To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many officials within his Department are engaged in examining the Crossrail proposals; when he will announce the Government's preferred option for Crossrail line 1; and if he will make a statement on the Crossrail project. 
Currently, around half a dozen Departmental officials are substantially engaged on Crossrail-related work, among other duties, involving a range of other officials within the Department as necessary. As regards an announcement on Crossrail, I refer the hon. Member to the answer given by the Secretary of State for Transport to the hon. Members for Kingston and Surbiton (Mr. Davey), and for Ilford South (Mike Gapes), on 13 May 2003, Official Report, column 149.