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House of Lords Hansard
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12 February 2001
Volume 622
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asked the Chairman of Committees:When was the advertisement seeking applications for the post of Black Rod published; in what newspapers; and on how many occasions. [HL606]

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The advertisement was published in The Times on 16 November 2000 and republished in that newspaper free of charge on 23 November and 7 December, and in The Guardian on 18 November.

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asked the Chairman of Committees:What criteria were used in selecting the newspapers in which the Black Rod advertisement was placed; and what was their total certified circulation. [HL607]

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The advertisements were placed in newspapers selected to achieve the maximum circulation among potentially suitable candidates, taking account of the need to ensure value for money. I understand that the Audit Bureau of Circulation (ABC) figure for the average daily circulation in November 2000 of The Times was 712,592 copies and of The Guardian 398,332.

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asked the Chairman of Committees:Who drew up the advertisement for Black Rod and who was consulted in the process; when was the decision taken to advertise and by whom; and when this matter was considered by the House of Lords' Offices Committee. [HL608]

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The advertisement was drawn up by the Establishment Office, after consultation with the Leaders of the main parties in the House and the Convenor of the Cross Benches. The decision to advertise the post of Black Rod was taken by the Finance and Staff Sub-Committee of the Offices Committee on 24 October 2000. The Sub-Committee also decided that the advertisement should be circulated to the Cabinet Secretary, the Head of the Diplomatic Service, the Defence Services Secretary at the Ministry of Defence and the Permanent Secretary to the Home Office, in accordance with previous practice.