Written Answers to Questions
Monday 7 January 2008
The information is as follows:
(a) The Scotland Office is included in the environmental management policy and programme for the Ministry of Justice and is implementing the Government's UK sustainable action plan, issued on 5 March 2007. This includes the ongoing changeover from general lighting bulbs to energy saving bulbs wherever possible.
(b) No specific requirements have been set for decorative Christmas lights.
Departmental Minimum Wage
Departmental Ministerial Policy Advisers
The Cabinet Office, on an annual basis, publishes a report to Parliament on the performance of Departments in replying to Members/Peers correspondence. Information relating to 2007 will be published as soon as it has been collated. The report for 2006 was published on 28 March 2007, Official Report, columns 101-04WS. Reports for earlier years are available in the Library of the House.
The funding for the Children’s Plan announced by the Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCFS) in December 2007, formed part of their comprehensive spending review (CSR 2007) settlement. Barnett Consequentials formed part of the settlement for the Welsh Assembly Government.
It is for the Welsh Assembly Government to determine the allocation of the block budget reflecting their priorities and policies.
Departmental Minimum Wage
House of Commons Commission
All buildings on the parliamentary estate are under the control of a Building Management System (BMS), together with heating time scheduling to automatically turn on the heating prior to the time office areas are usually occupied and turn it off when the areas are vacated at the end of the day. The BMS is monitored by the Parliamentary Works Services staff around the clock.
It is not possible to determine how much was spent just on heating on the parliamentary estate in each of the last four years. Most of the buildings are heated by natural gas boilers which are not metered separately; most of the gas meters also record the gas used in hot water generation and in some buildings, kitchens, as well as in heating. The heating costs of a small number of buildings are included in the leasing charges and therefore they are not known.
The amounts spent on gas on the parliamentary estate in each of the last four years are given in the following table:
£ 2003-04 455,554 2004-05 380,627 2005-06 584,069 2006-07 793,760
The increase in gas expenditure in the last two years is mainly due to significant increases in the unit price of gas in those years.
Portcullis House: Fires
(2) what the mean (a) nitrogen dioxide, (b) PM10 and (c) aircraft noise levels were in each London borough in (i) 2000 and (ii) the last year for which figures are available.
The consultation document “Adding Capacity at Heathrow Airport” and supporting technical reports include data and contours for NO2, PM10 and noise in the Heathrow area for 2002 (the base year for comparative purposes) and future airport development scenarios for 2015, 2020 and 2030.
Comprehensive information on air quality for each London borough is available via the London Air Quality Network
and is updated daily.
This was an especially challenging study given that it was not only reviewing attitudes of people to aircraft noise, but additionally was attempting ground breaking work by using specialist techniques to examine what monetary value should be put on such annoyance.
The study took longer to complete than originally envisaged primarily to accommodate additional pilot studies—as recommended by independent experts—designed to reinforce the methodology underpinning the main phase of the social survey.
The results of the study were announced just as soon as the extensive independent peer review process was completed.
The issue of independent monitoring of breaches of aircraft noise limits is a matter for individual airports as part of their day-to-day operational business.
I am aware of a number of cases where airports ensure that there is independent consideration of their noise and track keeping systems either by being certified to the ISO 14001 environmental management standard or having environmental policy and management systems subject to regular independent audit. In their environmental guidance manual for airports the Airport Operators Association acknowledge that the demonstration of a good environmental management system through externally certified management system can enable the airport to secure better relationships with customers, investors and the local community.
In the “Future of Air Transport” White Paper we said that our preference remains that local solutions should be devised for local problems wherever possible, and we expect airport master plans to describe the package of measures that an airport operator intends to apply to deal with local noise problems. We look to individual airport noise and track keeping groups and consultative committees to monitor airport operations such as track-keeping, noise mapping and observance of Continuous Descent Approach (CDA).
Cars: Exhaust Emissions
Information on the number of vehicles meeting the Euro 4 standard is not held centrally.
The number of licensed cars over the last five years in London and South East England with carbon dioxide emissions between 120 and 225 g/km and above 225 g/km were as follows:
London South East England (excluding London) 120-225 g/km Above 225 g/km 120-225 g/km Above 225 g/km 2002 366 733 2003 532 1,095 2004 594 117 1,253 181 2005 749 141 1,556 215 2006 902 161 1,840 244 Notes: 1. CO2 emissions data are unavailable for vehicles registered before 1 March 2001. In addition, CO2 data are also unavailable for a small number of vehicles registered after this date. 2. CO2 emissions data in the above 225 g/km group are not held separately for 2002 and 2003. 3. Data regarding the number of vehicles meeting the Euro 4 standard are not held centrally.
South East England (excluding London)
Above 225 g/km
Above 225 g/km
1. CO2 emissions data are unavailable for vehicles registered before 1 March 2001. In addition, CO2 data are also unavailable for a small number of vehicles registered after this date.
2. CO2 emissions data in the above 225 g/km group are not held separately for 2002 and 2003.
3. Data regarding the number of vehicles meeting the Euro 4 standard are not held centrally.
Cumbrian Coastal Rail Service
The Department for Transport does not hold this information. The Office of Rail Regulation (ORR) does however publish regional passenger flows in the National Rail Trends Yearbook editions, which are available in the House Library or from their website at www.rail-reg.gov.uk
Departmental Conditions of Employment
The current staffing figures for the Department are in the following table.
Level Male Female Total SCS Level 148 49 197 Grades 6/7 905 297 1,202 All other grades 10,180 7,140 17,320 Total 11,233 7,486 18,719
All other grades
The default retirement age in the Department is 65, with an option to retire at 60. Staff may continue working after 65 subject to there being an annual business case to remain in service.
Further analysis of the composition of the Department's workforce is included in the Civil Service statistics collected by ONS from the Annual Civil Service Employment Survey (formerly mandate) and the latest published statistics are for the year to 30 September 2006. These can be found in Table H at:
A further breakdown of the information requested can be provided only at disproportionate cost.
Departmental Illegal Immigrants
The technical development of Galileo is a joint project of the European Commission and the European Space Agency (ESA). Approximately €1.6 billion has been committed to the development phase of the system.
European Finance and Transport Ministers have recently agreed a way forward for the funding of Galileo over the 2007-13 financial perspective. Ministers have acknowledged the Commission’s estimate, based on a public procurement, of €3.4 billion over the period to 2013 for deployment and initial operation of the system, and have agreed that it should represent a ceiling on expenditure within this financial perspective. It is intended that the deployment and initial operation of Galileo will be taken forward as an EU only programme funded through the EC Budget.
The UK’s directly committed costs as an ESA member state for the ESA element of the design and development phase of the programme is €142 million. As EU member states contribute to the EC Budget as a whole rather than to individual spending programmes within it there is no specific UK contribution to the EC Budget funded element of the development and subsequent deployment costs for Galileo.
There has been no political discussion of potential funding commitments for the public sector beyond 2013.
Heathrow Airport: Railways
There is no definition of what constitutes a viable rail alternative to flying. However, according to CAA statistics for 2006 there were 58,915 domestic flights to or from Heathrow carrying just under 6 million passengers. There were 28,550 flights to or from Paris and Brussels, with 2.7 million passengers.
We have supported the provision of bus services in rural areas by means of rural bus subsidy grant (RBSG), a grant paid to local
transport authorities according to numbers living in rural areas. RBSG allocations to Cumbria county council since the grant's introduction in 1998 are shown in the following table.
Allocation 1998-99 957,384 1999-2000 957,384 2000-01 957,384 2001-02 1,222,506 2002-03 1,399,254 2003-04 1,428,712 2004-05 1,471,573 2005-06 1,529,273 2006-07 1,566,783 2007-08 1,604,293 Total 13,094,545
In addition, we have encouraged the development of innovative solutions to meeting rural transport needs by means of Rural Bus Challenge (RBC) competitions held from 1998 to 2003. RBC awards to Cumbria county council are shown in the following table.
Award 1999-2000 722,000 2000-01 800,000 2001-02 542,300 2002-03 805,573 2003-04 482,594 Total 3,352,467
Local authorities also support rural public transport from their own resources, including revenue support grant from central government.
Rail funding is not split on a county by county basis and therefore we cannot provide a specific figure for rail support for Cumbria.
Public Transport: Concessions
Those community transport services operated under section 22 of the Transport Act 1985 which are fully available to the public will be eligible. The inclusion of all community transport services would have to be fully funded and careful consideration would have to be given to the impacts on the sector and rural bus services. The Government have a strong track record in extending concessionary travel. However its current priority is to focus on the successful implementation of the national concession in 2008. Local authorities will retain the flexibility to include community transport in their local schemes to reflect local needs and circumstances.
Refuse Collection Vehicles
Vehicles used in connection with door-to-door household refuse collection and disposal are exempt from the EU drivers' hours and tachograph rules provided they are operated by, or under contract to, a public authority.
In the Department's opinion, such operations would involve the primary collection of waste from household or commercial premises, including the collection of street cleansing waste, where the transport activity remains subsidiary to the collection. The waste collected from commercial premises must be similar to or of the same kind as that collected from households, it must be collected in the same way (i.e. door-to-door), it must not be subject to any special collection regime or special rules, and must be collected using the same vehicles.
Such operations might involve longer aggregate journeys where there are a number of stops, particularly in rural areas, but such journeys should not normally exceed a radius of 50 kilometres from the place where a vehicle is normally based.
The trial layout of lane restrictions at Junction 12 of M25 came into force on 5 March 2007.
The lane restrictions were put in place to improve the flow of traffic from the M25 onto the M3 by re-allocating the available road space more accurately to reflect actual traffic flow. Traffic on the M3 has been restricted to a single lane through this junction to allow two dedicated lanes for traffic joining from the M25.
The trial was initially implemented for a period of four weeks to confirm the effective operation of the layout. As the trial layout has proved to be effective it has been retained.
Throughout the new layout a speed limit of 50 mph has been implemented and managed by Surrey Safety Camera Partnership to act as a safety deterrent while the trial is in place.
An announcement will be made shortly as to whether this scheme is to be made permanent or if lane restrictions are to be removed.
The Department has made no specific estimates of road usage, either private or goods vehicles, on this stretch of road for the forthcoming three years. Forecasts of traffic at a regional level are made using the Department's National Transport Model (NTM) and these are published on the Department's web site:
The latest forecasts for Northwest Region, which were published in October 2007, indicate that traffic growth on rural A roads between the years 2003 to 2010 will be 9 per cent. for cars, 17 per cent. for light goods vehicles and 2 per cent. for heavy goods vehicles.
The number of reported fatal road accidents involving drivers aged under 25 in Copeland in each of the last five years is as follows:
Number of fatal accidents 2002 2 2003 1 2004 2 2005 0 2006 1
Number of fatal accidents
Information on the length of time that drivers involved in personal injury road accidents have held a driving licence is not available.
We funded the £9 million Kerbcraft child pedestrian training research project in 64 English local authorities. The project provided training for five to seven-year-olds in three important road-crossing skills. The project was fully evaluated; we have disseminated interim evaluation results which show that trained children made statistically significant improvements to key behaviours, compared to untrained children. We will disseminate best practice to all local authorities.
Local authority road safety officers (RSOs) have the responsibility of supporting and co-ordinating road safety education, training and publicity; it is for them to consider how best to meet their local needs.
DfT will disseminate good practice in roadside child pedestrian training schemes to local authorities and educators, based on, but not exclusive to, the Kerbcraft child pedestrian training scheme as it was piloted and evaluated in England and Scotland between 2001 and 2007.
To reduce congestion the Department provides direct grant funding to support the use of rail and water freight where appropriate. This year these mode-shift programmes are expected to remove 1.1 million lorry journeys from the roads. The Government also promote efficiency within the road sector through the Freight Best Practice and other programmes.
Roads: Repairs and Maintenance
As part of routine business Ministers will meet a wide range of organisations including Members of Parliament, local authorities and community organisations in relation to road improvement schemes. In addition, during visits to regions, Ministers will also see a number of road schemes that have been completed or which are being promoted by the Highways Agency and local highway authorities.
Ministers have over recent months met a number of community groups, MPs and local councillors to discuss road improvement schemes, across England.
(2) how much was made available to support road improvement schemes in (a) Cumbria and (b) Copeland constituency in each year since 1997.
Since 1997, the Department has contributed funding as set in the following table to the following Highways Agency major road schemes on the trunk road network in Cumbria.
A595 Parton to Lilyhall Improvement Scheme;
A590 High and Low Newton Bypass;
M6 Carlisle to Guardsmill Extension;
A66 Stainburn and Great Clifton Bypass; and
A66 Temple Sowerby Bypass and Improvement to Winderwath.
Cost (£ million) 1997-98 0 1998-99 0 1999-2000 0 2000-01 2.2 2001-02 5.3 2002-03 9.0 2003-04 2.8 2004-05 3.8 2005-06 10.7 2006-07 65.4 2007-08 94.3
Cost (£ million)
Cumbria county council as local highway authority is responsible for local transport in Cumbria including the Copeland constituency. The council is currently promoting the Carlisle Northern Development Route which will be partly funded through the Government’s private finance initiative with a departmental contribution of £142.8 million towards the total cost.
The following table shows the funding through the Local Transport capital settlement that has been allocated to Cumbria county council since 1997. It is for Cumbria to determine how allocations are spent, having regard to its Local Transport Plan.
2000-01 2001-02 2002-03 2003-04 2004-05 2005-06 2006-07 2007-08 Capital Highway Maintenance 5.5 9.2 9.8 11.1 13.0 14.7 15.5 18.8 Integrated Block Allocation 2.3 6.0 7.2 5.8 5.7 5.7 5.3 5.3
Capital Highway Maintenance
Integrated Block Allocation
Prior to 2000-01, the Government funding support for local transport investment by Cumbria county council (including for major schemes and major maintenance) totalled £3.748 million in 1997-98, £2.384 million in 1998-99 and £5.311 million in 1999-2000.
The following table sets out the total reported revenue and capital spend both by Cumbria county council and Copeland district council on road maintenance in each year between 1997-98 and 2006-07.
Cumbria council Area of spend 1997-98 1998-99 1999-2000 2000-01 2001-02 2002-03 2003-04 2004-05 2005-06 2006-07 Total Reported Revenue Spend Cumbria 16.4 16.9 17.6 16.0 16.8 18.1 12.1 15.3 14.6 13.4 Copeland 0.037 0.054 0.032 0.029 0 0 0 0 0 0 Total Reported Capital Spend Cumbria n/a 2.4 5.2 2.3 4.4 11.7 10.3 12.3 15.6 13.5 Copeland n/a 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 n/a = Not available.
Area of spend
Total Reported Revenue Spend
Total Reported Capital Spend
n/a = Not available.
We keep abreast of developments in road safety best practice across the EU (and indeed, the world) on a continual basis, and maintain regular dialogue with our international counterparts. In addition we produce statistics showing how the UK compares with other countries, including other EU member states, as part of the yearly report Road Casualties Great Britain.
The UK is one of the safest countries in the EU in terms of overall casualties. In 2005 there were 5.5 road deaths per hundred thousand population, which is the fourth lowest in the EU; or 4.9 road deaths per billion passenger-kilometres, which is the second lowest in the EU.
Since the then Secretary of State, the right hon. Member for Edinburgh, South-West (Mr. Darling) committed in 2004 to lead a national debate on the practicality of road pricing as a highly-effective response to rising congestion, the Department has spent some £6.5 million on consultancy contracts including professional advice on possible technical designs, system architecture and cost modelling. Another £1.0 million is currently contractually committed through to the end of 2007-08.
Although further consultancy expenditure on road pricing policy is envisaged in 2008-09 and beyond, the amount will depend on our requirements, yet to be determined, and no further expenditure is contractually committed.
South West Trains
24 Class 442 units were taken off lease before the start of the Stagecoach South Western Trains (SSWT) Franchise that commenced in February 2007. The class 442s represented 7 per cent. of the total South West Trains (SWT) fleet under the previous franchise. No Class 442s ran in service under Stagecoach South Western Trains.
45 Class 444 units are on lease to Stagecoach South Western Trains and no class 444s have been cut from mainline express services.
The average speed of traffic on the M25 from Junction 26 to 30 is set out in the following table.
Junctions Peak Average speed (mph) 26-30 Morning 57 Evening 48 30-26 Morning 52 Evening 54
Average speed (mph)
The data are for weekdays only, for the hours of 7:00 to 10:00 (inclusive) and 16:00 to 19:00 (inclusive).
Sustainable Development: Finance
The miles per casualty (moving annual average) in the period prior to the start of Stagecoach South Western Trains 07/11 (January 2007) for the Class 458s was 14,817 with six units in service.
The miles per casualty (moving annual average) in the latest period available 08/04 (June/July 2007) for the Class 458s was 14,613 with 30 units in service.
This demonstrates that the reliability of the units remains steady despite there being more trains diagrams in service and undertaking more mileage.
All contributing nations to the ISAF mission in Afghanistan agree to be bound by the definition of the joint area of operations contained within the operational plan. Consequently the international border between Afghanistan and Pakistan is viewed consistently by all these nations.
There are currently around 42,000 troops in Afghanistan as part of ISAF. British forces deployed in Afghanistan currently number approximately 7,800. We do not comment on the numbers of deployed troops from other nations, which are matters for the countries concerned; however they are listed with periodic updates on the ISAF website at:
Afghanistan: Peacekeeping Operation
I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to him by the then Minister of State for the Armed Forces on 14 May 2007, Official Report, column 515W.
The vast majority of locally engaged civilians are employed as interpreters. However, local nationals are also employed in the following roles:
EFI Shop Assistant
EFI Stock Controller
Labour General Duties
While we require our interpreters to speak Pashto, there is no such requirement on locally engaged civilians in other roles.
[holding answer 15 November 2007]: The MOD operates according to the cross-government ‘Guidance on Contacts with Private Military and Security Companies’, as published by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in February 2007. The MOD currently is reviewing the application of this guidance within Defence. The MOD has not carried out any reviews into the procedures governing to operations of private security companies in Afghanistan. Currently, the MOD does not employ any private security companies in Afghanistan.
UK forces carry out a range of outreach projects around the Kandahar airfield that are designed to improve local infrastructure and public health. These vary in size and scope and include the provision of blankets to villages and escorting medical and dental personnel to local villages. Further activity, such as painting of mosques, installation of water pumps and drainage and irrigation projects are planned up until the end of March 2008.
We constantly assess the threat to our aircraft operating in Afghanistan and utilise tactics, techniques and procedures suitable for the threat. I am withholding further information as its release would, or would be likely to, prejudice the capability, effectiveness or security of our armed forces.
The Vector vehicle has provided a light protected patrol vehicle capability in Afghanistan since April 2007.
Information on the type of helicopters deployed each month prior to January 2006 is not held centrally. I am withholding the number of helicopters deployed as its release would, or would be likely to, prejudice the capability, effectiveness or security of the armed forces. The following table sets out, by month, the helicopter types deployed in-Theatre from January 2006 to December 2007.
Chinook Lynx Apache Sea King January 2006 Yes No No No February 2006 Yes No No No March 2006 Yes No No No April 2006 Yes No No No May 2006 Yes Yes Yes No June 2006 Yes Yes Yes No July 2006 Yes Yes Yes No August 2006 Yes Yes Yes No September 2006 Yes Yes Yes No October 2006 Yes Yes Yes No November 2006 Yes Yes Yes No December 2006 Yes Yes Yes No January 2007 Yes Yes Yes No February 2007 Yes Yes Yes No March 2007 Yes Yes Yes No April 2007 Yes Yes Yes No May 2007 Yes Yes Yes No June 2007 Yes Yes Yes No July 2007 Yes Yes Yes No August 2007 Yes Yes Yes No September 2007 Yes Yes Yes No October 2007 Yes Yes Yes No November 2007 Yes Yes Yes Yes December 2007 Yes Yes Yes Yes
The Ministry of Defence uses both civilian contractors and military personnel during the take-off and landing phase of unmanned aerial vehicles; however, the vast majority of operators are military. Once airborne, all operational mission activity is conducted by military personnel.
The Sea Kings will be operating as a support helicopter able to carry troops and equipment and will be tasked accordingly.
The MOD is already using specialist linguists in support of its operations in Afghanistan and we expect to increase the number deployed over the coming months. In addition to specialist linguists, considerable use is made of local employed civilians in a linguist role.
I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave on 13 December 2007, Official Report, column 777W.
Airborne Manned Surveillance
There have been a significant number of urgent operational requirements relating to surveillance capabilities for manned airborne platforms. Some are in service delivering capability on operations. Others are in progress.
I am withholding further information as its release would, or would be likely to, prejudice the capability, effectiveness or security of our armed forces.
Aircraft Carriers: Finance
There has been no delay to the future aircraft carriers' in-service dates of 2014 and 2016 as announced on 25 July 2007, Official Report, column 865 and no subsequent changes to the out of service dates of the current carriers. These out of service dates have been adjusted as planning assumptions for the introduction of the new aircraft carriers have been developed. There have been no significant extra costs associated with these adjustments.
Aircraft Carriers: Procurement
[holding answer 17 December 2007]: As I announced on 25 July 2007, Official Report, column 865, we have committed to placing an order for two future carriers. Contracts will be placed with the industrial participants in the Aircraft Carrier Alliance delivering the project, when the joint venture between BAE Systems and VT Group has completed the necessary approvals to allow it to receive a contract. This process is nearing completion.
Armed Forces: Deployment
[holding answer 18 December 2007]: The Regular Army reinforcements required by the 2nd Battalion The Yorkshire Regiment to provide the particular skill sets and rank structure required in its role as the Operational Mentoring and Liaison Team came primarily from other units in 52 Infantry Brigade.
Units within the brigade have not deployed on an operational tour at either unit or sub-unit level in the last six months. The trawl process used by the Army prevents individuals from deploying on operations within six months of a previous deployment, unless the individual is a volunteer or there is a pressing operational requirement.
Armed Forces: Finance
The cost of Financial Retention Initiatives (additions to basic pay for groups or trades with particular shortages) and Commitment Bonuses (cash payments at particular times throughout the career progression of personnel to encourage a continuance of service) is shown in the following table.
Financial year £ million 2002-03 44.3 2003-04 63.7 2004-05 73.9 2005-06 58.2 2006-07 74.1
Many disparate activities within the Services could be considered as measures to improve retention, from the improvement of accommodation to the implementation of welfare lines or services. Information about these activities could be provided only at disproportionate cost.
Armed Forces: Health Services
(2) what arrangement his Department has in place for the transfer of the medical care of discharged service men and women to the NHS.
The Ministry of Defence is committed to doing all it reasonably can to ensure successful transition to civilian life. On discharge, all ex-service personnel are provided with a medical summary record, and this can be presented at the GP’s surgery when they register with a civilian doctor. If the doctor has a requirement for the full medical record, we will provide this upon request.
For the vast majority of service personnel these procedures are sufficient to ensure a seamless transition to the NHS. However, for those who are medically discharged with significant ongoing physical or mental health conditions, the care is formally handed over to appropriate medical staff by MOD specialists as the patient is medically discharged.
In the case of physical illness or injury, social work teams at the Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre or the single service welfare organisations ensure this seamless transfer. For those with ongoing mental illness, the specific Defence Medical Services mental health team who have been caring for that individual will begin a liaison with appropriate civilian healthcare providers (e.g. general practitioner civil mental health team) to ensure that transfer of care and patient history takes place. Additionally, we have specific mental health social workers who manage the individual’s wider resettlement issues, liaising with relevant civil agencies such as local housing authorities, financial authorities, service welfare and charitable organisations. These MOD mental health social workers ensure that the individual's transfer into the civilian environment is as smooth as possible.
Since the beginning of 2007, we have also put in place arrangements for the Department’s Veterans Welfare Service to monitor those discharged with a seriously disabling injury; this covers cases of both physical and psychological injury. While this monitoring is primarily focused on welfare matters, the service will also identify sources of medical assistance where appropriate. In cases where there is a mental health issue, this could include if appropriate a NHS/MOD Mental Health Pilot team, the Medical Assessment Programme at St. Thomas’ Hospital London, or the charity Combat Stress.
The information is not held in the format requested.
The Defence Medical Services (DMS) are headed jointly by the Deputy Chief of Defence Staff (Health) (DCDS(H) and the Surgeon General (SG). They oversee the work of three separate organisations:
(a) Defence Medical Services Directorate Headquarters (DMSD HQ);
(b) Defence Medical Education and Training Agency (DMETA);
(c) Defence Dental Services (DDS).
DCDS(H) and SG also produce medical policy for the three single services. However, the Royal Navy (RN), Army and Royal Air Force (RAF) Medical Services are responsible for delivering primary healthcare to their respective service commanders in chief and for providing the requisite medical support on operations.
The overall expenditure for the DCDS(Health) organisation for the financial year 2006-07 was £268 million. The organisational structure of the DMS in its entirety means that comprehensive primary care and operational costs cannot be provided without disproportionate effort as they are disaggregated and embedded in individual military units’ budgets.
Armed Forces: Housing
[holding answer 18 December 2007]: Service Families Accommodation (SFA) and Single Living Accommodation (SLA) is assessed by Grade for Charge, while most SFA is also assessed by Standard for Condition. Grade for Charge takes account of an assessment of the physical condition of the accommodation and other factors such as location and closeness to amenities.
As at 30 June 2007, our worldwide SLA stock of some 165,500 bed spaces was at the following Grade for Charge.
Number Grade 1 38,100 Grade 2 19,000 Grade 3 28,200 Grade 4 80,200
At 1 April 2007, the worldwide SFA stock of some 70,193 properties is at the following Grade for Charge.
Number Grade 1 12,430 Grade 2 26,447 Grade 3 22,209 Grade 4 8,720 Below Grade 4 387
Below Grade 4
Of the 70,193, some 55,548 have also been assessed by Standard for Condition (SfC). These are broken down as follows:
Number SlfC 30,223 S2fC 19,016 S3fC 3,954 S4fC 2,355
All occupied accommodation is considered of a habitable standard. The Department currently expects to publish its response to the Public Accounts Committee report on managing the defence estate in February 2008.
Armed Forces: Influenza
The best method to prevent infection with influenza is by prior immunisation with an appropriate vaccine. The Department of Health (DH) has purchased a quantity of the H5N1 Avian Flu vaccine, which could be offered to key occupational groups when the risk of a pandemic increases as it may give a degree of protection should the pandemic strain be a variant of H5N1. Supplies of this vaccine are being held by the DH on behalf of the MOD and in the event of an outbreak will be deployed by MOD in accordance with DH guidelines.
When an influenza virus is already circulating, therapeutic antiviral agents can help to lessen the severity of illness, reduce deaths and contain spread. The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence recommends that during an influenza pandemic, patients with a flu-like illness should be treated with zanamivir (“Relenza”) or oseltamivir (“Tamiflu”). The DH has arranged for an appropriate stockpile quantity of Tamiflu to be purchased, which is also being held centrally, and includes an allocation for MOD. For armed forces personnel employed at one of MOD’s Permanent Joint Overseas Bases (PJOBs), stockpiles of the Tamiflu antiviral have been pre-positioned within the PJOB logistics chain for rapid deployment if necessary. For those on operational deployment in Iraq, Afghanistan or elsewhere, supplies are held by Permanent Joint Headquarters, and will be deployed to theatre as required.
Supplies of face-masks are already held in-theatre and will be used with other appropriate preventative measures in the event of a pandemic outbreak of influenza.
Armed Forces: Leave
Armed Forces: Legal Opinion
There are no allowances payable to service personnel for the commissioning of legal advice.
Internal legal advice is available to armed forces chiefs from the legal branches of their respective services and from the MOD's Director General Legal Services as appropriate. Any such advice is subject to legal professional privilege.
Armed Forces: Personnel Management
From 1 January 2007 to 30 September 2007, other than a Change of Rank (see serial number 6 in the following table), there were no Joint Personnel Administrative system errors which affected RAF basic pay. During this period 1.83 million payments were made. Details of the Royal Air Force underpayments are given in the following table:
Serial Type of Error Service Number Action taken January 1 Substitution Pay RN and RAF1 620 Error corrected. Supplementary payroll run, payments one day late into bank. Average underpayment value of £150 per person. March 2 Flying Pay for Reserve Band Pilot Officers, Navigators and Observers RN and RAF1 54 Data and records manually correct and payments made. Average underpayment value of £170 per person. June 3 Incorrect Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP) All1 90 Error corrected. SMP now being processed correctly. Individuals underpaid by 4 days salary per month. 4 Reservists' Home to Duty Travel (HDT) allowance All1 10,752 Error corrected. All outstanding payments made in September. Average value distance related, typically £20 to £30 per person. September 5 Non-Commissioned Officer Flying Pay RAF 12 Error corrected. Refunds of Flying Pay paid in October. Underpayment typically 12 per cent. of that month's salary. 6 Change of Rank RAF 666 Records manually corrected. Automated process refined. All records corrected for October's pay run. Underpayment of promotion uplift, typically 5 per cent. of basic pay. 1 The numbers of Royal Air Force personnel affected by these issues could be provided only at disproportionate cost. Service personnel who have been underpaid can request cash advances from their units.
Type of Error
RN and RAF1
Error corrected. Supplementary payroll run, payments one day late into bank. Average underpayment value of £150 per person.
Flying Pay for Reserve Band Pilot Officers, Navigators and Observers
RN and RAF1
Data and records manually correct and payments made. Average underpayment value of £170 per person.
Incorrect Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP)
Error corrected. SMP now being processed correctly. Individuals underpaid by 4 days salary per month.
Reservists' Home to Duty Travel (HDT) allowance
Error corrected. All outstanding payments made in September. Average value distance related, typically £20 to £30 per person.
Non-Commissioned Officer Flying Pay
Error corrected. Refunds of Flying Pay paid in October. Underpayment typically 12 per cent. of that month's salary.
Change of Rank
Records manually corrected. Automated process refined. All records corrected for October's pay run. Underpayment of promotion uplift, typically 5 per cent. of basic pay.
1 The numbers of Royal Air Force personnel affected by these issues could be provided only at disproportionate cost. Service personnel who have been underpaid can request cash advances from their units.
Service personnel who have been underpaid can request cash advances from their units.
Armed Forces: Weapons
The only non-lethal weapons used by our armed forces are the L104 and L67 baton guns. Information on the number of personnel trained in the use of these weapons is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost. Neither of these weapons is permanently held by units; they are issued to meet the requirements of specific theatres of operation.
When these weapons are required, nominated personnel will receive appropriate training in their use prior to deployment. Those personnel trained in handling such weapons, who are required to maintain their proficiency, will need to pass a weapons handling test every six months and take part in an annual weapons assessment shoot as is the case for any weapon.
In addition to baton rounds, these weapons can also be used to fire a CS gas grenade, the L96A1, for law enforcement operations at the discretion of unit commanders in theatre. The necessary instruction is delivered during unit pre-deployment training.
Armoured Fighting Vehicles
We have a number of Supacat-based vehicles, used for specialist roles. The most numerous are the All Terrain Mobility Platform (ATMP), and the Mobility-Weapon Mount Installation Kit (M-WMIK) which will enter service shortly.
The ATMP does not have a specific classification. It was procured as a lightweight load carrying vehicle used by airborne and airmobile units.
The M-WMIK, like all WMIK vehicles, is designed as a carrier for medium support weapons, providing high levels of terrain accessibility, situational awareness and firepower. It complements the use of Protected Patrol Vehicles.
Armoured Fighting Vehicles: Afghanistan
Army’s Total Fleet Requirement 2007
The Nuclear Installations Inspectorate (NII) now requires AWE plc to seek prior authorisation for assembly/disassembly work. Such activities have always been allowed to proceed, with no impact on operations at AWE Burghfield, which remains fully operational and safe.
It is emphasised that, if NII believed a particular operation were unsafe, it would not allow it to take place, and has appropriate regulatory powers at its disposal to cease operations. AWE Burghfield remains operational as the NII is satisfied that all appropriate licence conditions are being met by AWE plc.
Some of the issues identified by AWE plc as a result of its periodic review of safety required the procurement of specialist equipment where the acquisition time was such that the equipment could not be brought into service by the deadline of 27 September. Consequently, the Nuclear Installations Inspectorate (NII) has agreed a new programme of work with AWE plc. It is important to note that NII is satisfied that appropriate progress is being made at AWE Burghfield to address the findings of the periodic review of safety.
The safety case issues in question were identified not by the Nuclear Installations Inspectorate (NII), but by AWE plc in its own periodic review of safety. These were associated primarily with risk assessment techniques and the clarity of audit trails. A revised safety case addressing these issues was adopted in September 2007 and NII is satisfied that appropriate progress is being made at AWE Burghfield to address the findings of the periodic review of safety.
The letter from the Nuclear Installations Inspectorate (NII) was to AWE plc and not MOD. MOD officials work very closely with both the AWE nuclear site licensee, AWE plc, and the external regulator, the NII The latter is satisfied that operations at AWE Burghfield are safe and the Department's internal nuclear safety regulator supports this position. No useful purpose could therefore be served by the intervention of the Secretary of State for Defence in matters which are essentially for AWE plc to address with the NII.
The 23 projects included in each of the functions in the Atomic Weapons Establishment Site Development Context Plan 2005-15 are listed in the following table. Where applicable, the names of projects are indicated where they have been finalised. The function of each project correlates with the headings in the plan. Costs not shown are being withheld as their disclosure would, or would be likely to, prejudice commercial interests. Projected in-service dates are shown in five-year bandings in order to avoid prejudice to national security and/or defence interests.
These facilities are required to support the UK's current warhead in-service. Decisions on whether and how we may need to refurbish or replace this warhead are likely to be necessary in the next Parliament.
Name of project Cost (£m)1 Function Projected in-service period 2007-10 Orion Laser 183 Testing/research IT server buildings (two projects) 30 Computer/communications New office accommodation Phase 1 71 Office and business support accommodation New office accommodation Phase 2 — Office and business support accommodation New office accommodation Phase 3 — Office and business support accommodation Modular accommodation five buildings 25 Office and business support accommodation Car park 0.1 Office and business support Car park — Office and business support Landscaping — Environmental Projected in-service period 2011-15 Small components interim — Manufacturing/production High explosives climatic trials — Manufacturing/production Warhead assembly/disassembly — Manufacturing/production Systems engineering — Manufacturing/production Hydrodynamics — Testing/research High performance computer — Computing/communications High explosives fabrication — Manufacturing/production Chemical processing — Manufacturing/production Landscaping — Environmental Projected in-service period 2016-20 Uranium components — Manufacturing/production High explosives assembly for trials — Testing/research Small components — Testing/research Laboratory — Testing/research 12007-08 prices.
Name of project
Projected in-service period 2007-10
IT server buildings (two projects)
New office accommodation Phase 1
Office and business support accommodation
New office accommodation Phase 2
Office and business support accommodation
New office accommodation Phase 3
Office and business support accommodation
Modular accommodation five buildings
Office and business support accommodation
Office and business support
Office and business support
Projected in-service period 2011-15
Small components interim
High explosives climatic trials
High performance computer
High explosives fabrication
Projected in-service period 2016-20
High explosives assembly for trials
Ballistic Missile Defence
The US administration's request for missile warning data being routed through RAF Menwith Hill for use in the US missile defense system was received in a classified letter dated 29 June 2007. It is not the practice of the Government to make public the details of correspondence with foreign governments as this would, or would be likely to, prejudice international relations.
It is not the practice of the Government to make public the details of classified correspondence with foreign governments as this would, or would be likely to, prejudice international relations.
Defence Analytical Services Agency: Forecasts
(2) if he will place in the Library copies of each annual review of the Defence Analytical Service Agency’s ‘what if’ fuel price forecast model issued since 2001-02.
Defence Analytical Services Agency: Publications
The external statistical publications produced by the Defence Analytical Services Agency are available on the DASA website at:
Information in some instances goes back as far as 2001 or 2000. UK Defence Statistics, the annual statistical compendium of the Ministry of Defence is available on the website back to 1997.
Prior to the establishment of the website, the following titles were published in printed form:
TSP01 - Strength, Intake and Outflow of UK Regular Forces (Monthly)
TSP02 - UK Armed Forces Full Time Strengths and Requirements (Quarterly)
TSP03 - UK Armed Forces Trained Strengths and Requirements (Monthly)
TSP04 - Quarterly Press Release
TSP05 - Trained Outflow to Civil Life (Quarterly)
TSP06 - Global Location of UK Regular Forces1 (Quarterly)
TSP07 - Reserve Forces (Annual)
TSP08 - Age Distribution (Annual)
TSP09 - Rank Structure of UK Regular Forces (Quarterly)
TSP10 - UK Regular Forces Stationed Location (Quarterly)
TSP11 - Marital Status by Paid Rank (Annual)
TSP13 - UK Regular Forces servicemen age on entry2 (Annual)
TSP15 - UK Service Personnel on loan to other countries2 (Quarterly)
TSP16 - UK Regular Forces disciplinary convictions2 (Annual)
TSP19 - Intake to and Outflow from UK Regular Forces (Annual)
TSP20 - Male Regular Forces outflow by rank2 (Annual)
TSP22 - UK Regular Forces comparative statistics2 (Annual)
TSP24 - Strength of uniformed medical staff2 (Annual)
CPS01 - Civilian Personnel Statistics (Quarterly)
CPS02 - Regional analysis of resignations for admin and science group staff1 (Quarterly)
1 TSP06 was merged into TSP10 from January 2007.
2 Publication discontinued.
Defence Analytical Services Agency: Standards
Defence Equipment and Support Organisation: Private Sector
Defence Equipment and Support: Cost Effectiveness
(2) in what ways the Defence Suppliers Service encourages competition in the supply chain to ensure better value for money.
The Department seeks effective competition at the prime and sub-contract level, using the Defence Contracts Bulletin and, where appropriate, the Official Journal of the European Union to publicise future requirements including competitive sub-contract opportunities.
The Ministry of Defence is currently reviewing its policy in relation to supply networks. One of the aims of the policy is to address the issue of competition and value for money in the supply chain.
Defence Equipment: Procurement
Expenditure up to 31 March 2007 for the Type 45 Destroyer and the Astute submarine programmes was reported on 30 November 2007 in the National Audit Office's Major Projects Report 2007 and is reproduced in the following table:
Programme £ million Type 45 3,477 Astute 2,539
Expenditure up to 31 March 2007 for the Military Afloat Reach and Sustainability (MARS) and CVF programmes is shown in the following table:
Programme £ million MARS 10.5 CVF 374.9
Detailed spending plans are kept under review.
Defence Estates: Charities
(2) what arrangements are made for public liability insurance for events organised by charitable organisations held on his Department’s property;
(3) if he will make it his policy not to charge charitable organisations for events held on departmental property;
(4) whether his Department charges charitable organisations for events held on departmental property; and if he will make a statement.
Under Government Finance Accounting Regulations (Managing Public Money), there are no special arrangements for the treatment of charities, whether service or other. The fact that a charity is to be the main beneficiary of a good or service is not in itself sufficient justification to introduce a special charging regime or to set charges aside. There is the opportunity for abatement of full costs and this decision is on a case-by-case basis taking account of any special circumstances that may apply.
All privately-run events on departmental property, whether charitable or other are required to be covered by public liability insurance. This requirement is passed on to the organiser who is responsible for ensuring that appropriate cover is in place. Where commercial insurance is either not available or only at disproportionate cost, then organisers are charged under a Departmental Insurance Scheme.
Defence Manufacturers Association
The MOD Statement of Civilian and Service Personnel Policy Annex: Gifts, Rewards and Hospitality issued by the People, Pay and Pensions Agency, provides Departmental guidance to all MOD Civilian staff and Service personnel on the rules governing the way in which individuals should react to offers of gifts, hospitality or other considerations from private companies and defence contractors that have a contractual relationship with the MOD. This will include the Defence Manufacturers Association and associated member companies.
Defence Equipment and Support (D E and S) have issued additional separate guidelines to all D E and S officials on attendance at external events and conferences.
Defence Suppliers Service
(2) whether urgent operational requirements are paid for from the Treasury Reserve;
(3) pursuant to his statement of 12 November 2007 that the defence budget will receive an additional £200 million in 2010-11, Official Report, column 500, what the revised (a) near cash resource departmental expenditure limit (DEL), (b) non-cash resource DEL and (c) capital DEL is.
The first £100 million of the additional £200 million in the defence budget for 2010-11 was included in the MOD’s capital departmental expenditure limits (DEL) announced in the comprehensive spending review. HM Treasury has agreed that a further £100 million will be added to the defence budget in 2010-11, which will bring the capital DEL funding to £8,971 million in 2010-11. There will be no change to the near cash or the non-cash resource DEL.
Defence Ministers have frequent discussions with colleagues from HM Treasury on a range of issues.
Urgent operational requirements are, and will continue to be, paid up front in full from the Treasury Reserve. We have agreed a new overall funding arrangement with HM Treasury for the funding of UORs for the comprehensive spending review period as I set out in my statement to the House on 12 November 2007, Official Report, column 500. This arrangement is designed to be cost neutral to defence.
[holding answer 17 December 2007]: The long-term aim of the MOD is to implement a single information infrastructure across Defence; the Defence Information Infrastructure Future (DII(F)). The Defence Information Infrastructure Convergence (DII(C)) project was implemented at specific sites to bridge the gap between ageing legacy systems in MOD, which were going out of service, and DII(F) being available.
DII(F) is being rolled out now to become the primary information infrastructure across the MOD and is replacing many ageing legacy systems and DII(C) as planned. DII(F) will provide common core infrastructure services which meet the security, technical and interoperability demands of the MOD jointly across the business and battle space and will provide access to the applications required to support and enable the delivery of MOD’s outputs.
[holding answer 17 December 2007]: Defence Information Infrastructure Convergence (DII(C)) was a precursor infrastructure to Defence Information Infrastructure Future (DII(F)) and was only implemented for a subset of the eventual DII(F) user community. DII(C) was implemented at specific sites to bridge the gap between the ageing legacy systems in MOD going out of service and DII(F) being available. DII(C) will eventually be subsumed by DII(F).
No specific guidance is issued to MOD officials regarding the meeting of lobbyists employed by defence contractors. However, all MOD Crown servants (including members of the armed forces) are expected to conduct themselves at meetings with representatives of defence contractors in accordance with MOD policy on the acceptance of gifts, rewards and hospitality and the civil service code.
When there is an enduring requirement for Urgent Operational Requirement (UOR) equipment, it is brought into the core defence programme. This is usually at the end of the operation. Continuing operations in Iraq and Afghanistan mean that we have not yet brought a significant number of UORs into core.
UORs brought into core have only been recorded centrally by MOD since 2005. Principal UORs taken into core since 2005 include enhanced armour and environment modifications for Challenger II; AS90 environmental enhancement to operate in extreme hot, dry conditions; tactical Global Positioning Systems; Helmet Mounted Night Vision Systems; and additional weapons stocks.
We have not yet taken decisions on UORs to be brought into our core programme in the current financial year as the planning round has not yet concluded.
The total defence equipment and support (DE&S) expenditure on capital spares additions in each of the last four financial years (to the nearest £ million) is provided in the following table. Individual capital account codes did not exist within the Department’s financial systems prior to Financial Year 2003-04. Previous information for Financial Year 2002-03 could be provided only at disproportionate cost.
£ million 2003-04 581 2004-05 439 2005-06 385 2006-07 409
The breakdown by Front Line Command for Financial Years 2005-06 and 2006-07 is given in the following table. Information broken down for Financial Years 2003-04 and 2004-05 (to the required accuracy) could be provided only at disproportionate cost.
Service 2005-06 2006-07 Army 82 109 Royal Navy 45 55 Royal Air Force 248 228 Joint service/others 10 17 Total 385 409
Royal Air Force
It should be noted that these figures do not include any expenditure for non-balance sheet low value spare parts for equipment.
In response to business need, the Department assesses any potential supplier's eligibility against a number of standard objective criteria including capability, quality, financial and legal status, organisation, and supply chain management. The potential supplier is also assessed against project-specific criteria pertinent to the particular requirement.
The Ministry of Defence keeps its estate, including that in Northern Ireland, under constant review to meet present and planned future requirements. Land and property that is no longer required is disposed of as quickly as possible.
It is the Department’s normal policy to dispose of such surplus assets at market value in accordance with the guidance set out in “Managing Public Money”.
Sites are disposed of by means of a competitive process in order to ensure best value for defence. Therefore, it would not be appropriate to release expected receipts as it might impact on future negotiations with potential purchasers.
A list of all sites currently in disposal is available in the Library of the House.
The gifting of land and facilities over £100,000 (£250,000 since 1 April 2005) requires the approval of HM Treasury and Parliament. Details of gifts below that level are not held centrally. Since 1997 the following value of gifts of land and facilities, in support of local community initiatives, have been reported in the departmental accounts following approval by Parliament:
£ million Northern Ireland 2002-03 6.4 2003-04 13.0 South East 2005-06 0.35
The MOD does not loan facilities for local community initiatives except in so far as these constitute welfare facilities for the armed forces. Any land and facilities that are surplus to defence requirements are disposed of in accordance with “Managing Public Money” issued by HM Treasury.
This Department does not keep a separate record of the value raised from the sale of land and buildings in each region of the UK and such a breakdown could be provided only at disproportionate cost. However, the total accrued disposal receipts for each year since 1998-99 (the earliest year available) were as follows:
Financial year £ million 1998-99 59 1999-2000 301 2000-01 225 2001-02 185 2002-03 279 2003-04 207 2004-05 212 2005-06 258 2006-07 394
These figures are taken from the Defence Estates annual reports and accounts, copies of which are available in the Library of the House.
The Ministry of Defence (MOD) is required to obtain market value when disposing of surplus assets. In Northern Ireland all surplus MOD assets are advised to the Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister (OFM/DFM) at the earliest opportunity. OFM/DFM circulates details to Northern Ireland Government Departments.
We have also committed to adhere to the “clearing house” process used by Northern Ireland Government Departments under which details of surplus MOD assets are circulated to Northern Ireland Government Departments and agencies. This process is managed by the Central Advisory Unit (CAU) of Land and Property Services. Northern Ireland Government Departments and agencies may register interest through the CAU who notifies MOD accordingly.
The Ministry of Defence is required to obtain market value when disposing of surplus assets, and follows procedures laid down in “Managing Public Money’ and particular processes applicable to Northern Ireland. The Department works closely with the Northern Ireland Office when disposing of surplus assets to allow other Northern Ireland Government Departments and agencies to express an interest. We also work closely with the local authorities and other key stakeholders when considering its disposal strategy and the most appropriate alternative use, taking into account the requirements of the local community. This will often include an assessment of development and regeneration opportunities through the preparation of a planning brief or outline planning application which can be taken forward by prospective purchasers.
Departmental Carbon Emissions
(2) how many air miles were travelled by (a) the Secretary of State and (b) other Ministers in his Department on short haul flights over the last 12 months; and what estimate he has made of the total amount of carbon dioxide emissions produced as a result of these flights.
Since 1999 the Government have published a list of all overseas travel by Cabinet Ministers costing over £500. Information for the last financial year was published on 25 July 2007. Details for the current financial year will be published as soon as possible after the end of the financial year. From next year, the list will include details of overseas visits undertaken by all Ministers. All ministerial travel is undertaken in accordance with the Ministerial Code.
All central Government ministerial and official air travel has been offset from 1 April 2006. Departmental aviation emissions are calculated on an annual basis and subsequently offset through payments to a central fund. The fund purchases certified emissions reductions credits from energy efficiency and renewable energy projects with sustainable development benefits, located in developing countries.
In addition, offsetting the flights of Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Department for International Development, and the Prime Minister has been backdated to 1 April 2005.
A list of Government Carbon Offsetting Fund members, their emission figures and what activities they have offset through the fund is available online at: