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Written Answers

Volume 164: debated on Friday 12 January 1990

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Written Answers To Questions

Friday 12 January 1990

Education And Science

Ko Hsuan School

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science when his inspectors last visited Ko Hsuan school in North Devon; what inquiries they made; if he will publish their report; and if he will now make a statement on the information he has concerning the recent suicide of a pupil at the school.

My Department has asked for a full explanation from the school of the circumstances leading up to the tragic death of Nicholas Shultz.Her Majesty's inspectors last visited the school in September 1988 to advise the Department about its final registration. The visit involved not only observation of work in progress but discussions with senior management about the curriculum. The boarding accommodation was briefly visited; there was no evidence of boys and girls sharing the same dormitory or bedroom. This was one of the many visits to independent schools carried out by Her Majesty's inspectorate as part of its routine information-gathering. As such, it will not lead to a published report.

Figures in £'s
Nat PressReg PressSpecialist Press1OtherTotal
1986–87
Northern Board4,72273,2688,95986,949
Southern Board62,5425,67368,215
Eastern Board6,23275,62812,2759,725103,860
Western Board4,61770,9994,98080,596
Central Services Agency213,7754,04817,823
1987–88
Northern Board8,14269,4858,29085,917
Southern Board80,6788,34289,020
Eastern Board10,97051,06712,06815,12589,230
Western Board3,86496,6376,301106,802
Central Services Agency213,9095,05018,959
1988–89
Northern Board8,31869,2484,52382,089
Southern Board78,9968,05887,054
Eastern Board9,87963,86013,26316,820103,822
Western Board3,17875,9583,44682,582
Central Services Agency213,4015,89719,298
Notes:
1 The Eastern Board produces a fortnightly Job Bulletin which is placed at locations to which the public has access eg Job Markets.
2 Cost of advertisements by the Central Services Agency on behalf of Boards.

Drought Orders

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will list by (a) water company and (b) location, where drought orders still remain in force.

There are no drought orders currently in force in Northern Ireland.

Teacher Shortages

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science what information is kept on the number of children sent home due to lack of teaching staff in each local education authority.

Local education authorities are responsible for the deployment of teachers, and comprehensive information about the number of pupils sent home is not held centrally by the Department.

Northern Ireland

Teachers' Pay

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what is the average annual salary earned by graduates in (a) teaching, (b) the Civil Service, (c) industry and (d) commerce in Northern Ireland.

Recruitment Advertising

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will give for each health and social services board in Northern Ireland amounts spent on recruitment advertising for the last three years, together with a breakdown of the spending between (a) national press, (b) regional press, (c) specialist or periodical press and (d) other, stating which; and if he will make a statement.

Police Officers (Housing Allowance)

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he intends to implement the recommendation of the police negotiating board that officers in provided accommodation should receive a housing allowance and pay rent for their accommodation; and if he will make a statement.

No. The police authority will need to provide accommodation free of rent for the foreseeable future to meet operational requirements and as an incentive to recruitment. It has therefore been decided to maintain the status quo with officers in provided accommodation receiving no housing allowance but living rent-free. Draft regulations which amend the rent allowance provisions of the Royal Ulster Constabulary regulations 1984 have been sent to the police negotiating board for comment.

Beef

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland whether he has made any representations to the Commission of the European Communities about the beef industry in Northern Ireland; whether he is prepared to give additional assistance to the beef industry; what representations he has received about the beef industry; and if he will make a statement about the present state of the beef industry.

[holding answer 11 January 1990]: The Government are aware of the concerns being expressed about the current state of the beef industry in Northern Ireland. My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State has had preliminary discussions with the Ulster Farmers Union on the matter and I intend to have a further meeting with the union shortly.In the light of discussions with the union we will consider what action, including representations to the Commission of the European Communities through my right hon. Friend the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, might be taken to alleviate the concerns expressed.

Terrorism (Compensation)

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will list in the Official Report the criteria by which compensation is awarded to the victims of terrorism and to the families of the victims of terrorism in Northern Ireland and the amount of and the circumstances in which payments have been made in each of the past 10 years; and whether he is satisfied with the way in which the present system operates.

[holding answer 11 January 1990]: In Northern Ireland, as in Great Britain, the victim of a criminal injury is entitled to be compensated for pain, suffering and loss of amenities, and for any expenses or pecuniary loss resulting from his injuries. If the victim dies as a result of a criminal injury, compensation is payable to his relatives in respect of expenses incurred or pecuniary loss suffered as a result of the death. Additionally, in the case of incidents occuring on or after 1 July 1988, a bereavement award of £3,500 is payable to the spouse of the deceased victim or to the parents if the victim was unmarried and under 18 years of age. The rationale of the scheme is to ensure that victims and their families do not suffer financial hardship. The legislation makes no distinction between terrorist and other criminal acts except that in terrorist cases there is no upper limit to the amount of compensation for pecuniary loss which can be paid to victims or their dependants.Where a victim survives his injuries the amount of pecuniary loss arising from his partial or total incapacity for work is based on his earnings and future career prospects and account is also taken of any occupational pension or gratuity and social security benefits payable as a result of the injury. The same considerations apply in assessing the amount of pecuniary loss suffered by the dependants of a deceased victim. In the case of pecuniary loss suffered by other relatives, including the deceased victim's parents, account has to be taken of the amount of the victim's financial contributions and the length of time such contributions could reasonably have been expected to have continued.In all cases compensation is paid as a tax-free lump sum. Any applicant who is dissatisfied with the amount determined has a statutory right of appeal to the courts.The compensation provisions broadly follow common law practice and are similar to the compensation provisions in the rest of the United Kingdom. The scheme operates in a fair and reasonable way.The table shows the total amount of compensation paid in each of the past 10 years to the victims of terrorism, their dependants and other relatives.

YearCompensation Paid £ million
1979–801·2
1980–815·1
1981–823·5
1982–833·9
1983–844·6
1984–855·5
1985–867·9
1986–874·2
1987–884·3
1988–895·6
Total45·8

Traffic Flows

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland when the last census of traffic was carried out on each road which enters Limavady town; what were the traffic figures for each road on that occasion; and what is his estimate of the present figures, numbers to be given for daily, and maximum and minimum hourly traffic volumes.

[holding answer 9 January 1990]: Traffic figures on each road entering Limavady are obtained continually from automatic census points and annual figures are derived from these. The information for 1989 is as follows:

Average daily traffic flowMaximum hourly traffic flowMinimum hourly traffic flow
Roe Bridge, A213,1421,33513
Ballyquin Road, B684,2733960
Rathmore Road, A376,9277423
Dowland Road, A23,8613460

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what is his estimate of the present flow of traffic on a daily and maximum and minimum hourly flow basis across the Bann bridge, Coleraine and the Mountsandel bridge, Coleraine; what were the figures when the last traffic census was taken; and what were the figures for the Bann bridge before the Mountsandel bridge was opened.

[holding answer 9 January 1990]: The present daily and maximum and minimum hourly traffic flows across the Bann bridge are estimated to be 26,452, 2,600 and 10 respectively. These are based on the last census in 1988 but there have been no significant traffic flow changes since then. Automatic census points on the Sandelford bridge gave actual figures for 1989 of 14,745, 1,463 and eight respectively. The last complete census in 1987 gave figures of 13,450 and 1,350 vehicles with no minimum figure being available.The average 16-hour daily flow for the Bann bridge in 1972, before the Sandelford bridge was opened, was 22,290 vehicles. Maximum and minimum hourly flows are not available.

Number of vehicles per dayNumber of heavy goods vehicles per dayHighest hourly traffic flowLowest hourly traffic flow
Roe bridge, Limavady13,1429201,33513
Roe bridge, Dungiven7,3247327283

Civil Service

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland (1) if he will give details of the religious composition of the successful applicants for posts offered by the Department of the Environment, at each grade level in the (a) supervisory, (b) craft and (c) the non-craft grade groups of the industrial staff and: (i) the general service and (ii) the scientific grade groups of the non-industrial staff; and if he will give comparable figures for each year since 1983;(2) if he will give details of the religious denomination of all applicants for posts offered by the Department of the

Department of the Environment industrial staff recruitment: October 1988 (first available date) to December 1989
ProtestantRoman CatholicNot knownTotal
NumberPercentageNumberPercentageNumberPercentageNumberPercentage
Supervisory, craft and non-craft
Applicants62854·245138·9796·81,158100
Appointments10655·87539·594·7190100
Department of the Environment scientific group recruitment
YearGrade levelProtestantApplications Roman CatholicNot knownTotalAppointments total
1985
1986C332617762
1987D311518643
1988E1085891752
1989
Information about successful applicants is not provided because the numbers appointed were so small that it could serve to identify the religious affiliation of individuals.

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will give details of the religious denomination of the members of the directorate of (a) the planning service, (b) the roads service, and (c) the water service; and if he will give comparable details for each year for 1983 to 1988 respectively.

[holding answer 7 December 1989]: Equal opportunities monitoring in the Northern Ireland Civil Service began in 1985 when staff were asked

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will publish a table in the Official Report to show (a) the number of vehicles which cross the Roe bridge at Limavady, and (b) the number of vehicles which cross the Roe bridge at Dungiven, each day and the number of such vehicles which are believed to be heavy commercial vehicles, and also the highest and lowest hourly traffic flows.

[holding answer 9 January 1990]: The information is as follows:Environment, at each grade level in

(a) the supervisory, (b) the craft and (c) the non-craft grade groups of the industrial staff, and (i) the general service and (ii) the scientific grade groups of the non-industrial staff; and if he will give comparable figures for each year since 1983.

[holding answer 7 December 1989]: Equal opportunities monitoring in the Northern Ireland Civil Service began in 1985 when staff were asked to complete, on a voluntary basis, a confidential questionnaire about their schooling background. From this information the religious affiliation of staff was determined.The statistics available are as follows:to complete, on a voluntary basis, a confidential questionnaire about their schooling background. From this information the religious affiliation of staff was determined.The statistics available are as follows:

DOE Roads, Water and Town and Country Planning Services Directorates Total number of staff in the three directorates at 1 January 1989
Number
Roads4
Water4
Town and Country Planning3
11

With such small numbers further disaggregation could only serve to identify the religious affiliation of individual officers.

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will give details of the religious composition of the staff of the Department of the Environment for each grade and level in (a) the supervisory, (b) the craft and (c) the non-craft grade group of the industrial staff; and if he will give comparable figures for each year since 1983.

DOE industrial staff—by grade level
ProtestantRoman CatholicNot knownTotal
Grade levelNumberPercent.NumberPercent.NumberPercent.NumberPercent.
1. At 2 April 1987 (first available date)
Supervisory14443·411534·67322·0332100
Craft24850·111423·013326·9495100
Non-Craft1,34243·91,00732·970923·23,058100
2. At 1 Janaury 1988
Supervisory14443·411534·67322·0332100
Craft25650·211422·414027·5510100
Non-Craft1,36343·61,02632·873923·63,128100
3. 1 January 1989
Supervisory14344·810833·96421·3319100
Craft24350·510521·813327·7481100
Non-Craft1,26042·696332·673324·82,956100

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will give details of the religious composition of the staff of the Department of the Environment, for each grade level in (a) the general service and (b) the scientific grade groups of the non-industrial staff; and if he will give comparable figures for each year since 1983.

[holding answer 7 December 1989]: Equal opportunities monitoring in the Northern Ireland Civil Service began in 1985 when staff were asked to complete, on a voluntary basis, a confidential questionnaire about their schooling background. From this information the religious affiliation of staff was determined.The statistics available are as follows:

[holding answer 7 December 1989]: Equal opportunities monitoring in the Northern Ireland Civil Service began in 1985 when staff were asked to complete, on a voluntary basis, a confidential questionnaire about their schooling background. From this information the religious affiliation of staff was determined.The statistics available are as follows:

Department of the Environment non-industrial staff at 1 January 1985

1. General Service Group by Grade Level

Protestant

Roman Catholic

Not known

Total

Grade level1

Number

Percent.

Number

Percent.

Number

Percent.

Number

Percent.

A and B6082·21115·122·773100
C7672·42120·087·6105100
D11774·12616·5159·5158100
E15373·24622·0104·8209100
F16761·47828·7279·9272100
G45850·538942·9606·6907100
H20743·725453·6132·7474100
Totals1,23856·382537·51356·12,198100

2. Scientific Group by Grade Level

Protestant

Roman Catholic

Not known

Total

Grade level

1

Number

Percent.

Number

Percent.

Number

Percent.

Number

Percent.

Totals3670·61223·535·951100

1 Defined in Third Report of the Equal Opportunities Unit.

Department of the Environment non-industrial staff at 1 January 1986

Protestant

Roman Catholic

Not known

Total

Grade level

Number

Percentage

Number

Percentage

Number

Percentage

Number

Percentage

1. General service group by grade level
A and B6582·31215·222·579100
C7572·82019·487·8103100
D12472·93118·2158·8170100
E15372·74822·6115·2212100
F16557·99533·3258·8285100
G46349·342·445·2525·5939100
H22845·126352·1142·8505100
Totals1,27355·589338·91275·52,293100
2. Scientific group by grade level
Totals3561·41322·8915·857100

Department of the Environment non-industrial staff at 1 January 1987

Protestant

Roman Catholic

Not known

Total

Grade level

Number

Percentage

Number

Percentage

Number

Percentage

Number

Percentage

1. General service group by grade level
A and B6483·11114·322·677100
C8173·62119·187·3110100
D11571·93018·8159·4160100
E14468·66525·7125·7210100
F16255·910636·6227·6290100
G46848·345046·5505·2968100
H22944·926552·0163·1510100
Totals1,26354·393740·31255·42,325100
2. Scientific group by grade level
Totals3562·11424·1813·858100

DOE Non-Industrial Staff at 1 January 1988

1. General Services Group by Grade Level

Protestant

Roman Catholic

Not known

Total

Grade level

Number

Percent.

Number

Percent.

Number

Percent.

Number

Percent.

A and B6380·81215·433·878100
C8074·82018·776·5107100
D12871·53620·1158·4179100
E14265·76128·2136·0216100
F15554·611139·1186·3284100
G47748·845046·1505·1977100
H23845027752·4142·6529100
Totals1,28354·196740·81205·12,370100

2. Scientific Group by Grade Level

Grade Level

Protestant

Roman Catholic

Not known

Total

Number

Percent.

Number

Percent.

Number

Percent.

Number

Percent.

Totals3663·21322·8814·057100

DOE Non-Industrial Staff at 1 January 1989

1. General Services Group by Grade Level

Grade Level

Protestant

Roman Catholic

Not known

Total

Grade level

Number

Percent.

Number

Percent.

Number

Percent.

Number

Percent.

A and B6581·21215·033·880100
C7973·12220·476·5108100
D12569·44223·3137·2180100
E15364·37129·8145·9238100
F15250·813043·5175·7299100
G51250·845044·7454·51,007100
H23844·628152·6152·8534100
Totals1,32454·11,00841·21144·72,46100

2. Scientific Group by Grade Level

Grade Level

Protestant

Roman Catholic

Not known

Total

Grade level

Number

Percent.

Number

Percent.

Number

Percent.

Number

Percent.

Totals4165·11422·2812·763100

Overseas Development

Panama

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make available emergency economic and medical aid to Panama to assist the reconstruction of the country following the invasion by United States forces.

Trade And Industry

Barlow Clowes

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry why compensation paid by Her Majesty's Government to Barlow Clowes investors includes compound interest from the date of deposit to the end of December 1989; and why this interest is deemed to be free of liability for tax.

The terms of the Government's scheme of payments to investors in Barlow Clowes are in accordance with the recommendation of the Parliamentary Commissioner for Administration. The Department's statement regarding the tax liability of these payments reflects the advice of the Inland Revenue and is a matter for it.

Vietnam

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry when export credits guarantee cover was restored to Vietnam.

[holding answer 11 January 1990]: Export Credits Guarantee Department cover for business with Vietnam on medium and long-term credit was withdrawn in March 1982. Since December that year cover for short-term business has remained available subject to payment being made on terms of cash against documents out of an irrevocable letter of credit confirmed before shipment by a bank in the United Kingdom.While ECGD continues to monitor developments no early relaxation of these terms is envisaged.

Balance Of Trade

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what is the balance of trade with (a) the rest of the European Communiity, (b) the USA and (c) Japan; and if he will make a statement.

I have been asked to reply.Information from which crude trade balances

1 may be derived can be found in the Monthly Review of External Trade Statistics, available from the Library of the House, or on the central statistical office databank which may be accessed through the Library.

1 Crude balances slightly overstate deficits (or understate surpluses) since the value of imports, but not that of exports, includes insurance and freight.

Manufacturing Output

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry whether he will publish a table showing the increase in the volume of manufacturing output less food etc. and of exports of manufactures based on current values.

I have been asked to reply.Index numbers of the volume of output of manufacturing industries and of food, drink and tobacco—at 1985 prices—are published in the index of output of the production industries press notice, tables 1 and 2 respectively, together with their relative weights. Manufacturing output less food, drink and tobacco can be derived for these two series. Exports of total manufactures—in current value terms—are published in the United Kingdom balance of payments current account press notice, table 8. Both press notices give percentage changes for the latest three months on the previous three months and on the same three months a year earlier. The press notices are available from the House of Commons Library.

CountyLord-LieutenantDate of appointmentDate of retirement
England
AvonSir John Wills, TD, FRICS, JPApril 1974July 2003
BedfordshireLt. Col. Hanmer Hanbury, LVO, MC. JPMarch 1978January 1991
BerkshireJohn Henderson Esq, CVO, OBEJune 1989May 1995
BuckinghamshireCommander The Hon. John Fremantle, RN (Retd.), JPSeptember 1984January 2002
CambridgeshireMichael Bevan Esq.August 1985August 2001
CheshireThe Viscount Leverhulme, TDAugust 1949July 1990
ClevelandThe Lord Gisborough, TDMarch 1981July 2002
CornwallThe Viscount FalmouthOctober 1977October 1994
CumbriaSir Charles Graham, Bt.February 1983July 1994
DerbyshireCol. Peter Hilton, MC, JPJanuary 1978June 1994
DevonThe Early of Morley, JPMay 1982May 1998
DorsetThe Lord Digby JPSeptember 1984July 1999
DurhamDavid Grant Esq, CBEApril 1988January 1997
East SussexAdmiral Sir Lindsay Bryson, KCBNovember 1989January 2000
EssexAdmiral Sir Andrew Lewis, KCB, JPAugust 1978January 1993
GloucestershireCol. Martin Gibbs, CB, DSO, TD, JPJune 1978February 1992
Greater LondonField Marshal The Lord Bramall, GCB, OBE, MC, JPJanuary 1986December 1998
Greater ManchesterCol. J. B. Timmins, OBE, TD, JPDecember 1987June 2007
HampshireSir James Scott, JPDecember 1982October 1999
Hereford and WorcesterCaptain Thomas Dunne, JPJuly 1977October 2008
HertfordshireSimon Bowes Lyon Esq, FCAJanuary 1986June 2007
HumbersideRichard Bethell Esq.October 1983March 1997
Isle of WightThe Lord Mottistone, CBEAugust 1985December 1995
KentThe Rt. Hon. Robin Leigh-PembertonAugust 1982January 2002
LancashireDr. Simon TowneleyMarch 1976December 1996
LeicestershireTimothy Brooks Esq, JPJanuary 1989March 2004
LincolnshireHenry Nevile Esq.November 1975March 1995
MerseysideHenry Cotton Esq.May 1989July 2004
NorfolkTimothy Colman Esq.March 1978September 2004
NorthamptonshireJohn Lowther Esq, CBE, JPJanuary 1984November 1998
NorthumberlandThe Viscount Ridley, TDJanuary 1984July 2000
North YorkshireSir Marcus Worsley, JPMarch 1987April 2000
NottinghamshireSir Gordon HobdayJanuary 1983February 1991
OxfordshireSir Ashley Ponsonby, MCJanuary 1980February 1996
ShropshireJohn Dugdale Esq.February 1975May 1998
SomersetLt. Col. Geoffrey Luttrell, MC, JPMarch 1978October 1994
South YorkshireHugh Neill Esq, CBE, TD, JPMay 1985March 1996
StaffordshireSir Arthur BryanJuly 1968March 1998
SuffolkSir Joshua Rowley, JPMarch 1978December 195
SurreyRichard Thornton Esq, OBE, JPMay 1986October 1997
Tyne and WearSir Ralph Carr-EllisonJuly 1984December 2000
WarwickshireVacant
West MidlandsThe Earl of Aylesford, JPApril 1974November 1993
West SussexHer Grace, Lavinia, Duchess of Norfolk, CBEMay 1975March 1990
West YorkshireThe Lord Ingrow, OBE, TD, JPMay 1985August 1992
WiltshireField Marshal Sir Roland Gibbs, GCB, CBE, DSO, MCDecember 1989June 1996
Wales
ClwydSir William Gladstone, Bt, JPAugust 1985October 2000
DyfedMr. David Mansel Lewis, JPFebruary 1979October 2002
Mid GlamorganVacant
South GlamorganMrs. Susan Williams, MBEDecember 1985August 1990
West GlamorganLt. Col. Sir Michael Llewellyn, Bt.December 1987June 1996
GwyneddVacant
GwentMr. Richard Hanbury-Tenison, JPJune 1979January 2000
PowysMr. Mervyn Bourdillon, JPJuly 1986August 1999

Prime Minister

Lords Lieutenant For England And Wales

To ask the Prime Minister if she will list the lords lieutenant for England and Wales, the dates of their appointment and projected date of retirement.

A list of lords lieutenant for England and Wales follows, together with the dates of their appointment and expected retirement.

Ec Internal Matters (Director General)

To ask the Prime Minister what steps are being taken to fill the post of Director General for internal matters in the EEC.

Appointments in the Commission are made by the Commission. The Government naturally make every effort to ensure that there is an equitable proportion of British personnel on the staff of the EC institutions, in particular in important posts.

Mr John Mogg

To ask the Prime Minister when she expects Mr. John Mogg to leave the service of the Cabinet Office.

Mr. Mogg joined the Cabinet Office in July 1989. On present plans, his posting would last for two to three years.

Home Department

Hillsborough Disaster

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what compensation has been offered to Mr. Trevor Hicks in respect of each of his daughters killed in the Hillsborough stadium disaster; what is the total compensation to be awarded to bereaved families; and on what basis their claims will be met;(2) what compensation will be payable to parents who lost a child aged under 18 years, or a spouse aged over 18 years, in the Hillsborough disaster.

My right hon. and learned Friend has no power to intervene in these matters. I understand, however, that the South Yorkshire police authority, through its insurers, has been in touch with Mr. Hicks's solicitors asking for further information about his claim.

Official Secrets

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether the effect of the draft Official Secrets Act 1989 (Prescription) Order 1989 will enable prosecution of the officials listed in schedule 2 to the order under the Official Secrets Act 1989 for disclosing certain categories of information to hon. Members; and if he will make a statement.

The draft order establishes that the office holders listed in schedule 2 and some associated staff (all of whom at present fall within the scope of section 2 of the Official Secrets Act 1911) are to be treated as Crown servants for the purposes of the Official Secrets Act 1989. They will be liable to prosecution for unauthorised disclosures in the limited circumstances laid down in the Act.

Drugs

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make a statement on opportunities for new manufacturers of opium derivatives to enter the United Kingdom market in the light of the recommendations in the Monopolies and Mergers Commission's report published in April 1989.

While I shall continue to apply strict security measures to the manufacture and distribution of controlled drugs, I shall ensure that they do not create unnecessary restrictions on competition. I therefore welcome firm proposals from new manufacturers to establish opium derivative production.

Transport

Leeds City Station

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when he intends to approve the additional funds required for British Rail's completion of the upgrading of the west end of Leeds City station with an additional platform and improved track and signalling.

I understand that British Rail has started design work on a major scheme at Leeds, to be undertaken in the early 1990s.No question of approval by this Department arises at present.

Nuclear Fuel

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will list by year for the last 10 years the number of loaded waste nuclear fuel train movements through Doncaster that were completed (a) with no accidents involved and (b) with an accident involved.

The Department does not collect this information, but I understand that loaded nuclear fuel flasks do not normally travel through Doncaster and there has not been an accident involving this type of traffic in the Doncaster area.

Blind People

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will introduce legislation to require all contractors or councils that dig up pavements or road surfaces to place firm barriers around the holes to ensure blind people are not endangered.

A revised version of chapter 8 of the traffic signs manual to be published later this year will include such measures. The manual is a code of practice, compliance with which is taken to satisfy general legal requirements for the proper guarding of works. The proposed legislation to reform the Public Utilities Street Works Act 1950 will be used to enforce such requirements for utility works. This legislation will be introduced as soon as there is a suitable opportunity.

National Finance

Departmental Staff

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what action he intends to take concerning the involvement of Mr. Peter Wetherby, an employee of his Department, under the pseudonym of Dominic Delaney in the organisation of the Troops Out movement or the Martyrs Committee.

[holding answer 7 December 1989]: The activities of Mr. Peter Wetherby in relation to the Troops Out movement and the Manchester Martyrs are being investigated by his employers, the Inland Revenue. Any subsequent action will depend on the outcome of those investigations.

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is the current position and place of work of Mr. Peter Wetherby.

[holding answer 7 December 1989]: Mr. Peter Wetherby is a revenue executive employed by the Inland Revenue in its Greater Manchester region.

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he has issued any guidance to his employees on involvement with the Troops Out movement.

[holding answer 7 December 1989]: General guidance on the extent to which civil servants may take part in political activities is given in the Civil Service pay and conditions of service code and in departmental instructions.

Manufactured Goods

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is the balance of trade in manufactured goods.

[holding answer 9 January 1990]: The information was published on 29 December 1989, in table 12 of the montly press notice on the current account of the balance of payments, copies of which are available in the House of Commons Library.

Uniform Business Rate

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what forecasts he has made of the impact on the rate of inflation of the uniform business rate; and if he will make a statement.

[holding answer 10 January 1990]: The uniform business rate in 1990–91 will raise in real terms broadly the same amount from business as in 1989–90: it will not add to real business costs as a whole. For future years, there is a statutory guarantee that the national non-domestic rate poundage will increase by no more than the rate of inflation.

Lord President Of The Council

Parliamentary Rifle Range

To ask the Lord President of the Council what use is made of the parliamentary rifle range; what representations he has had seeking its closure and replacement by (a) a childcare facility or (b) a use likely to benefit a large number of hon. Members and staff; and if he will make a statement.

I have been asked to reply.Th sports and social club's rifle range occupies a windowless basement room within the House of Lords. I have received no proposals concerning the room since I answered the hon. Member's question on 29 November.

Energy

Iaea Safeguards

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy what information his Department collects on a routine basis on the imports and exports of nuclear materials for the purposes of reporting to the international safeguards authorities.

Under articles 24 and 25 of Euratom Regulations 3227/76 (of the Official Journal) the Department forwards to the Euratom safeguards directorate reports by all nuclear operators of exports and imports of nuclear materials. These reports are, in turn, passed by Euratom to the IAEA.

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy if Her Majesty's Government have given any consideration to the International Atomic Energy Agency playing a role in safeguarding fissile materials involved in non-explosive military uses.

I am content with the UK-Euratom-IAEA agreement which excludes material and facilities in the United Kingdom's military cycle.

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy if he will make it his policy to seek an extension to the International Atomic Energy Agency safeguards regime to cover visits to non-declared suspect facilities.

No. Safeguards-related visits and inspections are matters for the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the relevant state. In the case of non-nuclear weapon states party to the treaty on the non-proliferation of nuclear weapons (NPT), the treaty obliges them not to manufacture or otherwise acquire nuclear weapons, and accept IAEA safeguards on all source or fissionable material in all their peaceful nuclear activities.In relation to non-parties to the NPT, IAEA safeguards can be applied only on a voluntary basis.In either case the agency's statutes require the inspectors to report any non-compliance to the director general who shall thereupon transmit the report to the board of governors.

Fuel Exports And Imports

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy if he will provide the latest available equivalent figures about fuel exports and imports to those given in the tables in his answers of 9 November, Official Report, column 767 and 19 December 1989, Official Report, columns 118 arid 119.

The equivalent information for fuel exports and imports for the 11 months to November 1989 following my previous answers on 9 November and 19 December is as follows:

Table 1
January to November 1989
Thousand tonnes
Exports (fob)
Coal1,890
Oil163,320

Thousand tonnes

Imports (cif)

Coal10,918
Gas213,726
Oil53,636

1 Contains a small amount of natural gas exports.

2 Coal equivalent.

Notes:

The volume figures are in thousand tonnes. For oil this is consistent with the basis used in Overseas Trade Statistics publications. However if figures are required on a common basis then the oil figures should be multiplied by a factor of 1·7 to convert them to thousand tonnes of coal equivalent.

Provisional data for the whole of 1989 should be available in mid-February.

Table 2

January to November 1989

£ million at 1985 prices

2

Exports (fob)

Coal73
Oil

110,820

Imports (cif)

Coal584
Gas1,032
Oil8,648

1 Contains a small amount of natural gas exports.

2 Figures at 1985 constant prices have been derived by applying the unit value for exports in 1985 to the relevant volumes in 1989. The figures for gas are estimated.

Note:

Provisional data for the whole of 1989 should be available in mid-February.

Environment

Contracts

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, further to his answer to the hon. Member for Great Grimsby on 14 December, Official report, column 751, if he will list separately the contracts that have been extended by the Property Services Agency and the Crown Suppliers to the Department of the Environment.

Government Departments cannot contract with each other. There are therefore no contracts extended by the Property Services Agency and the Crown Suppliers to the Department of the Environment.

Local Government Finance

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what is the current estimated population of the London borough of Lambeth aged 18 years and over and who will be eligible to pay the community charge.

The information available to the Department shows that 172,529 people in the London borough of Lambeth were eligible to pay the community charge on 1 December 1989, counting students as one fifth and including the estimated full-year equivalent of contributors to the collective community charge.

Commons Crypt

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what work is to be carried out during 1990 to the fabric and structure in the Commons Crypt.

There is a major dampness problem in the Crypt Chapel caused by the long-term seepage of moisture through the porous stone.Consultants have been appointed to identify possible remedies and their report is due shortly. It is therefore, I regret, too soon to say what work will be done this year.

Home Ownership

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment in which 10 local authority areas in the United Kingdom the largest percentage increases in home ownership have occurred since 1979.

This information is not available.The latest information on the percentage change in the number of owner-occupier households at the local authority level comes from the 1981 Census for the period 1971 to 1981 and can be found in table 17 of "Census 1981: Key statistics for local authorities". We expect the 1991 census to provide corresponding information for the period 1981 to 1991. The Department does, however, make regional estimates of the proportion of the housing stock in owner-occupation and figures for April 1981 and December 1988 are published in table 9.4 of "Housing and Construction Statistics 1978–1988". Copies of both publications are in the Library.

Tyre Fire (Powys)

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will instruct Her Majesty's inspectorate of pollution to investigate the pollution implications of the tyre fire at Knighton and Heyhope in Powys.

No. Inspectors have given advice to the local authority which is responsible for regulating waste disposal sites and the burning of tyres.Questions about the incident itself should be addressed to my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Wales.

Reports

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what criteria he uses to decide when to publish a report commissioned by his Department (a) through Her Majesty's Stationery Office and (b) by placing a single copy in the Library.

Each case is considered on its merits. The factors involved also include an assessment of the likely public interest, the cost of publication and whether the report concerned should be priced or unpriced.

Northern Industrialised Nations (Conference)

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what plans he has for policy initiatives to be taken at the forthcoming international conference of northern industrialised nations in Bergen, Norway in May.

The Bergen conference, which is being organised by the Norwegian Government under the auspices of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe, will examine the extent to which the recommendations of the report of the World Commission on Environment and Development have been implemented. It will enable Ministers from ECE countries to decide what co-operative action is needed to tackle the main environmental problems of the world, particularly those confronting eastern Europe.The United Kingdom is playing a prominent part in the preparations for the conference. Last year we hosted the first of four international preparatory workshops. We have also contributed a report, "Sustaining Our Common future", reviewing the substantial progress we have made within the United Kingdom in following up the WCED report.

Nature Conservancy Council

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will list in the Official Report the main findings and conclusions of the most recent joint Department of the Environment-Nature Conservancy Council staff inspection of the Nature Conservancy Council.

The report of the staff inspection last year of the chief scientist's directorate of the Nature Conservancy Council (NCC) is an internal NCC document which has not yet been finalised. It would therefore be inappropriate to list its findings and conclusions.

Vehicle Smoke Checks

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what proportion of smoke in urban areas is estimated to come from diesel vehicles.

Figures for emissions of black smoke from diesel vehicles have not yet been finalised, but will be published for the first time in the Department's annual digest of environmental protection and water statistics early in 1990.

Ec Habitats Directive

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what steps he will take to ensure that Community funding made available to implement the European Community habitats directive will be directed to the most-needed areas.

We understand that the European Commission is working up a proposal for funding to assist implementation of the habitats directive once it has been agreed. We shall certainly be keen to ensure that any such funding will be used as effectively as possible.

Rateable Values

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will publish the report by consultants on substitutes for rateable values as they are used in housing legislation; and if he will make a statement.

Copies of the report by Price Waterhouse on market rents as substitutes for rateable values as used in housing legislation have today been placed in the House Libraries. The consultants were commissioned to survey rents in certain sectors of the private rented market, to provide evidence on which to base substitutes for the rateable value limits which define protection under certain rent, landlord and tenant and housing Acts, and to make recommendations. The proposed substitutes, set out in the table, would apply to agreements made on or after 1 April when the community charge comes into effect. They will be provided by means of regulations under section 149 of the Local Government and Housing Act 1989, applying in England and Wales, to come into force on 1 April.

Housing Act 1988: Rent Act 1977 (new tenancies)
Upper Limit for protectionIn Greater LondonTenancies with an annual rent of less than £25,000 (excluding certain service charges)
Outside Greater LondonTenancies with an annual rent of less than £25,000 (excluding certain service charges)
Lower LimitIn Greater LondonTenancies with an annual rent of more than £1,000 (excluding certain service charges)
Outside Greater LondonTenancies with an annual rent of more than £250 (excluding certain service charges)
Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 Part I: Local Government and Housing Act 1989, Schedule 10
Ground rent qualificationIn Greater London£1,000 pa
Outside Greater London£250 pa
The upper limit will broadly be based on the rental equivalent for the premium paid ie an annual equivalent payment taken over the unexpired length of the lease, assuming a maximum lease length of 100 years. The annual equivalent would be derived using the formula shown in the consultants' report, using an interest rate of 6 per cent. Both inside and outside Greater London, it is proposed that protection will generally apply to leases where the rental equivalent of the premium computed on this basis is £25,000 pa and below.

Leasehold Reform Act 1967

Both the ground rent and the upper limit qualifications will be the same as those under the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954, part I, and Local Government and Housing Act 1989, schedule 10, above.

Commercial Rates

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will list all local rating authorities which have increased commercial rates (a) by 20 per cent. per annum compound in real terms and (b) by 15 per cent. per annum compound in real terms, for five successive years since 1979.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will list for each local authority in England the gross commercial and non-domestic rateable value totals in (a) 1973 and (b) on 2 January 1990; and if he will list in each case the percentage increase.

[holding answer 10 January 1990]: I will write to my hon. Friend shortly.

Institute For European Environmental Policy

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what recent reports commissioned by his Department from the Institute for European Environmental Policy have been published; and what plans he has for commissioning further reports from the Institute for European Environmental Policy.

[holding answer 11 January 1990]: A study by the Institute for European Environmental Policy commissioned by my Department was published on 12 December under the title "Environmental Policy and 1992". My Department has recently let a contract to the institute to provide advice and information on the international aspects of integrated pollution control. The institute also provides regular advice and information to my Department on European Community environmental policy issues under a standing consultancy agreement.

Pollution, Bexhill

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will investigate the risks posed by drums of (a) sodium cyanide, (b) dioxins, (c) sulphuric and (d) hydrochloric acids on beaches at and near Bexhill in Sussex.

[holding answer 1 January 1990]: I am aware that containers, drums and packages, a few containing hazardous substances, have been washed ashore at a number of locations along the south and east coasts in recent weeks. It is thought that they originate from a Pakistani-owned and registered vessel, the Muree, which sank off the Devon coast on 28 October last year.The Department of Transport's marine pollution control unit has examined the ship's manifest and has advised Ministers that none of the cargo would pose a significant threat to the marine environment. However, some substances which were on board could be hazardous to people who come into direct contact with them. Warning messages have been issued to fishermen and local authorities in areas where it is thought they may come ashore.

Attorney-General

Social Security Commissioners (Appeals)

To ask the Attorney-General how many decisions were issued by the social security commissioners relating to each social security benefit, distinguishing between single payments and other supplementary benefits, in each month since January 1988; how many appeals to the commissioners relating to each benefit are outstanding; and in how many of these cases the appeal (a) is not ready for hearing, (b) is awaiting a hearing and (c) has been heard but the commissioner's decision has not been issued.

The information is not readily available in the form requested. However, the number of decisions issued by the commissioners in calendar years 1988 and 1989 for each category of benefit is shown in the tables, although existing statistics do not distinguish between supplementary benefit and single payment appeals.Information on the number of appeals outstanding relating to each category of benefit is not readily available, but the current total of outstanding appeals is 3,331. In 1988, 19 per cent. of appeals, and in 1989 24 per cent. of appeals, were decided after an oral hearing; the balance of

appeals in each year was decided without an oral hearing. Of the total of outstanding appeals

(a) 1,559 are not ready for decision; (b) 1,528 are awaiting a decision; and (c) 244 have been decided and a commissioner's decision has not yet been issued.

Number of Decisions issued by the Social Security Commissioners in 1988

Number

Supplementary Benefit1,198
Family Income Supplement18
Unemployment Benefit176
Sickness Benefit196
Attendance Allowance173
Industrial Injury207
Mobility Allowance221
Child Benefit33
Retirement Pensions45
Statutory Sick Pay8
General Benefits
e.g. widows benefit, guardian allowance65
Income Support
Total2,340

Number of Decisions issued by the Social Security Commissioners in 1989

Supplementary Benefit1,199
Family Income Supplement7
Unemployment Benefit134
Sickness Benefit125
Attendance Allowance205
Industrial Injury205
Mobility Allowance245
Child Benefit34
Retirement Pensions41
Statutory Sick Pay3
General Benefits
e.g. widows benefit, guardian allowance68
Income Support47
Family Credit2
Total2,315

To ask the Attorney-General what is the average cost to public funds of an appeal to the social security commissioners, with or without an oral hearing.

It is estimated that the average cost to public funds is £2,428·29.

Compensation

To ask the Attorney-General (1) what representations he has received about the present levels of compensation payable under the Administration of Justice Act 1982; and if he will make a statement;(2) whether he will review the current levels of compensation provided for under the Administration of Justice Act 1982.

The Solicitor-General and I, as well as the Lord Chancellor, have received a number of letters from members of the public expressing their concern about the present level of bereavement damages which may be awarded under the Administration of Justice Act 1982. The Solicitor-General announced in May 1989 during the Committee stage of the Citizens Compensation Bill (Official Report, Standing Committee C, 3 May 1989, col. 21) that the Lord Chancellor would be reviewing the sum specified in the 1982 Act. Since then, the Lord Chancellor has been studying the question whether it would he appropriate to raise the sum and, if so, to what new level, and he will be issuing a consultation paper shortly.

Constitution (Judicial Review)

To ask the Attorney-General what representations he or the Lord Chancellor have received seeking a judicial review of the constitution.

No such representations have been received either by me or by the Lord Chancellor.

Health

Malaria

To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many cases of malaria contracted in the United Kingdom have been reported in each of the past 10 years.

During the years 1979–88 two cases of malaria contracted by mosquito bite in the United Kingdom were reported to the malaria reference laboratory at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (both in 1983).In addition there were reports of cases contracted following congenital infection, organ transplant or blood transfusion in the following years: 1984 (four cases), 1985 (four cases) and 1986 (three cases).

Powered Wheelchairs

To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) whether his Department has received a report from the Disablement Services Authority concerning the provision of occupant-controlled indoor and outdoor powered wheelchairs; and if he will make a statement;(2) whether his Department will make available the funds to enable the Disablement Services Authority to provide occupant-controlled indoor and outdoor powered wheelchairs to those more severely disabled people who would benefit from such a chair.

The Disablement Services Authority is at present undertaking a study to assess the numbers of most severely disabled people who would benefit from this type of wheelchair. Once the results of the study are known, the authority will consider the resource implications and advise me in due course.

Sight Tests

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what surveys of sight test numbers in late 1989 his Department commissioned; if he will publish details of the form of the survey and its results; and if he will publish comparable figures for each of the last 10 years.

The results of a survey of the number of sight tests in the first quarter of 1990 compared with earlier periods should be available after Easter, when we expect to provide a summary of the findings for the Library.

Adopted Children

To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many children were adopted in each of the last five years in (a) England and Wales and (b) the Basildon area.

The total numbers of adoption orders granted by courts in England and Wales for children aged under 18 years during each of the last five years are given in the table.

Number
19848,648
19857,615
19867,892
19877,201
19887,390
Data for 1989 for England and Wales are expected to be available in April. Because the form from which adoption statistics are derived does not record the residential address of either the child or his/her parents, the numbers of adoptions in particular areas are not available.

Children In Care

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what information he has of the number of children in the care of local authorities in (a) England and Wales and (b) the Basildon area, for each of the last five years.

Information is collected centrally on children in the care of local authorities with social services responsibilities. This is published in "Children in the Care of Local Authorities" and is available in the Library. Information is not available centrally for the Basildon area, but data on children in the care of Essex local authority are available; the most recent data relate to 31 March 1987. These figures and data for each of the last five years are given in the table.

Children in care at 31 March in Essex and England and Wales
EssexEngland and Wales
19831,59486,552
19841,43878,889
19851,22473,302
19861,18970,919
19871,23469,249

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what is the average time for which a child is kept in the care of a local authority.

Information is available centrally about episodes of care, that is, the continuous length of time a child is in care without a change in legal status. The length of care episodes for children leaving care is shown by time bands in the publication "Children in the Care of Local Authorities", which is available in the Library. This information is also shown by the legal status of the child, the reason the episode ceased and the age of the child.

Genito-Urinary Medicine

To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will list for the last financial year the special sums to each regional health authority for genito-urinary medicine; which authorities took up all or part of those allocations; and if he will make a statement.

[holding answer 10 January 1990]: We have not provided any specific funding for genito-urinary medicine. We have, however, made it clear to health authorities that we expect them to make full use of the opportunity provided by the extra resources made available for AIDS to improve these services given their role in preventing the spread of HIV infection and sexually transmitted diseases.A total of £130 million was made available for AIDS in 1989–90.

Wales

Jobs

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many major job announcements have been made in the past six months; and if he will make a statement.

Investment in Wales has continued at a high level over the past six months with a new investment on average every eight working days. Major announcements include Toyota's £140 million investment at Shotton, the Gooding-Sanken joint venture at Aberaman promising 520 jobs, and an expansion of RF Brookes, Rogerstone promising 220 full-time and 50 part-time jobs.

Forests

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what plans he has to develop forests as a tourist resource in Wales; and if he will make a statement.

Welsh forests already provide a substantial tourist resource. Most of those managed by the Forestry Commission are open to the public and attract millions of visits a year. They offer a variety of recreational facilities such as visitor centres, forest walks and picnic places, as well as opportunities for specialist pursuits ranging from horse riding to orienteering. The commission also promotes camping and caravanning holidays to both home and overseas markets and co-operates with tourist boards on a range of initiatives.A growing number of private forests are open to the public, and applicants under the commission's woodland grant scheme are required to take into account the recreational potential of new woodlands.

Rally Driving School (Powys)

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will call in the planning application to Montgomeryshire district council concerning the proposed expansion of the rally driving school at Gribyn Forest, Powys.

On the information available to him, my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State sees no reason why an application of this nature, which does not appear to raise issues of more than local importance, should not be decided by the local planning authority.

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what representations he has received concerning the possible expansion of the rally driving school in the Gribyn Forest, Powys.

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales whether he has issued any guidance to the Forestry Commission concerning the possible expansion of the rally driving school at Gribyn Forest, Powys.

No. Gribyn Forest is not managed by the Forestry Commission; it is privately owned.

Earnings

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will publish in the Official Report tables showing the proportion of part-time employees earning less than (a) £4·16, (b) £4·32, (c) £3·12 and (d) £2·80 per hour, excluding overtime, shift and PBR premiums, in Wales and each county in Wales.

Information is not readily available for all part-time employees, nor for hourly earnings excluding shift and PBR premiums as well as overtime. Statistics could be compiled only at disproportionate cost.

Standard Spending Assessments

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales why the information on standard spending assessments, referred to in his answer to the hon. Member for Durham, North-West (Ms. Armstrong) of 13 November 1989, Official Report, column 34, is not yet available.

The 1990–91 standard spending assessments, and the formulae underlying their calculation, are given in the Welsh revenue support grant distribution report, which was laid before the House of Commons on 20 December 1989.

Margam

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will investigate the level of releases of natural gas to the atmosphere from normal operations at the British Steel plant at Margam.

No. I have no reason to believe that there are any significant releases of natural gas from the works.

Defence

Hong Kong

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if any members of Her Majesty's armed forces stationed in Hong Kong were involved in armed confrontation with Vietnamese emigrants on Lantau Island during the Christmas period.

Her Majesty's armed forces had no involvement in the quelling of the disturbances at Chi Ma Wan camp on 29 December; this was carried out by the Hong Kong correctional services department and police.One RAF helicopter was, however, deployed to evacuate six injured Vietnamese boat people for medical treatment.

Fissile Material

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what studies his Department has conducted concerning arrangements for safeguarding fissile material from nuclear weapons dismantled as part of arms reduction agreements.

Aircraft Collision, Northumberland

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will make a statement on the collision of two RAF fighters in Northumberland on Tuesday 9 January.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) if the two RAF aircraft involved in the mid-air collision over the Hexham constituency on Tuesday 9 January were both engaged on low-flying exercises; and if he will make a statement;(2) if he will make a statement on the mid-air collision between the RAF jets over the Hexham constituency on Tuesday 9 January.

On Tuesday 9 January 1990 an RAF Tornado and an RAF Jaguar aircraft engaged on routine low-flying training missions were involved in a mid-air collision over Northumberland. The Tornado aircraft crashed about five miles east of Hexham and some wreckage fell on the A68 and A69. There were no civilian casualties. The Jaguar remained airborne and was able to land at RAF Leeming. The crew of the Tornado sustained major injuires and are in hospital in Newcastle. The pilot of the Jaguar was uninjured.A board of inquiry has been convened in the normal way and a summary of its findings will be published in due course. It would be inappropriate to speculate about the causes of the accident until the inquiry is complete.

Army Scholarships

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) if he will list the schools in respect of which tuition fees were paid and from whose head teachers endorsements of

Total sum paid in educational allowancesNumbers of individuals in receipt of allowancesAverage allowance paid per child
1987–881988–891987–881988–891987–881988–89
(£ million)(£ million)(£)(£)
Officers67·95565·5247,9517,5995,4315,423
Other ranks38·62641·1966,5596,5334,1444,378
1 This is the average allowance paid per child and is inclusive of grossing-up for income tax.

Agriculture, Fisheries And Food

Salmon

To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food when he now expects to be in a position to publish the departmental report on the effect in the salmon fishery of draft netting at sea; and if he will make a statement.

Work on the review required by section 39 of the Salmon Act 1986 is in progress. My colleagues and I will submit a report to Parliament as soon as possible.

candidature were received and the numbers of (a) boys and (b) girls from each school who have received awards under the Army scholarship scheme for pupils aged 15 and 16 years for the latest year in which information is available;

(2) what has been the total cost in grants and tuition paid in respect of (a) boys and (b) girls receiving both grants and tuition in the latest year for which information is available in respect of the Army scholarship scheme for children aged 15 and 16 years.

The information is not available in the format requested. In financial year 1988–89, a total of £92,000 was spent on the Army scholarship scheme. Each scholar received £750 per academic year at that time. The award was increased to £1,050 with effect from 1 April 1989.There are currently 96 scholars, including nine females.The award of an Army scholarship does not rest on the head teacher's endorsement alone. Applicants are required to meet the necessary academic standards as well as passing a test, a medical examination and an interview.

Educational Allowances

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what is the approxiamte cost of holiday visit passages paid in respect of children of defence service personnel in receipt of educational allowances, for the latest year available.

The information available does not allow the costs of school children's visits to be identified separately from the costs of other types of travel.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what was the total sum paid to (a) officers and (b) other ranks in educational allowances in the years 1987–88 and 1988–89; what were the numbers of individuals receiving allowances in categories (a) and (b) above; and what is the average grossed-up value of an allowance in each category.

Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy

To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will list the institutions where the research work into bovine spongiform encephalopathy as recommended by the Tyrrell report will be carried out.

The MAFF-funded research work into bovine spongiform encephalopathy will be carried out mainly at the MAFF central veterinary laboratory, Weybridge, and at the Institute of Animal Health at the AFRC/MRC neuropathogenesis unit in Edinburgh, although some work may be conducted at other research establishments.

Antibiotic Hormone Drugs

To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will list the antibiotic hormone drugs given a product licence without reference to the veterinary products committee; and if he will make a statement.

The only product of this kind licensed without specific reference to the veterinary products committee is Synulox Lactating Cow intrammary suspension (PL 0030/4000), which contains two antibiotics and a glucocorticoid anti-inflammatory agent. Between 1978 and 1984 the VPC reviewed fully the data relating to all intrammary products then on the market and recommended the renewal of licences for a number of them. When the Ministry's expert assessors examined the product licence application for Synulox in 1986 they considered that it raised no new issues not already addressed by the VPC and a licence was therefore granted.Several members of the VPC subsequently asked for details of the assessment. They accepted officials' conclusions that no new safety or other issue was involved and it was agreed that any future applications for similar products would be referred to the VPC. No further applications have been received.

Social Security

Social Fund

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security if he will publish the social fund allocation for each local office, both in respect of grants and loans, for the year 1990–91.

Individual local office allocations for 1990–91 are now being considered and will be announced in due course.

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security to which offices he is allocating the extra £3 million for the social fund which he announced on 19 December 1989, Official Report, column 174; and, for each office, whether this is for loans or grants.

Mobility Allowance (Deaf-Blind People)

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security by what date he intends to announce eligibility criteria for mobility allowance in the case of people who are deaf-blind.

We intend to bring forward proposed amendments to the relevant regulations as soon as possible.

Mobility Allowance

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security (1) what consultation has been undertaken in drawing up the criteria of deaf-blind people for the purpose of entitlement to mobility allowance;(2) if he will consult the mobility allowance campaign on suitable eligibility criteria for deaf-blind people.

We are aware of the representations that have been made on behalf of deaf-blind people for extending mobility allowance to them.

Single Payments

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security if he will publish (a) the annual amounts paid in single payments in the last year in which these payments were available for each of the area offices in Dundee (b) the budgets for (i) grants and (ii) loans and (c) the actual amounts paid under these headings in the Dundee offices for each year for which figures are available.

Details of single payment expenditure for 1987–88, and annual social fund allocations for loans and grants for 1988–89 and 1989–90, listed by local office, are available in the Library, together with details of the amounts of loans and grants paid since 11 April 1988.

Pensions

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what steps have been taken to ensure that people contracting out by means of personal pension schemes have been advised of the approximate age at which, assuming a rate of return of 0·5 or 2·5 per cent. above the annual increase in earnings, it is likely to be in their interest to return to the state scheme.

It is for an individual wishing to take out a personal pension to seek advice appropriate to his or her needs. In the case of personal pension schemes which are investments as defined in the Financial Services Act, persons regulated by bodies under that Act have a duty to provide best advice on such products. It is for the individual to make arrangements for obtaining any further advice which may be necessary in the light of changing circumstances.

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security whether anyone contracting out by means of a personal pension scheme will be allowed to return to the state scheme at any age.

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security if he will publish in the Official Report, for each uprating from 1973 to 1990, the percentage above inflation by which the basic state pension has, and is to be, uprated.

[holding answer 13 December 1989]: The information requested is set out in the table.

UpratingIncrease of retirement pension above RPI (percentage)
October 19734·9
July 197415·6
April 1975-1·7
November 19753
November 19760
November 19771·4
November 19783·3
November 19792·1
November 19801·2
November 1981-3
November 19824·7
November 19830
November 19840
November 19850
July 19860
April 19870

Uprating

Increase of retirement pension above RPI (percentage)

April 19880
April 19890
April 19900

In November 1983 the method of uprating changed from being partly based on forecasts of future inflation to being based on known movements in the retail prices index.

Employment

Apprentices

To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many young people are currently participating in apprenticeship training.

Comprehensive statistics on all types of apprenticeship are not available and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

Labour Statistics

To ask the Secretary of State for Employment in which 20 parliamentary constituencies the largest percentage fall in unemployment occurred in the last 12 months.

The following information is in the Library. The table shows the 20 parliamentary constituencies which have experienced the largest percentage falls in unemployment over the last 12 months.The figures are not seasonally adjusted.

Percentage change in the number of unemployed over the year to November 1989
Constituency namePer cent.
South West Surrey-27·1
Chesham and Amersham-25·8
East Surrey-25·4
Numbers and percentage of employees in employment' in the fifteen industry classes with the largest numbers of employees in the Doncaster travel to work area
Classes of the Standard Industrial Classification 1980September 1981September 1984September 1987
Number (000s)Per cent.2Number (000s)Per cent2Number (000s)Per cent2
11Coal extraction and manufacture of solid fuels16·818·213·014·87·48·9
22Metal manufacturing3333
24Manufacture of non-metallic mineral products33331·92·2
31Manufacture of metal goods (other)33
32Mechanical engineering5·25·73·64·24·04·8
35/36Manufacture of motor vehicles and other transport equipment3333
41/42Food, drink and tobacco manufacturing industries2·32·5
50Construction3·53·83·03·44·65·6
61Wholesale distribution1·92·12·52·82·12·6
64/65Retail distribution9·09·89·210·58·410·1
66Hotels and catering3·74·02·73·13·84·6
71/72Railways and other inland transport5·05·44·95·53·44·1
81Banking and finance1·61·9
83Business services2·12·5
91Public administration and national defence5·25·63·54·06·27·5
93Education5·05·46·77·77·48·9

Constituency name

Per cent.

Henley-24·1
Wantage-20·6
Surbiton-20·2
Tunbridge Wells-20·1
Wokingham-19·9
Wealden-18·5
Reigate-18·0
North West Surrey-17·9
Guildford-17·6
North West Hampshire-17·4
Wycombe-13·0
Rochford-12·6
Chelmsford-11·6
Southend West-10·9
Basingstoke-8·1
Roxburgh and Berwickshire-5·5
Sutton and Cheam-4·4

Labour Statistics, Cleveland

To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will give the latest figure for people in employment in Cleveland.

The latest available employment estimates for the county are from the September 1987 census of employment. There were then 184,700 employees in employment, excluding self-employed people and members of Her Majesty's forces, in Cleveland.

Labour Statistics, Doncaster

To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what were the largest 15 categories of employment in the Doncaster area (a) to date, (b) five years ago and (c) 10 years ago; how many were employed in each category; and what percentage of the total work force these represent.

Information about employment in local areas is available only for dates when censuses of employment are taken. The table gives the available information for the Doncaster travel-to-work area from censuses of employment taken in September 19811, September 1984, and September 1981 (latest available).

Classes of the Standard Industrial Classification 1980

September 1981

September 1984

September 1987

Number

Per cent.

2

Number

Per cent

2

Number

Per cent

2

(000s)

(000s)

(000s)

95Medical, other health and veterinary services4·65·05·15·86·07·2
96Other services to the general public1·61·82·22·52·22·6
97Recreational services and other cultural services2·12·5

1 Excludes the self-employed and members of Her Majesty's Forces.

2 Percentage of all industries and services total.

3 Indicates in top fifteen but figures cannot be given without disclosing confidential information relating to individual firms.

Key Training

To ask the Secretary of State for Employment pursuant to his answer of 12 December, Official Report, column 589, how many employees of his Department and of what grades it is intended to second to Key Training of 10 Eaton place, Reading, in the fiscal year 1990–91.

There are no plans at present to second any employees of this Department to Key Training in the fiscal year 1990–91.

Earnings

To ask the Secretary of State for Employment (1) if he will estimate the proportion of wages council employees earning below (a) £4·16, (b) £4·32, (c) £3·12 and (d) £2·80 per hour, excluding overtime, shift and PBR premiums;(2) if he will estimate the proportion of wages council employees, broken down by region, earning below

(a) £4·16, (b) £4·32, (c) £3·12 and (d) £2·80 per hour, excluding overtime, shift and PBR premiums;

(3) if he will estimate the proportion of wages council employees, broken down by industry earning below (a) £4·16, (b) £4·32, (c) £3·12 and (d) 2·80 per hour, excluding overtime, shift and PBR premiums;

(4) if he will estimate the proportion of wages council employees, broken down by collective agreement, earning below (a) £4·16, (b) £4·32, (c) £3·12 and (d) £2·80 per hour, excluding overtime, shift and PBR premiums.

No information is readily available for hourly earnings excluding shift and PBR premiums as well as overtime, nor for wages council employees broken down by region or by industry, and could be compiled only at disproportionate cost.

To ask the Secretary of State for Employment (1) if he will publish in the Official Report tables showing the proportion of part-time employees earning less than (a) £4·16, (b) £4·32, (c) £3·12 and (d) £2·80 per hour, excluding overtime, shift and PBR premiums, for each London borough;(2) if he will publish in the

Official Report tables showing the proportion of part-time employees earning less than (a) £4·16, (b) £4·32, (c) £3·12 and (d) £2·80 per hour, excluding overtime, shift and PBR premiums, in Great Britain and in each standard economic region;

(3) if he will publish in the Official Report tables showing the proportion of part-time employees earning less than (a) £4·16, (b) £4·32, (c) £3·12 and (d) £2·80 per hour, excluding overtime, shift and PBR premiums, in Great Britain and in each county.

No information is readily available for all part-time employees regionally, nor for hourly earnings excluding shift and PBR premiums as well as overtime, and could be compiled only at disproportionate cost.

Strikes

To ask the Secretary of State for Employment (1) how many unofficial strikes took place in Great Britain in 1989; and what were the comparable figures for each of the five previous years;(2) what was the total number of days lost through unofficial strikes in Great Britain in 1989; and what were the comparable figures for the five previous years.

Separate statistics on unofficial strikes ceased to be published as a regular series in 1981. However, a limited amount of information from a special exercise was included in the Government's Green Paper "Unofficial Action and the Law", a copy of which is in the House of Commons Library.

Action Credit Scheme

To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many people have taken part in the action credit scheme in each of the three pilot areas; how many ceased claiming income support to start full-time work; how many ceased claiming income support to start part-time work; how many failed to secure employment after the three-month jobsearch period; and whether he has any plans to extend the scheme.

The information requested will not be available until after the end of the action credit scheme pilot, which is due to finish at the end of August 1990.

Scotland

Nhs

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how much of the £220 million additional expenditure earmarked for the National Health Service in Scotland is new cash; how much is from cash improvement schemes; and how much is from income generation.

The figure is £223 million and all of it is new money. I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave her on 11 December 1989, Vol. 163, column 510.

Training And Employment Programmes

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will list the training and employment programmes run by the Department of Employment in Scotland; and if he will indicate which, if any, of these programmes will not be wholly transferred to the new Scottish Enterprise Agency when it is established.

The training and employment programmes run by the Department of Employment in Scotland are set out in the table:

  • Youth Training Scheme
  • Employment Training
  • Community Opportunities
  • Enterprise Allowance Scheme
  • Business Growth Scheme
  • Technical and Vocational Education Initiative
  • Training Access Points
  • Compacts
  • Development of Vocational Qualifications
  • Enterprise in Higher Education
  • Scottish Wider Access Programme
  • Employment Rehabilitation Service
  • Community Industry
  • Restart
  • Job Clubs
  • Job Start
  • Job Share
  • Disablement Advisory Service
  • Disablement Resettlement Service
  • Sheltered Employment
  • Travel to Interview Scheme
The programmes which will not be wholly transferred to Scottish Enterprise are:

  • Technical and Vocational Education Initiative
  • Enterprise in Higher Education
  • Employment Rehabilitation Service
  • Restart
  • Job Clubs
  • Job Start
  • Job Share
  • Disablement Advisory Service
  • Disablement Resettlement Service
  • Sheltered Employment
  • Travel to Interview Scheme

Earnings

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will publish in the Official Report tables showing the proportion of part-time employees earning less than (a) £4·16, (b) £4·32, (c) £3·12 and (d) £2·80 per hour, excluding overtime, shift and PBR premiums, for Scotland and in each regional authority and, if possible, each borough.

No information is readily available for part-time employees regionally, nor for hourly earnings excluding shift and PBR premiums as well as overtime, and could be compiled only at disproportionate cost.

Vocational Courses

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how much has been spent on vocational courses in colleges of further education in Scotland each year for the past 10 years.

Capital Building Programme

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how much of the capital building programme for the Scottish new towns for the next five years comes from (a) private and (b) public revenue.

The Scottish commentary on the Government's expenditure plans for the years 1989–90 to 1991–92 (published in March 1989) indicates at tables 15·5 and 15·6 projected gross capital expenditure on the new town development corporations' housing and other environmental services programmes. Planned expenditure on these programmes for 1990–91 to 1992–93 arising from the recent public expenditure survey will be published shortly in the 1990 Scottish commentary. The Government do not hold projections of private sector capital investment in the new towns. The relative contributions of private and public capital investment in the new towns over the next five years will depend upon decisions made in future public expenditure surveys and the private sector's perception of investment opportunities.

Further Education

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how much was spent by Scottish local authorities on further education provision each year for the past 10 years.

The expenditure by Scottish local authorities on further education provision for each year from 1978–79 to 1987–88 (latest available) is set out in the table.

Financial YearScottish LA Expenditure
£000s
1978–7977,120
1979–8098,961
1980–81125,149
1981–82144,847
1982–83166,964
1983–84183,055
1984–85195,262
1985–86188,102
1986–87193,520
1987–88213,586

Source: Local Financial Returns

Note: Figures cover local authority current expenditure on further education.

New Towns

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what are the capital building programmes for each of the Scottish new towns for the next five years.

The capital programmes for each of the new town development corporations in 1990–91 will be the subject of discussion between my Department and each corporation following the submission of each corporation's annual budget submission later this month. The composition of the corporations' capital programmes and their financing requirements for the following four years will be determined at the same time in subsequent financial years.

Poinding Orders

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what consultations the Lord Advocate has had with sheriff officers and messengers-at-arms as to how they will cope with poinding orders arising out of poll tax debts.

Foreign And Commonwealth Affairs

Immigration

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs when a decision is to be taken by the post in Islamabad on the application of Mr. Basaharat Ali Shakir, who was born on 14 November 1956, Ref. Imm/93660; HO Ref. 5725181, to join his wife in the United Kingdom; when a report from the Home Office concerning this application was received at the post; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Shakir applied for entry clearance at the British High Commission in Islamabad on 18 February 1988. Following an interview on 9 January 1989 the entry clearance officer referred the application to the Home Office on 27 February 1989 for Mr. Shakir's wife to be interviewed.Copies of the immigration service report on the interview with Mrs. Shakir were sent to Islamabad on 14 June and 13 October 1989. I regret that both copies of the report appear to have been lost in transit. The Home Office has now sent a further copy, on receipt of which the entry clearance officer hopes to reach a decision without further delay.

Vietnamese Refugees

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many Vietnamese children classified as having family members in Hong Kong live in separate camps from their relations.

We do not have figures for the number of children who fall into this category. The policy in Hong Kong is to ensure that families are not divided. As soon as any case comes to notice in which children are separated from family members they are wherever possible transferred between camps so that they can be reunited.

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will convene an international conference to seek co-operation in providing third country settlement for those Vietnamese currently in camps in Hong Kong.

An international conference on Indo-China refugees was held in Geneva in June last year. At that conference the international community pledged sufficient places to resettle all Vietnamese refugees in the South-East Asian region, including Hong Kong. It was also agreed that those who were not refugees should return to their country of origin.

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will give the reasons why no legal advice is available to Vietnamese refugees before screening in Hong Kong; and why no representatives from independent bodies are allowed to accompany refugees to the screening interview.

The UNHCR is permitted access to Vietnamese asylum-seekers and may provide legal advice to them both before and after screening. The UNHCR is also permitted to attend any screening interview for monitoring purposes.Under Hong Kong law there is no provision for Government legal aid to be provided for Vietnamese asylum-seekers for screening and review procedures.

Vietnamese Prisoners