To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security how many families have taken up the offer of up to £40 a week in child care costs since October 1994; and what is the average per family and the total cost of the scheme to date. 
At 30 June 1995, 23,000 families had received higher family credit awards as a result of the help with child care charges with an average gain of £14.63 family credit per week. The benefit cost of the provision to that date was £6.6 million. No information is yet available as to families receiving help through housing and council tax benefits.
One in 20 sample of family credit awards made between 1 October 1994 and 30 June 1995. Figures do not include families who had their child care charges allowed but receive no extra benefit because they are already in receipt of their maximum family credit.