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Volume 404: debated on Wednesday 7 May 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what discussions she has had with English Heritage on (a) the arrangements for tendering archaeological work to accompany a major development and (b) the quality and expertise of the teams carrying out such work. [111695]

The Department has not held discussions with English Heritage on arrangements for tendering or the expertise of people and organisations carrying out such work. Planning permission for major development works is granted by the relevant local authority. It is for local authority archaeological officers to approve plans to carry out archaeological work associated with major developments to the appropriate standards, including approval of a specification which would include the competence and experience of those undertaking the work