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Armed Forces: Housing

Volume 495: debated on Monday 6 July 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the (a) longest and (b) average period of time taken to make repairs to a forces accommodation property after a call-out was in the latest period for which figures are available. (275021)

The requested information is not held centrally and will take a little time to collate and verify. I will write to the hon. Member.

Substantive answer from Kevan Jones to Liam Fox:

In my answer of 13 May 2009 (Official Report, column 763W) I undertook to write to you with details of the longest and average time taken to make repairs to forces accommodation properties.

The maintenance and repair of Service accommodation worldwide is carried out under a number of different arrangements. In the UK, repairs to the majority of Service Family Accommodation (SFA) properties are carried out under the Housing Prime Contract (HPC), in England and Wales, the Regional Prime Contract (RPC) in Scotland and other arrangements in Northern Ireland. The longest and average time to carry out repairs in each period for which figures are available are provided in the following table.

Repairs (in days)

Emergency

Urgent

Routine

England and Wales HPC

April 2008 to March 2009

Longest

18

36

66

Average

0.5

5.2

11.2

Scotland RPC

October 2003 to May 2009

Longest

1

9.1

22.9

Average

0.5

5.2

20.4

Northern Ireland

2004 to May 2009

Longest

14

29

44

Average

0.8

3.9

11

From the way the data is held, it is not possible to identify the specific reasons why the longest repairs took the time they did to complete. In general, repairs can take longer based on a number of factors, including the complexity of the work, whether accommodation is occupied or the availability of parts and materials that are required to finalise repairs. In many cases the fault is temporarily repaired at the first visit, but additional work is required to complete it.

Like for like figures are not available for Single Living Accommodation or overseas SFA.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence when he expects the new armed forces accommodation announced in Budget 2009 to be completed; and if he will make a statement. (283311)

The Budget 2009 announced that £50 million of expenditure is to be brought forward from 2010-11 and 2011-12 to be spent on upgrading, modernising and improving existing service accommodation. This is in addition to expenditure already provisioned for this year.

The advance of expenditure will be used to assist around 19 improvement projects and locations across Great Britain, some already in progress. It is not possible to say when the work will be completed at this stage. This expenditure is part of the £3 billion budget which the Government plan to spend on improving service accommodation over the next 10 years.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will place in the Library a copy of each grading committee report on armed forces accommodation. (283657)

The MOD does not produce a grading committee report on armed forces accommodation. This information is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

However, the Armed Forces Pay Review Board, who determine pay, allowances and accommodation charges, publish an annual report which is routinely placed in the Library of the House.