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Departmental Aviation

Volume 479: debated on Monday 1 September 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department on how many occasions she has used the Queen’s Flight in each of the last five years; and how much her Department spent on chartering aircraft in each of the last five years. (219185)

Travel by Ministers makes clear that special flights may be authorised when a scheduled service is not available, or when it is essential to travel by air, but the requirements of official or parliamentary business or security considerations or urgency preclude the journey being made by a scheduled service. In respect of overseas travel by Ministers, since 1999 the Government have published an annual list of all visits overseas undertaken by Cabinet Ministers costing £500 or more during each financial year. The list published in 1999 covers the period 2 May 1997 to 31 March 1999. Where RAF/Private Charter aircraft are used this is shown in the list. The Government have also published on an annual basis the cost of all Ministers’ visits overseas. Copies of the lists are available in the Libraries of the House.

A chartered aircraft was used to travel to Blackpool in 2007. The cost of this was £4,770. The Queen’s Flight has not been used for any other internal flights in the last five years.