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World Squares for All Steering Group

Volume 472: debated on Monday 3 March 2008

To ask the Leader of the House what representations she has received on the work of the World Squares for All Steering Group; what (a) political and (b) official representation the House has on the group; what submissions have been made by the House to the group; and what discussions she has had with other Ministers about the group. (190140)

The World Squares for All Steering Group has been established under the leadership of the Greater London Authority and includes representatives from a range of affected interests. The group aims to redefine the heart of London—specifically Trafalgar square, Parliament square and the Whitehall conservation area. The latest stage of its work is the Parliament square improvement project.

Representation of the House on the group is a matter for the administration of the House under the ultimate authority of the House of Commons Commission.

Parliament is represented on the group by the parliamentary director of estates or a representative, and by the manager of Visitor and Public Information Projects. The House has no political representation on the group. Officials have received briefings from the architects, Hawkins Brown, and from Transport for London, and have consulted the Joint Committee on Security on security aspects of the plans. The Group on Information for the Public has submitted to the Parliament square improvement project a briefing on Parliament's priorities for the redevelopment of the square.

The Administration Committee, chaired by my hon. Friend the Member for Aberdeen, North (Mr. Doran), has heard a presentation from representatives of the Parliament Square Improvement Project, who sought the advice of the Committee on how Members of Parliament could be consulted about the plans. At the Committee's request, the group will shortly write to all Members, before the start of wider public consultation.

The Leader of the House has received no representations and has held no discussions on this issue.