new posts have been created in the National Museum of Wales since 1 February 1986 with the approval of his Department; and if he will specify them.

asked the Secretary of State for Wales whether the report of the full independent inquiry into the conduct and management of the Department of Art of the National Museum of Wales has now been delivered; and if he will place a copy in the Library.

The National Museum of Wales commissioned the inquiry into the conduct and management of the art department. Decisions about the dissemination of the report which has been received are therefore a matter for the museum authorities.

National Gallery Of Wales

asked the Secretary of State for Wales what steps are being taken to give administrative autonomy to the National Gallery of Wales and a governing body; and if he will establish a separate grant in aid for its art purchases.

Careful consideration will be given to the future arrangements for the organisation and funding of the art department of the National Museum of Wales. No decisions have yet been reached.

Mid-Wales Development Board

asked the Secretary of State for Wales how many jobs have been lost, and how many created since June 1979 in the Mid-Wales Development Board catchment area; and if he will make a statement.

Drugs Education

asked the Secretary of State for Wales if he will make a statement on the latest developments regarding the drugs education programme in Welsh schools.

Responsibility for developing drugs education programmes in schools rests with the local education authorities. The Department has given assistance through the education support grants scheme to enable LEAs to appoint advisers to promote and co-ordinate activity aimed at preventing drug misuse. This funding amounts to £169,000 in 1987–88. All LEAs in Wales have benefited from this scheme. The education advisers work closely with county health education officers for drugs, who are also funded by the Department. In addition all LEAs in Wales have received copies of the joint Welsh Office/Department of Education and Science publication "Drug Misuse and the Young" and the Department has made available to all secondary schools a video package entitled "Double Take". The Department has also made grant of £127,000 available in 1987–88 for the in-service training of teachers in drug education.

Defective Housing

asked the Secretary of State for Wales if he will state, in respect of the PRC dwellings and home owners, for each local authority in Wales (a) the number who have been assisted to date by local authority, by means of repurchase, (b) the average price paid for such repurchases, and (c) the minimum, maximum and average valuation, gross and net of discount, in respect of the original sale of these properties.

The number and average price of repurchases since 1984, for the 19 local authorities in which repurchase of PRC dwellings has occurred, are shown in the following table. Information on the original sale of repurchased dwellings is not collected centrally.

Number of repurchasesAverage cost per dwelling
£
Alyn and Deeside221,500
Arfon218,500

Number of repurchases

Average cost per dwelling

£

Blaenau Gwent417,500
Brecknock1723,300
Cardiff319,000
Carmarthen218,000
Delyn116,000
Glyndwr116,000
IslwynI9,000
Meirionydd114,000
Monmouth1718,300
Newport115,000
Ogwr214,000
Preseli518,600
Radnor217,000
Rhymney Valley69,700
South Pembrokeshire114,000
Swansea312,000
Vale of Glamorgan521,000
Wales7618,300

Consultants (Cover)

asked the Secretary of State for Wales what is the policy in the Gwynedd health authority area on covering consultants' sessions where the consultant is away ill or on holiday; and if he will make a statement.

Junior Hospital Doctors

asked the Secretary of State for Wales if he has had any representations about the length of hours worked by junior hospital doctors in Gwynedd.

asked the Secretary of State for Wales what are the average hours worked by junior hospital doctors in (a) Clwyd and (b) Gwynedd; and how the average has varied over the last five years for which information is available.

Ambulance Service

asked the Secretary of State for Wales what is the average response time for ambulances answering emergency calls; and what is the percentage of response times taking 20 minutes or more for the counties of (a) Clwyd and (b) Gwynedd for the last five years for which figures are available.

Recommended response times for ambulances answering emergency calls are based on eight minutes for the 50 percentile and 20 minutes for the 95 percentile. The 50 percentile may be taken as the median of the total number of calls. Figures for the last five years in Clwyd and Gwynedd are as follows:

1982

1983

1984

1985

1986

(in minutes)

Clwyd

50 percentile78886
95 percentile1618171617

Gwynedd

50 percentile88777
95 percentile2020201920

The percentage of calls in which the response time was more than 20 minutes are as follows:

1982

1983

1984

1985

1986

Clwyd33233
Gwynedd55545

Energy

Oil And Gas Development

asked the Secretary of State for Energy when he will publish his next report on oil and gas development in the United Kingdom, the Brown Book.

I have today published the latest edition of the Brown Book, and have arranged for copies to be placed in the Library of the House and the Vote Office stores. The report gives a detailed account of oil and gas development in 1986.

North Sea Oil

asked the Secretary of State for Energy if he will give the most recent figures available to him of the numbers of personnel working offshore on the United Kingdom continental shelf: how many are (a) United Kingdom nationals, (b) European Economic Community nationals other than United Kingdom, (c) United States nationals and (d) others; and if he will make a statement.

[pursuant to his reply, 2 April 1987, c. 568]: I regret that, due to an error of transcription, the number of "Others" offshore on fixed installations was overstated. The correct figure is 64, and the total for the column should accordingly be amended to 6,360.

Employment

Avon And Wansdyke

asked the Paymaster General (1) what was the percentage change in unemployment in (a) Avon and (b) Wansdyke constituency between January 1986 and January 1987 for those people without a job for more than three years;(2) what was the percentage change in unemployment in

(a) Avon and (b) Wansdyke constituency between January 1986 and January 1987.

The following information is in the Library. The comparison of unemployment between 9 January 1986 and 8 January 1987 is affected by the change in the compilation of the unemployment statistics in March 1987. The table shows the published number of claimants in the county of Avon and the Wansdyke constituency on the two dates, and the numbers who had been unemployed for over three years.

Unemployed claimants

Total

Over 3 years

January 1986

January 1987

January 1986

January 1987

Avon48,31845,1096,4556,821
Wansdyke constituency3,1623,057336346

Radio Frequency Equipment

asked the Paymaster General what warnings have been given to the public about the danger to health of radio frequency equipment; what screening safeguards are required; and what are the maximum levels of radiation for such equipment permissible in the United Kingdom.

Radio transmission equipment has riot been shown to create a danger to the health of the public such as to require public warnings. Operators are advised by the Health and Safety Executive and the Department of Trade and Industry to follow Medical Research Council recommendations on safe levels of exposure. These include a power density limit for continuous exposure of 10mW/cm2 for the frequency range 30 to 30,000MH3.This may require the prevention of public access to some radio frequency transmitting areas, with fencing and notices to keep out.

asked the Paymaster General what steps he is taking to ensure that radio frequency and microwave safety levels are enforceable by law.

There is no legislation requiring specific safety levels for radio frequency or microwave radiation. The general provisions of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 require any health and safety risks from such radiation, should they arise, to be contolled so far as is reasonably practicable. Operators are advised by the Health and Safety Executive to follow Medical Research Council recommendations on limiting exposure. Domestic electrical appliances such as microwave ovens are covered by regulations made under the. Consumer Protection Act 1961. Under these regulations, the sale of appliances leaking harmful levels of radiation is not permitted. The safety limit used for this purpose is set out 'in British Standard BS5175: 1976.

asked the Paymaster General it' he will set out in the Official Report such information as he has as to the minimum requirements for safeguarding health from the dangers of radio frequency and microwave equipment in the United Kingdom, the United States of America and the Soviet Union.

In the United Kingdom, the Medical Research Council have recommended a power density limit for continuous exposure of 10 mW/cm2 for the frequency range 30 to 30,000MH3. The most recent information available on requirements in the United States of America and the Soviet Union are contained in a paper published in July 1986 in the Applied Industrial Hygiene journal, a copy of which has been placed in the Library.

Labour Statistics

asked the Paymaster General if he will publish figures on the proportion of part-time females paid below £3·20 and £3·40 an hour in April 1986, for all agreements, industries, occupations and age groups, as listed in tables 171, 172, 173 and 174, respectively, of the new earnings survey, 1986, part F.

I am sending the hon. Member the information requested, which is also available in the Library.

asked the Paymaster General if he will publish figures from the 1985 labour force survey showing the percentages of employees aged 16 years and over, by sex, usual hours worked per week and, in the case of women, marital status.

The 1985 labour force survey estimates are shown in the table:

Employees by basic1 usual hours work per week
Great Britain Spring 1985
MenMarried women2Other womenAll persons
HoursPer cent.Per cent.Per cent.Per cent.
0–81·28·47·54·2
9–161·118·16·36·9
17–241·019·05·87·0
25–302·412·26·65·9
31–341·23·13·02·0
35–4076·836·465·763·3
41–445·00·92·33·4
45–506·40·91·84·1
51–602·70·30·61·7
61 or more1·70·50·21·1
Employees by whether full1 or part-time2 and age
Great Britain Spring 1985
Full-timePart-time
MenMarried Women3Other WomenMenMarried Women3Other Women
AgePer cent.Per cent.Per cent.Per cent.Per cent.Per cent.
16–195·90·824·625·6432·3
20–2413·714·633·98·53·111·6
25–2912·715·811·76·58·15·9
30–3412·09·75·47·412·86·1
35–3913·012·64·67·518·97·9
40–4410·613·04·75·416·15·1
45–499·612·74·65·414·16·0
50–548·911·24·46·111·76·6
55–598·17·64·44·89·57·5
60–645·11·71·46·73·85·5
65–690·3447·91·12·8
70 and over0·1448·30·42·7
All ages100100100100100100
Total number of employees ('000s)10,8532,5492,2076633,498782
1 Basic usual hours (ie excluding meal breaks and paid and unpaid overtime) of 31 or more per week.
2 Basic usual hours of 30 or less per week.
3 Widowed, divorced, legally separated or single.
4 Sample size too small to provide a reliable estimate.

asked the Paymaster General if he will list the numbers employed in each parliamentary constituency in 1984, on the basis of his results from the labour force survey, showing for each constituency the gains and losses in employees since 1981.

[pursuant to the reply]: I refer the hon. Member to my reply of Tuesday 5 May 1987, at column 332.

Men

Married women

2Other women

All persons

Hours

Per cent.

Per cent.

Per cent.

Per cent.

All hours3100·0100·0100·0100·0
Total number of employees (thousands)11,5726,0602,99720,629

1 ie excluding meal breaks and paid and unpaid overtime.

2 widowed, divorced, legally separated or single.

3 includes those who did not state number of hours worked.

asked the Paymaster General what is the present level of recorded unemployment and the number of reported job vacancies in the constituency of East Hampshire.

The following information is in the Library. On 12 March 1987, the number of unemployed claimants in the East Hampshire parliamentary constituency was 2,356. Vacancy figures are not collected separately for the Fleet jobcentre, which covers an area similar to the East Hampshire constituency. However, these figures are included in those for Aldershot jobcentre, where there were 662 unfilled vacancies, excluding vacancies on Government schemes, on 6 March 1987.

asked the Paymaster General if he will publish figures from the 1985 labour force survey, showing separately for full-time and part-time workers, the percentages of employees aged 16 years and over by sex, age group, and in the case of women, marital status.

Yts

asked the Paymaster General whether he has any information as to the number or percentage of young people who found work following the successful completion of youth training schemes in Leicester and in the east midlands; and if he will make a statement.

The latest available figures show that around 1,800 young people completed their entitlement to YTS in Leicester during the period April 1986 to September 1986 and were in work three months later; this represents around 83 per cent. of all those who completed YTS in the period. The comparable figures for the Manpower Services Commission's east midlands and eastern region are around 8,300 young people and 76 per cent. respectively.These figures clearly demonstrate that very many young people are benefiting from the opportunities available under YTS.

asked the Paymaster General how many people are currently on youth training schemes in Leicester and in the east midlands; and if he will make a statement.

On 31 March 1987 there were around 7,100 young people in training on YTS schemes in the local authority district of Leicester; the comparable figure for the Manpower Services Commission's east midlands and eastern region was around 36,200.These figures clearly show that the young people of Leicester and the east midlands recognise that YTS offers quality training and work experience in their transition from school to work.

asked the Paymaster General how many people have completed youth training schemes in Leicester and the east midlands to date; and if he will make a statement.

By the end of March 1987, the latest date for which figures are available, around 7,600 young people in the local authority district of Leicester and 69,000 in the east midlands and eastern region had completed YTS schemes since the scheme was introduced in April 1983.I am confident that the success of YTS in the east midlands as in other parts of the country will provide a secure base from which young people will be able to build a better future. For the first time in this country we have a high-quality training scheme for all 16 and 17-year-old school leavers. This will be of benefit not only to young people but to British industry, which will gain from a better trained, more flexible young work force.

Job Creation

asked the Paymaster General if he will estimate the numbers of unemployed people who have benefited from the Government's employment measures since May 1979; and if he will make a statement.

It is not possible to give a precise number. Certain of the schemes benefit both the employed and the unemployed. However, since May 1979, over 6·5 million people have benefited from the employment, training and enterprise measures run by my Department and the Manpower Services Commission.

Transport

Aircraft Noise

asked the Secretary of State for Transport what he defines as a quiet aircraft; and if he will issue up-to-date noise footprints for these aircraft.

Aircraft on the United Kingdom register which do not meet the basic noise standards of chapter 2 to annex 16 to the convention on international civil aviation have been banned from operating in this country since 1 January 1986. Such aircraft on foreign registers will he banned from 1 January 1988.The Department does not define quiet aircraft as such. For the purposes of night restrictions at Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted, the Department define a category of "quieter" aircraft: those with a 95 PNdB noise footprint not exceeding four square miles on take-off and 2½ square miles on landing. To be allowed to operate planned movements at night at these airports, an aircraft must be classed as "quieter". All non-jet aircraft with one or two engines are exempt from the night restrictions; all those with more than two engines meet the criteria. We are considering including 95 PNdB footprint diagrams of representative aircraft types in a future consultation document on night restrictions.

asked the Secretary of State for Transport if he will extend aircraft noise control limits to include non-jet aircraft and noise from aircraft landing

No. Most noise near airports is made by jet aircraft taking off. Noise limits will continue to be applied to such aircraft at Heathrow and Gatwick. In addition, we will continue to encourage pilots to use operational procedures to reduce noise on both landing and take-off.

asked the Secretary of State for Transport what information he has on the effect to which the noise climate at Gatwick has changed as expressed by the noise contours for 1986 and 1985; what information he has as to the reasons for this; and if there has been any improvement between 1985 and 1986.

The area within the 35 noise and number index contour, which is generally taken to indicate the onset of disturbance, was 225 sq km in 1984, 299 sq km in 1985 and 288 sq km in 1986. The factors affecting the area are: extra aircraft movements, increasing use of the BACI-11, and the shape of the noise contours themselves. It is unlikely that any particular place will have experienced an increase of more than 2 or 3 NNI.

Bypasses And Road Schemes

asked the Secretary of State for Transport how many bypasses and road schemes have been completed since 1979; and when he expects the Bedford bypass to be completed.

199 national road schemes have been completed since 1979, of which 67 are bypasses or relief roads. Subject to the completion of the outstanding procedures and the availability of resources, the A428 Bedford bypass could be completed towards the end of 1993.

Pacer Units

asked the Secretary of State for Transport if, pursuant to his answer of 27 April, Official Report, column 9 on pacer units, he will publish the information he received from British Rail at the time British Rail placed its orders for pacer units.

The Government do not receive information from BR when it places its rolling stock orders. We receive information in support of BR's investment submissions, but for reasons of commercial confidentiality it is not the practice to make this information public. As I explained in my earlier answer to the hon. Gentleman, questions on the reliability of the pacer units are the responsibility for the British Railways board and the manufacturers.

Underground (Escalator Repairs)

asked the Secretary of State for Transport if he will review the times taken by London Regional Transport to repair broken escalators in the underground.

I have no plans to do so. Responsibility for the efficient day-to-day operation of the underground rests with London Underground, which has a substantial maintenance and repair programme for escalators.

Manchester Airport Rail Link

asked the Secretary of State for Transport if he will make a statement on recent developments in regard to the Manchester airport rail link.

Further to the reply which I gave the hon. Gentleman on 1 April, officials had a constructive meeting on 8 April to discuss the PTA's application for a section 56 grant. The PTA has agreed that further work needs to be done before the case for the investment can properly be assessed. I understand it is hoping to complete that work within the next few weeks.

Time Saving And Accident Prevention (Report)

asked the Secretary of State for Transport whether he has reached a decision on the proposals contained in the report, "Values for Journey Time Savings and Accident Prevention"; and if he will make a statement.

When I published the report in March, I promised to consult experts in transport appraisal and others before deciding on the final values for time and accident costs that are to be used in the economic appraisals of transport policy, projects and operations. The consultation period ended on 21 April. We are most grateful to all those who responded to our request for comments.The balance of responses gave strong support for the recommendations for substantial increases to the values for journey time savings and accident prevention in the report. Respondents confirmed our view that the recent research into travel time savings provided a sound basis for increasing the values of time.The main criticisms of the report concerned the proposed increases in casualty costs. Several respondents argued that there was adequate evidence to justify much higher values than those we propose. In 1980, we commissioned a study into how much people are willing to pay to reduce their risks of death or injury in road accidents. The research was of high quality, but like the other available research evidence it threw up both theoretical and practical problems. Interest has now been expressed in publication of the report of this study and we are considering this.A recent comprehensive and wide ranging interdepartmental review of road safety, which we expect to publish shortly, also had serious reservations about the available evidence on road casualty costs. After considering all the comments on this issue very carefully we decided that the best course was to retain the values proposed—which maintain the weight of safety vis-a-vis mobility—until we have had an opportunity to consider further the recommendations of the interdepartmental review.Another criticism was that the provision of separate values of time for retired people and children was contrary to the principle of a single appraisal value and that this may lead to inequities of investment between regions, particularly where local concentrations of retired people or children exist. It is our view that there will be very few circumstances where it would be appropriate to depart from the use of the single standard appraisal value. The use of separate values for pensioners, children and working age adults should only be considered in very exceptional circumstances.I have placed in the Library details of the new values of non-working time and casualty costs which—in the light of the proposals in the report and the comments received on it — we have decided to adopt. The Secretaries of State for Scotland, for Northern Ireland and for Wales have also decided to use the new values in transport investment decisions in their countries thus preserving a consistent approach throughout the United Kingdom.

Trade And Industry

Credit

asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what discussions he has had with the credit industry about measures to reduce the level of personal over-indebtedness through the use of existing credit reference bureaux; and if he will make a statement.

My Department is in regular contact with the main commercial lenders about a wide range of consumer credit issues including consumer overindebtedness. I am encouraged that lenders are making greater use of the services offered by credit reference agencies to aid them in their commercial assessment of the credit worthiness of credit applicants, which in turn should help to minimise consumer over-indebtedness.

asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will introduce legislation to require the credit industry to offer borrowers payment protection insurance; and if he will make a statement.

I have no plans to introduce such legislation. I accept that payment protection insurance schemes can be of value in helping to minimise the risk of over-indebtedness, provided that they offer adequate protection, but they involve extra cost and consumers should be able to choose whether or not to participate.

asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what information he has about the latest incidence of personal over-indebtedness; if he will finance an extension of the services of trading standards officers to provide consumers with professional financial advice; and if he will make a statement.

The definition of over-indebtedness depends on a range of individual circumstances and it is impossible reliably to estimate its total extent. However, Government statistics on the total financial liabilities of individuals are available, and for the most recent 12-month period for which figures are available, these rose by 16 per cent. Over the same period, the financial assets of individuals rose by 17 per cent. The trading standards service is funded through the rate support grant to enforce a wide range of statutory consumer protection duties. It is for local authorities to make the necessary arrangements and to allocate resources as they see fit. Information and advice to the public on a wide range of matters including consumer and financial problems is available from citizens advice bureaux. My Department provides funds, through grant in aid, to the National Association of Citizens Advice Bureaux.

False Origin Marks

asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will introduce legislation making it an offence to import into the United Kingdom goods known to the importer to bear a false indication of origin.

Section 16 of the Trade Descriptions Act 1968, which is enforced by Her Majesty's Customs and Excise, already prohibits the importation of any goods to which a false indication of their place of manufacture has been applied outside the United Kingdom. It is an offence under the Customs and Excise Management Act 1979 for a person to import any goods contrary to such a prohibition under any enactment with intent to evade that prohibition.

House Of Fraser (Investigation)

asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry who are the inspectors appointed under the Companies Act to investigate the circumstances surrounding the acquisition of shares in House of Fraser during 1984 and 1985.

The inspectors are Mr. Philip Heslop QC and Mr. Hugh Aldous FCA. They were appointed under section 432 of the Companies Act 1985 to investigate and report on the affairs of House of Fraser Holdings plc and they have been asked to look in particular at the circumstances surrounding the acquisition of shares in House of Fraser plc in 1984 and 1985.

Social Services

Mental Illness

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services whether he will amalgamate the tables analysing figures for places for mentally ill people in local authority day centres and National Health Service day hospitals so as to show what day care provision is available to such people by (a) district health authority and (b) local authority.

The amalgamated tables requested are not readily available because not all district health authority areas are conterminous with local authority areas: a list of conterminous areas was provided in my predecessor's reply to the hon. Member for Brent, South (Mr. Pavitt) on 9 June 1986 at columns 99–104.Information on the number of places in local authority day centres solely for mentally ill people, analysed by local authority is published in "Day centres for the Mentally Ill, the Elderly and the Younger Physically Handicapped at 31 March 1985, England", copies of which have been placed in the Library. Information collected centrally does not separately identify places for mentally ill people in day centres which cater for mixed client groups but it is planned to collect such detail in future.Figures for the number of places for mentally ill people in National Health Service day hospitals in England by district health authority as at 31 December 1985 are given in the table.

Places allocated for mentally ill people in NHS day hospitals: England on 31 December 1985
District health authorityNumber
Northern RHA1,069
Hartlepool0
North Tees0
South Tees160
East Cumbria33
South Cumbria9
West Cumbria40
Darlington0
Durham100
North West Durham0
South West Durham67
Northumberland199
Gateshead60
Newcastle284
North Tyneside
South Tyneside25
Sunderland92
Yorkshire RHA1,186
Hull60
East Yorkshire73
Grimsby45
Scunthorpe60
Northallerton
York60
Scarborough0
Harrogate65
Bradford147
Airedale112
Calderdale160
Huddersfield60
Dewsbury60
Leeds Western124
Leeds Eastern50
Wakefield80
Pontefract30

District health authority

Number

Trent RHA

1,700
North Derbyshire80
Southern Derbyshire85
Leicestershire357
North Lincolnshire30
South Lincolnshire100
Bassetlaw80
Central Nottinghamshire45
Nottingham420
Barnsley38
Doncaster210
Rotherham48
Sheffield207

East Anglian RHA

434
Cambridge117
Peterborough30
West Suffolk60
East Suffolk157
Norwich70
Great Yarmouth0
West Norfolk and Wisbech0
Huntingdon

North West Thames RHA

1,278
North Bedfordshire80
South Bedfordshire50
North Hertfordshire40
East Hertfordshire60
North West Hertfordshire61
South West Hertfordshire55
Barnet144
Harrow140
Hillingdon18
Hounslow and Spelthorne137
Ealing45
Brent41
Paddington and North Kensington200
Riverside207

North East Thames RHA

1,487
Basildon and Thurrock130
Mid Essex
North East Essex135
West Essex160
Southend136
Barking, Havering and Brentwood79
Hampstead139
Bloomsbury161
Islington50
City and Hackney47
Newham80
Tower Hamlets31
Enfield136
Haringey87
Redbridge6
Waltham Forest110

South East Thames RHA

1,051
Brighton121
Eastbourne30
Hastings25
South East Kent40
Canterbury and Thanet136
Dartford and Gravesham99
Maidstone24
Medway82
Tunbridge Wells16
Bexley54
Greenwich70
Bromley55
West Lambeth114
Camberwell105
Lewisham and North Southwark80

District health authority

Number

South West Thames RHA

1,279
North West Surrey192
West Surrey and North East Hampshire210
South West Surrey82
Mid Surrey84
East Surrey160
Chichester45
Mid Downs55
Worthing District30
Croydon156
Kingston and Esher20
Richmond, Twickenham and Roehampton45
Wandsworth100
Merton and Sutton100

Wessex RHA

1,031
East Dorset155
West Dorset163
Portsmouth and South East Hampshire260
Southampton and South West Hampshire160
Winchester85
Basingstoke and North Hampshire48
Salisbury57
Swindon0
Bath District38
Isle of Wight65

Oxford RHA

613
East Berkshire165
West Berkshire116
Aylesbury Vale50
Wycombe40
Milton Keynes18
Kettering122
Northampton72
Oxfordshire30

South Western RHA

1,048
Bristol and Weston105
Frenchay215
Southmead84
Cornwall and Isles of Scilly64
Exeter68
North Devon30
Plymouth120
Torbay0
Cheltenham and District
Gloucester226
Somerset136

West Midlands RHA

2,089
Bromsgrove and Redditch250
Herefordshire62
Kidderminster and District100
Worcester and District250
Shropshire177
Mid Staffordshire100
North Staffordshire60
South East Staffordshire155
Rugby
North Warwickshire0
South Warwickshire50
Central Birmingham49
East Birmingham
North Birmingham120
South Birmingham105
West Birmingham300
Coventry70
Dudley40
Sandwell
Solihull94

District health authority

Number

Walsall50
Wolverhampton57

Mersey RHA

876
Chester30
Crewe106
Halton0
Macclesfleld120
Warrington25
Liverpool Central Southern Sector90
Liverpool Eastern Sector50
St. Helens and Knowsley160
Southport and Formby30
South Sefton90
Wirral175

North Western RHA

2,601
Lancaster44
Blackpool, Wyre & Fylde285
Preston140
Blackburn, Hyndburn & Ribble Valley170
Burnley, Pendle & Rossendale129
West Lancashire130
Chorley & South Ribble:90
Bolton104
Bury80
North Manchester290
Central Manchester132
South Manchester220
Oldham142
Rochdale0
Salford125
Stockport100
Tameside & Glossop 156
Trafford20
Wigan244

Special RHA

145
Great Ormond Street10
Bethlem Royal & Maudsley135

Notes:

"0" denotes no day hospital facilities available for the mentally ill.

" — " denotes no mental illness hospital or unit in area of Authority.

Schizophrenia

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services whether he is satisfied. in the light of the number of patients with a diagnosis of schizophrenia readmitted to hospital in 1985, that appropriate support facilities were available for these patients after initial discharge and that clinicians had confirmed their availability before discharge.

Many patients with schizophrenia have periods of good health interrupted by recurrent attacks. For this reason it is always likely to be the case that the number of admissions over a patient's lifetime — and therefore the ratio of readmissions to first admissions nationally—is higher with schizophrenia than with most other mental illnesses. We accept that good quality support to the patient when at home can reduce the number of recurrences. Research studies have shown that in many places the quality of support is patchy and we shall not be satisfied until we know that good support is on offer everywhere. In particular we have been emphasising the importance of the professional team agreeing an individual care plan with the patient and carers at the time of discharge.

Organ Transplants

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what information he has on the level of organ transplants in the United Kingdom and other comparable countries.

According to information supplied by the United Kingdom transplant service, the number of organ transplant operations performed in the United Kingdom during 1986 was as follows:

Number
Kidney (cadaveric donors for NHS-entitled patients only)11,493
Heart176
Heart/Lung51
Liver127
1 As notified to date.
Provisional information on the number of heart, heart/ lung and liver transplant operations performed in Austria, Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands during 1986 has been provided by Eurotransplant and is as follows:
HeartHeart/LungLiver
Austria323130
Belgium23751
Germany1611105
Netherlands2414
1 Includes 1 liver/kidney transplant.
2 Includes 1 heart/kidney transplant.
Figures for the number of kidney transplant operations performed in other countries are not yet available for 1986. 1985 statistics have been made available by the European Dialysis and Transplant Association. These figures include living donor transplants and private operations and are therefore higher than those provided by UKTS for the United Kingdom. For selected European countries, 1985 information is as follows:
Total kidney transplantsPatients treated per million population
Austria22918·9
Belgium29029·4
Federal Republic of Germany1,27420·8
France1,15721·0
Netherlands32322·4
United Kingdom1,54927·5
For information on a more complete list of countries, my hon. Friend may wish to write to the EDTA at St. Thomas's hospital, London SE1.

Rugby Dha

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what was the budget of the Rugby district health authority (a) in 1986 and (b) in the first year since its inception; and how many staff were employed in each of those years.

Financial allocations to individual health authorities are matters for the regional health authority. My hon. Friend may therefore wish to write to the chairman of the West Midlands regional health authority for this information. Staff in post figures, as at 30 September for the years 1982 and 1985 are shown in the table. I regret that staffing information for 1986 is not yet available centrally to this level of detail. Because of the 1982 National Health Service reorganisation, information for years prior to 1982 would not be comparable with that for 1985.

NHS directly employed staff in post in Rugby DHA12
At 30 SeptemberWhole time equivalent
1982820
1985840

Source: DHSS Annual Censuses of NHS Medical and Non-Medical Manpower.

1 Figures are independently rounded to the nearest ten (10) whole time equivalents.

2 Includes agency staff and locums.

Excludes Medical and Dental Consultants and Senior Registrars.

"Preventive Care For Pre-School Children"

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what representations he has received concerning the booklet "Preventive Care for Pre-School Children"; and what action he has taken.

Since this handbook was published in 1984 by the British Medical Association and the Royal College of General Practitioners, the Department has made available to and discussed with them views received from the relevant professional bodies. I understand thatproduction of a second edition is underway, and I will arrange for a copy to be placed in the Library when published.

Health Promotion Teams

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will list the district health authorities which have health promotion teams or units and those which include general practitioners on these teams.

I understand that only four district health authorities out of 191 are currently without a health education unit. These are: Bassetlaw, Leeds Western and Waltham Forest, which at present rely on services provided by health education units in neighbouring authorities, and Somerset, which has part-time cover. No information is collected centrally on the membership of health promotion teams, but we estimate that, whereas about 250 health education officers were employed by district health authorities and regional health authorities in 1979, the current number is over 600.

Health Education Authority

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services (1) to what extent information and publicity material formerly made available by the Health Education Council to community health councils and other local units will continue to be provided by the Health Education Authority; and what will be the effect of the change upon such work;(2) what resources it is intended that the Health Education Authority will make available for the work of local health education units.

The Health Education Authority will be responsible for production and distribution of its own material but may continue to distribute material produced by the Health Education Council. Local health education units will continue to receive free supplies of publications, posters and other material from the authority. As the new authority is an integral part of the National Health Service, liaison arrangements and links with bodies in the Health Service involved with health education are expected to improve. The funding of local health education units is a matter for the local health authorities.

Press Release (In-Patients)

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will publish in the Official Report the number of copies of DHSS press release 87/153, figures on National Health Service acute in-patient activity, sent out and the number of copies of the statistical bulletin referred to in the press release which were sent to (a) members of the press at the same time as the press release and (b) in response to subsequent requests from the press.

The Department issued 300 copies of press release 87/153 to the media. Of these, 110 copies, sent to national media offices and the Press Gallery of the House, were accompanied by the statistical bulletin. About 10 further copies of the bulletin were provided to journalists who subsequently requested them; there is no record of the exact number.

Statistical Bulletins

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will publish in the Official Report, for each of the statistical bulletins published by his Department, the title, date, number of copies printed and number of copies distributed free of charge to (a) Government and National Health Service users and (b) press and the numbers sold so far.

The information is as follows. The sales figures are the numbers sold up to 30 April 1987.

Statistical Bulletin No. 1/84
Title:NHS hospital activity statistics for England 1972–82
Date published:April 1984
Number of copies printed:500
Number distributed free of charge to
(a) Government and NHS users:300 (approx.)
(b) The Press:50 (approx.)
Numbers sold:142
Statistical Bulletin No. 2/84
Title:NHS hospital activity statistics for England 1973–83
Date published:November 1984
Number of copies printed:500
Number distributed free of charge to
(a) Government and NHS users:250 (approx.)
(b) The Press:50 (approx.)
Numbers sold:171
Statistical Bulletin No. 1/85
Title:Mental illness hospitals and units in England: Results from the Mental Health Enquiry 1983.
Date published:March 1985
Number of copies printed:505

Number distributed free of charge to

(a) Government and NHS users:

140 (approx.)

(b) The Press:

60 (approx.)
Numbers sold:176

Statistical Bulletin No. 2/85
Title:Mental handicap hospitals and units in England: Results from the Mental Health Enquiry 1983
Date published:March 1985
Number of copies printed:425
Number distributed free of charge to

(a) Government and NHS users:

240 (approx.)

(b) The Press:

60 (approx.)
Numbers sold:162

Statistical Bulletin No. 3/85
Title:New cases of sexually transmitted diseases seen at NHS clinics in England 1973–1983.
Date published:May 1985
Number of copies printed:610
Number distributed free of charge to

(a) Government and NHS users:

200 (approx.)

(b) The Press:

50 (approx.)
Numbers sold:166

Statistical Bulletin No. 4/85
Title:Mental illness hospitals and units in England: Drug misuse statistics 1979–83.
Date published:Aug 1985
Number of copies printed:500
Number distributed free of charge to

(a) Government and NHS users:

150 (approx.)

(b) The Press:

150 (approx.)
Numbers sold:131

Statistical Bulletin No. 5/85
Title:NHS hospital activity statistic:; for England 1974–1984
Date published:September 1985
Number of copies printed:500
Number distributed free of charge to

(a) Government and NHS users:

300 (approx.)

(b) The Press:

50 (approx.)
Numbers sold:142

Statistical Bulletin No. 6/85
Title:Mental illness hospitals and units in England: Results from the Mental Health Enquiry 1984.
Date published:December 1985
Number of copies printed:550
Number distributed free of charge to

(a) Government and NHS users:

150 (approx.)

(b) The Press:

150 (approx.)
Numbers sold:79

Statistical Bulletin No. 7/85
Title:Mental handicap hospitals and units in England: Results from the Mental Health Enquiry 1984

Date published:December 1985
Number of copies printed:500
Number distributed free of charge to

(a) Government and NHS users:

200 (approx.)

(b) The Press:

150 (approx.)
Numbers sold:63

Statistical Bulletin No. 1/86
Title:Mental illness hospitals and units in England: Schizophrenia statistics 1981–84
Date published:June 1986
Number of copies printed:450
Number distributed free of charge to

(a) Government and NHS users:

140 (approx.)

(b) The Press:

100 (approx.)
Numbers sold:140

Statistical Bulletin No. 2/86
Title:NHS hospital activity statistics for England 1974–85
Date published:July 1986
Number of copies printed:500
Number distributed free of charge to

(a) Government and NHS users:

300 (approx.)

(b) The Press:

50 (approx.)
Numbers sold:131

Statistical Bulletin No. 3/86(not issued)

Statistical Bulletin No. 4/86
Title:Mental illness hospitals and units in England: Results from the mental Health Enquiry 1985
Date published:December 1986
Number of copies printed:600
Number distributed free of charge to

(a) Government and NHS users:

150 (approx.)

(b) The Press:

150 (approx.)
Numbers sold:42

Statistical bulletin No. 5/86
TitleCauses of blindness and partial sight among children aged under 16, newly registered as blind and partially sighted between 1976 and 1985.
Date published:December 1986
Number of copies printed:1,000
Number distributed free of charge to

(a) Government and NHS users:

175 (includes some which were distributed to Local Authorities)

(b) The Press:

200 (approx.)
Numbers sold:103

Statistical bulletin No. 6/86
Title:Mental handicap hospitals and units in England: Results from the Mental Health Enquiry 1985.
Date published:December 1986
Number of copies printed:600
Number distributed free of charge to

(a) Government and NHS users:

150 (approx.)

(b) The Press:

150 (approx.)
Numbers sold:50

Statistical bulletin No. 7/86
Title:Mental illness hospitals and units in England: Drug misuse statistics 1981–85.
Date published:December 1986
Number of copies printed:600
Number of distributed free of charge to

(a) Government and NHS users:

140 (approx.)

(b) The Press:

200 (approx.)
Numbers sold:40

Statistical bulletin No. 1/87
Tile:NHS hospital acute in-patient statistics—England 1974–84.
Date published:March 1987
Number of copies printed:600
Number of distributed free of charge to

(a) Government and NHS users:

150 (approx.)

(b) The Press:

150 (approx.)
Numbers sold:9

Statistical bulletin No. 2/87
Title:Mental illness and mental handicap hospitals and units in England: Legal status statistics 1982–85.
Date published:April 1987
Number of copies printed:600
Number distributed free of charge to

(a) Government and NHS users:

180 (approx.)

(b) The Press:

200 (approx.)
Numbers sold:15

Aids

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will publish in the Official Report the percentage of households which have received the Government's AIDS leaflet to date.

Leaflets

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services how many copies of his Department's new series of social security leaflets have been distributed (a) in total and (b) to members of the press.

The number of copies of the new series of social security leaflets printed by the end of April were:

LeafletNumber printed (million)
FB2Which benefit?2·00
FB6Retiring?3·00
FB8Babies and benefits3·50
FB23Young people's guide to Social Security3·00
FB27Bringing up children?3·00
FB28Sick or disabled?3·00
FB29Help when someone dies3·00
NI17AMaternity benefits1·14
NI196Social Security benefit rates5·35
NI246How to appeal0·70
NP38Your future pension0·50
NP39Your Additional Pension statement0·30

Leaflet

Number printed (million)

MAIIntegrated leaflet/claim form for Maternity Allowance0·86
SF100Integrated leaflet/claim form for maternity payments from the Social Fund0·90
SF200Integrated leaflet/claim form for funeral payments from the Social Fund1·50
Total31·75

An initial distribution has been made, but at any one time a proportion of these leaflets is held in store waiting to resupply local offices and other outlets. Further quantities will be printed throughout the year in response to demand.

Approximately 130 press packs containing a set of the new leaflets and explanatory material were distributed to members of the press.

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will publish in the Official Report the places in which the new social security leaflets are officially available.

119811198211983119841198521986
Full registration
(i) to doctors holding overseas qualifications which the Council recognises1,027774867929967921
(ii) to doctors who had held limited registration without requalification in the United Kingdom342271360574737620
(iii) to doctors who had held limited registration and had requalified in the United Kingdom9378101154139123
(iv) to doctors who were in the United Kingdom temporarily to provide specialist services as Visiting Overseas Doctors354241392643
Total grants of full registration1,4971,1651,3691,6961,8691,707
Limited Registration
Initial grants of limited registration to doctors with qualifications which the Council accepts1,6711,4731,1291,1231,0241,034

Source:

1 General Medical Council's Annual Reports for the years 1981–85.

2 General Medical Council.

We have no information about the numbers for 1987 nor about the number of overseas qualified doctors who applied unsuccessfully for registration in the years 1981 to 1986. My hon. Friend may care to approach the General Medical Council for these details.

Pregnant Women (Afp Test)

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services how many and what proportion of pregnant women in England and Wales were given the AFP test for each year since 1978.

All social security leaflets and claim forms are available from local social security offices and supplies of leaflets can be obtained fro:m the DHSS leaflets unit, PO Box 21, Stanmore, Middlesex HA7 1AY.Of the new leaflets FB6, FB8, FB23, FB27, FB28 and FB29 are also available at main post offices; MA1, SF100 and FB8 at ante-natal clinics; SF200 at registrars of births, deaths and marriages; and FB23 at careers offices.Additionally, copies of social security leaflets are delivered direct to over 7,500 individuals and organisations including libraries, independent advice centres, the National Association of Citizens Advice Bureaux, and social services departments of local authorities.

General Medical Council (Registration)

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what information he has as to the number of overseas applicants for registration with the General Medical Council between the years 1981 and 1987, and as to the ratio of passes to the total number who applied.

The numbers of overseas qualified doctors who were granted registration with the General Medical Council in the years 1981–86 were as follows:

Spina Bifida

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services how many and what proportion of babies in England and Wales were born with spina bifida for each year since 1978, broken down in terms of live and still births.Mrs. Currie: The information is given in the table.

Notifications of births with spina bifida, England and Wales 1978–86

Births

Live

Still

Year

Notifications

All live births

1Rate

Notifications

All still births

2Rate

1978665596,41811·151765,108344·56
1979677638,02810·611665,125323·90
1980600656,2349·141534,773320·55
1981530634,4928·351244,207294·75
1982420625,9316·71883,939223·41
1983369629,1345·87493,631134·95
1984314636,8184·93613,643167·44
1985325656,4174·95353,64596·02
19863236662,2003·56193,55553·45

1 Rate per 10,000 live births.

2 Rate per 10,000 still births.

3 Provisional.

Note: Figues are derived from a voluntary system of notifying congenital malformations observed at birth or up to seven days after birth and are therefore an incomplete measure of the total number of affected infants.

Children In Care

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what number of children were in care in England and Wales for each year since 1978; and what proportion they were of the total number of children in England and Wales for each year since 1978.

The numbers of children in care in England and Wales and the proportion of the population aged under 18 years for each year 1978–84 are given in "Children in Care in England and Wales", published annually, copies of which are available in the Library. Figures for 31 March 1985 show that the numbers and proportion aged under 18 years have continued to fall to 72,800 and 6.1 per 1,000 respectively. Figures for 1986 are not yet available.

Cervical Cancer

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services how much money has been spent on cervical

BenefitFrequency and period of paymentPay day
Retirement Pensionweekly in advanceMonday or Thursday
Widow's benefitweekly in advanceTuesday
Industrial Injury/Disablement Benefitweekly in advanceWednesday
Attendance Allowanceweekly in advanceMonday
Invalid Care Allowanceweekly in advanceMonday
Guardian's Allowanceweekly in advanceMonday or Tuesday
Family Income Supplementweekly in advanceTuesday
Supplementary Benefitweekly in advance or fortnightly in advance to claimants who are available for employmentMonday or the appropriate day for payment of linked contributory social security benefit.
Mobility Allowancefour weekly; 3 weeks in arrear, 1 week in advance.Wednesday
Child benefitweekly or four-weekly in arrearsMonday or Tuesday
Maternity Allowanceweekly in arrearsFriday
Sickness benefit; Invalidity benefit; Severe Disablement allowanceweekly in arrearsMonday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday depending on the claimant's NI number.
Unemployment benefitfortnightly in arrearsTwo days after the claimant's signing day.
Retirement pension, widow's benefit, mobility allowance, attendance allowance and child benefit may be paid direct to a beneficiary's bank account; payments under these arrangements are made four-weekly or quarterly in arrears.

cancer screening in England and Wales for every year since 1978; and what is the projected expenditure for each year until 1990.

Total expenditure on cervical cancer screening is not separately identified in health authority accounts or forward plans. It has been estimated that the annual cost is between £20 million and £30 million.

Benefits

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will list each social security benefit showing separately those which are paid in advance and those which are paid in arrears indicating the period in advance or arrears in each case and the day of the week which is the pay day on which each is paid.Mr. Lyell: The information requested is as follows:

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will give for each social security benefit the date or range of dates on which claimants will have received the new rate of benefit which came into force from Monday 6 April.

The uprated benefits were paid as follows:

BenefitDate(s) Paid
Retirement pension6 April or 9 April
Widow's benefit7 April
II disablement benefit8 April
Attendance allowance6 April
Invalid care allowance6 April
Guardian's allowance6 April or 7 April
Family Income Supplement7 April
Supplementary benefit30 March—10 April
Mobility allowance8 April
Child benefit6 April or 7 April
Maternity allowance10 April
Sickness benefit9–15 April
Invalidity benefit9–15 April
Severe disablement benefit9–15 April
Unemployment benefit8–24 April
Those benefits paid four-weekly or quarterly in arrears to a bank account will he paid later depending on the payment cycle.There will have been delays in making payments on the above dates in a small number of the Department's local offices.

Adult Dental Health

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services when he expects the research committee of his Department to finish its consideration of the proposed 1988 national survey of adult dental health.

We have decided to go ahead with this survey. Preparatory work will begin shortly.

Prime Minister

Ec (Budgetary Controls)

Q154.

asked the Prime Minister if she will raise at the next meeting of the European Council the operation of the agreement of 4 December 1984 on strict budgetary controls of EEC spending; and if she will make a statement.

The European Council in June will be having extensive discussions on the future financing of the Community. I shall insist on the need to improve budget discipline and management, taking account of the Council conclusions of 4 December 1984.

Engagements

asked the Prime Minister if she will list her official engagements for Thursday 7 May.

asked the Prime Minister if she will list her official engagements for Thursday 7 May.

asked the Prime Minister if she will list her official engagements for Thursday 7 May.

asked the Prime Minister if she will list her official engagements for Thursday 7 May.

asked the Prime Minister if she will list her official engagements for Thursday 7 May.

asked the Prime Minister if she will list her official engagements for Thursday 7 May.

asked the Prime Minister if she will list her official engagements for Thursday 7 May.

This morning I presided at a meeting of the Cabinet and had meetings with ministerial colleagues and others. In addition to my duties in this House I shall he having further meetings later today.

Home Department

Broadcasting

4.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what recent progress has been made in the discussions within the European Economic Community on the broadcasting directive proposed by the Commission; and if he will make a statement.

The draft directive is still under discussion in the Council working group of officials. The Government continue to hold the view that a case has not been made out for Community legislation in this field, and that the proposed Council of Europe Convention provides a better way forward.

Crime (Clear-Up Rate)

7.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what are the most recent clear-up rates for each police force area in England and Wales for all recorded crimes.

As the answer is in the form of a table I will, with permission, circulate it in the Official Report. In 1986, the police cleared up:12 per cent. of all recorded notifiable offences in England and Wales.

Ratio of notifiable offences1 recorded to notifiable offences cleared up by the police, 1986
England and WalesPercentages
Avon and Somerset29
Bedfordshire29
Cambridgeshire37
Cheshire43
Cleveland34
Cumbria42
Derbyshire48
Devon and Cornwall40
Dorset34
Durham39
Essex37
Gloucestershire30
Greater Manchester27
Hampshire33
Hertfordshire46
Humberside30
Kent34
Lancashire45
Leicestershire44
Lincolnshire36
London, City of13
Merseyside37
Metropolitan Police16
Norfolk36
Northamptonshire31
Northumbria40
North Yorkshire32
Nottinghamshire33
South Yorkshire43
Staffordshire44
Suffolk41
Surrey34
Sussex30
Thames Valley35
Warwickshire36
West Mercia41

England and Wales

Percentages

West Midlands29
West Yorkshire38
Wiltshire36
Dyfed-Powys51
Gwent50
North Wales32
South Wales39
England and Wales32

1 Excluding offences of "other criminal damage" value £20 or under.

27.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps he is taking to improve the clear-up rate of crime in England and Wales.

We have taken steps to increase the resources in money, equipment and manpower available to the police; but it is for chief officers to take operational decisions about what proportion of their available resources should be devoted to the investigation of crime in general or of particular crimes.

West Midlands Police

8.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make a statement on the annual report of the chief constable of the west midlands police for 1986.

I was pleased to receive the chief constable's report, in which he records that 1986 was a year of considerable change, major problems, and some notable successes in many areas of the force's work. I am glad to see that the chief constable concludes that the west midlands police are in good heart with a high morale despite the daunting range of tasks that confronts them.

Criminal Injuries

10.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many cases are currently awaiting decisions by the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board; and how many of these have been waiting for more than 12 months.

At the end of March 1987, the board had about 64,000 uncompleted cases. These included a number in which the board awaited the results of inquiries and about 8,000 cases in which it had made an initial decision. No record is kept of how many of the outstanding cases have been waiting for more than 12 months.

Crime (Epping Forest)

11.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what increases and decreases have occurred in the main categories of crime during the last year, or nearest convenient year, in those parts of the Metropolitan police district and of the Essex police area falling within the Epping Forest parliamentary constituency.

The only information readily available to me is for the parts of Epping Forest district falling within the Metropolitan police district, where burglaries fell by 8 per cent. in 1986. The Metropolitan police recorded 1,848 offences of theft, about 150 more than in 1985; and 767 offences of criminal damage, about 100 more. The number of offences of violence, including robbery and sexual offences, remained low.

Burglars (Age Statistics)

14.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what is the average age of offenders who commit burglary.

The figures of those cautioned or convicted indicate that the peak age of offending for burglary is 15.

Neighbourhood Watch Schemes

15.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what evidence he has of the effect of neighbourhood watch schemes on the level of crime; and if he will make a statement.

Neighbourhood watch schemes vary considerably in size, scope and in the commitment of their members. Their effects will inevitably also vary considerably. A good deal of material is now to hand suggesting that some neighbourhood watch schemes are effective in reducing crime while others reduce the fear of crime and increase social cohesion. We shall continue to encourage the remarkable growth of these schemes.

23.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many neighbourhood watch schemes now exist; and what were the corresponding figures for each of the preceding three years.

There are now over 29,500 neighbourhood watch schemes in existence in England and Wales. This compares with some 14,500 schemes in June 1986, some 3,000 schemes in June 1985 and about 1,000 schemes in June 1984.

Prison Officers

19.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what recent discussions he has had with representatives of the prison officers.

My right hon. Friend last met representatives of the Prison Officers Association on 2 March, when they talked about certain aspects of the fresh start proposals.

28.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many prison officers there are; and how this compares with the figure in 1979.

On 1 April 1987 there were 19,176 staff employed in the prison officer class, compared with 15,708 on 1 April 1979.

Metropolitan Police (Crime Statistics)

20.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will publish the most recent clear-up rates for crimes committed in the Metropolitan police area, categorised by the type of crime.

22.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what plans he has to improve the clear-up rate for crime in the Metropolitan police area.

Tables giving the numbers of offences recorded and cleared up in the Metropolitan police district, by main offence group, are regularly placed in the Library. Decisions about what proportion of his available resources should be devoted to the investigation of crime in general or of particular crimes are for the Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis, but I strongly support his decision, recorded in his strategy report for 1987, to identify as a priority, the enhanced detection of a number of offences of particular concern including burglary, robbery and racial and sexual attacks.

Crimes Of Violence

21.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what changes have occurred in the level of sentences for crimes of violence over the past two years.

The proportionate use of custody for offences of violence rose between 1983 and 1985, as did the average sentence length for males over 21 sentenced in the Crown court.

25.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what is the most recent clear-up rate for crimes of violence; and whether he will make a statement.

In 1986 the clear-up rate for offences of violence against the person was 71 per cent. Although this rate represents a slight decrease on the previous year, the number of such offences cleared up was greater in 1986 than in 1985.

Offenders (Ages)

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what is the average age of offenders in England and Wales committing each of (a) violence against the person, (b) burglary, (c) theft and handling of stolen goods, (d) fraud and forgery, (e) criminal damage and (f) all crimes.

The figures for those cautioned or convicted indicate the peak age of offending as 18 for violence against the person; 15 for burglary; 15 for theft and handling stolen goods: 18–21 for fraud and forgery and 15 for criminal damage. The peak age for known offending in general is 15 for boys and 14 for girls.

Tamil Refugees

29.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department when he expects to be in a position to make an announcement on the applications for asylum for the 64 Tamil refugees who arrived in the United Kingdom at the beginning of the year.

The Sri Lankan Tamils who arrived here from Dhaka on 13 February are currently being re-interviewed. Fresh decisions on the individual applications will be reached as soon as possible.

Thames Valley Police

30.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department when he next expects to meet the chief constable of the Thames Valley police to consider the budget of the Thames Valley police.

My right hon. Friend does not expect to meet the chief constable for this purpose. It is the responsibility of the police authority to set the force's budget.

Animals (Cruelty)

31.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will introduce legislation to enable courts to impose a ban on the keeping of animals by persons found guilty of offences involving abuse of or cruelty towards domestic animals; and if he will make a statement.

We are keen to ensure that effective penalties are available for all instances of cruelty to domestic animals. At present the court may disqualify a person from keeping a dog on first conviction for cruelty and other animals on a second or subsequent conviction. We are ready to consider support for proposals to make disqualification available in all instances on first conviction and the necessary consultations are now taking place.

Criminal Damage

32.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what plans he has to deal with the rise in the number of acts of criminal damage over the past eight years.

Criminal damage can often be prevented by good design. The Government's crime prevention strategy includes work to support local action against vandalism and other forms of criminal damage; for example, we have issued good practice guidelines to local authority chief executives and to chief officers of police on the handling of local anti-vandalism campaigns.

Crime (Use Of Firearms)

33.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what has been the increase since 1978 in the total number of crimes in England and Wales in which a firearm was used.

Statistics of notifiable offences recorded by the police in which firearms of all types, including air weapons, were reported to have been used are published annually in "Criminal Statistics, England and Wales" (tables 3.1 and 3.2 of the latest edition, for 1985 Cm. 10). In 1985, 9,742 such offences were recorded, compared to 5,672 in 1978.

Prison Officers (Protective Clothing)

34.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department why he has decided to issue protective clothing to all prison establishments for the use of prison officers when dealing with patients suffering from AIDS.

The decision to issue protective clothing to all prison establishments was taken as part of a package of preventive measures designed to protect prison officers against possible infection from hepatitis B or by the AIDS virus. While protective clothing will rarely be medically indicated, it has been made available in establishments for use when judged necessary.

Policemen (Dorset)

35.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make a statement about the future provision of policemen in Dorset.

It is the responsibility of the Dorset police authority to determine the authorised establishment of the force, subject to my right hon. Friend's approval. Seventy-one additional police posts have been approved for the force since May 1979, bringing the authorised establishment up to 1,235. The last increase was nine police posts approved with effect from 1 April 1987, which met in full the police authority's application for this financial year (1987–88).

Metropolitan Police (Stop And Search Operations)

36.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many stop and search operations took place in 1986 in the Metropolitan police area; how many of these resulted in (a) arrests and (b) successful prosecutions; and what were the equivalent figures for 1985.

Information on the number of stops and searches in 1986 in each police force area, recorded in accordance with the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984, will be published shortly in a Home Office statistical bulletin. I understand from the Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis that the available information for stops and searches in 1985 relates to the last three quarters of 1985 only, during which a total of 24,600 searches of persons and vehicles were made, resulting in 4,000 arrests. Prior to 1 April 1985, the information collected related to all stops and was collected on an annual basis only; figures for the first quarter of 1985 could only be provided at disproportionate cost. From 1 April 1985 a force order was introduced and information was collected in line with the requirements of the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 in anticipation of its implementation on 1 January 1986. The figures collected in 1985 will not be comparable with those for 1986 because the 1984 Act extended the powers of search available.

Buildings (Hostile Attacks)

37.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department when the final report of the working party on the rescue of persons from the buildings damaged by hostile attack will be published; and if he will make it his policy to place a copy of the report in the Library as soon as it is available.

The report of the working group on rescue is expected by the summer. Decisions on the publication of its recommendations will be taken when the report has been received.

"Civil Protection"

38.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will arrange for a copy of each subsequent issue of the quarterly bulletin, "Civil Protection", to be sent out to all hon. Members; and if he will make a statement.

A number of copies of each issue are placed in the Library. If any hon. Members wish to receive copies on an individual basis we should be happy to include them on the mailing list.

Civil Protection Planning

39.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he proposes to issue a statement on the current state of civil protection planning following the conclusion of the initial phase of the planned programme for implementation; and if he will make a statement.

We shall prepare a further report on the implementation of the 1983 regulations in the light of the information which we have asked local authorities to supply by 1 October.

40.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he is satisfied, on the basis of the plans so far submitted under the planned programme for implementation, with the performance of local authorities in recruiting and training civil defence volunteers; and if he will make a statement.

Much more undoubtedly needs to be done by most local authorities in accepting and training civil defence volunteers. The planned programme for implementation suggests that initial priority should be given to the completion of detailed operational plans. But as the programme develops we shall be giving increasing attention to the role of volunteers.

41.