To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many excellence in cities projects in England (a) opened, (b) closed and (c) were operating in each year since 1997, broken down by local education authority. 
[holding answer 28 April 2003]: The EiC programme was launched in 1999—there were no programmes running in either 1997 or 1998. No EiC partnership has closed.The programme was introduced in three phases.Phase 1 began in September 1999 with 25 LEAs. These were Knowsley, Liverpool, Manchester, Salford, Bradford, Leeds, Rotherham, Sheffield, Birmingham, Camden, Corp of London, Greenwich, Hackney, Hammersmith and Fulham, Haringey, Islington, Kensington and Chelsea, Lambeth, Lewisham, Newham, Southwark, Tower Hamlets, Waltham Forest, Wandsworth, Westminster.Phase 2 in September 2000 extended the programme to 23 additional authorities: Halton, Rochdale, Sefton, St. Helens, Wirral, Gateshead, Hartlepool, Middlesbrough, Newcastle upon Tyne, North Tyneside, Redcar and Cleveland, South Tyneside, Stockton-on-Tees, Sunderland, Kingston upon Hull, Solihull, Stoke-on-Trent, Leicester, Nottingham, Barking and Dagenham, Brent, Ealing, BristolPhase 3 in September 2001 again extended the programme to include 10 additional authorities: Blackburn with Darwen, Blackpool, Oldham, Barnsley, Doncaster, Sandwell, Wolverhampton, Luton, Enfield, Hounslow.September 2001 also saw the inclusion of Excellence Clusters in the programme to tackle smaller pockets of deprivation. Further Clusters have since been established in the following authorities:
Lancashire(2), Tameside, Cumbria, Kirklees(2), Walsall, Coventry, Croydon, Portsmouth, Kent,
Thurrock, Barnet, Durham, Cheshire, Derby, Buckinghamshire, Hillingdon, Lancashire, Milton Keynes, Norwich, Peterborough, Stockport, Wigan. In addition Preston Education Action Zone transformed to a cluster.
From September further clusters will be created in the following authorities: Kent(3), Lincolnshire(3), Northamptonshire, Essex, Derbyshire, Havering, Bexley, Swindon and North Lincolnshire. The current Phase 2 Solihull Partnership will convert to a cluster.
Five Education Action Zones will transform into clusters:
Croydon (New Addington), Grimsby, Herefordshire, Trafford and Weston.
In January a further six Zones will transform into clusters:
East Basildon, East Brighton, Halifax, Plymouth, Thetford and Wigan.
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what funding has been provided to each Excellence in Cities project in each year since 1997, broken down by local education authority. 
[holding answer 28 April 2003]: The main Excellence in Cities programme now covers 58 local education authority areas. Smaller pockets of deprivation are covered by Excellence Clusters in 37 authorities.The tables which have been placed in the Library show the funding allocated to LEAs since the programme began in 1999 for:
EiC phase 1, 2 and 3 partnerships, and
LEAs with an Excellence Cluster.