Helen Goodman Portrait

Helen Goodman

Labour - Former Member for Bishop Auckland

Shadow Minister (Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs)
6th Jul 2017 - 6th Nov 2019
Ecclesiastical Committee (Joint Committee)
31st Oct 2017 - 6th Nov 2019
Procedure Committee
11th Sep 2017 - 6th Nov 2019
Procedure Committee
1st Feb 2016 - 3rd May 2017
Ecclesiastical Committee (Joint Committee)
28th Oct 2015 - 3rd May 2017
Treasury Committee
8th Jul 2015 - 3rd May 2017
Shadow Minister (Work and Pensions)
3rd Dec 2014 - 18th Sep 2015
Ecclesiastical Committee (Joint Committee)
26th Oct 2010 - 30th Mar 2015
Shadow Minister (Culture, Media and Sport)
7th Oct 2011 - 3rd Dec 2014
Procedure Committee
1st Mar 2011 - 27th Jan 2014
Shadow Minister (Justice)
8th Oct 2010 - 7th Oct 2011
Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
12th May 2010 - 8th Oct 2010
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
9th Jun 2009 - 6th May 2010
Assistant Whip (HM Treasury)
5th Oct 2008 - 9th Jun 2009
Deputy Leader of the House of Commons
2nd Jul 2007 - 5th Oct 2008
Draft Climate Change Bill (Joint Committee)
18th Mar 2007 - 3rd Aug 2007
Public Accounts Committee
12th Jul 2005 - 4th Jun 2007


Division Voting information

Helen Goodman has voted in 2498 divisions, and 25 times against the majority of their Party.

25 Jun 2018 - National Policy Statement: Airports - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 94 Labour No votes vs 119 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 415 Noes - 119
31 Jan 2018 - Restoration and Renewal (Report of the Joint Committee) - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 11 Labour No votes vs 158 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 236 Noes - 220
31 Jan 2018 - Restoration and Renewal (Report of the Joint Committee) - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 10 Labour No votes vs 155 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 234 Noes - 185
8 Feb 2017 - Comprehensive Economic Trade Agreement (CETA) between the EU and Canada - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 68 Labour No votes vs 85 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 409 Noes - 126
18 Jul 2016 - UK's Nuclear Deterrent - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 48 Labour No votes vs 140 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 472 Noes - 117
11 Sep 2015 - Assisted Dying (No. 2) Bill - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 73 Labour Aye votes vs 91 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 118 Noes - 330
17 Oct 2012 - Oral Health Services - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 3 Labour Aye votes vs 203 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 301 Noes - 211
17 Oct 2012 - Oral Health Services - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 7 Labour No votes vs 199 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 479 Noes - 33
11 Jul 2012 - Sittings of the House - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 69 Labour Aye votes vs 138 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 241 Noes - 256
11 Jul 2012 - Sittings of the House - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 66 Labour No votes vs 139 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 267 Noes - 233
11 Jul 2012 - Sittings of the House - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 51 Labour No votes vs 141 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 280 Noes - 184
13 Oct 2011 - Procedure Committee Reports - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 15 Labour Aye votes vs 56 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 63 Noes - 206
15 Jun 2010 - Backbench Business Committee - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted No - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 29 Labour No votes vs 83 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 100 Noes - 331
15 Jun 2010 - Backbench Business Committee - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 53 Labour Aye votes vs 57 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 171 Noes - 263
4 Mar 2010 - Chair (Terminology) - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 24 Labour No votes vs 119 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 279 Noes - 31
3 Jul 2008 - Members’ Expenses - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 50 Labour No votes vs 144 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 172 Noes - 144
19 May 2008 - Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill [Lords] - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 23 Labour Aye votes vs 233 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 149 Noes - 318
19 May 2008 - Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill [Lords] - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 51 Labour Aye votes vs 225 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 163 Noes - 342
19 May 2008 - Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill [Lords] - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 51 Labour Aye votes vs 216 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 200 Noes - 293
7 Mar 2007 - House of Lords Reform - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 126 Labour Aye votes vs 184 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 155 Noes - 418
7 Mar 2007 - House of Lords Reform - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 132 Labour Aye votes vs 177 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 178 Noes - 392
7 Mar 2007 - House of Lords Reform - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 156 Labour Aye votes vs 157 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 305 Noes - 267
7 Mar 2007 - House of Lords Reform - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 96 Labour No votes vs 207 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 337 Noes - 224
1 Nov 2006 - Legislative Process - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 42 Labour Aye votes vs 218 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 122 Noes - 354
17 Oct 2006 - Gambling Act 2005 (Amendment) - View Vote Context
Helen Goodman voted No - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 46 Labour No votes vs 49 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 55 Noes - 240
View All Helen Goodman Division Votes

All Debates

Speeches made during Parliamentary debates are recorded in Hansard. For ease of browsing we have grouped debates into individual, departmental and legislative categories.

Sparring Partners
Alan Duncan (Conservative)
(82 debate interactions)
John Bercow (Speaker)
(74 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
HM Treasury
(462 debate contributions)
Department for Work and Pensions
(152 debate contributions)
Cabinet Office
(119 debate contributions)
Leader of the House
(115 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
View all Helen Goodman's debates

Latest EDMs signed by Helen Goodman

15th October 2019
Helen Goodman signed this EDM on Thursday 24th October 2019

Prison officer pension age

Tabled by: Grahame Morris (Labour - Easington)
That this House recognises the dangerous working conditions in the Prison Service; expresses concern at the increasing number of violent assaults on prison staff; believes that prison officers approaching the age of 70 should not be expected to deal with violent and dangerous criminals aged in their twenties, thirties and …
75 signatures
(Most recent: 5 Nov 2019)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 37
Scottish National Party: 20
Democratic Unionist Party: 8
Independent: 5
Conservative: 2
Plaid Cymru: 2
Liberal Democrat: 1
23rd April 2019
Helen Goodman signed this EDM on Thursday 3rd October 2019

PROVIDING FINANCIAL RESTITUTION TO 1950s WOMEN

Tabled by: Anna McMorrin (Labour - Cardiff North)
That this House welcomes the positive interventions from many hon. Members from across the House on behalf of women born in the 1950s who have lost their pensions; welcomes the equalisation of retirement ages between women and men; recalls that women born in the 1950s were subject to discriminatory employment …
225 signatures
(Most recent: 8 Oct 2019)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 133
Scottish National Party: 24
Conservative: 24
Liberal Democrat: 15
Independent: 10
Democratic Unionist Party: 10
Non-affiliated: 4
Plaid Cymru: 3
The Independent Group for Change: 2
Green Party: 1
Crossbench: 1
View All Helen Goodman's signed Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Helen Goodman, and are more likely to reflect personal policy preferences.

MPs who are act as Ministers or Shadow Ministers are generally restricted from performing Commons initiatives other than Urgent Questions.


1 Urgent Question tabled by Helen Goodman

Monday 11th July 2016

Helen Goodman has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

1 Bill introduced by Helen Goodman


The Bill failed to complete its passage through Parliament before the end of the session. This means the Bill will make no further progress. A Bill to make provision for the regulation of fees charged by management companies to freeholders of residential properties; to make provision for self-management of shared facilities by such freeholders; to require management companies to ensure shared facilities are of an adequate standard; and for connected purposes.


Last Event - 1st Reading: House Of Commons
Wednesday 14th November 2018
(Read Debate)

Helen Goodman has not co-sponsored any Bills in the current parliamentary sitting


905 Written Questions

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department
29 Other Department Questions
10th Jul 2018
To ask the Prime Minister, when she plans to publish the declaration of interest of the new Attorney General.

On appointment to each new office, Ministers provide a list of all relevant interests to their Permanent Secretary, which are considered by the Cabinet Office, and the Prime Minister’s Independent Adviser on Ministers’ Interests. The next list of Ministers' relevant interests will be published in due course.

23rd Nov 2017
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what the criteria for application for the £3.8 million for local and community projects within the centenary fund are and how people can apply for that funding.

This week, the Chancellor announced that £1.2 million of the centenary fund will go directly to seven Centenary Cities and towns in England with a strong suffrage history, to strengthen the reach and legacy of the celebrations to inspire a new generation with this story.

A further £1.5 million will be available to organisations and communities through a grants scheme. We have appointed a grant administrator to oversee the application and award process, and I will write to all Members with details of the scheme including application criteria shortly.

We are developing an exciting national programme to celebrate and remember the suffrage movement, which also includes funding the statue of Millicent Fawcett in Parliament Square, and a suite of education programmes.

14th Dec 2016
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, with reference to the oral contribution by the Chancellor of the Exchequer to the Treasury Committee on 12 December 2016, in response to Q311, who in the Government Equalities Office is responsible for assessing whether grant applications for Horizon 2020 funding are (a) value for money and (b) in line with Government objectives.

I refer the Hon. Member to the answer given by the Chief Secretary to the Treasury.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
21st Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, whether the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport has received a reply to his letter of 4 April 2016 to the European Commission Vice President for the Digital Single Market on online platforms.

A reply to our letter was not expected. Instead the letter on online platforms was designed to influence the Commission’s thinking ahead of the release of the package before the summer. Ministerial colleagues have engaged closely with EU Commissioners as well as a number of Member States about online platforms policy and will continue to do so.

7th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what licences were granted for exports to Israel of (a) military use and (b) dual use equipment in 2015.

Information on military and dual use export licences (including Iicences for Israel) is published as Official Statistics in the quarterly and annual reports on Strategic Export Controls. These reports contain detailed information on export licences issued, refused or revoked, by destination, including the overall value, type (e.g. Military, Other) and a summary of the items covered by these licences.

Data for the period 1 January to 30 September 2015 is available to view at GOV.UK. Information covering the period 1 October to 31 December 2015 will be published on 19 April 2016.

22nd Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, what meetings (a) she and (b) Ministers of her Department have had with (i) arms manufacturers, (ii) tobacco manufacturers and (iii) representatives of the Israeli embassy since the period covered in the Cabinet Office's most recent ministerial gifts, hospitality, travel and meetings data release.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to her by my rt. hon. Friend the Minister for the Cabinet Office and Paymaster General on 26th February 2016 to Question 27634:

http://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/written-questions-answers-statements/written-question/Commons/2016-02-22/27634/.

22nd Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what meetings (a) he and (b) Ministers of his Department have had with (i) arms manufacturers, (ii) tobacco manufacturers and (iii) representatives of the Israeli embassy since the period covered in the Cabinet Office's most recent ministerial gifts, hospitality, travel and meetings data release.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given on 26 February 2016 by my right hon. Friend the Minister for the Cabinet Office to Question 27634.

4th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what steps the Government has taken to follow up the recommendations in the Kay Review of UK equity markets and long-term decision making, published in July 2012.

The Department published a detailed progress report on the implementation of the Kay Review in October 2014.


The Government’s Productivity Plan, “Fixing the Foundations”, published in July 2015, emphasised the central importance of encouraging long-term business investment as part of an ambitious vision to boost productivity in the UK economy. In particular, the Plan welcomed an initiative by several of the largest institutional investors to develop an Action Plan to support and challenge companies to invest for long-term productivity and growth. The Government is engaging with the Investment Association as it takes forward this work, and is also considering what further steps may be appropriate to encourage a culture of long-term investment on the part of UK companies and their shareholders.

4th Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what proportion of investments made through the British Business Bank has been made in the North East.

As at 30 June, the North East accounts for 5% of the finance facilitated by the British Business Bank. Given that the North East accounts for 3% of the small business population this means that the region enjoys more than its pro rata share of Business Bank investment.


I am pleased that since 2010, there are 11,800 new businesses in the North East. The historic Tees Valley devolution deal, worth £450million, and the North East Combined Authority deal, worth £900million, recently signed by the Chancellor will help drive locally led economic growth and a thriving business environment.

4th Sep 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what investments have been made through the Green Investment Bank in each region and constituent part of the UK.

Details of all investments made by the Green Investment Bank are available on its website.

4th Sep 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what proportion of investments made through the British Business Bank to date have been made in each region and nation of the UK.

The British Business Bank manages the Government’s business finance programmes (loans and equity investments) for smaller businesses within a single commercially-minded institution. It is not a bank in a conventional sense: it does not invest directly in businesses; instead, it provides funds and guarantees to private sector partners, allowing them to finance smaller businesses. The table below outlines the breakdown of finance facilitated by region and nation.

British Business Bank (BBB) Finance Facilitated by Region/Nation[1]

Region

Finance facilitated by BBB schemes (excluding Start Up Loans Co) as at 30 June 2015 (in £m)

Finance facilitated by Start Up Loans programme as at 30 June 2015 (in £m)

UK private sector businesses by region by %[2]

East Midlands

241.8

8.6

6%

East of England

193.6

9.6

10%

London

1689.9

46.7

18%

North East

269.8

7.3

3%

North West

557.7

21

10%

South East

978.9

14.4

16%

South West

271.2

12.5

10%

West Midlands

413.4

13

8%

Yorkshire & Humber

499.6

12.7

7%

Scotland

250.7

5.7

6%

Wales

95.2

6.3

4%

Northern Ireland

21

1.8

2%

Unspecified

41.3

0.6

0%

Total

5523.9

160.2

100%


[1] Start-up Loans data is presented separately due to differences in reporting methodologies. British Business Bank data is stock of finance facilitated and Start Up Loans data is cumulative all-time total drawn lending

[2] Proportions for all UK Private sector businesses from the 2014 BIS Business Population estimates

5th Feb 2015
To ask the hon. Member for South West Devon, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, what steps are being taken to ensure that people who omitted their National Insurance numbers from their electoral registration are made aware of the need to provide that information.

Individuals applying to register to vote must provide their National Insurance number (NINO) or a reason why they are unable to supply it.

This requirement is clear on both the online and paper application forms, and an online application cannot be submitted without either the NINO or a reason why they can’t supply it. If a paper application is submitted without this information, the Electoral Registration Officer (ERO) will contact the applicant to make them aware of the need to provide it. If a person has a NINO but does not know where to find it, the ERO will provide advice on how to locate it.

Where a NINO has not been provided and a reason for this has been given, the ERO may use local data sources, such as council tax or housing benefit, to verify the identity of the applicant. If the applicant is not verified through local data sources, the ERO will contact the applicant explaining that they will need to provide documentary evidence, such as a passport or the photo card part of a current driving licence, to verify their identity.

23rd Jan 2015
To ask the Deputy Prime Minister, how many people have been informed that their application for inclusion on the voting register was not valid because their national insurance number was not provided since the introduction of individual electoral registration.

Failure to provide a National Insurance number does not result in an application being declared invalid.

Electoral Registration Officers have alternative methods of verifying an application including requesting documentary evidence of identity if personal identifiers, such as the National Insurance number or date of birth, are absent.

23rd Jan 2015
To ask the hon. Member for South West Devon, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, what advice is offered to people on how to find their national insurance number or to be provided with one when they apply to vote.

An individual’s National Insurance number can be located on official paperwork, such as their National Insurance card, payslips, or letters from the Department of Work and Pensions or HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC).

It can also be found via the HMRC enquiry service, which is available online, over the telephone and via post in both English and Welsh.

Information on where to locate your National Insurance number is available on-screen during the relevant points of the online voter registration process.

This advice, along with more detailed information, is available on the Electoral Commission’s website, as part of the resources aimed at local authorities, for Electoral Registration Officers (EROs) to use in response to public queries.

11th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, how many staff are employed in his Department's headquarter buildings.

As of 30 November 2014 there were 1,441 civil servants working the Department of Energy & Climate Change headquarter buildings in London. There were also 102 civil servants working in its Aberdeen building.

11th Dec 2014
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, how many staff are employed in the Government Equalities Office headquarter buildings.

On the 15th December the total number of Government Equalities Office staff employed was 52. All these were employed in the department's headquarters.

11th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, how many staff are employed in his Department's headquarter buildings.

As at 30 November 2014, 3100 staff were employed in the core-Department’s buildings throughout the UK. Of these 2555 were core-BIS staff and 545 were UKTI staff.

8th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, how many desks are in his Department's main building; how many such desks are (a) owned and (b) leased by his Department; and what the cost is per desk of leasing.

The main building for the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) is 1 Victoria Street, London. This is a building which the Department leases and as such leases the workstations within together with partner organisations. BIS Core occupy a total of 2,601 workstations within this building at a cost of £6067.89 per FTE.

Any space within the building is sub-let via a Memorandum of Terms of Occupation agreement and is charged per square metre, not per workstation.

8th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, how many desks are in his Department's main building; how many such desks are (a) owned and (b) leased by his Department; and what the cost is per desk of leasing.

The Department’s main building at 3 Whitehall Place / 55 Whitehall has a total of 1206 desks. All of these desks are owned by the Department and none are leased.

28th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what arms the UK has sold to the government of Bahrain since 2010; what licence conditions were imposed on exporters; and what due diligence was undertaken to ensure those weapons would not be used on Bahraini citizens.

We do not hold data on actual arms sales, only on export licences that have been granted, which are available at: https://www.exportcontroldb.gov.uk/sdb/fox/sdb/SDBHOME.

All export licence applications are rigorously assessed on a case-by-case basis against the Consolidated EU and National Arms Export Licensing Criteria, taking into account all prevailing circumstances at the time of application.

Foreign Office posts overseas have a standing requirement to keep an eye on developments in human rights in their respective countries and to report back if there are any concerns that might affect licensing policy.

10th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what proportion of the Community Learning Fund supports digital inclusion projects or projects that equip learners with digital skills.

The national Community Learning (CL) objectives focus strongly on tackling disadvantage, including digital exclusion. Data for 2012/13 show that 9.4 per cent of all CL enrolments were in ICT subjects, with 97,310 learners participating.

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) separately funds the Tinder Foundation to deliver a wide range of digital inclusion projects. Many BIS-funded learning providers - mainly Local Authority adult education services - work closely with the Tinder Foundation and UK online centres on a range of digital inclusion projects.

In addition BIS has run a series of basic digital skills training programmes with Tinder in recent years. These have helped 1.25m people gain the skills they need to become confident and safe internet users.

10th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, how the Community Learning Fund is distributed; and what projects that Fund currently supports.

BIS contributes £210m pa to support community learning (CL) via the Community Learning budget, which is managed by the Skills Funding Agency. Funding is allocated via a grant arrangement with 315 learning providers, including Local Authority adult education services, Further Education colleges, and voluntary sector organisations. Many learning providers work with local sub-contractors.

The CL budget helps to support an on-going adult education offer in every area, rather than short term projects. Community Learning courses:

· meet a variety of learning needs, from personal development to pre-employment skills, health and wellbeing, parenting skills, crafts and languages

· are free - or nearly free - for people who are disadvantaged, with more affluent learners paying according to their means

· use flexible teaching and learning approaches and take place in accessible local venues in order to engage a wide range of people, including those who are very disadvantaged

· have varied outcomes, including improved confidence, better mental/physical health, confident parenting and progression to formal training and/or employment.

4th Sep 2014
To ask the right hon. Member for Banbury, representing the Church Commissioners, whether the Church Commissioners have set criteria excluding some bidders from the purchase of its land currently for sale near Bishop Auckland.

The Church Commissioners are operating an open and transparent marketing and bidding process for the property for sale near Bishop Auckland.

The Church Commissioners’ bidding process leaves no room for undue influence by any interested party. The Church Commissioners have not set criteria that would exclude any party from submitting offers, and all offers will be considered without prejudice or preference.

As a registered charity the Church Commissioners are under a legal duty to demonstrate that they have maximised the proceeds of sale of their assets to fund the wider mission and ministry of the Church of England, particularly in areas of need.

4th Sep 2014
To ask the right hon. Member for Banbury, representing the Church Commissioners, for what reasons land owned by the Church near Bishop Auckland is for sale.

The Church Commissioners own areas of land across England, including four rural estates in the North East. As with other land and property owners, we review these holdings from time to time, based on a variety of commercial and other factors. Following a review, the Commissioners took the decision to offer a number of farms in the Bishop Auckland area on the open market. They continue to own other land and estates in County Durham.

4th Sep 2014
To ask the right hon. Member for Banbury, representing the Church Commissioners, for what reasons the land for sale at Binchester has been divided into two lots.

The estate is being offered as a whole or in 10 separate lots. Lot 5 is a working farm and part of the farm includes largely unexcavated parts of the Binchester Roman Fort. The excavated part of the Fort, and the other unexcavated area, form part of Lot 6. The lotting takes account of a number of factors including practical boundaries and issues on the ground. For instance, if all of the unexcavated areas had been included in Lot 6, Binchester Hall Farmhouse and yard would be severed from the rest of the farm holding.

4th Sep 2014
To ask the right hon. Member for Banbury, representing the Church Commissioners, what steps are being taken to ensure continued public access to Binchester Roman Fort.

The Binchester Roman Fort is a scheduled ancient monument. It is a criminal offence to disturb a scheduled ancient monument by carrying out works without Scheduled Monument Consent, or causing reckless or deliberate damage to the monument. To offer best protection, public access to the excavated parts of the Fort is managed and controlled in accordance with a Deed of Guardianship with Durham County Council. This means that, as Guardians, Durham County Council must allow access to the site, but are able to do so in such a way as protects and preserves the site for the future. The property will be sold subject to this Deed of Guardianship.

5th Jun 2014
To ask the Ministers for Women and Equalities, pursuant to the Government Equalities Office press release of 13 May 2014 entitled £1 million to help women start or grow their own business, whether that sum will be drawn from the budget of the Super Connected Cities programme.

The £1 million Woman and Broadband Challenge Fund is additional to the Super Connected Cities programme. It will support local activity to help women take advantage of the Government's investment in superfast broadband to set-up or grow their business. The 40 broadband projects in England already delivering the Superfast Broadband Programme are invited to submit bids to the Fund.

To ask the Prime Minister, if he will publish any correspondence he had with Baroness Neville-Jones on her appointment and resignation as a Minister.

I speak to Ministers and discuss the Government’s priorities on appointment. Copies of the exchange of letters between Baroness Neville-Jones and me on her resignation from Government are available on the gov.uk website.

11th Dec 2014
To ask the Attorney General, how many staff are employed in the Law Officers' Departments headquarter buildings.

The table below shows the recorded number of staff employed in the Law Officers' Departments’ who work in the main headquarters buildings:

Department

Building

Staff Headcount (1)

Attorney General’s Office

20 Victoria Street, London

37

Treasury Solicitor’s Department

One Kemble Street, London

872

HM Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate

One Kemble Street, London

23

Serious Fraud Office

2-4 Cockspur Street, London

350

Crown Prosecution Service (2)

Rose Court, 2 Southwark Bridge, London

945

(1) The data provided only covers permanent staff and those employed on fixed term contracts.

(2) The CPS also has two additional regional headquarters buildings in Wakefield and York.

Robert Buckland
Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice
8th Dec 2014
To ask the Attorney General, how many desks are in the Law Officers' Departments' main building; how many such desks are (a) owned and (b) leased by the Law Officers' Departments; and what the cost is per desk of leasing.

The AGO has 57 desks used by AGO staff in its main building in 20 Victoria Street, London. All of these desks are owned by the AGO.

The main building of the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) is Rose Court in London. In that building there are 936 desks. All of these are owned by the CPS.

The Serious Fraud office are based exclusively in 2-4 Cockspur Street, London. They own 491 desks outright and none are leased.

The Treasury Solicitor’s Department (TSol) main building is located at One Kemble Street in London; HMCPSI is a sub-lessee of this accommodation. There are 938 desks within the building:

TSol owns all of the desks and TSol staff use 856 of these. A total of 82 desks are leased. HMCPSI use 28 desks and a further 54 desks are used by London Continental Railways (LCR), another sub lessee of this accommodation.

The cost to HMCPSI per desk is £3105.61 and to LCR is £2840.74.

Robert Buckland
Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice
8th Sep 2014
To ask the Attorney General, how many prosecutions of offences under the Indecent Displays (Control) Act 1981 there have been in each year between 2009-10 and 2013-14.

The records held by the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) indicate the number of offences charged, in which a prosecution was commenced at a magistrates’ court, rather than the identifying the number of people prosecuted.

During each of the last five years the number of offences charged by way of the Indecent Displays (Control) Act 1981 is as follows:

2009-2010

2010-2011

2011-2012

2012-2013

2013-2014

Indecent Displays (Control) Act

1981 {1(1) and 4}: Make / cause /

permit display of indecent matter

0

7

0

1

4

Data Source: CPS Case Management Information System

There is no indication of the number of individual defendants prosecuted for these offences or the final outcome of the prosecution proceeding or if the charged offence was the substantive charge at the time of finalisation. It is often the case that an individual defendant is charged with more than one offence.

Robert Buckland
Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice
8th Sep 2014
To ask the Attorney General, when the Crown Prosection Service last (a) issued and (b) reviewed guidelines for prosecutions under the Indecent Displays (Control) Act 1981; and whether a further review of those guidelines is planned.

The CPS issued legal guidelines in relation to Obscene Publications in June 2001. The legal guidance was last reviewed in July 2011 and, at that time, guidance was added for the offence under section 1 of the Indecent Displays (Control) Act 1981. There is currently no intention to further review those guidelines.

Robert Buckland
Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice
29th Aug 2014
To ask the Attorney General, if he will seek a review of the Crown Prosecution Service's decision not to prosecute the Metropolitan Police officers accused of starting sexual relationships with environmental activists.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) will review any cases referred to it by the police in accordance with the two stage test that is set out in the Code for Crown Prosecutors. Where there is sufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of conviction and it is in the public interest, such cases will be prosecuted.

The CPS has been working with officers conducting the Operation Herne investigation into the conduct of a number of officers.

On 21 August 2014 the Crown Prosecution Service issued a statement containing the reasons it gave for not prosecuting officers considered under Operation Aubusson, a subset of Operation Herne which is available at:

http://www.cps.gov.uk/news/latest_news/charging_decision_concerning_mps_special_demonstration_squad/

Since that date one person has requested that the case be re-reviewed under the Victims’ Right to Review scheme and that process is under way.

Robert Buckland
Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice
To ask the Attorney General, pursuant to the Answer of 29 April 2014, Official Report, column 540W, on pornography: internet, how many prosecutions there have been under section 2 of the Obscene Publications Act 1959 since 2005 in which a person has been charged in connection with the distribution of R18 equivalent material on a website which allowed under-18s to see such material.

The records held by the Crown Prosecution Service do not specify the type of material which is the subject of a charge under Section 2 of the Obscene Publications Act 1959 (publishing or having an obscene article for gain). To obtain details of individual cases would require a manual review, which could only be undertaken at disproportionate cost.

To ask the Attorney General, how many prosecutions have taken place under the Obscene Publications Act 1959 for the offence of providing unrestricted access to hardcore pornography online, as set out in the 2005 Crown Prosecution Service guidelines, disaggregated by year.

The records held by the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS)indicate the number of offences charged, in which a prosecution commenced at magistrates' courts under Section 2 of the Obscene Publications Act 1959 (publishing or having an obscene article for publication for gain), rather than identifying the number of people prosecuted.

Section 2 of the Obscene Publications Act 1959 creates the offence of publishing or having an obscene article for publication for gain.

The table below shows, in each of the last 8 years, for which figures are available, the number of offences, charged by way of Section 2 of the OPA 1959, and which reached a first hearing at magistrates' courts, in England and Wales.

Financial Year

Obscene Publications Act 1959 { 2 }

2005-2006

111

2006-2007

105

2007-2008

111

2008-2009

152

2009-2010

82

2010-2011

71

2011-2012

76

2012-2013

34

Data Source: CPS Case Management Information System

4th Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if he will review the merits of the Government's assistance for fracking in China.

All of the support we provide through our Prosperity Fund is already very carefully considered, including to the energy sector in China. The overall purpose of the Fund is to promote inclusive growth whilst contributing to the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The Fund’s climate change and energy programmes all support the SDGs, including SDG 7 (affordable, reliable, sustainable modern energy) and SDG 13 (climate action). Sharing UK expertise, including on environmental regulation will help ensure that China’s planned development of its unconventional gas resources is done to high standards, and is managed as part of a transition to a low carbon energy system. This will reduce emissions, as well as support economic development and poverty reduction.

12th Mar 2019
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, if the Joint Funds Unit will (a) conduct and (b) publish regular reviews of Conflict, Security and Stability Fund programmes for which information is not publicly available.

All programmes are subject to Annual Reviews, which assess a number of technical and programme management standards including financial and risk management, value for money, conflict and gender sensitivity, as well as contextual factors such as changes to the political environment.

The JFU is working hard to increase transparency and there is a presumption to publish. We have now published two Annual Reports, 76 programme summaries for 2018/19 (in addition to the 62 programme summaries published for 2017/18) and 42 Annual Review summaries for 2016/17. We are due to publish 64 Annual Review summaries for 2017/18 reviews, shortly.

Due to the highly sensitive nature of some of the CSSF’s work, it is not possible to publish details of all programmes. The two key reasons why it may not be possible to make programme documentation public are to protect national security and to protect the safety and security of beneficiaries, partners and partner Governments.

8th Mar 2019
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what plans he has for publication of Conflict, Security and Stability Fund programme summaries up to the end of July 2019.

The CSSF has published programme summaries for financial years 2017/18 and 2018/19 on gov.uk .

In November 2018, 76 CSSF programme summaries for 2018/19 programmes were published and a further seven programme summaries are due to be published shortly.

The CSSF continues to work towards greater transparency and the programme summaries for 2019/20 will be published later this year.

4th Feb 2019
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will publish the amount of funding over £50,000 allocated to country programmes under the Conflict, Stability and Security Fund in 2018-19.

The Cabinet Office is responsible for both the Conflict Stability and Security Fund (CSSF) and Prosperity Fund overall.

CSSF and Prosperity Fund ODA programme spend is also detailed on Devtracker and year end ODA spend is detailed by project level via the Statistics on International Development, which is published annually in November for the previous year.

The Prosperity Fund Annual Report provides details of the total spend by programme for the previous financial year. The Annual Report for 2018/19 will be published later this year. Information on Prosperity Fund ODA eligible programme spend is published regularly on gov.uk https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/official-development-assistance-oda-fco-prosperity-fund-spend

The CSSF has published programme summaries, which outline the programme’s funding allocation (split by Official Development Assistance (ODA)/non-ODA), objectives and project level activities for 2018/19 - https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/conflict-stability-and-security-fund-programme-summaries#programme-summaries-2018-to-2019

The CSSF Annual Report provides details of the CSSF’s total spend and breaks down by region and thematic area. The Annual Report for 2018/19 will be published later this year.

1st Feb 2019
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will publish the (a) amount of money contributed and (b) recipients of each of his Department's contributions in excess of £10,000 to (a) peacekeeping, (b) peacebuilding, (c) crisis management and (d) associated strengthening of international and regional systems through the Conflict, Stability and Security Fund in 2018-19.

The Cabinet Office is responsible for both the Conflict Stability and Security Fund (CSSF) and Prosperity Fund overall.

CSSF and Prosperity Fund ODA programme spend is also detailed on Devtracker and year end ODA spend is detailed by project level via the Statistics on International Development, which is published annually in November for the previous year.

The Prosperity Fund Annual Report provides details of the total spend by programme for the previous financial year. The Annual Report for 2018/19 will be published later this year. Information on Prosperity Fund ODA eligible programme spend is published regularly on gov.uk https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/official-development-assistance-oda-fco-prosperity-fund-spend

The CSSF has published programme summaries, which outline the programme’s funding allocation (split by Official Development Assistance (ODA)/non-ODA), objectives and project level activities for 2018/19 - https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/conflict-stability-and-security-fund-programme-summaries#programme-summaries-2018-to-2019

The CSSF Annual Report provides details of the CSSF’s total spend and breaks down by region and thematic area. The Annual Report for 2018/19 will be published later this year.

1st Feb 2019
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will publish the (a) amount of money paid and (b) the recipients of that funding in cases where £10,000 or more has been paid from the Prosperity fund in 2018-19.

The Cabinet Office is responsible for both the Conflict Stability and Security Fund (CSSF) and Prosperity Fund overall.

CSSF and Prosperity Fund ODA programme spend is also detailed on Devtracker and year end ODA spend is detailed by project level via the Statistics on International Development, which is published annually in November for the previous year.

The Prosperity Fund Annual Report provides details of the total spend by programme for the previous financial year. The Annual Report for 2018/19 will be published later this year. Information on Prosperity Fund ODA eligible programme spend is published regularly on gov.uk https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/official-development-assistance-oda-fco-prosperity-fund-spend

The CSSF has published programme summaries, which outline the programme’s funding allocation (split by Official Development Assistance (ODA)/non-ODA), objectives and project level activities for 2018/19 - https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/conflict-stability-and-security-fund-programme-summaries#programme-summaries-2018-to-2019

The CSSF Annual Report provides details of the CSSF’s total spend and breaks down by region and thematic area. The Annual Report for 2018/19 will be published later this year.

20th Dec 2018
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, whether the accounting officer for his Department has sought a written ministerial direction for expenditure on contingency planning for the UK leaving the EU without a deal.

The Cabinet Office Accounting Officer has not sought a Ministerial Direction for expenditure on contingency planning for the UK leaving the EU without a deal.

12th Dec 2018
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what human rights risk assessments have been undertaken for each Conflict, Stability and Security Fund programme in 2018-19.

The Conflict, Stability and Security Fund takes its responsibility to manage human rights risk very seriously and has robust processes in place to do so. All projects must comply with the UK’s domestic and international human rights obligations. Measures to mitigate risks are embedded in the way our programme teams work. Teams are required to identify a range of risks, including human rights, ahead of starting a programme and must continue to monitor those, and any emerging risks, throughout implementation.

In addition as part of an additional risk management process all security and justice programmes must have an Overseas Security and Justice Assessment (OSJA) which has been approved at the appropriate level, if necessary by Ministers. The CSSF confirms OSJAs are in place for all security and justice programmes as part of the annual review process. The CSSF does not hold a central record of all OSJAs.

25th Jan 2018
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will (a) commission an investigation into how a lunch engagement with the Foreign Secretary came to be auctioned at the Presidents Club dinner of 18 January 2018 and (b) the findings of that investigation.

The Foreign Secretary had not agreed to support this event and knew nothing of his inclusion in the auction. The offer was not authorised and will not take place.

Chloe Smith
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
7th Dec 2017
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, when he plans to appoint an anti-corruption champion.

The government announced yesterday that John Penrose MP will be the Prime Minister's new Anti-Corruption Champion.

12th Jan 2017
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many civil servants are also employed directly by Ministers and paid (a) by the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority and (b) any other body.

Information about any civil servant's outside employment is not held centrally and could only be obtained at disproportionate cost.

10th Jan 2017
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many current civil servants, excluding special advisers, were formerly employed by (a) the Conservative Research Department, (b) Conservative Central Office, (c) Members of Parliament using Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority-provided funds and (d) Members of Parliament using private funds.

The Cabinet Office does not hold this information centrally. The Cabinet Office complies with the Civil Service Recruitment Principles and the Civil Service Management Code with regard to recruitment practice and the rules around political activities for civil servants.

11th Jul 2016
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what estimate the Government has made of the legal costs it will incur in connection with the legal case brought by Mishcon de Reya in respect of Article 50 of the Treaty of European Union.

The government does not comment on ongoing litigation.

11th Jul 2016
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what the Government's legal costs have been to date in connection with the legal case brought by Mishcon de Reya in respect of Article 50 of the Treaty of European Union.

The government does not comment on ongoing litigation.

22nd Feb 2016
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what meetings (a) he and (b) Ministers of his Department have had with (i) arms manufacturers, (ii) tobacco manufacturers and (iii) representatives of the Israeli embassy since the period covered in his Department's most recent ministerial gifts, hospitality, travel and meetings data release.

Departments publish details of Ministers meetings' with external organisations routinely on www.Gov.uk.

Details of meetings held during the period October – December 2015 will be published in due course.

27th Feb 2015
Pay
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many people earned an amount (a) in each bracket of £1,000 between £42,000 and £55,000 and (b) in each bracket of £10,000 over £55,000 in the last year for which figures are available.

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

11th Dec 2014
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many staff are employed in his Department's headquarter buildings.

As part of the Transparency Agenda, all Government Departments, their agencies and public bodies now publish monthly statistics on their workforce. For the Cabinet Office, this is published on the Cabinet Office website at https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/payroll-costs-and-non-consolidated-pay-data and on data.gov.uk at http://data.gov.uk/dataset/workforce-management-information-cabinet-office .

Information about the Cabinet Office workforce is also published in the Cabinet Office Annual Report and Accounts which are available at https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/cabinet-office-annual-reports-and-accounts

8th Dec 2014
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many desks are in his Department's main building; how many such desks are (a) owned and (b) leased by his Department; and what the cost is per desk of leasing.

70 Whitehall is undergoing refurbishment under a programme initiated by the previous Government. No desks are leased.

4th Nov 2014
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what representations he has received about the appointment of John Manzoni as Chief Executive of the Civil Service.

John Manzoni declared his interests to Cabinet Office officials. It was agreed he could retain his non-executive directorship of SABMiller, which he is doing in his own time on an unpaid basis and which comes to an end in Summer 2015.

As chief Executive of the Civil Service, John Manzoni has no involvement in any aspect of alcohol policy and there is therefore no conflict of interest.

We have received a number of representations welcoming this appointment.

4th Nov 2014
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment he has made of the potential for conflict of interest between John Manzoni's non-executive directorship of SAB Miller and his post as Chief Executive of the Civil Service.

John Manzoni declared his interests to Cabinet Office officials. It was agreed he could retain his non-executive directorship of SABMiller, which he is doing in his own time on an unpaid basis and which comes to an end in Summer 2015.

As chief Executive of the Civil Service, John Manzoni has no involvement in any aspect of alcohol policy and there is therefore no conflict of interest.

We have received a number of representations welcoming this appointment.

5th Jun 2014
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, with reference to the Answer of 23 January 2014, Official Report, column 316W, on museums and galleries, what the financial contribution required from each institution in the museums and galleries sector is from the transfer in employers' contributions following the Cabinet Office review of the Civil Service Pension Scheme.

Such details would be finalised before any potential transfer of liabilities.

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will place in the Library all correspondence between his Department and other departments on the matter of union subscription check off.

In line with the practice of successive administrations, details of internal discussions and correspondence are not usually disclosed.

2nd Sep 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how he plans to use the Northern Powerhouse to increase productivity in County Durham.

In his Manchester Speech of 27 July, the Prime Minister made clear this Government’s commitment to the Northern Powerhouse as part of its ambitions to level-up the country, unlocking untapped productivity and economic potential in all places, including County Durham.

This commitment builds on a track record of investment in economic growth in the North East. Of the £3.4 billion Government has invested in Growth Deals across the Northern Powerhouse, the North East Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) has received £379.6m across the three rounds of the Local Growth Fund. This investment in innovation, business support, skills, economic assets and infrastructure and transport and connectivity, will help people gain access to new jobs and opportunities and provide businesses with the environment needed to grow and become more productive. In County Durham, £17m of Local Growth Funding has been invested at the National Formulation Centre and National Photonics Centre. These leading innovation centres will boost productivity but also provide facilities and expertise to help companies of all sizes develop new technologies and turn them into commercially viable products that will grow the local economy.

The Northern Powerhouse’s emphasis on transport connectivity as a driver of productivity will also be of direct benefit to Durham, for example the £780 million upgrade to the East Coast Mainline.

Local economies are a crucial part of this: Bishop Auckland is also one of 50 places across the Country that has progressed to the second phase of the £675 million Future High Streets Fund, which will help local leaders to reinvent their town centres. Those successful towns will now receive up to £150,000 of new funding to work up detailed project proposals, based on their initial plans.

Nadhim Zahawi
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
2nd Sep 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent discussions he has had with the National Association of Local Councils on the delivery of the Northern Powerhouse.

The Minister for the Northern Powerhouse and his officials engage with local councils through a range of different organisations and forums, including Local Enterprise Partnerships and Transport for the North, where local councils are represented at board level.

Nadhim Zahawi
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
2nd Sep 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what meetings her Department has had with Durham County Council to discuss preparations for the UK leaving the EU without a withdrawal agreement.

BEIS Ministers and officials have been engaging throughout the country with businesses of all sizes and their representatives, trade associations and local enterprise partnerships, including through regular meetings. We communicate regularly with intermediaries to ensure businesses obtain information quickly and efficiently. We will continue to engage across the business population to ensure their priorities are reflected and that businesses have the latest information on how to prepare themselves for Brexit, including through a targeted series of roadshows and events.

The Government also has a business readiness website designed to keep businesses and consumers informed about what no deal might mean for them, with information on a range of measures that may need to be taken in order to prepare. These notices are being regularly updated with the latest information, for example BEIS have published 18 sector specific guides with the top three to six priorities per sector on GOV.UK. These guides can be easily accessed through an interactive business search tool https://www.gov.uk/get-ready-brexit-check

Nadhim Zahawi
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
19th Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will bring forward legislative proposals to ban the practice of employers requiring waiting staff to pay for clients' unpaid bills.

The 1996 Employment Rights Act already defines the limited circumstances in which it is allowable for deductions to be made from pay to cover cash shortages.

The Government is committed to ensuring fair remuneration for lower-paid workers across the economy. In April 2019, the National Living Wage rate was increased to £8.21 per hour, a rise of 4.9 percent. It is estimated that 230,000 workers in the hospitality sector benefitted directly from this increase.

In order to further support fairness for workers in the hospitality sector, through the Good Work Plan, the Government will shortly bring forward legislation to ensure that all tips left to workers will go to them in full. New rules will benefit over a million workers, many of whom are in low-paid jobs.

17th Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what the Government's policy is on an application from Aquind to join the list of projects of common interest for an interconnector project.

The Aquind interconnector project was included on the third EU list of projects of common interest, published in November 2017, and the Government supported the application of the project at that time. Selection of the fourth PCI list is ongoing, and the Government is currently considering its position on all candidate projects, including the Aquind interconnector.

5th Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department is taking to reform the mineworkers’ pension scheme in line with the 1993 actuarial review.

There are no current plans to review the existing arrangements, agreed between the Government and the Trustees in 1994, on the basis of the 1993 review. The scheme has been working well for all parties. The Government is considering proposals from the Trustees for changes including greater protection of bonuses that have already accrued.

Andrew Stephenson
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
7th Jan 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking with his international counterparts to monitor implementation of the (a) Capacity Building for International Negotiations Programme in the Pacific Region and (b) Pacific Regional Nationally Determined Contributions Hub.

Monitoring of the Capacity Building for International Negotiations programme will begin on completion of the delivery contract, which is currently being finalised following procurement. As with all BEIS International Climate Finance funding, the programme will be monitored and reported upon in line with cross government good practice, including the publication of annual reviews of progress on implementation, financial reporting and value for money. This will include activities conducted in the Pacific region.

The German Development Agency GIZ (who are setting up the Pacific Regional Nationally Determined Contributions Hub) are submitting quarterly reports to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office on how funds are being spent and progress against pre-agreed indicators. In addition, the British High Commission in Suva meet GIZ at least once a month.

20th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether the accounting officer for his Department has sought a written ministerial direction for expenditure on contingency planning for the UK leaving the EU without a deal.

No. For information, the only ministerial direction issued by my rt. hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy for European Union exit preparations related to the development of a UK database for product safety. This is to ensure critical protections remain in place on leaving the European Union. This was issued on 19 March 2018.

Source: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/eu-exit-preparations-beis-ministerial-direction

22nd Nov 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what guidance he has provided to the university sector on the safety of students while doing research overseas.

The general duties of an employer with regards to their staff and other people affected in some way by their business activities (i.e. researchers) are contained within the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 (HSAW). Additionally, employers have a common law duty to take reasonable care for their employees.

While the HSAW only applies to those working in the UK, there is an expectation that employers consider HSAW aspects of employees working overseas. Individual organisations, including Universities and Research Councils, publish their own guidance on employees working abroad.

20th Nov 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what his assessment is of the potential costs to the pharmaceutical industry of Article 45 of the Draft Agreement on the withdrawal of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the European Union and the European Atomic Energy Community.

There will be no cost to the pharmaceutical industry as a result of Article 45 of the draft Withdrawal Agreement. The Article requires the UK to share marketing authorisation data with the European Medicines Agency or Member States where needed for assessing generic marketing applications when requested. Member States will also be required to provide the UK with the same information when requested. The UK’s Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency already regularly shares and receives such data with the European Medicines Agency and other Member States.

18th Jul 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what estimate his Department has made of the number of women who take between 39 and 52 weeks maternity leave in each year for which information is available.

The most recent official data on maternity leave is from the Maternity and Paternity Rights Survey in 2009, which collected data from mothers of children born in 2008. A previous survey in 2007 collected data for children born in 2006. There were policy changes between these dates: in particular, up to 39 weeks’ Statutory Maternity Pay were available in 2008 compared to 26 weeks in 2006. Findings from these two surveys are summarised in the table below, showing the percentage of mothers who took 39 weeks of maternity leave or more, out of a sample of mothers who had worked at some point in the 12 months before birth. Although the question asked about maternity leave, some responses appear to have included other forms of leave.

Duration of Maternity Leave

39 weeks

40-51 weeks

52 weeks

53 weeks or
more

2006

1%

10%

12%

4%

2008

20%

22%

17%

6%

The Government will shortly commission a new survey, which will provide updated information. Subject to the progress of data collection, we anticipate publishing findings in Spring 2019.

16th Jul 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what estimate he has made of the number of women who took unpaid maternity leave in 2017.

Our most recent data on unpaid maternity leave is from the Maternity and Paternity Rights Survey in 2009, which found that 11% of mothers received neither statutory maternity pay, occupational maternity pay nor Maternity Allowance. The main reasons for not receiving pay include not having sufficient continuous service with the same employer and being unemployed.

The Government will shortly commission a new survey, which will provide updated information.

20th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what plans he has to bring forward legislative proposals to require overseas companies owning property in the UK to declare publicly their beneficial owners.

The responses to the call for evidence are currently being analysed and a response will be published in due course.

3rd Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what plans he has for UK participation in the EU emissions trading system after the UK leaves the EU.

As the Clean Growth Strategy sets out, the Government is considering the UK’s future participation in the EU Emissions Trading System after our exit from the EU, and we remain firmly committed to carbon pricing as an emissions reduction tool whilst ensuring energy and trade intensive businesses are appropriately protected from any detrimental impacts on competitiveness.

Whatever our future relationship with the EU, we will seek to ensure that our future approach is at least as ambitious as the existing scheme and provide a smooth transition for the relevant sectors. The UK’s commitment and leadership role in tackling climate change remains undimmed and working closely with the EU on this global challenge will remain important.

3rd Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to increase the use of geothermal energy in the UK.

This Government supports the development of geothermal energy through a range of policy support mechanisms and by supporting world class research.

The development of deep geothermal heat is supported through the Renewable Heat Incentive and through feasibility studies funded by the Heat Network Delivery Unit. Funding for geothermal district heating schemes will also be available through the Heat Networks Investment Project. Geothermal power projects are eligible for support through the Contracts for Difference Scheme.

The Government is also funding the UK Geoenergy Observatories Project, a £31 million project led by the Natural Environment Research Council and the British Geological Survey, to explore the potential of geothermal energy for the benefit of local communities. The project will also explore the opportunity for other areas of innovation and research into the subsurface.

20th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what the timetable is for the Unified Patent Court (Immunities and Privileges) Order 2017 to be laid before Parliament.

The Unified Patent Court (Privileges and Immunities) Order 2017 was laid before Parliament on 26 June 2017.

The next stage is for the Order to be scrutinised by the Joint Committee on Statutory Instruments; the membership of this Committee is still to be confirmed and timetable published.

A separate Order on Privileges and Immunities for the Unified Patent Court was laid in Holyrood on 30 August 2017. It passed scrutiny on 19 September 2017. The Order will now pass to the Scottish Parliament for approval on 25 October 2017.

3rd Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment his Department has made of the effect on the rooftop solar power market of the business rate rise for organisations investing in solar power for their own consumption.

Business rates are based on valuations from the Valuation Office Agency and we do not intervene in their independent assessments. It is too early for official statistics to be able to see any effect of business rates as the changes have only just taken effect.

3rd Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department is taking to incentivise businesses to invest in rooftop solar.

Solar PV is a UK success story. In 2013 we estimated that solar capacity would reach 10-12GW by 2020. We now expect Government support to bring forward around 13 GW by 2020. The Feed-in Tariff remains open to solar PV which provides an incentive for businesses to invest in rooftop solar.

14th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to coordinate the provision of guarantees for university research project applications for Horizon 2020 funding.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to him by my rt. hon. Friend the Chief Secretary to the Treasury today to Question UIN 57694:

http://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/written-questions-answers-statements/written-question/Commons/2016-12-14/57694/.

14th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, with reference to the oral contribution by the Chancellor of the Exchequer to the Treasury Committee on 12 December 2016, in response to Q311, who in his Department is responsible for assessing whether grant applications for Horizon 2020 funding are (a) value for money and (b) in line with Government objectives.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to him by my rt. hon. Friend the Chief Secretary to the Treasury today to Question UIN 57694:

http://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/written-questions-answers-statements/written-question/Commons/2016-12-14/57694/.

13th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when the Government plans to publish the guidelines for UK research projects applying for Government funding in the event that when the UK leaves the EU the UK is no longer a participant in Horizon 2020 including the criteria for being considered to be (a) good value for money and (b) in line with Government policy.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to him by my rt. hon. Friend the Chief Secretary to the Treasury today to Question UIN 57694:

http://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/written-questions-answers-statements/written-question/Commons/2016-12-14/57694/.

13th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how many research project applicants for Horizon 2020 funding have applied to receive Government funding in the event that when the UK leaves the EU the UK is no longer a participant in Horizon 2020.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to him by my rt. hon. Friend the Chief Secretary to the Treasury today to Question UIN 57694:

http://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/written-questions-answers-statements/written-question/Commons/2016-12-14/57694/.

13th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how many research projects that currently receive Horizon 2020 funding have applied to receive Government funding in the event that when the UK leaves the EU the UK is no longer a participant in Horizon 2020.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to him by my rt. hon. Friend the Chief Secretary to the Treasury today to Question UIN 57694:

http://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/written-questions-answers-statements/written-question/Commons/2016-12-14/57694/.

13th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will publish the process for a research project seeking to receive Government funding in the event that when the UK leaves the EU the UK is no longer a participant in Horizon 2020.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to him by my rt. hon. Friend the Chief Secretary to the Treasury today to Question UIN 57694:

http://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/written-questions-answers-statements/written-question/Commons/2016-12-14/57694/.

10th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when the Government plans to begin the ratification process of the December 2015 Paris Agreement.

An explanatory memorandum initiating the UK’s domestic approval of the Agreement was laid on 7th October 2016 with a view to completing the domestic procedures that will enable ratification before the end of the year.

7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent progress his Department has made in negotiations on phase IV of the EU Emissions Trading Scheme.

The Department remains an active participant in negotiations on Phase IV of the EU Emission Trading System (ETS) and, after publication of the high level UK position in November 2015 continues to develop a more detailed position in discussion with EU ETS participants and other interested parties. Slovakia as the current EU Presidency is keen to progress negotiations further.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what the Government's position is on the negotiations on phase IV of the EU Emissions Trading Scheme; and if he will make a statement.

The Government’s position on the negotiations for Phase IV of the EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) has not changed. The UK continues to support: the proposed level of ambition, including preserving the integrity of the Market Stability Reserve; a secure, liquid carbon market; better targeted carbon leakage support through a tiered approach; reduced administrative burdens on operators, especially small emitters; and the cost-effective administration of funds, derived from the EU ETS, that support decarbonisation of industrial and energy sectors.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether it his policy to continue to take part in the EU negotiations on phase IV of the EU Emissions Trading Scheme while the UK remains a member of the EU.

The UK will continue to be a member of the EU for a period after Article 50 has been invoked. This means that we will continue to participate in the EU ETS and engage in the negotiation and decision-making process for Phase IV of the System.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
29th Oct 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what her timescale is for provision of total mobile network coverage in Bishop Auckland constituency; and which operator will provide the network in that constituency.

On 25 October 2019, the Government announced in-principle support for a Shared Rural Network (SRN) programme, which is a proposal from the Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) to collectively increase 4G mobile coverage throughout the United Kingdom to 95% by 2025, underpinned by a legally binding coverage commitment from each operator to have reached more than 92% by 2026. The Government’s in-principle support remains subject to detailed negotiations with the MNOs, but our ambition is to reach a formal agreement on the SRN in the coming months.

The exact site deployment plans and timescales will be managed by the MNOs themselves in order for them to best deliver the agreed coverage outcomes. So until the operators’ final radio planning exercise is complete, neither the Government nor the operators will know the precise location or number of new or upgraded masts. However, the operators will be consulting with local communities as they do so. The MNOs’ intention is to deliver this programme by the end of 2025.

Matt Warman
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
28th Oct 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what preparations her Department are undertaking to celebrate the opening of the first public railway in Stockton and Darlington in 1825.

Through the Heritage Action Zone initiative, Historic England, Government’s adviser on the historic environment, is helping to breathe new life into old places that are rich in heritage and full of promise. The Stockton and Darlington Railway (S&DR) Heritage Action Zone (HAZ) has been established to help rejuvenate and restore the historic railway and to help realise its potential to become a major heritage attraction in the build-up to its 2025 bicentenary. The aim is to provide the impetus for long term economic growth and regeneration in the area.

The preparations for celebrating the bicentenary are central to the HAZ. The HAZ is part of a much wider initiative around celebrating the anniversary, led by Tees Valley Combined Authority (TVCA), and there are extensive plans in place to mark the anniversary. A lot of well-developed planning on the S&DR HAZ has taken place involving all the key partners including local government partners as well as industry partners, such as National Rail and others. The partners are working together not just on the overall management of the project, but also on the planning of a highly ambitious cultural programme for 2025. Extensive groundwork has taken place to develop the corridor of the S&DR HAZ into a coherent attraction with all key partners working on plans to celebrate 2025 as the anniversary of a great moment in our shared history. The partners’ intention is to create a permanently enhanced cultural attraction across the S&DR HAZ area in order to leave a lasting legacy.

The National Railway Museum, part of the DCMS-Sponsored Science Museum Group, will also be celebrating this monumental anniversary. The Railway Museum in York and its sister site, Locomotion in Shildon, are being transformed in order to reimagine the way they share the inspirational story of Britain’s railways with future generations, and visitors from around the world. These redevelopments, supported by £18.6m of government funding, will culminate in significant celebrations to mark the 200th anniversary of the Stockton and Darlington Railway in 2025.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
27th Sep 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether it is her policy to lay before Parliament the statutory instruments required to give legal effect to the regulations on age verification for commercial pornography sites by 3 October 2019.

The British Board of Film Classification Guidance on Age Verification Arrangements is still in the standard three month standstill period under the EU Technical Standards and Regulatory Directive and the earliest it will complete is 2nd October 2019. We will provide further details once the standstill period has finished.

Matt Warman
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
1st Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether steps have been taken to improve the child protection regime in martial arts; and if he will make a statement.

On 1 March 2018 I announced the launch of a new Safeguarding Code in Martial Arts, to recognise clubs or providers who have reached and maintained excellent safeguarding standards. This new code will help empower parents and carers to make informed decisions when selecting a martial arts club or provider for their child. The Code was developed by Sport England through close consultation with representatives from martial arts governing bodies, the Child Protection in Sport Unit and those with years of expertise in safeguarding. Clubs and providers can pledge to work towards the Code now, with the Code becoming fully operational in the summer.

27th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how many public swimming pools have closed in each constituency since 2010.

Information on the number of swimming pools that have closed and opened in each of the last 5 years is available via Sport England’s Active Places Power database which can be accessed here:https://www.activeplacespower.com/. The information is not held at constituency level but is available at local authority level.

Between 2017 and 2021 Sport England is investing £12.16 million in Swim England to get more people swimming, and £27.5 million through its Strategic Facilities Fund to construct 21 new state of the art leisure facilities which include swimming pools. Government has set up an implementation group to explore the recommendations from the school swimming report published by the Swim Group in 2017, including how we can work with local authorities and private operators to make better use of facilities.

27th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how many libraries have closed in each constituency since 2010.

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport monitors proposed changes to library service provision throughout England, but does not hold complete figures on the number of public libraries closed in each constituency since 2010.

Michael Ellis
Attorney General
27th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how many (a) theatres and (b) cinemas have closed in each constituency since 2010.

We do not hold the information requested.

27th Jun 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how much funding will be provided by Arts Council England to (a) the North East and (b) England in the (i) period 2018 to 2022 and (ii) previous funding period.

Information regarding Arts Council England's National Portfolio can be found at: http://www.artscouncil.org.uk/NPO.

19th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how many submissions to the consultation on the Leveson Inquiry and its implementation (a) supported and (b) opposed Part 2 of that Inquiry.

I refer the Hon Member to my reply to PQ 59669.

16th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to the oral contribution of the Minister of State for Digital and Culture of 28 November 2016, column 1345, when that Minister plans to write to the hon. Member for Bishop Auckland on amendments 25 and 26 to the Digital Economy Bill.

A response was submitted to the hon. Member on January 23rd 2017.

14th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to the oral contribution by the Chancellor of the Exchequer to the Treasury Committee on 12 December 2016, in response to Q311, who in her Department is responsible for assessing whether grant applications for Horizon 2020 funding are (a) value for money and (b) in line with Government objectives.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to him by my rt. hon. Friend the Chief Secretary to the Treasury today to Question UIN 57694.

25th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, whether she has had discussions with the BBC Trust on proposals to tender 60 per cent of BBC radio production; and if she will make a statement.

The requirements for the BBC to offer 60% of eligible radio hours for competition by 2022 reflects the terms of an agreement reached between BBC and the Radio Independents Group (RIG) and was announced by the BBC in June 2015.

2nd Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions she has had with the Ofcom on the implications for its remit of the draft Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.

The Secretary of State has had no discussions with Ofcom on the implications for its remit of the draft Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.

2nd Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, which agencies perform child protection checks prior to a self-employed adult being permitted to provide extracurricular activities to children for which activity or sport there is no governing body.

The current system relies on parents to ask self-employed coaches or private providers whether DBS checks have been obtained and what their safeguarding arrangements are.

Sport England has recently provided input on safeguarding into Baroness Grey-Thompson's Duty of Care Review, which is exploring issues around the duty of care that sport has towards its participants. The terms of reference for the review are wide ranging, covering many aspects relating to safety and wellbeing, and safeguarding is one area under consideration.

Sport England is also currently looking at how it can improve safeguarding through its sponsorship of and investment into the Child Protection in Sport Unit (CPSU), a partnership between the NSPCC, Sport England, Sport Northern Ireland and Sport Wales.

12th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, when the Leveson 2 inquiry will take place.

Criminal proceedings connected to the subject matter of the Leveson Inquiry, including the appeals process, have not yet completed. We have always been clear that these cases must conclude before we consider Part 2 of the Inquiry.

12th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what recent discussions he has had with victims of press intrusion on the Leveson 2 inquiry.

The Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport met victims of press intrusion in March 2016 to discuss the Leveson Inquiry. Criminal proceedings connected to the subject matter of the Leveson Inquiry,including the appeals process, have not yet completed. We have always been clear that these cases must conclude before we consider Part 2 of the Inquiry.

26th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, whether he has had discussions with the BBC on the decision to move the Chinese language BBC World News Service to Hong Kong.

I have not had any discussions with the BBC about the decision to move the Chinese language BBC World News Service to Hong Kong. Operational decisions of this nature are for the BBC themselves, and rightly independent of Government.
21st Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what recent discussions he has had with the newspaper industry on ad-blocking and platform regulation.

The Secretary of State hold regular discussions with the newspaper industry on a wide range of issues. As he said in his speech to the Oxford Media Convention on 2 March 2016, he will shortly be hosting roundtable meetings with a wide range of relevant stakeholders, including newspaper industry representatives, to discuss ad-blocking and its impact.

21st Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what estimate his Department has made of the loss caused to businesses by ad-blocking technology.

Government has not made any estimate of the impact of ad-blocking in terms of losses caused to businesses, however we are aware of the concerns from our sectors about the expansion of ad-blockers. As the Secretary of State outlined in his speech at the Oxford Media Convention on 2 March 2016, the newspaper, music, film and games industry are all having to adapt to a world in which, in almost every case, advertising revenue now plays an essential part in their new business models.

21st Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what recent discussions he has had with the European Commission on ad-blocking and platform regulation.

Over recent months DCMS Ministers have met with both Vice President Ansip and Commissioner Oettinger to discuss several issues, including potential platforms regulation. There have also been meetings with a number of MEPs and Member States. DCMS Ministers have not held any recent discussions with the European Commission on ad-blocking.

13th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what estimate his Department has made of how many museums and galleries charged for entry in (a) 2005 and (b) 2010; and what estimate his Department has made of how many museums and galleries plan to introduce such charges in 2016.

Thanks to an excellent Spending Review settlement in November 2015 - the Government is honouring its manifesto commitment to keep entry to the permanent collections of our national museums free.


Through the Arts Council England, DCMS is increasing funding for major partner museums to £22.6 million to enable greater regional spending. In addition to this, regional museums can bid for funds from ACE's £10 million per year Resilience Fund. We are also investing millions of pounds to boost local and regional museums - for example, £5 million towards a new South Asia Gallery at Manchester Museum and £2.5 million to the Manchester Museum of Science andIndustry.


Spend on DCMS-sponsored museums and galleries was £389.7 million in 2014/15. In 2005 spend was £397.4 million and in 2010 it was £474.7 million. The Heritage Lottery Fund is also a major source of support to museums. To date, HLF has supported a total of 38,000 projects with £6.6 billion across the UK with around one third of this being allocated to museums, including support for capital projects, acquisitions and skills development.

13th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how much his Department spent on museums and galleries in (a) 2005, (b) 2010 and (c) 2014-15; and what estimate he has made of such spending in (i) 2015-16 and (ii) 2016-17.

Thanks to an excellent Spending Review settlement in November 2015 - the Government is honouring its manifesto commitment to keep entry to the permanent collections of our national museums free.


Through the Arts Council England, DCMS is increasing funding for major partner museums to £22.6 million to enable greater regional spending. In addition to this, regional museums can bid for funds from ACE's £10 million per year Resilience Fund. We are also investing millions of pounds to boost local and regional museums - for example, £5 million towards a new South Asia Gallery at Manchester Museum and £2.5 million to the Manchester Museum of Science andIndustry.


Spend on DCMS-sponsored museums and galleries was £389.7 million in 2014/15. In 2005 spend was £397.4 million and in 2010 it was £474.7 million. The Heritage Lottery Fund is also a major source of support to museums. To date, HLF has supported a total of 38,000 projects with £6.6 billion across the UK with around one third of this being allocated to museums, including support for capital projects, acquisitions and skills development.

13th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment he has made of the need for a new concert hall in London.

In February 2015 the Chancellor announced that the government would fund the Barbican in the City of London to consider the feasibility of a creating a new world class concert hall in London.

As part of the Spending Review, the Chancellor agreed to provide a further £5.5million over the next 18 months for more detail business case work, which fully explore the costs and benefits of options for this project.

13th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how many museums and galleries have closed in each region and nation of the UK since 2010.

Thanks to an excellent Spending Review settlement in November 2015 - the Government is honouring its manifesto commitment to keep entry to the permanent collections of our national museums free.


Through the Arts Council England, DCMS is increasing funding for major partner museums to £22.6 million to enable greater regional spending. In addition to this, regional museums can bid for funds from ACE's £10 million per year Resilience Fund. We are also investing millions of pounds to boost local and regional museums - for example, £5 million towards a new South Asia Gallery at Manchester Museum and £2.5 million to the Manchester Museum of Science andIndustry.


Spend on DCMS-sponsored museums and galleries was £389.7 million in 2014/15. In 2005 spend was £397.4 million and in 2010 it was £474.7 million. The Heritage Lottery Fund is also a major source of support to museums. To date, HLF has supported a total of 38,000 projects with £6.6 billion across the UK with around one third of this being allocated to museums, including support for capital projects, acquisitions and skills development.

2nd Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions he has had with FIFA officials on the candidacy of Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim al-Khalifa for FIFA President.

I have had no discussions with FIFA officials regarding candidates standing for the FIFA Presidency.

2nd Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, whether it is his policy to support the candidacy of Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim al-Khalifa for FIFA President; and if he will make a statement.

The candidacy of Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim is a matter for the football authorities.

14th Oct 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what steps he is taking to support the work of the British Library during the next funding period; and if he will make a statement.

In the 2015 Spending Review it was announced that the British Library, along with sponsored museums and galleries, would be receiving a settlement unchanged in cash terms. This will allow the British Library to continue its current good work. Further, the Government supports the British Library's ambition to develop land to the north of its St Pancras site, subject to business case approval. If it goes ahead this will create both more space and the potential for increased income for the Library.

11th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how many staff are employed in his Department's headquarter buildings.

The number of permanent employees in the Department's headquarters employed by DCMS is 435 which includes GEO.

8th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how many desks are in his Department's main building; how many such desks are (a) owned and (b) leased by his Department; and what the cost is per desk of leasing.

DCMS owns 305 desks and leases desk space from HMRC. The cost per desk is £10,309.63.

27th Nov 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, when he plans to publish the Howell-Redesdale report on the future of local government archaeology services.

The report will be published in due course.

17th Nov 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to his Department's press release of 30 October 2014, if he will place in the Library a list of the 1,000 public buildings that will become wifi hot spots.

As part of the announcement on 30 October 2014 we published a list of the public buildings that will, as a result of investment through the SuperConnected Cities Programme, have free high-speed and high-capacity Wi-Fi access for members of the public.

Over 1,000 buildings have passed into contract phase. Please find the full list detailed here: https://www.google.com/maps/d/viewer?ie=UTF&msa=0&mid=zwLLqmDnfnjA.kYSOB43DNGZ4

10th Nov 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to his Department's announcement of 3 December 2013, on putting an end to shock mobile telephone bills, what progress his Department has made on implementing a consumer liability cap on stolen mobile telephones.

The Telecommunications Consumer Action Plan has made strong progress. To continue important work on this issue I have invited the major Mobile Network Operators to a Round Table meeting, where the MNOs will confirm details of the liability caps they will offer for any unauthorised use of lost or stolen phones.

10th Nov 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what the freehold value of Blythe House is.

DCMS is working with the Government Property Unit to assess the current use of Blythe House as the Government seeks to provide a long term, cost effective solution for museum storage and conservation facilities, as well as to improve access to the national collections. Property valuation information is however commercially sensitive and any disclosure would adversely affect the Government’s future ability to negotiate efficiencies and achieve value for money to the taxpayer.

6th Nov 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, if he will publish a list of all operational heritage assets referenced in paragraph 8.1.2 of his Department's 2013-14 Annual Report and Accounts, HC8.

The Department does not hold an analysis of the operational heritage assets owned by the DCMS Group and so does not intend publishing such a list. As noted, in the detail at the bottom of the table on page 134 of the accounts, these buildings are owned by The Royal Parks Agency or Arm Length Bodies i.e. the Department itself does not own any.

6th Nov 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to his Department's Annual Reports and Accounts for the year ended 31 March 2014, which buildings are included in the valuation of £70,341,000 on page 134 of that report.

A breakdown of the £70,341k can be provided by the Arm Length Bodies’ (ALBs), but a detailed split of this balance by building is only held by the individual ALBs.

6th Nov 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what the value of individual land, buildings and monuments were which are DCMS non-operational heritage assets.

This information is not held centrally by the Department. Detailed analysis (including values) of non-operational assets split between land, buildings and other is held by the Arm Length Bodies themselves.

14th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what estimate he has made of the cost to museums funded by his Department of pension responsibilities transfer to those museums; and how many (a) museums and (b) staff that transfer will affect.

No estimate has been made of the cost to museums of the change in employer contribution rates. However, the estimated average employer contribution rate will increase from its current level of 18.9% to 21.1% in April 2015. The exact impact on individual museums will vary according to their workforce composition.

The table shows the Department’s sponsored museums which offer the Principal Civil Service Pension Scheme, and the total numbers of staff employed at each of them in 2012-13. A breakdown of the number of staff that are part of the pension scheme is not held centrally.

Museum

Number of Staff

(Full-Time Equivalent)

British Museum

1033

Imperial War Museum

572

National Gallery

407

National Museums Liverpool

521

National Portrait Gallery

247

Natural History Museum

822

Royal Museums Greenwich

478

Science Museum Group

833

Sir John Soane’s Museum

44

Tate

1228

Victoria and Albert Museum

634

Wallace Collection

94

13th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how much the consultation on the proposed abolition of the Advisory Council on Libraries cost the public purse.

No costing has been estimated.

13th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, for what reason he is piloting age ratings only for music video by artists signed to British music labels.

This is the industry's pilot and they have decided to run it with UK labels only. I am delighted to see that labels Sony Music, Universal Music and Warner Music and platforms YouTube and Vevo are all taking part. I hope this pilot is successful and that more labels and platforms will start to use trusted age ratings in due course.

10th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, when he last met representatives of the entertainment trade unions.

My Rt Hon Friend, the Secretary of State, met the Musicians Union as part of a music industry roundtable meeting on 2 September 2014. The meeting was called by him to discuss key issues affecting the music industry.

10th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how much of the Super Connected Cities Programme budget has been spent to date.

To the end of September 2014 £20.17m has been spent from the £150m Super Connected Cities budget, which includes budget transfers to the devolved administrations of Scotland and Northern Ireland.

10th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how much has been spent on advertising or advertising agencies for the Super Connected Cities project; and whether that spending is in addition to or separate from the £150 million project budget.

We are advertising the Broadband Connection Voucher scheme in order to ensure as many small and medium sized businesses as possible can benefit from up to £3k to help with the costs of getting superfast broadband. To the end of September we have spent £234k on advertising. This spending is part of the £150million project budget.

10th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how much of the budget for the Mobile Infrastructure Project has been spent to date; how many sites have been built under that project; and what the completion date for the project is.

The Mobile Infrastructure Project currently has 135 sites in acquisition stage, with options for site locations under investigation. There are 15 sites where planning applications have been submitted, 2 sites are being built, and to date 2 sites have gone live in Weaverthorpe, North Yorkshire, and North Molton in Devon, providing coverage to over 200 premises each. The project has so far spent £3.87 million.

The Government is committed to taking mobile coverage to as many premises as possible. Therefore the project will continue beyond March 2015 to ensure as many communities as possible benefit.

10th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what progress he has made on the Mobile Infrastructure Project.

The Mobile Infrastructure Project currently has 135 sites in acquisition stage, with options for site locations under investigation. There are 15 sites where planning applications have been submitted, 2 sites are being built, and to date 2 sites have gone live in Weaverthorpe, North Yorkshire, and North Molton in Devon, providing coverage to over 200 premises each.

10th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how many junction boxes (a) have been and (b) will be installed under BT's Broadband Delivery UK rollout programme.

The Government’s target for superfast broadband for 95% of UK premises by 2017. It is for suppliers to determine the optimal design of their network to deliver the target. The number of structures (cabinets) built is commercially sensitive information under the terms of the contracts and therefore not available for publication.

10th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what estimate he has made of the number of junction boxes that will need to be installed for superfast broadband to be rolled out to 95 per cent of premises.

The Government’s target for superfast broadband for 95% of UK premises by 2017. It is for suppliers to determine the optimal design of their network to deliver the target. The number of structures (cabinets) built is commercially sensitive information under the terms of the contracts and therefore not available for publication.

26th Sep 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what recent discussions he has had with children's privacy campaigners.

Ministers have not held any recent discussions on this matter. The Government has introduced a new system of independent self-regulation of the press that protects press freedom whilst offering real redress when mistakes are made. This is a matter for independent press self-regulators. The Government has no plans formally to review the law in this particular area.

26th Sep 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what recent discussions he has had with the Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice and the Secretary of State for Education about the protection of children from unwarranted press intrusion.

Ministers have not held any recent discussions on this matter. The Government has introduced a new system of independent self-regulation of the press that protects press freedom whilst offering real redress when mistakes are made. This is a matter for independent press self-regulators. The Government has no plans formally to review the law in this particular area.

21st Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, whether his Department pays the London living wage to cleaners working in its London office.

DCMS does not have any direct employees who are paid less than the rate defined by the Living Wage Foundation as a living wage. DCMS is not responsible for setting pay levels for contracted workers. This is a matter for the organisations who employ them. However, we actively encourage employers to ensure that the living wage is paid and we would monitor these when contracts are being negotiated.
2nd Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions he has had with Facebook about the experiment they conducted on users to influence their emotions in 2012.

Neither the Secretary of State or I have not sought specific legal advice on the recent research carried out by Facebook. In the first instance, I believe it is a matter for the Information Commissioner's Office to determine whether UK data protection laws have been breached.

Neither have we made any estimate on the number of UK citizens that may have been subject to the research recently published by Facebook, nor had discussions with Facebook or the US administration about this. I have received a briefing paper from Facebook regarding this research, ahead of giving evidence to the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee inquiry on social media data.

2nd Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions he has had with the US administration about Facebook's experiment on users' emotions in 2012.

Neither the Secretary of State or I have not sought specific legal advice on the recent research carried out by Facebook. In the first instance, I believe it is a matter for the Information Commissioner's Office to determine whether UK data protection laws have been breached.

Neither have we made any estimate on the number of UK citizens that may have been subject to the research recently published by Facebook, nor had discussions with Facebook or the US administration about this. I have received a briefing paper from Facebook regarding this research, ahead of giving evidence to the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee inquiry on social media data.

2nd Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, whether he has sought legal advice on Facebook's experiment on users' emotions in 2012.

Neither the Secretary of State or I have not sought specific legal advice on the recent research carried out by Facebook. In the first instance, I believe it is a matter for the Information Commissioner's Office to determine whether UK data protection laws have been breached.

Neither have we made any estimate on the number of UK citizens that may have been subject to the research recently published by Facebook, nor had discussions with Facebook or the US administration about this. I have received a briefing paper from Facebook regarding this research, ahead of giving evidence to the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee inquiry on social media data.

2nd Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what the regional distribution is of Arts Council England's Catalyst funds.

The £100 million Catalyst programme is supporting the culture and heritage sector's efforts to strengthen their fundraising expertise and build long-term financial resilience across the country.

Regional breakdown of grants awarded by the Arts Council England:

Catalyst: Building Fundraising Capacity, Catalyst: Capacity Building and Match Funding and Transforming Arts Fundraising.

Amount committed:

Region

£

%

London

10,199,987

25.7%

East Midlands

2,575,072

6.5%

West Midlands

3,627,294

9.1%

North East

2,367,058

6.0%

North West

4,310,188

10.9%

Yorkshire and The Humber

6,076,001

15.3%

South East

2,935,806

7.4%

East of England

2,517,687

6.3%

South West

4,941,791

12.4%

Wales

156,562

0.4%

Grand Total

39,707,446

Catalyst: Endowments

Amount awarded at offer stage - distribution of funds depends on fundraising level

Region

£

%

London

18,500,000

60.7%

East Midlands

-

0.0%

West Midlands

3,000,000

9.8%

North East

2,000,000

6.6%

North West

2,000,000

6.6%

Yorkshire and The Humber

3,000,000

9.8%

South East

1,000,000

3.3%

East of England

1,000,000

3.3%

South West

-

0.0%

Wales

-

0.0%

Grand Total

30,500,000

2nd Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what estimate he has made of the number of UK citizens subject to Facebook's experiment on users' emotions in 2012.

Neither the Secretary of State or I have not sought specific legal advice on the recent research carried out by Facebook. In the first instance, I believe it is a matter for the Information Commissioner's Office to determine whether UK data protection laws have been breached.

Neither have we made any estimate on the number of UK citizens that may have been subject to the research recently published by Facebook, nor had discussions with Facebook or the US administration about this. I have received a briefing paper from Facebook regarding this research, ahead of giving evidence to the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee inquiry on social media data.

20th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what proportion of library users reported success in obtaining a specific book in (a) 2010-11, (b) 2011-12, (c) 2012-13 and (d) 2013-14.

The detail requested is not held centrally by this Department, nor is it collected by the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy as part of the annual public library statistics provided by individual library authorities.

20th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what proportion of requests for books were met within (a) seven, (b) 15 and (c) 30 days in (i) 2010-11, (ii) 2011-12, (iii) 2012-13 and (iv) 2013-14.

The detail requested is not held centrally by this Department, nor is it collected by the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy as part of the annual public library statistics provided by individual library authorities.

20th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what the aggregate opening hours per 1,000 population were for all public libraries in (a) 2010-11, (b) 2011-12, (c) 2012-13 and (d) 2013-14.

The detail requested is not held centrally by this Department, nor is it collected by the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy as part of the annual public library statistics provided by individual library authorities.

18th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to paragraph 18 of Investing in Britain's Future, Cm 8669, produced in June 2013, how he intends to spend the £250 million allocated to broadband in 2015-16 and 2016-17.

With local match funding, the £250m allocated to broadband in 2015-16 and 2016-17 will enable superfast broadband coverage to be extended to 95% of premises by 2017. The Department announced indicative funding allocations for local broadband project areas in February 2014. The first procurements for projects using this funding are now under way.

16th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how many electronic workstations were made available in each public library per thousand population in (a) 2010-11, (b) 2011-12, (c) 2012-13 and (d) 2013-14.

The detail requested is not held centrally by this Department. However the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) collect, annually, from the individual library authorities comprehensive information relating to library service provision in the United Kingdom, which includes data relating to the questions raised. Copies of CIPFA statistics are available in the House Library.

16th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how much lottery funding and from which year is being committed to Arts Council England's national portfolio organisations and national partner museums as part of their overall settlement for the period 2015 to 2018.

DCMS allocates 13.956% of Lottery income to Arts Council England. It is for the Arts Council to make decisions about how to allocate this funding, and to which organisations. The Arts Council is currently finalising how it will allocate funding from 2015/16 onwards, and is due to make an announcement on 1 July.

16th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what proportion of public libraries replenished their full lending stock within eight and a half years in (a) 2010-11, (b) 2011-12, (c) 2012-13 and (d) 2013-14.

The detail requested is not held centrally by this Department. However the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) collect, annually, from the individual library authorities comprehensive information relating to library service provision in the United Kingdom, which includes data relating to the questions raised. Copies of CIPFA statistics are available in the House Library.

16th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how much was made available for purchasing public library items in (a) 2010-11, (b) 2011-12, (c) 2012-13 and (d) 2013-14.

The detail requested is not held centrally by this Department. However the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) collect, annually, from the individual library authorities comprehensive information relating to library service provision in the United Kingdom, which includes data relating to the questions raised. Copies of CIPFA statistics are available in the House Library.

16th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how many visits per thousand of the population were made to each public library's website in (a) 2010-11, (b) 2011-12, (c) 2012-13 and (d) 2013-14.

The detail requested is not held centrally by this Department. However the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) collect, annually, from the individual library authorities comprehensive information relating to library service provision in the United Kingdom, which includes data relating to the questions raised. Copies of CIPFA statistics are available in the House Library.

16th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, which Arts Council England strategic programmes are designed specifically to address the National Lottery directions issued in 2007.

Lottery Distributors, including Arts Council England, are required to take account of directions issued under Section 26 (1) of the National Lottery etc. Act 1993. It is for the Arts Council to determine how best to do so in designing its strategic programmes.

16th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what proportion of public libraries open for more than 10 hours a week provided access to online catalogues in (a) 2010-11, (b) 2011-12, (c) 2012-13 and (d) 2013-14.

The detail requested is not held centrally by this Department and nor is it collected by the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy as part of the annual public library statistics provided by individual library authorities.

16th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, whether National Public Library user surveys are still being taken.

The detail requested is not held centrally by this Department. However the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) collect, annually, from the individual library authorities comprehensive information relating to library service provision in the United Kingdom, which includes data relating to the questions raised. Copies of CIPFA statistics are available in the House Library.

16th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what proportion of public libraries with a catchment area of more than 40,000 resident population were open at least 45 hours per week in (a) 2010-11, (b) 2011-12, (c) 2012-13 and (d) 2013-14.

The detail requested is not held centrally by this Department. However the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) collect, annually, from the individual library authorities comprehensive information relating to library service provision in the United Kingdom, which includes data relating to the questions raised. Copies of CIPFA statistics are available in the House Library.

16th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what Arts Council England strategic funding programmes funded from the National Lottery are designed wholly or primarily to benefit national portfolio organisations and national partner museums.

Arts Council England makes its funding decisions, and establishes its funding programmes, independently of Ministers and Government. It seeks to ensure that its funding programmes support a wide range of arts organisations and museums. There are no Strategic Programmes funded through the National Lottery exclusively for National Portfolio Organisations or National Partner Museums.

16th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, for what proportion of time public library service points were unavailable to visitors because of (a) emergency closures and (b) missed or cancelled mobile library stops in each of the years (i) 2010-11, (ii) 2011-12, (iii) 2012-13 and (iv) 2013-14.

The detail requested is not held centrally by this Department and nor is it collected by the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy as part of the annual public library statistics provided by individual library authorities.

16th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how many public libraries were open at least five hours per week outside 9am to 5pm on weekdays in each of the years (a) 2010-11, (b) 2011-12, (c) 2012-13 and (d) 2013-14.

The detail requested is not held centrally by this Department and nor is it collected by the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy as part of the annual public library statistics provided by individual library authorities.

5th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to the Answer of 1 May 2014, Official Report, columns 809-10W, on Arts Council England, how much Arts Council England spending on libraries was obtained from (a) grant-in-aid and lottery funding in (i) 2012-13 and (ii) 2013-14.

Arts Council England spending on libraries for the years requested is shown in the following table:

2012/13

2013/14

Grant-in-Aid

£687,000

£622,287

Lottery

£1,001,200

£2,418,224

Libraries are funded by local authorities, who have a statutory duty to maintain local library services.

5th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to the Answer of 1 May 2014, Official Report, columns 809-10W, on Arts Council England, how much the Museums, Libraries and Archives Council spent on libraries in (a) 2009-10, (b) 2010-11 and (c) 2011-12.

The Annual Report and Financial Statements for the Museums, Libraries and Archives Council indicates that the grant-in-aid grants payable for specific library activities for the financial years requested is as shown in the table

Grant Payable

Activity

2009/10

£67,000

Future Libraries - £38,000

Get it Loud Libraries - £24,000

National Library Membership - £5,000

2010/11

£338,000

Future Libraries

2011/12

£149,000

London Library Change Programme

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what expenditure his Department incurred on the (a) Broadband Delivery Programme, (b) Mobile Infrastructure Project, (c) Spectrum Clearance and Awards Programme and (d) Urban Broadband Fund (Super-Connected City Initiative) in (i) 2010-11, (ii) 2011-12, (iii) 2012-13, (iv) 2013-14 and (v) 2014-15 to date; and what further expenditure on each of those projects it expects to incur in (A) the remainder of 2014-15, (B) 2015-16, (C) 2016-17, (D) 2017-18, (E) 2018-19 and (F) 2019-20.

The expenditure the Department incurred on the (a) Broadband Delivery Programme, (b) Mobile Infrastructure Project, (c) Spectrum Clearance and Awards Programme and (d) Urban Broadband Fund (Super-Connected City Initiative) in the years requested is:

Programme

2010-11 (£m)

2011-12 (£m)

2012-13 (£m)

2013-14

(£m)

(a) Broadband Delivery Programme

0

0

9.77

68.49

(b) Mobile Infrastructure Project

0

0

0.09

1.63

(c) Spectrum Clearance and Awards Programme

0

49.7

46.1

9.20

(d) Urban Broadband Fund (Super-Connected City Initiative)

0

0

0

16.36

The figures provided relate to capital funding only. The totals for (a) and (d) include budget transfers to Broadband projects in the Devolved Administrations and (a) includes a budget transfer to Defra. The 2013-14 data are unaudited figures from the Department's financial systems and therefore subject to change. BDUK has not yet spent any capital funding in 2014-15.

The forecasts for these DCMS programmes are subject to regular re-profiling. These are published on an annual basis by the Cabinet Office (https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/government-major-projects-portfolio-data-for-dcms-2013). The next data set will be published in June 2014. These programmes are currently profiled to spend:

(a) £780m on the Broadband Delivery programme by end FY 2017/18;

(b) £150m on the Superfast Connected Cities Programme in 2015;

(c) £131m on the Spectrum Clearance and Awards Programme by end FY 14/15;

(d) £150m on the Mobile Infrastructure Programme by end FY 2014/15.

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what the budget of Arts Council England for library development is in 2013-14; and how many staff that body employs to work on its library responsibilities.

The budget set by Arts Council England (ACE) for library development in 2013/14 was £685,000. 5.5 full time equivalent staff are currently employed on ACE library responsibilities.

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, pursuant to the Answer of 10 April 2014, Official Report, column 311W, on public expenditure, what the (a) actual 2010-11 income and (b) projected 2015-16 income is for the Heritage Lottery Fund.

In 2010/11, the Heritage Lottery Fund's net income from the National Lottery (after its contribution to the Olympics had been deducted) was £217 million. Based on the current level of ticket sales, HLF income from the Lottery in 2015/16 is estimated to be £360 million.

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how many paintings, artefacts and other objects were lent from the collections of grant-in-aid funded national museums and galleries to other grant-in-aid funded national museums and galleries in each year since 2010-11.

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport has collected and published the following data about the number of venues in the United Kingdom to which the sponsored national museums have lent objects from their collections.

Number of UK loan venues

Institution

2010/11

2011/12

2012/13

British Museum

178

162

169

Imperial War Museum

90

376

104

National Gallery

17

35

35

National Maritime Museum

71

74

81

National Museums Liverpool

193

228

239

Science Museum Group 1

164

185

240

National Portrait Gallery

133

118

118

Natural History Museum

182

131

32

Royal Armouries

107

106

120

Sir John Soane's Museum

7

3

4

Tate Gallery

153

147

128

Victoria and Albert Museum

241

262

242

Wallace Collection 2

N/A

N/A

N/A

1 From 2011-12, the total includes figures for the Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester, following its merger with the Science Museum Group.

2 The Wallace Collection cannot lend items under terms of its bequest.

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how many paintings, artefacts and other objects were lent from the collections of grant-in-aid funded national museums and galleries to regional museums and galleries in each year since 2010-11.

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport has collected and published the following data about the number of venues in the United Kingdom to which the sponsored national museums have lent objects from their collections.

Number of UK loan venues

Institution

2010/11

2011/12

2012/13

British Museum

178

162

169

Imperial War Museum

90

376

104

National Gallery

17

35

35

National Maritime Museum

71

74

81

National Museums Liverpool

193

228

239

Science Museum Group 1

164

185

240

National Portrait Gallery

133

118

118

Natural History Museum

182

131

32

Royal Armouries

107

106

120

Sir John Soane's Museum

7

3

4

Tate Gallery

153

147

128

Victoria and Albert Museum

241

262

242

Wallace Collection 2

N/A

N/A

N/A

1 From 2011-12, the total includes figures for the Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester, following its merger with the Science Museum Group.

2 The Wallace Collection cannot lend items under terms of its bequest.

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, if he will bring forward legislative proposals to ratify the Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict and its two Protocols.

The Government, along with the British Red Cross, has pledged to facilitate the UK's ratification of the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict, and believes ratification of the Convention and its two Protocols will strengthen our commitment to the protection of our own heritage, and highlight our respect for the cultural property of other nations. However, as yet it has not been possible to secure the parliamentary time needed to pass the relevant legislation.

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how many heritage sites English Heritage has declined to take control of as custodian of last resort in the last 30 years; and what the reasons were for declining in each such case.

To the knowledge of its current management team, English Heritage has not declined to take control of any heritage sites as custodian of last resort in the last 30 years. English Heritage has occasionally been offered properties that it has declined on the basis that there were other more suitable solutions available.

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, if she will make the business plan for the new English Heritage charity available.

We intend to make further information available in the summer, alongside the Government's response to the recent consultation on the English Heritage new model.

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions she has had with the Local Government Association and local authorities about the proposed remodelling of English Heritage.

Neither my Rt Hon Friend the Secretary of State nor I have had any such discussions. However, I understand that English Heritage have met the Local Government Association to discuss the proposals, and the Local Government Association and a number of local authorities have responded to the recent consultation.

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what contingency plans her Department has in place should the proposed English Heritage charity annual revenues be affected by (a) poor weather, (b) a fire at a heritage site or (c) other unforseen circumstances.

English Heritage have developed contingency plans for the new charity addressing the possibility of variances from budget and giving examples of the actions which would be taken in such circumstances. These are based upon the performance of the English Heritage property business over the last 10 years, which has shown consistent growth. They anticipate the effect of weather and changes to patterns of visitation. In addition, once the charity becomes self-financing it will build up contingencies to protect it from factors such as poor weather or other unforseen circumstances.

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, whether (a) the English Heritage charity or (b) Historic England will fulfil a historic preservation research role under the proposed remodelling of English Heritage.

Historic England will continue to undertake research and offer advice on the practical conservation of historic buildings, guided by the priorities in the National Heritage Protection Plan. The agreements between Historic England and the English Heritage charity will enable such research to be carried out on sites within the National Heritage Collection.

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, pursuant to the Answer of 3 April 2014, Official Report, column 145W on consultants, how much spending on consultancy was spent on (a) Olympic delivery, (b) the broadband delivery programme and (c) other consultancy spending.

DCMS has spent the following amounts on consultancy services since 2010-11:

Financial Year

2010-11

2011-12

2012-13

2013-14

Cost Directly Related to The Olympics

101,712

103,293

92,753

BDUK Consultancy Costs

2,041,495

3,983,283

3,304,915

Other Consultancy

247,860

133,771

297,835

109,536

Total

349,572

2,278,559

4,373,871

3,414,451

The figures for 2013-14 are currently unaudited. The figures now include the expenditure on external legal advice related to programme support, but excludes spending on legal services from the Treasury Solicitor and the providers of recruitment services. This has been done in order to arrive at figures that more directly relate to the providers of consultancy.

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what the reasons are for the time taken to complete the Tate Modern project; and what the current projected completion date is for that project.

The building has always been scheduled to open by the end of 2016 and remains on course to do so. It is a large and ambitious project to establish a new model for museums of modern and contemporary art that will stand to the Nation's benefit.

20th May 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many students have died by suicide at each UK university in each of the last 10 years.

Mental health is a priority for this government, which is why we continue to work closely with Universities UK (UUK) on embedding the Step Change programme within the sector. Step Change calls on higher education (HE) leaders to adopt mental health as a strategic priority and adopt a whole-institution approach to mental health, embedding it across all policies, cultures, curricula and practice.

In addition, the government actively backs the introduction of a sector-led University Mental Health Charter, launched in June 2018. This will drive up standards in promoting student and staff mental health and wellbeing. It will invite universities to meet high standards of practice, including in areas such as leadership, early intervention and data collection.

HE institutions (HEI) have legal responsibilities under the Equality Act 2010 to support students, including those with mental health conditions. It is for HEIs to determine what welfare and counselling services they need to provide to their students to offer that support.

The information requested is not held centrally regarding student suicide. However, in June 2018, the Office for National Statistics released experimental statistics estimating suicide among higher education students in England and Wales which can be found following this link: https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/birthsdeathsandmarriages/deaths/articles/estimatingsuicideamonghighereducationstudentsenglandandwalesexperimentalstatistics/2018-06-25.

The government has worked with UUK, the Office for Students, and other stakeholders to develop guidance on measures to help prevent suicide and deal sensitively with issues that may arise when tragedy does occur. This guidance was published in September 2018, ahead of the 2018/19 academic year.

As independent and autonomous bodies, HEIs are responsible for decisions regarding required training for their staff and have a duty of care to their staff, like all employers, as well as to their students.

20th May 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps he is taking to improve student (a) wellbeing and (b) mental health.

Mental health is a priority for this government, which is why we continue to work closely with Universities UK (UUK) on embedding the Step Change programme within the sector. Step Change calls on higher education (HE) leaders to adopt mental health as a strategic priority and adopt a whole-institution approach to mental health, embedding it across all policies, cultures, curricula and practice.

In addition, the government actively backs the introduction of a sector-led University Mental Health Charter, launched in June 2018. This will drive up standards in promoting student and staff mental health and wellbeing. It will invite universities to meet high standards of practice, including in areas such as leadership, early intervention and data collection.

HE institutions (HEI) have legal responsibilities under the Equality Act 2010 to support students, including those with mental health conditions. It is for HEIs to determine what welfare and counselling services they need to provide to their students to offer that support.

The information requested is not held centrally regarding student suicide. However, in June 2018, the Office for National Statistics released experimental statistics estimating suicide among higher education students in England and Wales which can be found following this link: https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/birthsdeathsandmarriages/deaths/articles/estimatingsuicideamonghighereducationstudentsenglandandwalesexperimentalstatistics/2018-06-25.

The government has worked with UUK, the Office for Students, and other stakeholders to develop guidance on measures to help prevent suicide and deal sensitively with issues that may arise when tragedy does occur. This guidance was published in September 2018, ahead of the 2018/19 academic year.

As independent and autonomous bodies, HEIs are responsible for decisions regarding required training for their staff and have a duty of care to their staff, like all employers, as well as to their students.

20th May 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what training in health and wellbeing is required of university lecturers.

Mental health is a priority for this government, which is why we continue to work closely with Universities UK (UUK) on embedding the Step Change programme within the sector. Step Change calls on higher education (HE) leaders to adopt mental health as a strategic priority and adopt a whole-institution approach to mental health, embedding it across all policies, cultures, curricula and practice.

In addition, the government actively backs the introduction of a sector-led University Mental Health Charter, launched in June 2018. This will drive up standards in promoting student and staff mental health and wellbeing. It will invite universities to meet high standards of practice, including in areas such as leadership, early intervention and data collection.

HE institutions (HEI) have legal responsibilities under the Equality Act 2010 to support students, including those with mental health conditions. It is for HEIs to determine what welfare and counselling services they need to provide to their students to offer that support.

The information requested is not held centrally regarding student suicide. However, in June 2018, the Office for National Statistics released experimental statistics estimating suicide among higher education students in England and Wales which can be found following this link: https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/birthsdeathsandmarriages/deaths/articles/estimatingsuicideamonghighereducationstudentsenglandandwalesexperimentalstatistics/2018-06-25.

The government has worked with UUK, the Office for Students, and other stakeholders to develop guidance on measures to help prevent suicide and deal sensitively with issues that may arise when tragedy does occur. This guidance was published in September 2018, ahead of the 2018/19 academic year.

As independent and autonomous bodies, HEIs are responsible for decisions regarding required training for their staff and have a duty of care to their staff, like all employers, as well as to their students.

20th Feb 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how much funding he has allocated to the Share Foundation's recovery programmes for Child Trust Fund accounts.

The Department for Education has provided the Share Foundation with funding totalling £531,624 for administering the Junior Individual Savings Accounts scheme for children in care and care leavers. It does not provide funding for recovery programmes for Child Trust Funds.

Nadhim Zahawi
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
9th Nov 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps the Government is taking to improve adult literacy rates.

This government recognises the importance of English, both in work and everyday life. That is why we provide full funding for adult learners in England to secure English qualifications from entry level to level 2.

To raise standards of adult literacy, we are reforming English Functional Skills qualifications, which are accessed primarily by adults. This will make sure that these qualifications are more rigorous and better recognised by employers.

Through the Flexible Learning Fund, we are investing over £11 million to design and test ways of delivering learning to adults with low or intermediate skills more flexibly.

22nd May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many sixth forms have closed in each constituency since 2010.

There have been 10 sixth form colleges and 56 further education colleges, which have closed since 1 January 2010.

Although usually one college closes in order to merge with another college, the majority of newly merged colleges have retained the original college’s estate. This means that although an institution may no longer exist independently, its closure does not equate to a loss of provision for learners in the area.

Each college closure has been in a different constituency. The full list can be found in the attachment.

22nd May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many further education colleges have closed in each constituency since 2010.

There have been 10 sixth form colleges and 56 further education colleges, which have closed since 1 January 2010.

Although usually one college closes in order to merge with another college, the majority of newly merged colleges have retained the original college’s estate. This means that although an institution may no longer exist independently, its closure does not equate to a loss of provision for learners in the area.

Each college closure has been in a different constituency. The full list can be found in Annex A.

25th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment she has made of the potential effect of planned changes to school budgets set out in the new National Funding Formula on the level of attainment in internal and external assessments of children who qualify for free school meals.

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
25th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many schools her Department consulted on the planned changes to school budgets set out in the new National Funding Formula.

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
25th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many representations her Department has had from head teachers (a) in favour of and (b) against the changes in funding for school budgets in the new National Funding Formula.

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
25th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment she has made of the effect of proposed reductions to school budgets set out in the new Schools National Funding Formula on children's attainment relating to reading ages.

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
25th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment she has made of the effect of proposed reductions to school budgets set out in the new Schools National Funding Formula on children's attainment in national curriculum tests and assessments.

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
22nd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, pursuant to the Answer of 13 January 2017 to Question 59416 on Maria Strizzolo, what circumstances created an urgent need; and what specific skills Ms Strizzolo possessed which qualified her appointment under Exception 1 of the Civil Service Commissioner's recruitment principles.

Maria Strizzolo possessed the specific skills required for the post which were to be able to work effectively with external partners and have strong organisational skills. While these skills did exist in the Skills Funding Agency, they were already being utilised fully and there was a short term need for additional staff with these skills. The post filled was therefore temporary and filled on that basis, in line with Exception 1 of the Civil Service Commissioner’s recruitment principles.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
24th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many times the selection exemptions of the Civil Service Commissioner's recruitment principles were used by her Department in each year since 2010; and at what grades each such appointment was made.

The Civil Service Commissioners’ recruitment principles do not include selection exemptions.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
24th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many times the selection exemptions of the Civil Service Commissioner's recruitment principles were used by the Skills Funding Agency in each year since 2010; and at what grades each such appointment was made.

The Civil Service Commissioners’ recruitment principles do not include selection exemptions.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
12th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what the job description is for a senior manager in the Skills Funding Agency.

The attached job description highlights the skills, knowledge and experience required to hold a senior manager position within the Skills Funding Agency.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
12th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what skills, knowledge and experience is required to hold a senior manager post in the Skills Funding Agency.

The attached job description highlights the skills, knowledge and experience required to hold a senior manager position within the Skills Funding Agency.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
12th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if she will publish the employment contract and job description for the post Ms Maria Strizzolo held at her Department.

Ms Strizzolo was recruited to a role providing secretariat support for the Apprenticeship Delivery Board (ADB). Her key responsibilities included translating policy and strategy into operation plans; planning and managing commissioned projects and events; the provision of governance for the ADB which included developing, implementing and monitoring Board membership; monitoring progress against plans; and developing communication and event plans.

Ms Strizzolo was on a temporary Skills and Funding Agency (SFA) Fixed Term Appointment (FTA) contract covering maternity leave, but it would not be appropriate for the Department to publish information which is personal between an employer and employee.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
10th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what the process was for Ms Maria Strizzolo's appointment to the Skills Funding Agency.

The individual concerned was recruited to a temporary maternity cover role in the Skills Funding Agency on a one-year contract. The recruitment fell under Exception 1 of the Civil Service Commissioner’s recruitment principles which covers temporary appointments to fulfil an urgent need for specific skills.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
14th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to the oral contribution by the Chancellor of the Exchequer to the Treasury Committee on 12 December 2016, in response to Q311, who in her Department is responsible for assessing whether grant applications for Horizon 2020 funding are (a) value for money and (b) in line with Government objectives.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to her by my rt. hon. Friend the Chief Secretary to the Treasury to Question UIN 57694:

http://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/written-questions-answers-statements/written-question/Commons/2016-12-14/57694/.

21st Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps she is taking to ensure that nurseries in County Durham recruit well qualified staff including early years teachers.

The Department does not hold data on the workforce for specific Local Authority areas as the duty to ensure sufficient childcare places resides with the individual Local Authority.

However, as a Government we want to continue to attract and retain good quality staff to deliver good quality early years provision and the Government has committed to developing a workforce strategy to help employers to do this. As part of this strategy we are focussed on removing the barriers to attracting, retaining and developing staff so that new and existing staff can achieve their potential and forge a successful career in early years.

The Government has recently published a consultation on the literacy and numeracy skills needed to perform as a Level 3 Early Years Educator in response to messages from the sector that the current requirements are creating a barrier to attracting and retaining high quality staff: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/level-3-early-years-educator-numeracy-and-literacy-requirements

Between 2008 and 2013, the proportion of full day care staff with a degree or higher increased from 5 to 13%. To support this, the Department delivers early years initial teacher training and provides financial support for eligible graduates in the form of bursaries.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
8th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what estimate she has made of the potential cost to the public purse of replacing her Department's funded assistive listening devices, such as radio aids used by deaf children in schools, in the event that such devices suffer from interference as a result of the release of the 2.35 to 2.39 GHz spectrum bands.

Under the Equality Act, schools and local authorities are required to provide auxiliary aids when it would be reasonable to do so and if such an aid would alleviate any substantial disadvantage that the pupil faces in comparison to non-disabled pupils.

We are protecting the core schools budget in real terms throughout this Parliament, enabling a per pupil protection for the dedicated schools grant, which includes funding for high needs. Local authorities have also received an additional £92.5m high needs funding as part of their dedicated school grant this year, which will help them meet the costs of special educational needs and disability provision in their area.

The Office of Communications (OFCOM) is managing the release of the 2.35 to 2.39 GHz spectrum bands. OFCOM have carried out careful tests of listening devices and sought evidence from across the deaf community to ensure these devices will not be affected by future mobile signals.

7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what recent discussions she has had with the Home Secretary on work permits and immigration rules for EU citizens working in higher education, research and academia after the UK leaves the EU.

Department for Education officials meet regularly with Home Office officials to discuss a range of issues regarding EU students and staff. The two departments will continue to work closely as these issues progress.

7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, pursuant to the Answer of 15 September 2016 to Question 45985 on extracurricular activities: offenders, what measures are in place to protect children when such classes are provided (a) privately and (b) on private property.

Any measures to protect children where they are attending privately run classes, including those provided on private property, rest entirely with parents. It is a matter of parental choice to allow their children to attend and to make a considered decision about the suitability of the individuals running the class.

12th Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what discussions she has had with her Cabinet colleagues on preventing self-employed adults with violent or sexual convictions providing extracurricular classes or sessions to children where there is no governing body for that sport or activity.

Schools are aware of their responsibilities in ensuring that any self-employed individual who is providing extra-curricular classes or sessions on their behalf has been subject to the necessary and appropriate checks, which could include checking individual status with the relevant sports or activity governing body.

If those checks reveal convictions for violence the school will then determine the appropriateness or otherwise of allowing that individual to continue to provide classes or sessions.

12th Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what child protection steps have been taken to prevent self-employed adults with violent or sexual convictions providing extracurricular activities for children when no governing body exists for that sport or activity.

Schools are aware of their responsibilities in ensuring that any self-employed individual who is providing extra-curricular classes or sessions on their behalf has been subject to the necessary and appropriate checks, which could include checking individual status with the relevant sports or activity governing body.

If those checks reveal convictions for violence the school will then determine the appropriateness or otherwise of allowing that individual to continue to provide classes or sessions.

2nd Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps she has taken to prevent self-employed adults with violent convictions providing extracurricular classes or sessions to children for sports or activities which have no governing body.

Schools are aware of their responsibilities in ensuring that any self-employed individual who is providing extra-curricular classes or sessions on their behalf has been subject to the necessary and appropriate checks, which could include checking individual status with the relevant sports or activity governing body.

If those checks reveal convictions for violence the school will then determine the appropriateness or otherwise of allowing that individual to continue to provide classes or sessions.

18th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether her Department has made an assessment of the number of secondary school pupils who have been unable to participate in a school trip directly related to a statutory aspect of the national curriculum in each of the last three years.

The Department does not collect data on the number of pupils who are unable to participate in school trips related to a statutory aspect of the national curriculum. All schools have a duty to teach a balanced and broadly based curriculum which, for maintained schools includes the national curriculum. It is the responsibility of schools to decide how best to teach the curriculum and this includes whether school trips could help enhance pupils’ experience and education and allow pupils to achieve better outcomes.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
14th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps her Department is taking to ensure schools in deprived areas have adequate money in their budgets to take children on school trips connected to the curriculum.

At the last Spending Review, the Chancellor announced that the Government would meet its manifesto commitment to protect the core schools budget throughout this Parliament. We have also protected the pupil premium at its current rates, worth £2.5 billion annually. Additionally, all local authorities must include a deprivation factor in their local funding formulae, through which they distribute funding to schools in their locality. It is for individual schools to decide how best to use their funding to raise the attainment of pupils, including those from deprived backgrounds, which can include visits in support of the curriculum.

13th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many schools teach sex education and consent in PSHE lessons.

The Department for Education does not hold data on the number of schools teaching sex education or consent.

The Government believes that all children should have the opportunity to receive a high quality and appropriate sex and relationships education (SRE). SRE is compulsory in maintained secondary schools. Primary schools can choose to teach SRE in an age-appropriate way. All schools providing SRE, including academies and primary schools, must have regard to the Secretary of State’s Sex and Relationship Education Guidance (2000).

Schools often choose to teach sex and relationships education as part of Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education (PSHE), and consent may be a part of this.

4th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what proportion of pupils achieved five A* to C GCSEs in (a) community schools and (b) state-funded academy converter mainstream and foundation schools in (i) 2013 and (ii) 2015.

The figures for pupils achieving five or more A* to C GCSE grades in converter academies are published in the following GCSE and equivalent statistical first releases for the years 2012/13[1] and 2014/15[2]. The lower level breakdown of local authority maintained schools are not published.


[1] https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/gcse-and-equivalent-results-in-england-2012-to-2013-revised (Table 3a)

[2] https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/provisional-gcse-and-equivalent-results-in-england-2014-to-2015 (Table 3a)


Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
11th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many staff are employed in her Department's headquarter buildings.

As of 30 November 2014, the number of staff employed in each of the Department’s headquarter buildings is as follows:

Headcount

Site

London

1621

Sheffield

483

Darlington

427

Coventry

370

Manchester

358

Nottingham

191

Bristol

33

Cambridge

8

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
8th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many desks are in her Department's main building; how many such desks are (a) owned and (b) leased by her Department; and what the cost is per desk of leasing.

The Department for Education has 1,493 desks in its main building, Sanctuary Buildings. The desks are owned by the Department.

The Department has significantly reduced the number of desks it uses in Sanctuary Buildings and across its wider estate, through sub-letting desk space to others and by employing a 7:10 desk ratio (7 desks for every 10 members of staff).

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps his Department plans to take to ensure that children and adoptive parents receive support beyond the initial stages of the adoption process.

People who adopt are making a life changing decision, both for themselves and the children they adopt.

Research indicates a high level of need among adoptive families for therapeutic services often many years after the adoption process has ended.

It is for this reason that we have committed £19.3 million into an Adoption Support Fund to make therapeutic support much more widely accessible, timely and of high quality for adoptive families.

3rd Sep 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what meetings her Department has had with Durham County Council on preparations for the UK leaving the EU without a withdrawal agreement.

We have communicated on a range of topics with local authorities, including in a conference call on 13 August along with other Government departments. Each local Authority has established a Brexit lead officer to liaise with Government.

Defra has identified areas where our exit preparations impact local authorities. For instance Environmental Health Officers are responsible for issuing Export Health Certificates on fish and we have discussed capacity and the requirements with them.

We regularly contribute to a cross-government working group which coordinates engagement with local authorities.

Information on leaving the EU without a withdrawal agreement relevant to a particular local authority can then be accessed by the local authority via shared channels, such as:

  • MHCLG’s Local government Brexit preparedness page on GOV.UK;
  • MHCLG’s weekly e-bulletin to local authorities setting out all relevant updates for the week;
  • Presenting information at MHCLG’s monthly delivery board to local authority representatives;
  • The Food Standards Agency’s Smarter Comms platform accessed directly by regulatory officers in local authorities;
  • Cascading information via MHCLG’s network of nine regional local authority Chief Executives;
  • Using MHCLG’s newly established network of Brexit lead officers in each local authority;
  • Direct email messages to regulatory leads in relevant local authorities;
  • Engaging with and passing information through regulatory bodies such as the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health, the Chartered Trading Standards Institute or the Association of Port Health Authorities.

Information on a range of Defra’s exit projects if we leave the EU without a withdrawal agreement has been made available to local authorities through these channels. This includes information on:

  • Exporting fish and shellfish (Export Health Certificates);
  • Importing fish and fisheries products (Catch Certificates);
  • Import control systems for animals, products of animal origin and high risk food and feed;
  • Food labelling changes;
  • The protection of habitats and species;
  • Waste;
  • Guidance for businesses exporting goods to the EU.

Local authorities have been invited to attend various meetings, including workshops, training events and roadshows on topics including:

  • Changes to environmental regulations;
  • Changes to food and farming;
  • Changes to exports of animals and animal products;
  • Changes to imports of animals and animal products;
  • MHCLG’s regional roadshows on how local authorities will be affected by exiting the EU without a withdrawal agreement in Wakefield, Birmingham, London and Cambridge;
  • Training on catch certificates in Wales, Inverness, Bristol and Newcastle;
  • Changes to trading standards regulatory functions in Exeter;
  • A series of teleconferences on changes to export health certificates;
  • A webinar on changes affecting border or coastal local authorities;
  • A workshop on regulatory services hosted by MHCLG with input from other departments including Defra.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
3rd Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, pursuant to his oral contribution of 9 May 2019, Official Report Column 653, when and by how much the budget for peatland restoration will be increased.

The Government will take any future decisions on funding for peatland restoration as part of the 2019 Spending Review.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
20th Nov 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether he has assessed the economic effect on farmers of articles 40 to 46 and 92 to 97 of the Government's EU withdrawal agreement.

The Government is undertaking a wide range of continuing analysis in support of our negotiations and preparations for leaving the EU. We will ensure that Parliament is presented with appropriate analysis ahead of the vote on the final deal, and in Impact Assessments accompanying legislation, where appropriate.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
26th Apr 2018
What steps he has taken to reduce delays in processing applications for the basic payment scheme.

Since the introduction of the Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) in 2015, the Rural Payments Agency has made improvements in the processing of applications including the introduction of online applications, online land and entitlement transfers, reducing the time to process transactions, and further support and guidance to help farmers successfully submit their applications. This has led to improvements in the BPS payment performance with over 90% of eligible farmers being paid by the end of December for the 2016 and 2017 scheme years.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
23rd Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when he plans to respond to the letter of 21 February 2018 from the hon. Member for Bishop Auckland on the time taken to process the Basic Payment Scheme application of a constituent.

Defra received the letter on 9 March 2018 and a reply was sent on 18 April 2018.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
6th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what funds are provided for the maintenance of national trails for each year to 2021; and what sum has been allocated to maintain the Pennine Way.

Natural England has provided funding of £1.8 million for the maintenance of national trails in England in 2017/18. This figure includes funding of £199,253 for the Pennine Way. Local authority funding will bring the total amount available for the Pennine Way to a minimum of £265,671.

Natural England has not finalised its annual funding for national trails for each year to 2021. Natural England expect to complete its plans for the funding of national trails for 2018/19 by December 2017.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
27th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what funding and other support the Government provides for research into the conservation of turtles.

The UK Government has provided funding of around £550,000 to protect turtles.

The Darwin Initiative has funded projects seeking to protect turtles in developing countries and in the UK Overseas Territories. A current Darwin project is promoting the conservation and sustainable use of marine turtles in Southwest Madagascar. Another, led by the University of Exeter, is working in Peru to find a solution to the thousands of endangered turtles who die as a result of gillnet fisheries around the world by employing the use of light emitting diodes (LEDs).

Through the Overseas Territories Environment and Climate fund, also known as Darwin Plus, Defra has funded a project in the Cayman Islands assessing how best to reduce threats to wild marine turtles.

The Flagship Species Fund, a partnership between Defra and Fauna and Flora International (FFI), has supported all six of the world’s hard-shelled marine turtle species and most recently funded a project supporting sea turtle conservation through applied research in Anguilla.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
27th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what funding the Government has provided to projects seeking to protect turtles.

The UK Government has provided funding of around £550,000 to protect turtles.

The Darwin Initiative has funded projects seeking to protect turtles in developing countries and in the UK Overseas Territories. A current Darwin project is promoting the conservation and sustainable use of marine turtles in Southwest Madagascar. Another, led by the University of Exeter, is working in Peru to find a solution to the thousands of endangered turtles who die as a result of gillnet fisheries around the world by employing the use of light emitting diodes (LEDs).

Through the Overseas Territories Environment and Climate fund, also known as Darwin Plus, Defra has funded a project in the Cayman Islands assessing how best to reduce threats to wild marine turtles.

The Flagship Species Fund, a partnership between Defra and Fauna and Flora International (FFI), has supported all six of the world’s hard-shelled marine turtle species and most recently funded a project supporting sea turtle conservation through applied research in Anguilla.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
27th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what representations she has made to her international counterparts on ensuring that legislation introduced to protect turtles and their habitat is being enforced.

The UK is a signatory to the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the Conservation and Management of Marine Turtles and their Habitats of the Indian Ocean and South-East Asia and discusses implementation of the MoU with other signatory states at its triennial meetings. At the last meeting in September 2014, which the UK attended, signatory states discussed a number of turtle enforcement issues.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
27th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether the UK contributes financially to the United Nations Environment Programme.

Defra contributes £3.3 million on an annual basis to the operation of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). Defra also pays mandatory subscriptions to a range of UN conventions that the UK is signed up to relating to specific environmental issues that UNEP oversees including climate change, biological diversity and ecosystem management, international wildlife trade, organic pollutants, chemicals and waste.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
14th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, with reference to the oral contribution by the Chancellor of the Exchequer to the Treasury Committee on 12 December 2016, in response to Q311, who in her Department is responsible for assessing whether grant applications for Horizon 2020 funding are (a) value for money and (b) in line with Government objectives.

I refer the hon. Member to the reply given by my Rt Hon. Friend the Chief Secretary to the Treasury on 20 December 2016 to PQ UIN 57694.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
2nd Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what discussions she has had with the Environment Agency on the implications for its remit of the draft Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.

The Department for International Trade is the lead department on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and has established a process for regular cross-Whitehall engagement with relevant parts of Government, including Defra, to ensure matters arising from the TTIP discussions have been considered appropriately.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
2nd Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether she has consulted the Office of Water Services on the implications for its remit of the draft Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.

The Department for International Trade is the lead department on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and has established a process for regular cross-Whitehall engagement with relevant parts of Government, including Defra, to ensure matters arising from the TTIP discussions have been considered appropriately.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
2nd Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether she has consulted the Food Standards Agency on the implications for its remit of the draft Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.

The Department for International Trade is the lead department on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and has established a process for regular cross-Whitehall engagement with relevant parts of Government, including Defra, to ensure matters arising from the TTIP discussions have been considered appropriately.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps her Department is taking to ensure that EU agri-environment schemes will be open to UK applicants after current funding guarantees expire in 2019.

The Government’s announcement of 3 October provided further certainty on funding to rural communities while we develop a new approach to supporting agriculture, protecting the countryside and generating growth in the rural economy.

We will now be working with the industry, rural communities and the wider public to shape our plans for food, farming, the environment and rural growth outside the EU.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what her policy is on retaining access to EU agri-environment schemes for new applicants after the autumn statement; and what discussions her Department has had with HM Treasury on those schemes.

As announced by the Chancellor of the Exchequer, agri-environment agreements signed after the Autumn Statement and which continue after we have left the EU are guaranteed funding if they are good value for money and in line with domestic strategic priorities.

Defra will have responsibility in England for the allocation of funds to agri-environment agreements in line with these conditions and the wider rules on public spending.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what discussions she has had with Ministerial colleagues at the Department for Culture, Media and Sport on the future of agri-environment projects jointly funded by the National Lottery.

The Government’s announcement of 3 October has provided further certainty on funding to rural communities while we develop a new approach to supporting agriculture, protecting the countryside and generating growth in the rural economy.

Existing agri-environment agreements and new Countryside Stewardship agreements starting on 1 January 2017 will be guaranteed even after the UK leaves the EU. We will confirm arrangements for entering into new agri-environment funding agreements after 2017 in due course.

Leaving the EU means that we will want to take our own decisions about how we deliver the policy objectives previously targeted by EU funding, including agri-environment schemes. Over the coming months, the Government will review, in conjunction with stakeholders, all EU funding schemes in the round to ensure that any ongoing funding arrangements best serve the UK‘s national interest. Defra will discuss the interface with lottery funding with DCMS and the lottery distributors as part of this process.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if she will publish an estimate of the UK share of EU tariff rate quotas on agricultural products in (a) each of the last three financial years, (b) 2016-17 and (c) each of the next three years.

There is as yet no single agreed method to estimate the UK's share. The Government is now preparing to negotiate our exit from the EU. Defra is working with the Department for International Trade and the Department for Exiting the EU on the UK’s withdrawal and future trade relationship. As part of this we will have to separate the UK schedules for goods and services at the World Trade Organisation (WTO) from those of the EU. One of the tasks ahead is to examine the UK’s use of tariff rate quotas held by the EU. Defra is in close co-operation with other Government Departments and we will pursue this task in consultation with other WTO Members.

Until we leave the EU current arrangements, including agreements relating to tariff rate quotas, are still in place.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
15th Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when she expects to receive the £2 billion green dividend that the Minister of State for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food announced before the EU referendum on 23 June 2016.

Until exit negotiations are concluded, the UK remains a full member of the European Union (EU) and all the rights and obligations of EU membership remain in force. During this period the Government will continue to negotiate, implement and apply EU legislation and receive funding under the Common Agriculture Policy. The Government will work with stakeholders and NGOs to design new domestic policy arrangements to be put in place after we leave the EU.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
15th Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what discussions she has had with (a) Cabinet colleagues and (b) stakeholders on reforming pesticide regulations from a precautionary principle to a risk-based principle.

As part of the preparation for EU exit, the Government is considering future arrangements for pesticide regulation. The Government remains of the view that decisions on the use of pesticides should be based on a careful scientific assessment of the risks, with the aim of achieving a high level of protection for people and the environment. An evidence-based approach to assessing risk is entirely consistent with the precautionary principle.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
15th Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent discussions she has had with (a) Cabinet colleagues and (b) stakeholders on repealing the birds and habitats directives.

The Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has not discussed repealing the birds and habitats directives with either Cabinet colleagues or stakeholders.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
15th Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what representations she has made to the (a) Soil Association, (b) Rivers Trust and (c) RSPCA on running eco-friendly accreditation schemes for farmers.

I have regular meetings with farming and environmental organisations to discuss the options for future policy after we leave the EU. While no formal proposals have been made regarding the running of eco-friendly accreditation schemes for farmers, the concept of developing UKAS accredited environmental schemes has been discussed with representatives from all three organisations.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
14th Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when she plans to publish the 25 year plan for the environment.

I refer the hon. Member to the reply given to the hon. Member for Bristol East, Kerry McCarthy, on 10 October 2016, PQ UIN 46423.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
14th Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when she plans to publish the 25 year plan for food and farming.

Our 25 Year Food and Farming Plan will set out a new vision for British food and farming outside of the EU. We are committed to working with the industry to get this right, and will soon begin the process by publishing a consultation that will inform the Plan’s development. This will start the discussion around a set of key strategic themes such as productivity and consumer trust.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
13th Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent steps she has taken to protect native tree species.

Defra is acting to protect native tree species from a range of threats. Current examples include:

  • it is an offence to fell trees without a licence if an exemption does not apply;

  • the particular value and irreplaceable nature of ancient woodlands and veteran trees is recognised in the National Planning Policy Framework;

  • we use the UK Plant Health Risk Register to identify, assess and tackle tree pests and diseases at source (pre-border), at the border and inland, including several that threaten native trees;

  • investing more than £37million into tree health research between 2012 and 2019;
  • support for some landowners on specific tree diseases and measures to support squirrel control through the Countryside Stewardship Scheme;

  • working with the Squirrel Accord to deliver the December 2014 grey squirrel action plan for England;

  • funding the Deer Initiative to reduce the negative impact of deer in priority woodlands and support; and
  • Forestry Commission advice on how native woodlands can be adapted to be more resilient to the effects of climate change.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
13th Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether the Natura 2000 scheme will be continued.

Whilst we are still a member of the EU we will continue to implement the Habitats and Birds Directives, including management of the Natura 2000 network of European sites.

We are committed to protecting vulnerable species and habitats and to being the first generation to leave the natural environment of England in a better state than that in which we found it.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
12th Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps she is taking to implement provisions in the European Landscape Convention.

The United Kingdom ratified the European Landscape Convention in 2006. Its principles are reflected in Government and local policies, for example, that local communities are engaged in the setting of priorities and objectives for their local landscapes and that opportunities are sought to align conservation and landscape objectives for designated areas.

National Park and Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Management Plans are an example of delivering on the convention’s principle of stronger alignment of conservation and landscape objectives for designated sites.

The right of communities to shape development in their areas through the production of Neighbourhood Development Plans, introduced through the Localism Act 2011, delivers on the convention’s principle that local communities should be engaged in the setting of priorities and objectives for their local landscapes.

The National Planning Policy Framework outlines strong protection of designated landscapes and the duty on decision-makers to consider landscape impacts in plan making and planning decisions. We consider it compliant with the convention.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
14th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps her Department is taking to encourage local authorities to tackle light pollution and help protect dark skies in their areas.

The Government is taking a number of steps to encourage local authorities to address light pollution.

The National Planning Policy Framework includes consideration of the impact of light pollution on local amenity, intrinsically dark landscapes and nature conservation. The Department for Communities and Local Government has also published additional guidance setting out when light pollution is relevant to planning, which the Government asks all local authorities to have regard to when considering planning decisions: http://planningguidance.communities.gov.uk/blog/guidance/light-pollution/.

Other Government action includes encouragement for local authorities to introduce LED street lighting where it is economically feasible to do so, in order to reduce glare. Defra has also supported applications from National Parks, such as Exmoor and South Downs, to become International Dark Sky Parks or Reserves.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
14th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether she plans to include measures to protect and improve England's dark skies in the Government's 25-year plan for the natural environment.

The Government remains committed to developing a long term, 25-year plan for the environment. Following the decision to leave the EU, we now have a fresh opportunity to shape a long-term vision for the type of environment we want in this country. As part of this we will be looking across the breadth of environmental challenges.

Developing our approach to the environment will need to be informed by significant input from interested parties across many sectors. Further information on the next steps and timings will be provided in due course.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
22nd Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what meetings (a) she and (b) Ministers of her Department have had with (i) arms manufacturers, (ii) tobacco manufacturers and (iii) representatives of the Israeli embassy since the period covered in the Cabinet Office's most recent ministerial gifts, hospitality, travel and meetings data release.

Departments publish details of Ministers meetings' with external organisations routinely on Gov.uk. Details of meetings held during the period October – December 2015 will be published in due course.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
11th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many staff are employed in her Department's headquarter buildings.

As at 30 September 2014, approximately 1,500 staff were employed by core Defra based in the London Nobel House complex.

This excludes Natural England employees and a number of staff on temporary contracts, loan or secondment from other bodies or employed through contracted out service agreements who are also based in this office complex.

8th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many desks are in her Department's main building; how many such desks are (a) owned and (b) leased by her Department; and what the cost is per desk of leasing.

Core Defra has 1528 office desks in its main buildings at Nobel House and 9 Millbank, London, all of which are owned by the Department.

18th Nov 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when funding decisions for the year beginning January 2015 for the North Pennines Dales LEADER will be announced.

The application window for LEADER bids closed on 5 September and assessments on the submissions received are being finalised. We hope to notify all applicants of the outcome by the end of November.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
8th Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, pursuant to the contribution of the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs of 7 July 2014, Official Report, columns 127-31, on Common Agricultural Policy, where the 10 centres for digital assistance for farmers will be located.

There will be three trial Digital Support Centres (DSCs) for specific invited applicants to test the service which will be run over the summer. These will be based in Cumbria and in Devon. Further DSCs will become available in the autumn to support farmers across England as more farmers from other areas are invited to register. The RPA is working now to identify the most appropriate locations for the DSCs to support this staged roll out. This analysis will include likely demand alongside information we have on Broadband not-spots and areas where trusted intermediaries are operating. It is anticipated that there will be more than 10 DSCs available as demand grows.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
23rd Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when he intends to reply to the letter of 3 June 2014 from the hon. Member for Bishop Auckland.

I replied to the hon. Member on 24 June 2014.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
20th Nov 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, what account he has taken of the interests of the British Overseas Territories, apart from Gibraltar, in preparing the Draft Agreement on the withdrawal of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the European Union and the European Atomic Energy Community and the Outline Political Declaration on the Future Relationship.

Ministers and Officials regularly engage with all the Overseas Territories on Exit matters, including through the Joint Ministerial Council which will meet for the fifth time in December. The Government is committed to taking the interests of the Overseas Territories into account as we leave the EU, and getting a deal that works for the wider British family, including the Overseas Territories.

The Overseas Territories are covered by the territorial scope of the Withdrawal Agreement and therefore the arrangements for the Implementation Period. As set out in the July White Paper, the UK will be seeking specific arrangements for the Crown Dependencies, Gibraltar and the other Overseas Territories, taking account of their existing relationships with the EU.

Robin Walker
Minister of State (Northern Ireland Office)
20th Nov 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, what his assessment is of the potential cost to industry of Articles 40-125 of the draft Withdrawal Agreement.

The Government is undertaking a wide range of continuing analysis in support of our EU exit negotiations and preparations. We will ensure that Parliament is presented with appropriate analysis ahead of the vote on the final deal, and in Impact Assessments accompanying legislation, where appropriate.

Chris Heaton-Harris
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
8th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, what assessment he has made of the potential effect on the Crown Dependencies of (a) the UK leaving the EU without a deal and (b) the EU accepting the Chequers proposals.

The UK Government is committed to engaging fully with the Crown Dependencies as we exit the EU to ensure they are prepared for all exit scenarios and their interests and priorities are properly taken into account. My officials have fortnightly engagements with representatives of the Crown Dependencies and the Minister of State responsible, Robin Walker MP, holds formal quarterly meetings with the Chief Ministers of Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man.

Officials from the UK and Crown Dependency governments have worked together on readiness planning, the transition of International Agreements, and on the drafting of primary and secondary exit legislation, as well as broader discussions on the future EU-UK relationship.

Suella Braverman
Minister on Leave (Attorney General)
8th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, what assessment he has made of the potential effect on the British overseas territories of (a) the UK leaving the EU without a deal and (b) the EU accepting the Chequers proposals.

The UK Government regularly engages with the Overseas Territories as we exit the EU to ensure they are prepared for all exit scenarios and that their interests and priorities are properly taken into account. The UK - Overseas Territories Joint Ministerial Council on EU Negotiations provides a mechanism for dialogue between the Overseas Territories and the Government. It ensures representatives can share their assessments about the potential effects of EU Exit scenarios on their Territories. Gibraltar, as the only Overseas Territory in the EU, has its own Joint Ministerial Council (Gibraltar EU Negotiations). In all these meetings, Ministers have discussed a variety of issues including contingency planning and the UK’s proposals for our future relationship with the EU.

Chris Heaton-Harris
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
25th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, what discussions he has had with EU counterparts on whether the UK will pay the costs of transferring the European Medicines Agency elsewhere in the event of its headquarters leaving London.

The Government is committed to ensuring a positive outcome for the UK life sciences and pharmaceuticals sector as we exit the European Union.

In the negotiations, the Government will discuss with the EU and Member States how best to continue to cooperate in the field of medicines regulation in the best interests of both the UK and EU. It would not be appropriate to pre-judge the outcome of the negotiations.

Robin Walker
Minister of State (Northern Ireland Office)
25th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, what assessment he has made of the potential effect on the UK pharmaceutical industry of the UK no longer being part of the European Medicines Agency after the UK leaves the EU.

The Government is committed to ensuring a positive outcome for the UK life sciences and pharmaceuticals sector as we exit the European Union.

In the negotiations, the Government will discuss with the EU and Member States how best to continue to cooperate in the field of medicines regulation in the best interests of both the UK and EU. It would not be appropriate to pre-judge the outcome of the negotiations.

Robin Walker
Minister of State (Northern Ireland Office)
25th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, whether he has compiled a list of all UK rights and obligations arising from third party agreements made by the EU to which the UK is a signatory.

We are doing all necessary preparatory work to make sure that we get the best deal for Britain, but as we have said before we will not provide a running commentary.

25th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, whether he has compiled a list of all UK rights and obligations arising from membership of EU agencies and institutions.

We are doing all necessary preparatory work to make sure that we get the best deal for Britain, but as we have said before we will not provide a running commentary.

12th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, what assessment his Department has made of the potential effect of the UK leaving the EU customs union on levels of employment.

As the Prime Minister has made clear, the Government is aiming to secure the best outcome for the UK as a whole. As I stated to the hon. Member in the debate on 2 November 2016, no decisions have yet been taken, but we are analysing the impacts of different scenarios in negotiations. That analysis is ongoing. We are determined to build a national consensus around our negotiating position and are listening and talking to as many organisations, companies and institutions as possible to do this. The Government wants to give UK companies the maximum freedom to trade with and operate in the Single Market – and let European businesses do the same here. The Department for Exiting the European Union, working with officials across government, continues to undertake wide-ranging data analysis looking at over 50 sectors as well as cross-cutting regulatory issues. The Department is also engaging widely with representatives from sectors. This work will inform the UK's position for the upcoming negotiations with our EU partners.

Robin Walker
Minister of State (Northern Ireland Office)
18th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, pursuant to the Answer of 11 November 2016 to Question 51791, if he will define what is considered to be a network industry.

Network industries include communications, energy and transport sectors. As well as being important in their own right, they are critical enablers of activity across the economy as a whole.

3rd Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, which sectors his Department is studying in its analysis of the effect of the UK leaving the EU on more than 50 sectors.

We will disclose the sectors we are analysing in due course. Our overall analysis covers the entirety of the UK economy. We have structured our approach by sector because it is a robust way of breaking down the economy into comparable units which lend themselves readily to analysis within the areas of goods; services; financial services; network industries; and agriculture and fisheries. We are also including cross-cutting regulations in our analysis. We will not, however, publish any analysis that might risk harming our negotiating position.

3rd Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, when his Department plans to publish its analysis of the effect of the UK leaving the EU on more than 50 sectors.

We will disclose the sectors we are analysing in due course. Our overall analysis covers the entirety of the UK economy. We have structured our approach by sector because it is a robust way of breaking down the economy into comparable units which lend themselves readily to analysis within the areas of goods; services; financial services; network industries; and agriculture and fisheries. We are also including cross-cutting regulations in our analysis. We will not, however, publish any analysis that might risk harming our negotiating position.

10th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, what his policy is on leaving the EU Customs Union.

We have been clear that we will pursue a solution that works for the unique circumstances of the UK. Ministers are considering the UK’s future customs and trading relations with the EU and work continues to analyse the options to ensure we have the best possible outcome for the UK.

Robin Walker
Minister of State (Northern Ireland Office)
10th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, whether it is his policy to apply to join the EEA (a) before or (b) after the UK leaves the EU.

We have been clear that we will pursue a solution that works for the unique circumstances of the UK. Ministers are considering the UK’s future customs and trading relations with the EU and work continues to analyse the options to ensure we have the best possible outcome for the UK.

Robin Walker
Minister of State (Northern Ireland Office)
10th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, whether it is his policy to apply to join the EFTA (a) before or (b) after the UK leaves the EU.

We have been clear that we will pursue a solution that works for the unique circumstances of the UK. Ministers are considering the UK’s future customs and trading relations with the EU and work continues to analyse the options to ensure we have the best possible outcome for the UK.

Robin Walker
Minister of State (Northern Ireland Office)
7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, what assessment his Department has made of the value of UK access to the single market.

My Department, working with officials across government, continues to undertake a wide range of data analyses to inform the UK's position for the upcoming negotiations with our EU partners. We have been clear that we will not provide a running commentary that might undermine our negotiating position.

7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, what estimate he has made of the proportion of exports from the UK by volume and value which would be covered by rules of origin by sector in (a) 2016-17 and (b) each of the next three financial years.

My Department, working with officials across government, continues to undertake a wide range of data analyses to inform the UK's position for the upcoming negotiations with our EU partners. We have been clear that we will not provide a running commentary that might undermine our negotiating position.

7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, what estimate he has made of the (a) value and (b) volume of imports by sector, from non-EU countries that were exported to countries in the EU as (i) components and (ii) free standing items in each of the last five years.

My Department, working with officials across government, continues to undertake a wide range of data analyses to inform the UK's position for the upcoming negotiations with our EU partners. We have been clear that we will not provide a running commentary that might undermine our negotiating position.

7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, if he will publish his Department's negotiating priorities for a free trade deal with the EU.

We are about to begin these negotiations and it would be wrong to set out unilateral positions in advance. At every step of these negotiations we will work to ensure the best possible outcome for the British people.

Robin Walker
Minister of State (Northern Ireland Office)
3rd Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of providing aid to Sierra Leone to offset the interest payments on that country’s debt.

The UK is working with the Government of Sierra Leone to create a more prosperous and inclusive country. This includes support to increase revenue generation and improve public financial management to address their debt position.

Sierra Leone is not currently in debt distress, although it is at high risk. There is an existing process through multilateral fora which countries can follow if they wish to pursue debt relief.

In the last 6 months, the UK has actively supported decisions taken by the IMF and the World Bank to provide additional financial support packages for Sierra Leone. Our contributions to the EU and African Development Bank are also supporting the Government of Sierra Leone to finance their development needs.

7th Jan 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, whether anti-corruption measures are being embedded into UK-funded climate resilience programmes in the Pacific Region.

The UK supports climate resilience programmes in the Pacific Region through the multilateral system. This comprises the Multilateral Development Banks (World Bank and Asian Development Bank), United Nations (UN) Agencies (UN Environment Programme and UN Development Programme) and Multilateral Funds (Climate Investment Funds, Green Climate Fund and Global Environment Facility). The UK Aid Strategy sets out our zero tolerance toward corruption. In line with this strategy we expect each multilateral institution to demonstrate that it also applies a zero tolerance approach toward corruption in its projects and minimises risks of corruption through rigorous project risk assessments and monitoring throughout implementation and delivery.

15th May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what mental health care programmes her Department is funding for Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh.

DFID is leading the way in supporting programmes which provide mental health care among the Rohingya. We are supporting 30 ‘child friendly spaces’ to support children with protective services and psychosocial and psychological support. 19 women’s centres will offer a safe space, psychosocial support and activities to women and girls. We also support the provision of medical services, counselling and psychological support to Rohingya refugees who have either witnessed or are survivors of sexual violence.

27th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, whether the Government sponsors any aid programmes in Cape Verde that support eco-development.

DFID provides support to ecological development in Cape Verde through the Adaptation for Smallholder Agricultural Programme. DFID’s core contributions to multilateral institutions also support Cape Verde.

14th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, with reference to the oral contribution by the Chancellor of the Exchequer to the Treasury Committee on 12 December 2016, in response to Q311, who in her Department is responsible for assessing whether grant applications for Horizon 2020 funding are (a) value for money and (b) in line with Government objectives.

In response to Q311, at the Treasury Committee on Monday 12 December, the Chancellor referenced the process for EU Structural Funds rather than for Horizon 2020.

The Treasury will underwrite all successful bids for Horizon 2020 that are approved by the Commission, even when specific projects continue beyond our departure from the EU. Government departments will not assess Horizon 2020 grant applications as it is an EU programme, independent of the UK government, and grant funding is awarded by the Commission based on peer review.

UK businesses and universities should continue to bid for competitive EU funds while we remain a member of the EU, and we will work with the Commission to ensure payment when funds are awarded.

7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what proportion of the Department's funding has been allocated to women's health initiatives, including education in (a) 2016-17, (b) 2017-18 and (c) 2018-19.

The UK, as a member of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s (OECD) Development Assistance Committee (DAC), is committed to transparent reporting of development assistance in a way that permits international comparisons. Whilst comparison codes are available to separately identify funding for family planning and for reproductive, maternal, newborn and child health, the same is not true specifically for women's health initiatives.

DFID is in the process of developing our plans to 2020, so future spending has not yet been determined.

7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what discussions she has had with non-governmental organisations on tackling the taboo around women's periods and its effect on women in refugee camps.

DFID is working with our partners to ensure that sexual and reproductive health needs of girls and women affected by crises are prioritised. This includes their right to experience menstruation with dignity. In 2015 alone, UK funding to UNFPA supported their efforts to distribute almost 60,000 menstrual hygiene kits to women and girls living in conflict situations. The UK has committed that, in humanitarian crises, DFID calls for proposals will require the sexual and reproductive health and rights of women and girls to be considered. The UK also supported a joint statement led by UNFPA, highlighting the importance of sexual and reproductive rights in crises, at the World Humanitarian Summit in May this year.

DFID is working globally with a network of civil-society organisations, private sector companies, donors, academics, and international agencies to address stigma and increase access for all women and girls to the education, support, products and services they need to manage menstruation with dignity.

19th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what recent discussions she has had with (a) her international counterparts, (b) international organisations and (c) NGOs on the situation in Yemen.

The UK is playing a leading role in responding to the crisis in Yemen. DFID Ministers regularly have discussions with international counterparts, organisations, and NGOs on the situation in Yemen. The World Humanitarian Summit in May was obviously a key moment for such discussions.

Senior officials also have regular discussions on the situation in Yemen. Mark Lowcock, DFID Permanent Secretary, recently discussed the humanitarian and economic situation in Yemen with international counterparts on 11 July, at the annual Tidewater conference of the Development Assistance Committee of the Organisation for Economic Co-ordination and Development (OECD-DAC).

11th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, how many staff are employed in her Department's headquarter buildings.

DFID employs 807 staff in the London Headquarters and 581 staff in the East Kilbride Headquarters.

8th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, how many desks are in her Department's main building; how many such desks are (a) owned and (b) leased by her Department; and what the cost is per desk of leasing.

There are 650 desks in our main building at 22 Whitehall, London. We also have 834 desks in our office in Abercrombie House, East Kilbride. All desks are owned by the Department for International Development.

10th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what steps the Government is taking to prevent famine in South Sudan.

The UK has adopted the role of early responder to the crisis in South Sudan and is the second largest donor to the country’s Crisis Response Plan. Between January and September 2014, DFID contributed £82.5 million of humanitarian funding to South Sudan which included £16 million to the World Food Programme for general food distribution, £8.3 million to the Food and Agricultural Organisation of the United Nations, and £8 million to the International Committee of the Red Cross to stimulate local production via seed, tool and fishing net distribution, as well as vaccination of livestock. Recent UN food security analysis has found that the emergency food security response was a critical factor in averting a widely-predicted outbreak of famine in 2014.

Despite success to date in famine-prevention, communities in conflict-affected states remain extremely vulnerable and we remain concerned about the humanitarian situation in 2015 as the risk of famine is still very real if the conflict continues. For this reason, the UK announced last month a further £25 million of assistance, the majority of which will be spent on work to bolster food security. We continue to work with the UN and other donors to raise the prominence of the appeal and secure new and increased commitments of funds.

4th Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, when he plans to lay before the House the UK's trade agreement with Colombia, Ecuador and Peru.

Pending the completion of the necessary internal procedures, the UK-Andean Countries Trade Agreement will shortly be laid before Parliament to be scrutinised for 21 sitting days, as set out in the in the Constitutional Reform and Governance Act (CRaG) 2010. The Agreement will be accompanied by both a Parliamentary Report and an Explanatory Memorandum.

20th Feb 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what steps he is taking to ensure that guarantees on human rights form part of future trade negotiations with the Government of Hong Kong after the UK leaves the EU.

The U.K. agreed a Strategic Dialogue with Hong Kong in 2017. As part of this, we are exploring with HK a range of ambitious options for our future trade relationship.

The UK has long supported the promotion of our values globally and this will continue as we leave the EU. We are committed to upholding the UK’s high standards and we are exploring all options in the design of future trade and investment agreements, including possible human rights provisions.

19th Jul 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, with reference to the White Paper entitled The future relationship between the United Kingdom and the European Union, published in July 2018, Cm 9593, what assessments has been made of the feasibility of accession to the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership.

As set out in the Government’s White Paper on the future relationship with the EU, the UK will potentially seek accession to the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CTPP). This will take place pending the outcome of a 14-week public consultation and the process of accession for new members being established. Potential accession would be sought on terms consistent with the future relationship with the EU, and domestic priorities. CPTPP includes some of the world's fastest growing economies that together represent 13-14% of global GDP, and a total population of around 500m people. If the UK were to join, it would be the second largest economy in the group, and CPTPP’s coverage of global GDP would increase to around 17%. We are undertaking assessments of all the opportunities presented by CPTPP, including analysis on opportunities the agreement presents to UK consumers and businesses.

3rd Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what discussions he has had with his US counterpart on section 230 of the US Communications Decency Act 1996.

My Rt Hon Friend the Secretary of State for International Trade and I have regular contact with our US counterparts on a range of issues. However, we have had no discussions on Section 230 of the US Communications Decency Act 1996.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for International Trade)
3rd Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what his policy is on the potential inclusion of section 230 of the US Communications Decency Act 1996 in any US-UK free trade deal.

My Rt Hon Friend the Secretary of State for International Trade and I have regular contact with our US counterparts on a range of issues. However, we have had no discussions on Section 230 of the US Communications Decency Act 1996.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for International Trade)
27th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, how much the Government has spent on television advertisements urging businesses to export in the last 12 months; and what the business case was for that expenditure.

Since April 2016, the Government has spent £1.97m on television advertising as part of the Exporting is GREAT campaign to inspire more businesses to take their next step towards exporting by visiting the website great.gov.uk.

Television advertising gives us the ability to communicate with a large audience across the UK, generate awareness and encourage action. We target specific audiences and TV is a cost effective medium that compliments other communications activity across radio, print, online and email. This ensures our message reaches the intended audiences.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for International Trade)
2nd Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, whether he has consulted the Office of Gas and Electricity Markets on the implications for its remit of the draft Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.

The lead department on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) was previously the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) and is now the Department for International Trade. BIS established a process for regular cross-Whitehall engagement with relevant parts of Government to ensure matters arising from the TTIP discussions have been considered appropriately.

2nd Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, whether he has consulted the Competition and Markets Authority on the implications for its remit of the draft Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.

The lead department on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) was previously the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) and is now the Department for International Trade. BIS established a process for regular cross-Whitehall engagement with relevant parts of Government to ensure matters arising from the TTIP discussions have been considered appropriately.

7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that the Trade in Services Agreement supports the targets set at the COP21 climate change conference.

Negotiations of the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA) are ongoing. A trade sustainability impact assessment is being conducted on the TiSA. The terms of reference of the report include analysis of the impact of the TiSA on climate change. The final inception report can be found on the European Commission’s DG Trade website.

The Department for International Trade works closely with the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and other departments to ensure the TiSA aligns with the UK’s wider policy objectives. Irrespective of what is agreed in TiSA, all signatories to the Paris agreement will have to meet their climate change commitments under that agreement.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for International Trade)
7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, how many trade negotiators he has hired since 23 June 2016; and what the aggregate cost is of their contracts.

The Department for International Trade already has a strong and capable trade policy team which has more than doubled in size since 23 June. Over the coming months we will be developing that team to build the world class negotiating strengths needed to deliver the best outcomes for the UK. They will have the depth and breadth of expertise to handle the full range of sectoral and cross-cutting issues that arise in trade agreements, supported by analysts and lawyers. We will continue to hire the brightest and best talent from within the UK civil service and in time, will look to enhance our team by drawing on expertise from elsewhere.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for International Trade)
7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what schedules his Department has prepared for World Trade Organisation tariffs on goods and services for the period after the UK has exited the EU.

The UK already has World Trade Organisation (WTO) schedules for goods and services, contained within those of the EU.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for International Trade)
7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what his Department's capital and current budgets are for (a) 2016-17 and (b) 2017-18.

The newly created Department for International Trade (DIT) has been formed from the previous UK Trade and Investent (UKTI) and from the Trade Policy Unit of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS). My Rt hon. Friend the Secretary of State for International Trade also has responsibility for UK Export Finance (the Export Credits Guarantee Department), which has its own budget.

The estimated annual budgeted operating costs of the department for the next four years are currently being established and will be submitted to parliament later this financial year.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for International Trade)
7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, if he will publish the latest proposals on the Trade in Services Agreement.

Information on the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA) can be found on the European Commission’s dedicated TiSA website. In a bid to encourage transparency, the European Commission has published a large number of documents including its revised TiSA offer from May 2016, the EU proposals for institutional provisions and state-to-state dispute settlement, position papers and factsheets.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for International Trade)
7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what discussions he has had with representatives of the 53 countries with which Britain holds free trade agreements (FTAs) through its membership of the EU on the timetable for replacing those agreements with bilateral FTAs.

The Prime Minister has been clear, we are not going to provide a running commentary on every twist and turn of these negotiations. We recognise the need for a smooth transition as the UK leaves the EU which minimises disruption to our trading relationships. Ministers and officials in the Department for International Trade are working closely with counterparts across a wide range of markets in order to promote the UK as a great place to do business and with which to trade. We are taking advantage of all the opportunities available to us to ensure that Britain becomes the global leader in free trade once we leave the EU.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for International Trade)
19th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what representations he has received from non-governmental organisations on the reported use of arms sold by Britain to Saudi Arabia in Yemen.

There have been no representations from non-governmental organisations on the reported use of arms sold by Britain to Saudi Arabia in Yemen.

20th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether the accounting officer for his Department has requested a written ministerial direction for expenditure on contingency planning for the UK leaving the EU without a deal.

Bernadette Kelly, the accounting officer for DfT sought a written ministerial direction on 7th February 2018 for expenditure on EU Exit preparations. The details can be found here

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/eu-exit-preparations-dft-ministerial-direction.

No other ministerial directions have been sought.

9th Nov 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps are being taken to introduce mandatory disability awareness training for all taxi and minicab drivers.

Taxis and private hire vehicles (PHVs) provide a vital service for many disabled people. However, as of March this year, only 38% of licensing authorities required drivers to complete disability awareness and equality training; I would urge the remainder to use their existing licensing powers to ensure that all taxi and PHV drivers have the knowledge and skills necessary to provide every passenger with the assistance they require.

Ministers are considering the recommendations made in the report of the Chair of the Task and Finish Group on Taxi and Private Hire Vehicle Licensing, including those intended to improve accessibility. A Government response will be issued in due course.

8th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what the criteria are for allocating funds under the Safer Roads Fund.

As highlighted in my June Written Ministerial Statement, the Department has invested £100 million to improve the 50 most dangerous stretches of ‘A’ roads in England.

The roads chosen for funding were based on Road Safety Foundation analysis, the key components of which were the number of people killed or seriously injured, the traffic flow of the road and the likelihood of future collisions based on the characteristics of the road.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
7th Sep 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when he plans to publish the responses to the public consultation, Proposals for the creation of a Major Road Network, published in December 2017.

The Department is aiming to publish a response to the consultation shortly, with a view to releasing a network map and further details on the scheme selection process by the end of the year.

It will then be for the relevant local authority, working with regional partners, to make the case for MRN funding for particular schemes.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
7th Sep 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether he has plans to include the A68 in the major roads network.

The Department is aiming to publish a response to the consultation shortly, with a view to releasing a network map and further details on the scheme selection process by the end of the year.

It will then be for the relevant local authority, working with regional partners, to make the case for MRN funding for particular schemes.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
27th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many railway stations (a) opened and (b) closed in each constituency in each year since 2010.

Since 2010, thirty seven stations have opened, and three have been closed. I attach a table for ease.

27th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many driving test stations have closed in each constituency since 2010.

The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) has closed nine driving test centres since 2010; this consists of four car driving test centres, one motorcycle driving test centre and four lorry driving test centres. The sites were closed either because the usage agreement was terminated by the landlord, the property was sold by the site landlord or the site was no longer suitable for testing. The following table shows the name of each driving test centre that has closed, the type of test that was carried out and the constituency:

Name of driving test centre

Type of test

Constituency

Aberporth

Motorcycle

Ceredigion

Ashton-under-Lyne

Car

Ashton Under Lyne

Bromsgrove

Car

Bromsgrove

Congleton

Car

Congleton

Gloucester

Lorry

Gloucester

Islay Island

Lorry

Argyll and Bute

Neath

Lorry

Neath

Rutherglen

Car

Rutherglen and Hamilton West

Simonswood (Liverpool)

Lorry

West Lancashire

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
14th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, with reference to the oral contribution by the Chancellor of the Exchequer to the Treasury Committee on 12 December 2016, in response to Q311, who in his Department is responsible for assessing whether grant applications for Horizon 2020 funding are (a) value for money and (b) in line with Government objectives.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to him by my right hon. Friend the Chief Secretary to the Treasury on 20 December 2016 to Question UIN 57694.

2nd Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether he has consulted the Office of Rail and Road on the implications for its remit of the draft Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.

The Department for International Trade leads on Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and has established a process for regular cross-Whitehall engagement with relevant parts of Government to ensure matters arising from the TTIP discussions have been considered appropriately. There has also been extensive engagement with various stakeholders.

2nd Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what discussions he has had with the Civil Aviation Authority on the implications for its remit of the draft Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.

The Secretary of State for Transport has had no discussions with the Civil Aviation Authority on the implications for its remit of the draft Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.

4th Sep 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when he will publish the (a) business case and (b) payment schedule for the £30 million allocated to the Garden Bridge project in the National Infrastructure Plan 2013.

The Garden Bridge business case was published in May 2014. A copy can be obtained following this link:

https://tfl.gov.uk/cdn/static/cms/documents/garden-bridge-strategic-outline-business-case.pdf

The full £30 million of Government’s contribution was provided to Transport for London (TfL) in 2014/15 via their general grant. A funding agreement was signed which required, among other things, that TfL would jointly manage phased drawdown of both ‘their’ £30 million and ‘ours’ according to certain conditions:

https://tfl.gov.uk/cdn/static/cms/documents/garden-bridge-funding-agreement.pdf

10th Feb 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will place in the Library all information his Department holds comparing the (a) miles per gallon, (b) cost and (c) emissions of (i) premium and (ii) non-premium (A) diesel and (B) petrol.

The Government publishes a broad range of information on their performance and emissions. To help consumers to make an informed choice when buying a new car, on fuel costs and environmental impact, the Vehicle Certification Agency produces guide lists. These estimate the fuel consumption, carbon dioxide (CO2), and other emissions performance figures of new cars, currently on the market in the UK. An electronic version of the latest edition has been provided to the House Library.

The Department for Transport produces a range of statistics on air quality and other emissions by mode and vehicle as part of the energy and environment datasets (TSGB03) on the gov.uk website. We do not publish comparative data on the air quality emissions associated with different fuel types. Information on all sources of air pollution can be found in the National Atmospheric Emissions Inventory at http://naei.defra.gov.uk/. Progressively tighter emission standards are reducing pollutant emissions from all vehicles.

The Department of Energy and Climate Change also publishes weekly, monthly and annual typical prices of road fuels and petroleum products on the gov.uk website. This data includes super unleaded and non-premium unleaded petrol, and diesel.

The greenhouse gas emissions associated with diesel and petrol will vary depending upon the source of the materials and process used to produce both the fossil and renewable content of the fuel. The Department does not hold information on the carbon dioxide emissions associated with fossil diesel and petrol, and premium and non-premium grades. However, the Renewable Energy Directive sets a default energy content of 32 megajoules per litre for petrol and 36 for diesel, and a greenhouse gas emission of 83.8 grams of CO2 equivalent per megajoule - this equates to atypical emission per litre for petrol of 2681.6 grams of CO2 equivalent and 3016.8 grams of CO2 equivalent per litre for diesel.

Through the administration of the Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation the Department collects information on the carbon and sustainability characteristics of the renewable content of fuel reported under the scheme. This data is published quarterly on the gov.uk website. The latest published data covering the period 15 April 2014 to 14 April 2015, shows that bioethanol, blended with petrol, delivered greenhouse gas savings of 62% compared to fossil fuels and biodiesel, blended with diesel, achieved 75% greenhouse gas savings. The figures exclude emissions from indirect land-use change.

Super unleaded petrol, the premium grade, has a separate specification to regular unleaded petrol. This limits the oxygen content and a higher minimum for octane number. Some vehicles could be more fuel efficient when using this petrol if they have been designed to respond to using such a fuel as they will be able to develop more power from the fuel. While diesel may be marketed as premium on the basis of additives to the base fuel, all diesel is supplied to one standard EN590.

The Department does not have any information regarding the comparative fuel efficiency between super and regular unleaded petrol. However, the influence of fuel upon mileage, is much smaller, in general, than is the influence of other factors such as the vehicle itself (for example, its size, weight, power) , the way that the vehicle is driven, and the road conditions (for example motorway or urban driving).

11th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many staff are employed in his Department's headquarter buildings.

The number of staff employed in the Department’s headquarter buildings is 6621. The Full Time Equivalent is 5996.99

These figures include the central department and it’s agencies except Highways Agency who do not have a headquarters building.

8th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many desks are in his Department's main building; how many such desks are (a) owned and (b) leased by his Department; and what the cost is per desk of leasing.

There are 1,477 owned desks in the Department’s main headquarters building. The Department does not lease any desks.

12th Sep 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimates he has made of the cost of (a) adding a third lane on the A1(M) north from Scotch Corner to Edinburgh, (b) dualling of the A66 on all single carriage sections between Middlesborough and Carlisle, (c) dualling of the A1 north through Northumberland, (d) extending the metro to Washington, through Gateshead and Whickham to Consett, to Durham, (e) building a new bridge over the Wear at Sunderland, (f) building a Durham bypass, (g) building an Allerdene bridge over the A1(M) at Low Fell and (h) introducing integrated Oyster-style ticketing across the North East region and across buses, metro and trains.

The Department has not completed recent cost estimates for the transport proposals referred to. However, in terms of the strategic road network, this Government has allocated funding for, and the Highways Agency has started construction on, upgrading the A1 between Leeming to Barton to motorway standard which will create a continuous motorway standard route from London to Newcastle (via M1/A1M). Construction has also recently started on the A1 Coal House to Metro Centre improvement scheme in Gateshead. In terms of future proposals for the strategic road network, the Department is currently undertaking specific feasibility studies to identify solutions to address notorious and long standing hot spots on our national road network, including studies on the A1 North of Newcastle and the A1 Newcastle/Gateshead Western bypass.

The detailed scope of work for these studies were published in April this year and are available from the Government’s website at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/strategic-road-network-the-scope-of-6-feasibility-studies

The Government has committed to report progress on the studies at the time of the 2014 Autumn Statement.

In addition, as part of its investment planning process, the Highways Agency is developing route strategies for the entire strategic road network, including the A66. The route strategies will allow further consideration of the future investment proposals as part of the Department’s longer-term investment planning process.

In terms of the proposals for local transport improvements, responsibility for their development, including producing cost estimates, rests with the relevant local transport authority – in this instance, the North East Combined Authority.

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 10 April 2014, Official Report, column 367W, on the River Thames: bridges, in what year or years the £30 million allocated to the Garden Bridge in the National Infrastructure Plan 2013 is projected to be spent.

Should the business case demonstrate that the project represents good value for money, Government will agree the detailed terms of funding with the Garden Bridge Trust.

Whilst the payment schedule has not yet been determined. It is likely that the funding will be released in tranches throughout the project, as it reaches agreed milestones.

7th Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many women born in the 1950s and affected by the change of the state pension age received less than five years notice of that change.

The Pensions Acts of 1995, 2007 and 2011 were fully debated in Parliament. The government undertook wide public consultation before the passage of the Acts. This included publishing Green and White Papers. The passage of the Acts and the changes they brought in were widely reported in the media throughout this period.

The changes to State Pension age that the Pensions Act 1995 brought in started to come into effect from April 2010 giving a notice period of at least 15 years for those changes.

In addition, the DWP and others took extensive steps in the years following the 1995 Act to further communicate the changes to women born in the 1950s, as well as all others affected, by means such as leaflets, State Pension forecasts, media articles and personal letters.

Guy Opperman
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
11th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many (a) male and (b) female lone parent university students have been affected by the requirement to move from claiming tax credits to universal credit.

I refer the hon. Member to my answer to Question 163623 on 20 July 2018.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
6th Nov 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate she has made of the number of claimants of universal credit that are paid every (a) four weeks, (b) two weeks and (c) every week.

I refer the hon Member to question 151086 anwered on 12 June 2018.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
15th Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many claimants of (a) jobseeker's allowance and (b) employment and support allowance have not been contacted by her Department when they have reached state pension age and qualify for pension credit in the latest period for which figures are available.

The Department for Work & Pensions is unable to provide this information as the data is not collected and would only be available at disproportionate cost to the Department.

Guy Opperman
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
11th Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if she will publish the number of (a) claims for employment support allowance, (b) mandatory re-considerations, (c) mandatory re-considerations that went to appeal and (d) successful appeals of mandatory re-considerations in (i) the UK and (ii) each parliamentary constituency.

The information requested is not readily available and could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

The Department publishes quarterly statistics on Employment and Support Allowance (ESA): Outcomes of Work Capability Assessments (WCA) which include figures in tables 12 and 13 on mandatory reconsiderations and appeals of WCA decisions. These statistics are not currently available to Country or parliamentary constituency level but DWP statisticians are investigating how to extend the geography information provided. The statistics can be found at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/employment-and-support-allowance-outcomes-of-work-capability-assessment

Information for Northern Ireland is the responsibility of the Department for Communities. Northern Ireland statistics can be found at:

https://www.communities-ni.gov.uk/topics/benefits-statistics

14th May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people who had an earnings deduction order for child maintenance subsequently lost their jobs and claimed job seeker's allowance in 2016 -17.

The Department does not readily collate information on the number of people paying child maintenance via a deduction from earnings order who subsequently lost their job and claimed Job Seekers allowance within the year 2016-17. Obtaining the information to answer this question could only be provided at a disproportionate cost.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
14th Dec 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what recent progress he has made on plans to include Dupuytren's disease in the list of Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit diseases.

After considering the recommendation made by the Industrial Injuries Advisory Council, we have decided not to add Dupuytren’s contracture to the list of prescribed diseases.

24th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how the interest rate will be set, following support for mortgage interest changes in April 2018.

A Standard Interest Rate (SIR) based on the Bank of England’s published monthly average mortgage interest rate is used to calculate the amount paid towards the interest on a claimant’s mortgage and / or loan. This rate is based on information from banks and building societies and reflects an average of current mortgage interest rates on UK loans. The current rate (from June 2017) is 2.61%.

Interest will be charged on SMI loans based upon the cost of gilts as published by the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR). This rate reflects the cost of Government borrowing. The Gilt Rate Forecast for 2017-18 is 1.5% as specified in the latest Economic and Fiscal Outlook published on the 8th March 2017 by the OBR and the current forecast for 2018-19 is 1.7%.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
24th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, who will be administering the support for mortgage interest changes due to take place in April 2018.

The registration of charges on a claimant’s property and loan arrangements will be managed by the Department for Work and Pensions.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
24th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, following the support for mortgage interest changes in April 2018, with what frequency interest will be applied.

Interest on Support for Mortgage Interest loans will accrue daily and shall be added to the outstanding amount at the end of each month.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
24th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many claimants will be affected by the changes to the support for mortgage interest due to take place in April 2018.

I refer the Hon. Member to the answer I gave on 13 September 2017 to Question 9506.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
24th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, when he plans to publish the outcome of his Department's consultation on the proposed closure of Vinovium House.

We are currently consulting with our staff at Vinovium House and Trade Unions about the proposal. The outcomes of the consultation will be reviewed and considered before making a final decision on the future of this site.

It is necessary to delay any further announcements whilst we are in the pre-election period.

24th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether he has made a decision on the proposed closure of Vinovium House.

We are currently consulting with our staff at Vinovium House and Trade Unions about the proposal. The outcomes of the consultation will be reviewed and considered before making a final decision on the future of this site.

It is necessary to delay any further announcements whilst we are in the pre-election period.

24th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what progress his Department has made on consulting on the proposed closure of Vinovium House.

We are currently consulting with our staff at Vinovium House and Trade Unions about the proposal. The outcomes of the consultation will be reviewed and considered before making a final decision on the future of this site.

It is necessary to delay any further announcements whilst we are in the pre-election period.

13th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether the Government offers any provision of female sanitary products for women who consider themselves unable to afford such products.

Benefits administered by DWP do not include a specific amount for sanitary products, just as they do not include a specific amount for any other item such as food or fuel charges. Instead, an “applicable amount” is set through legislation passed by Parliament for each benefit.

An applicable amount is a standard national figure which the Government believes reflects the basic living needs of an applicant and their family.

There is no objective way of deciding what an adequate level of benefit should be. Every person has different requirements, and the Government strongly believes that individuals should be free to spend their benefits in the way that best suits their individual circumstances.

14th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, with reference to the oral contribution by the Chancellor of the Exchequer to the Treasury Committee on 12 December 2016, in response to Q311, who in his Department is responsible for assessing whether grant applications for Horizon 2020 funding are (a) value for money and (b) in line with Government objectives.

In response to Q311, at the Treasury Committee on Monday 12 December, the Chancellor made reference to the process for EU Structural Funds rather than for Horizon 2020

The Treasury will underwrite all successful bids for Horizon 2020 that are approved by the Commission, even when specific projects continue beyond the departure from the EU.

Government departments will not assess Horizon 2020 grant applications – Horizon 2020 is an EU programme, independent of the UK government, and grant funding is awarded by the Commission based on peer review.

UK businesses and Universities should continue to bid for competitive EU funds while we remain a member of the EU. We will work with the Commission to ensure payment when funds are awarded.

17th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what plans he has for transferring the administration of Attendance Allowance to local authorities; and if he will make a statement.

The Business Rate Retention consultation published by the Department for Communities and Local Government sought views on a wide variety of financial measures for Local Authorities in England including giving greater support for older people with care needs through local provision. The responses to this consultation are currently being considered and the Government will issue its response in due course.

The Government recognises the valuable role that Attendance Allowance has played in supporting older people with care needs as a result of their disability or long term health condition. Should changes be considered to the support currently provided by Attendance Allowance as part of any Business Rate Retention package, a further detailed consultation would be undertaken on this specific issue and we would involve key stakeholders in this process.

Penny Mordaunt
Paymaster General
12th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the average waiting time is for claimants of universal credit to receive their first payment.

The information you have requested is not currently quality assured for release.

We hope to be able to release data on this later this year after it has been quality assured.

8th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people who had their entitlement to the personal independent payment enhanced mobility rate removed and then reinstated on appeal were required to return a mobility vehicle or aid before that reinstatement in 2014-15.

The Department does not routinely collect information on the numbers of people who have had to return a Motability vehicle nor on whether they were successful on appeal. Motability is an independent charitable organisation that is wholly responsible for the administration of the Motability scheme, including collating its own management information. Whilst the Department meets regularly with Motability to discuss scheme performance, questions relating to the details of the scheme’s operation should be directed to Motability itself.

Justin Tomlinson
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
8th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate he has made of the number of women who are entitled to a state pension based on married women's reduced rate national insurance contributions.

The information is not available. Married women’s reduced-rate National Insurance contributions do not count for the purposes of entitlement to state pension. Instead, women who reached State Pension age before 6 April 2016 and who had paid reduced-rate National Insurance contributions may be entitled to a state pension based on the National Insurance contributions of their spouse.

Justin Tomlinson
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
24th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate he has made of how many people in supported housing specifically designated for (a) disabled people, (b) victims of domestic violence, (c) people with substance misuse problems and (d) others will be affected by the change in housing benefit to the Shared Accommodation Rate.

The information requested is not available.

Justin Tomlinson
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
24th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people have made representations to his Department about the proposed change of social sector housing benefit to the level of local housing allowance.

So far representations have been made by 93 individuals and 16 housing providers about the proposed change of social sector housing benefit to the level of local housing allowance.

DWP Ministers and officials will continue to have meetings with a wide variety of organisations in the public and private sectors as part of the process of policy development and delivery.

Justin Tomlinson
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
24th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many housing providers made representations to his Department about the proposed change of social sector housing benefit to the level of local housing allowance.

So far representations have been made by 93 individuals and 16 housing providers about the proposed change of social sector housing benefit to the level of local housing allowance.

DWP Ministers and officials will continue to have meetings with a wide variety of organisations in the public and private sectors as part of the process of policy development and delivery.

Justin Tomlinson
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
25th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, when the hon. Member for Bishop Auckland will receive a reply to his letter of 14 December 2015 addressed to Robert Devereux, Permanent Secretary to his Department.

The Permanent Secretary replied to the hon. Member on 28 January 2015.

Justin Tomlinson
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
18th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate he has made of how many people have received a lower pension credit entitlement as a result of receipt of the carer premium in each of the last three years.

The award of the additional amount for caring in Pension Credit (currently £34.60 weekly) does not, in itself, reduce Pension Credit entitlement as it is an additional sum added to the customer’s appropriate amount. Estimates of numbers qualifying for the additional amount in May 2014 were published last year:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/pension-credit-additional-amounts-and-assessed-income-periods-may-2014

However, in order to qualify for the additional amount for caring the customer must be entitled to Carer’s Allowance. If Carer’s Allowance is in payment then it is taken into account as income and the person being cared for does not qualify for the additional amount for severe disability in Pension Credit. We do not have any estimates of the impact on Pension Credit where Carer’s Allowance is in payment.


Justin Tomlinson
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
13th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people no longer receive the disability premium following their transfer from receipt of disability living allowance to personal independence payments.

Disability premium is an extra amount automatically added to Income Support or income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) for those who qualify.


Information on the payment of this premium for those who were also receiving Disability Living Allowance (DLA) and have now transferred to Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is not readily available and to provide it would incur disproportionate cost.

Justin Tomlinson
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
13th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people were moved from receipt of employment and support allowance to jobseeker's allowance because they did not meet the new points standard in each quarter of 2015.

This is not readily available and to provide it would incur disproportionate cost.

Priti Patel
Home Secretary
17th Sep 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what reasonable adjustments will be made to support any disabled young person required to attend boot camp to prepare for employment under the Earn or Learn policy.

From April 2017, we will be introducing the new Youth Obligation for Universal Credit (UC) claimants aged 18-21 who will be expected and supported to look for work. This new programme of support will help young people develop skills and experience to get and keep work.

The first three weeks of this will be a Work Coach led Intensive Activity Period (IAP), where young people on the Youth Obligation will complete a set curriculum of activity designed to help establish them as effective full time job-seekers straight away and support them into work as soon as possible.

Any requirements placed on claimants through the Youth Obligation will be reasonable and tailored to their individual needs and capabilities, taking into consideration any health condition they may have.

We will set out our policy design for disabled young people under the Youth Obligation in due course.

Priti Patel
Home Secretary
17th Sep 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what support his Department provides to disabled young people who are required to take traineeships or unpaid work experience under the Earn or Learn policy.

Jobcentre Plus will help meet the costs of any reasonable adjustments where appropriate to enable the young person to participate in a work experience placement. Certain expenses, such as child care costs and travel can also be reimbursed.

Young people participating in a traineeship can qualify for existing financial support, including the 16 to 19 Bursary Fund, Free Meals, and Learning and Learner Support funding for 19 to 24 year olds. Access to Work is also available for the work experience placement of their traineeship if they have a disability or health condition that affects their ability to do a job, or means they have to pay extra work-related costs.

Any policy changes under the Youth Obligation will be set out in due course.

Priti Patel
Home Secretary
17th Sep 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if a disabled young person will be able to make a claim under the Access to Work scheme if required to undergo a traineeship or unpaid work experience under the Earn or Learn policy.

Access to Work is available to individuals aged 16 or over whose disability or health condition affects the way they undertake employment or some pre-employment related activities. This would include a supported traineeship or a Jobcentre Plus Work Trial.

Justin Tomlinson
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
4th Sep 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answers of 30 June 2015 to Questions 4382 and 4385, what his Department's planning assumptions are on (a) the CSA case closure process and the numbers and rate at which cases will be closed and (b) the proportion of former CSA cases by segment expected to apply to the 2012 statutory child maintenance scheme in the case of proactive case closures cases and reactive case closure cases.

a) The closure of CSA cases is being progressed in accordance with “The Ending Liability Scheme”. The CSA cases currently being selected for closure are those in segment 4; having completed the planned selection of segments 1, 2 and 3. Cases that newly meet segment 1, 2 or 3 criteria (due to changes to the compliance status or the maintenance calculation value of the case) are identified and selected for closure alongside the current segment.

Approximately 7,900 cases per week are selected for case closure, at which time those clients are notified that their CSA liability will end in 6 months time and are signposted to Child Maintenance Options to discuss and consider their future child maintenance arrangements.

b) The information is in the table.

The proportion of CSA clients expected to apply to the 2012 statutory child maintenance scheme

Proactive case closure

Segment 1

24%

Segment 2

45%

Segment 3 and 4

50%

Segment 5

50%

Reactive case closure

63%

Notes:

1. The child support scheme for timing and related matters to ending liability in existing cases (“the ending liability scheme”) can be found at

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/child-maintenance-ending-liability-scheme

2. Assumptions are monitored and reviewed based on actual behaviours and findings as the CSA programme of case closure progresses.

Priti Patel
Home Secretary
13th Jul 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the contribution by the Prime Minister of 24 June 2015, Official Report, column 886, when the data on public spending referred to in that contribution will be published.

The Department intends to publish out-of-work benefits mortality statistics and the publication date will be pre-announced at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/list-of-scheduled-upcoming-ad-hoc-statistical-releases

Priti Patel
Home Secretary
25th Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many applications to the 2012 statutory child maintenance scheme made since January 2015 have been from parents whose previous Child Support Agency (CSA) case was shut down as part of the phased CSA case closure programme.

Approximately 3,800 applications made to the 2012 child maintenance scheme between the 01 January 2015 and 31 May 2015 were made by parents who previously had a case with the Child Support Agency, which was closed as part of the case closure programme. This is broadly in line with our current planning assumptions at this early stage of the case closure process.

Priti Patel
Home Secretary
25th Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many Child Support Agency cases reviewed as part of the ongoing closure programme have been closed by his Department to date.

As at 31 May 2015, 24,100 cases have been closed as part of the Child Support Agency case closure programme.

Notes:

Figure rounded to the nearest 100.

The figure is made up from cases proactively selected for case closure, and those where an application has been made to the 2012 scheme and a case exists on the 93/03 scheme which is then reactively closed down.

Priti Patel
Home Secretary
11th Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, when he plans to publish the recommendations from the peer reviews of deaths which occurred during benefit sanctions.

Peer Reviews are used to examine whether processes have been followed correctly, and are not used to seek out or apportion blame. Where opportunities for improvement are found, recommendations are made. It is important to appreciate that these reviews do not examine the underlying benefit policy or legislation. DWP has no plans to publish these reports.

Priti Patel
Home Secretary
3rd Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many citizens of other EU member states receive (a) disability living allowance and (b) personal independence payments.

The Department for Work and Pensions does not collect information on the EU citizenship status of claimants for Disability Living Allowance and Personal Independence Payment.

Justin Tomlinson
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
2nd Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many citizens of other EU member states with Parkinson's disease receive disability living allowance or personal independence payments.

The Department for Work and Pensions does not collect information on the EU citizenship status of claimants for Disability Living Allowance and Personal Independence Payment.

Justin Tomlinson
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
2nd Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 9 February 2015 to Question 223811, what progress has been made in completing the new Data Warehouse required by his Department to provide full IT functionality to support the 2012 Child Maintenance Scheme.

Data warehouse capability has been delivered that provides automated support for new applications to the 2012 Scheme. Work is also underway to deliver additional capability to support the automated movement of relevant Child Support Agency arrears information to the 2012 system.

Priti Patel
Home Secretary
2nd Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what systems and procedures exist between the Child Maintenance Service (CMS) and the Child Support Agency (CSA) to ensure that where, following a six-month warning notice of CSA case closure, a parent with care applies in advance to the CMS, the new application is not processed prematurely and a case opened by the CMS, prior to the CSA case being closed.

Central to the arrangements for identifying and controlling the steps taken on 2012 scheme applications received from parents with care is the Data Warehouse. The Data Warehouse holds records of all Child Support Agency cases and there is an automatic interface between the Warehouse and the new Child Maintenance Service system.

Priti Patel
Home Secretary
2nd Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, in how many cases the Child Maintenance Service opened a new case in error before a case subject to the Child Support Agency case closure process was closed in the last 12 months.

The Child Maintenance Service computer systems automatically check whether clients making applications to the 2012 Scheme also have a case with Child Support Agency (CSA).

At February 2015, the Child Maintenance Service had received around 7,900 new applications from clients with CSA cases which are closing. Of these, 52 (around 0.6%) have had liability set up on the 2012 scheme before their CSA liability ended.

Processes are in place to correct these cases through specialist teams who provide individual advice on a case by case basis. Additionally, to minimise occurrences, the automated lookups to the CSA systems are refreshed regularly and upgrades to the computer software have been made.

Priti Patel
Home Secretary
2nd Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, for what period of time parents who were formerly in receipt of Child Support Agency maintenance via that agency's collection service will experience a gap in child maintenance payments before their new applications to the Child Maintenance Service made within the six-month notice period are processed and a new payment schedule notified to the paying parent.

The Government has committed to minimise disruption for those parents who wish to continue using the statutory service. We will guarantee that if parents choose to apply to the Child Maintenance Service (CMS), and apply before the liability on their Child Support Agency (CSA) case ends, the underlying requirement to pay will continue through to their new case in the CMS.

Priti Patel
Home Secretary
19th Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many Child Support Agency (CSA) cases have been closed as part of the phased three-year CSA case closure programme.

Up to and including 28th February 2015, 5,100 cases have been closed as part of the phased three-year CSA case closure programme.

Notes:

Figure rounded to the nearest 100.

The figure is made up from cases proactively selected for case closure, and those where an application has been made to the 2012 scheme and a case exists on the 93/03 scheme which is then reactively closed down.

19th Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many Child Support Agency cases are being dealt with by the legal enforcement section of that Agency.

As of the end of November 2014 17,100 cases were being dealt with by the legal enforcement section of the Child Support Agency.

Notes:

Figure rounded to the nearest 100.

19th Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many calls the Child Maintenance Options Service has received in each month from September 2014 to date.

The number of inbound calls received by the Child Maintenance Options Service from September 2014 to the end of February 2015 is shown in the table below.

Month

Number of calls received by the Child Maintenance Options Service

Sep-14

31,390

Oct-14

30,460

Nov-14

27,300

Dec-14

20,970

Jan-15

33,010

Feb-15

31,020

Notes:

- Data Sourced from CMO Monthly MI Service Pack

- Data rounded to nearest 10

19th Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many six months' notice warning letters of case closure have been sent to Child Support Agency customers in each month since December 2014.

The table below shows the number of six months’ notice warning letters of case closure, that have been issued since December 2014:

Month

Notifications Issued in Month

January 2015

59,800

February 2015

50,600

Notes:

Figure rounded to the nearest 100.

The figures are made up from cases proactively selected for case closure, and those where an application has been made to the 2012 scheme and a case exists on the 93/03 scheme which is then reactively closed down.

19th Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many reminder letters giving one month's warning of case closure have been sent to Child Support Agency customers in each of the last 12 months.

The table below shows the number of reminder letters that have been issued giving one months warning of case closure. The case closure process started on the 30 June 2014, with reminder letters being issued from December 2014.

Month

Notifications Issued in Month

December 2014

5,300

January 2015

13,200

February 2015

37,500

Notes:

Figure rounded to the nearest 100.

The figures are made up from cases proactively selected for case closure, and those where an application has been made to the 2012 scheme and a case exists on the 93/03 scheme which is then reactively closed down.

9th Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how much child maintenance arrears (a) is designated technically uncollectable and (b) his Department has already written-off as uncollectable since the write-off powers were introduced in November 2012; and what the reasons are for any difference between the two such figures.

(a) Information on uncollectable arrears can be found on page 41 of the latest Child Support Agency Quarterly Summary of Statistics, available at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/404296/csa-qtr-summ-stats-dec-2014.pdf

(b) Under the Write Off and Part Payment Powers introduced on 10 December 2012 the Department has written off £1.2 million in the financial year 2012/13 and £16.0 million in the financial year 2013/14 giving a total written off of £17.2 million.

The two figures are not directly comparable. The data is based on different sources, uncollectable arrears is based on the entire caseload whereas the amount written off relates to specific cases where agreement to write off has been reached.

5th Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many benefit claimants who had been referred for sanction were not sanctioned following provision of a recognised good reason for not having fulfilled their claimant conditions in the latest period for which figures are available.

The information as requested is not available but such information we can provide is for the number of Jobseeker’s Allowance and Employment and Support Allowance non adverse mandatory reconsiderations, by reason for referral and this is available at:

https://stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/

Guidance on how to extract the information required can be found at:

https://sw.stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/webapi/online-help/Stat-Xplore_User_Guide.htm

4th Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate his Department has made of the amount of Child Support Agency arrears owing in cases with a current liability that will be (a) written off in full, (b) written off in part, (c) re-valued to take account of a previous interim maintenance assessment and (d) transferred to the Child Maintenance Service for collection as a result of the 2015 to 2018 phased closure of such cases.

We cannot predict how many parents with care will agree to have their child maintenance arrears written off during the case closure process; however all will be given the opportunity to do so. No estimates have been published for the amount of Child Support Agency arrears that will be (a) written off in full, (b) written off in part, (c) re-valued to take account of a previous interim maintenance assessment, or (d) transferred to the Child Maintenance Service for collection.

4th Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether his Department has undertaken a review of the results of the controlled approach to implementation of the power contained in the Child Support Management of Payments and Arrears (Amendment) Regulations 2012 allowing part payment of child maintenance arrears in full and final satisfaction of a debt where both parents consent; and if he will assess the merits of his Department adopting a pro-active rather than reactive approach to use of that power in suitable cases.

The Department continues to consider the merits of adopting a proactive approach to part payment of child maintenance arrears. However the immediate priority is to ensure the smooth running of the 2012 child maintenance scheme so that children benefit from regular ongoing maintenance payments and we will continue to do all we can to collect historic Child Support Agency arrears.

4th Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate his Department has made of the likely proportion of parents with care with child maintenance arrears whose CSA cases will be closed as part of the scheduled case closure process who will opt to have their child maintenance arrears (a) written off as part of the shutdown and (b) transferred to the child maintenance service for future collection.

We cannot predict how many parents with care will agree to have their child maintenance arrears written off during the case closure process; however all will be given the opportunity to do so. No estimates have been published for the amount of Child Support Agency arrears that will be (a) written off in full, (b) written off in part, (c) re-valued to take account of a previous interim maintenance assessment, or (d) transferred to the Child Maintenance Service for collection.

4th Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, when his Department next plans to release statistics on the 2012 statutory child maintenance scheme.

The next release of the Child Maintenance Service Experimental Statistics on the 2012 Scheme is announced on the GOV.UK website at https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/announcements/child-maintenance-service-2012-experimental-statistics-february-2015

4th Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many parents with care who have child maintenance arrears but who are not receiving ongoing maintenance through the Child Support Agency have been contacted by his Department since the Child Support Management of Payments and Arrears (Amendment) Regulations 2012 came into effect to be asked whether they wish the Agency to continue pursuing those arrears.

Information on the number of cases that have been contacted by the Department regarding the pursuit of arrears is not collated centrally and could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

3rd Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people in London claimed (a) £250 per week for a one bedroom, (b) £290 per week for a two bedroom property, (c) £340 per week for a three bedroom property and (d) £400 per week for a four bedroom property in housing benefit in 2013-14.

The information requested in respect of all housing benefit claimants is not available. The Department does collect some information on the number of entitled bedrooms in respect of the Local Housing Allowance only. We are therefore unable to answer these questions which relate to all housing benefit claimants.

The information available is for local housing allowance (LHA) cases by the number of entitled bedrooms and weekly award amount bands.

This information is published and available at:

https://stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/

Guidance on how to extract the information required can be found at:

https://sw.stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/webapi/online-help/Stat-Xplore_User_Guide.htm

3rd Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many new claims there were for housing benefit of (a) £250 per week for a one bedroom property or shared accommodation, (b) £290 per week for a two bedroom property, (c) £340 per week for a three bedroom property and (d) £400 per week for a property with four or more bedrooms.

The information requested in respect of all housing benefit claimants is not available. The Department does collect some information on the number of entitled bedrooms in respect of the Local Housing Allowance only. We are therefore unable to answer these questions which relate to all housing benefit claimants.

The information available is for local housing allowance (LHA) cases by the number of entitled bedrooms and weekly award amount bands.

This information is published and available at:

https://stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/

Guidance on how to extract the information required can be found at:

https://sw.stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/webapi/online-help/Stat-Xplore_User_Guide.htm

3rd Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people in 2013-14 received local housing allowance at a rate of (a) £250 per week for a 1-bedroom property or shared accommodation, (b) £290 per week for a 2-bedroom property, (c) £340 per week for a 3-bedroom property and (d) £400 per week for a property with four or more bedrooms.

The information available is for local housing allowance (LHA) cases by the number of entitled bedrooms and weekly award amount bands.

This information is published and available at:

https://stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/

Guidance on how to extract the information required can be found at:

https://sw.stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/webapi/online-help/Stat-Xplore_User_Guide.htm

23rd Feb 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what proportion of the child maintenance arrears owed in respect of Child Support Agency cases where a child could still benefit is owed by a parent who is self-employed or a director of a private company.

As at December 2014, 12.4%1 of the amount of arrears where there is a qualifying child remaining on the case is owed by non resident parents who are self-employed.

Information on the job title of non-resident parents is not routinely recorded for management information purposes and could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

Note:

1. Data sourced from CSCS and CS2 computer systems. Employment status is not available for cases managed off system.

23rd Feb 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what proportion of Child Support Agency cases with a child who could benefit are known to concern a non-resident parent who is self-employed or a director of a private company.

As at December 2014, of the live cases where there is a qualifying child remaining on the case, 8.5%1 are in relation to a non resident parent who is self-employed.

Information on the job title of non-resident parents is not routinely recorded for management information purposes and could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

Note:

1. Data sourced from CSCS and CS2 computer systems. Employment status is not available for cases managed off system.

23rd Feb 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, in how many and what proportion of Child Support Agency arrears cases where there is a child who could still benefit was a contribution made to arrears in the last (a) quarter, (b) year and (c) two years.

The table below shows the numbers and proportions of arrears cases where a qualifying child is remaining on the case, where a contribution towards arrears has been made within the last two years.

Last paid:

Number

Proportion

Latest quarter (Dec 14)

183,200

25.3%

Latest year

345,200

47.8%

Latest 2 years

410,700

56.8%

23rd Feb 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how much of the Child Support Agency arrears owed in respect of a child who could still benefit are regarded as (a) temporarily and (b) permanently collectable.

As at December 2014, the amount of arrears where there is a qualifying child remaining on the case that is (a) temporarily1 and (b) permanently2 uncollectable is £4.8 million and £10.3 million respectively.

Notes:

1. We have interpreted temporarily uncollectable as arrears on cases where the case is under surveillance, we are unable to trace the NRP, the NRP is abroad or the debt is suspended.

2. We have interpreted permanently uncollectable as arrears on cases where the non-resident parent or parent with care is deceased, where the arrears are deferred or where the arrears are classed as Interim Maintenance Assessment Gap (money that cannot be collected due to it not being covered by legislation).

23rd Feb 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what (a) number and (b) proportion of Child Support Agency cases are known to concern a non-resident parent who is (i) self-employed and (ii) a director of a private company.

As at December 2014, there were 102,3001 (7.5%) live cases where the non resident parent was self-employed.

Information on the job title of non-resident parents is not routinely recorded for management information purposes and could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

Note:

1. Data sourced from CSCS and CS2 computer systems. Employment status is not available for cases managed off system.

23rd Feb 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, in what proportion of Child Support Agency arrears cases where there is a child who could still benefit are there arrears which have been (a) temporarily and (b) permanently suspended.

As of December 2014 approximately 36%1 of cases with arrears where there is a qualifying child remaining on the case contained an amount of suspended arrears.

Information regarding arrears that have been temporarily or permanently suspended is not readily available and has not previously been published as official statistics. We will consider whether it is feasible to produce the statistics requested within the disproportionate cost limit, and if so, will issue them in an official statistics release in accordance with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics.

Notes:

1. Management information on suspended debt is not available for off system cases, therefore the proportion of suspended arrears has been calculated using CS2 and CSCS cases only.

23rd Feb 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 12 February 2015 to Question 223811, whether the next release of experimental statistics on the 2012 child maintenance scheme will include data on (a) the extent to which cases are fully, partially or nil compliant and (b) the amount of child maintenance arrears currently outstanding on Child Maintenance Service cases.

We intend to include data on the proportion of 2012 cases contributing in the next release of experimental statistics on the 2012 child maintenance scheme.

We are not yet in a position to release full statistics on the 2012 Scheme, administered by the Child Maintenance Service, but when system data become available and fully assured they will be released as part of a managed process, which will be pre-announced and in line with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics.

23rd Feb 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the caseload onflow onto local housing authority housing benefit was in each of the last three years.

I have interpreted the question to relate to a time series of the Housing Benefit (HB) local housing allowance (LHA) caseloads.

This information is available and published at:

https://stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/

Guidance on how to extract the information required can be found at:

https://sw.stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/webapi/online-help/Stat-Xplore_User_Guide.htm

9th Feb 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, when he expects that the new Data Warehouse intended to facilitate strategic management information reporting on the 2012 Child Maintenance Scheme (CMS) will come fully into operation; and for what reason the planned implementation date of 2014 anticipated in his Department's strategy for the publication of information about the 2012 CMS was not added to.

The data warehouse capability intended to facilitate strategic management information reporting on the 2012 Child Maintenance Scheme (CMS) is being developed and implemented in stages.

The first 2 stages of CMS 2012 management information using the data warehouse, covering information about 2012 Scheme Client Funds and Client Compliance, have been delivered.

A third stage of delivery, using a strategic reporting capability, covering workflow management, is planned for delivery later in 2015. Delivery of this stage is also intended to inform proposals to develop further stages including their timing.

5th Feb 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if he will estimate the number of people who are in receipt of benefits totalling between (a) £23,000 and £24,000, (b) £24,000 and £25,000 and (c) £25,000 and £26,000 a year.

The information requested is not readily available and could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

5th Feb 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people who are affected by the benefit cap are in receipt of (a) bereavement allowance, (b) carer's allowance, (c) child benefit, (d) child tax credit, (e) employment and support allowance, except where the support component has been awarded, (f) guardian's allowance, (g) housing benefit, (h) incapacity benefit, (i) income support, (j) jobseeker's allowance, (k) maternity allowance, (l) severe disablement allowance, (m) widowed parent's allowance and (n) widow's benefit.

Full benefit cap statistics for November 2014 can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/benefit-cap-number-of-households-capped-to-november-2014

These statistics do not contain benefit type information. However, all capped households included in the official statistics are in receipt of Housing Benefit. At November 2014 (the latest available data) 24,252 households are subject to the cap, and therefore are in receipt of Housing Benefit. At November 2014 22,866 capped households had 1 or more child dependants so we could infer that all of these capped households with child dependant(s) are in receipt of child benefit.

A suite of evaluation was published on 15 December 2014. This evaluation made estimates of the proportion of capped households in scope for the cap who were in receipt of Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA), Income Support (IS), Employment Support Allowance (ESA) or other benefit types over time.

Further information can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/benefit-cap-evaluation

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/benefit-cap-review-of-the-first-year

5th Feb 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many claimants of housing benefit are 18 to 21 years old; and how much his Department spent in each of the last three years on housing benefit for 18 to 21 year olds.

At August 2014, the latest period for which data is available, there were 115,935 Housing Benefit claimants aged 18 to 21.

Expenditure information is in the table below.

Housing Benefit expenditure for 18 to 21 year olds, £millions

Nominal terms

Real terms, 2014/15 prices

2011/12

776

818

2012/13

750

778

2013/14

685

698

Source: Single Housing Benefit Extract and Local Authority subsidy returns.

Notes:

1. Benefit expenditure is available for financial years only.

2. Figures at 2014/15 prices are deflated using GDP deflators published following the 2014 Autumn Statement at: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/383988/GDP_Deflators_Autumn_Statement_December_2014_update.xls

3. Information on the number of Housing Benefit claimants is published on Stat-Xplore at https://stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/

23rd Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether people are informed when they are sent their national insurance number that they will need it in order to register to vote.

The letter issued by DWP advising individuals of their National Insurance number focuses on the primary use of the National Insurance number i.e. for the payment of tax, national insurance contributions and to claim benefit.

The letter directs individuals to gov.uk where information relating to the organisations that need to use the national insurance number is provided. This includes Electoral Registration Officers for Voter Registration.

https://www.gov.uk/national-insurance/your-national-insurance-number

23rd Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps he plans to take in the next three months to advertise how people can (a) get a national insurance number if they do not have one and (b) find out their national insurance number if they do not know it.

Information is readily available at gov.uk advising people:

(a) how to get a National Insurance number if they do not have one

https://www.gov.uk/apply-national-insurance-number

(b) find out their National Insurance number if they do not know it

https://www.gov.uk/lost-national-insurance-number

23rd Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if he will publish the letter sent to people when they receive their national insurance number.

A copy of the letter sent to people by DWP when they have been allocated their National Insurance number via the adult allocation process will be placed in the House of Commons Library.

21st Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, with reference to the statement in his Department's strategy for the publication of information about the 2012 scheme administered by the Child Maintenence Service (CMS) that the strategic management information reporting capability of a new Data Warehouse would be available from 2014, what the latest timetable is for the managed process of the release of fully assured statistics on the performance of the CMS.

Development of a data warehouse capability is being implemented in stages, the first stage of this for CMS 2012 management information is expected for delivery later in 2015 with subsequent stages thereafter. In the meantime management information developed from relevant interim statistics have been released as Experimental Official Statistics and these will continue to be built on and assured.

16th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many letters giving one month's notice of case closure have been sent to Child Support Agency clients.

Up to and including 11 January 2015, 7,521 reminder letters have been sent to clients, giving one month’s notice of case closure.

16th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many six months' notice warning letters of case closure have been sent to Child Support Agency customers in each month since 30 June 2014.

The table attached below shows the monthly distribution of first contact notice of closure letters, issued to parents six months prior to case closure. It also shows the cumulative totals that have been sent in each month since 30 June 2014, when the case closure process started with a low volume pathfinder approach before ramping to full volumes from September 2014.

Month

Notifications Issued in Month

Cumulative Number of Notifications Issued

July 2014

3,890

3,890

August 2014

19,092

22,982

September 2014

45,903

68,885

October 2014

55,193

124,078

November 2014

67,978

192,056

December 2014

50,508

242,564

16th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, with reference to paragraph 5.3 of the Government response to the 17th Report of the Public Accounts Committee, Cm 8988, what steps his Department is taking to alert Segment 1 (nil assessed) Child Support Agency clients to the fact that an estimated third of them would qualify for more child maintenance if they applied to the new statutory child maintenance scheme.

The approach to communicating with clients as they go through the case closure process is to encourage them to make a new child maintenance arrangement. Our view is that in most cases it is best for clients if they can make their own arrangements outside the statutory scheme. To support this, we contact affected clients three times; twice before and once at the point their CSA arrangement ends. All of these letters encourage clients to seek support from Child Maintenance Options and discuss the right arrangement for them.

We did not customise communications for nil assessed clients because we are unable to identify which clients would have a positive assessment until they apply.

16th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, with reference to the 390 child maintenance service cases noted in Figure 5 of the Report by the National Audit Office on Child Maintenance 2012 Scheme: Early Progress, HC 173, published on 20 June 2014, what legal enforcement action has been taken in those cases; and in how many of those cases child maintenance arrears have been paid in (a) full and (b) part as a result of that action.

We are not yet in a position to release full statistics on the 2012 Scheme, administered by the Child Maintenance Service, but when system data become available and fully assured they will be released as part of a managed process, which will be pre-announced and in line with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics.

15th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the average number of job searches required of jobseeker's allowance claimants is in (a) each English region and (b) each age group.

There is not set number of jobsearches required.

It is a condition of entitlement for Jobseeker’s Allowance claimants to be actively seeking work. To meet this requirement, claimants are generally expected to take all reasonable steps each week to give them the best prospects of obtaining work.

DWP Work Coaches agree steps that it is reasonable to expect the claimant to undertake, taking into account individual circumstances and record these in a Claimant Commitment which is regularly reviewed and updated as appropriate.

14th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, with reference to the Government's response to the Independent review of the operation of jobseeker's allowance sanctions, published in July 2014, when he plans to publish the communications review referred to in that document.

We have accepted all recommendations made by the Oakley Report and we have already implemented a number of improvements. Our response sets out a number of target completion dates for recommendations made by the Oakley Report.

In the Government Response to the Oakley Review we committed to report on the progress of the Communications Review by the end of 2014. The Department published an update on improvements to communications following the review, on 18 December 2014. This can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/387727/jsa-sanctions-independent-review-government-response-update.pdf

14th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many staff of his Department have been assigned to implementation of the recommendations of the independent review of the operation of jobseekers' allowance sanctions, published in July 2014; what estimate he has made of the number of staff hours that have been spent on that implementation to date; and what funding his Department has allocated to that implementation.

The information as requested is not readily available and could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

14th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what progress his Department has made on the implementation of the recommendations which the Government (a) accepted, (b) accepted in principle and (c) accepted and were already underway in its response to the publication entitled, Independent review of the operation of jobseeker's allowance sanctions, published in July 2014.

We have published our response to the Oakley Report and a copy can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/332137/jsa-sanctions-independent-review-government-response.pdf

We have accepted all recommendations made by the Oakley Report and we have already implemented a number of improvements. Our response sets out a number of target completion dates for recommendations made by the Oakley Report.

14th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many of the recommendations accepted in the Government's response to the Independent review of the operation of jobseeker's allowance sanctions, published in July 2014, his Department plans to have implemented by May 2015.

We have published our response to the Oakley Report and a copy can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/332137/jsa-sanctions-independent-review-government-response.pdf

We have accepted all recommendations made by the Oakley Report and we have already implemented a number of improvements. Our response sets out a number of target completion dates for recommendations made by the Oakley Report.

14th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, with reference to recommendation 11 of the Government's response to the Independent review of the operation of jobseeker's allowance sanctions, published in July 2014, what potential warnings and non-financial sanctions options his Department has considered in response to that recommendation.

We have published our response to the Oakley Report and a copy can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/332137/jsa-sanctions-independent-review-government-response.pdf

We have accepted all recommendations made by the Oakley Report and we have already implemented a number of improvements. Our response sets out a number of target completion dates for recommendations made by the Oakley Report.

12th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people have appealed against child maintenance decisions since the introduction of the mandatory reconsideration period.

For cases managed by the Child Support Agency (1993/2003 Schemes) figures on the number of people who have appealed against child maintenance decisions since the introduction of mandatory reconsideration is published in table 18 (page 46) of the latest Child Support Agency Quarterly Summary of Statistics, which contains data up to September 2014.

We are not yet in a position to release full statistics on the 2012 Scheme, administered by the Child Maintenance Service, but when system data become available and fully assured they will be released as part of a managed process, which will be pre-announced and in line with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics.

12th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether his Department has issued guidance on the evaluation of Innovation Fund projects to support separated families.

DWP officials work closely with all Innovation Fund projects as they deliver their services for separated families and collect relevant data for use in evaluation. The methodology of the formal evaluation will be agreed between DWP and the external evaluator with support from suppliers.

12th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people who in the past (a) had nil assessments and (b) were in the first tranche of old case closures would be eligible for payments under the current child maintenance system.

Nil assessed cases make up the first segment of Child Support Agency case closures. It is estimated that around 50,000 of these nil assessed CSA cases will be eligible for payments should a new application be made to the 2012 Scheme, administered by the Child Maintenance Service.

12th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 8 December 2014 to Question 906491, when he will publish data on how many victims of domestic violence are using the exemption to the child maintenance application fee.

We are not yet in a position to release full statistics on the 2012 Scheme, administered by the Child Maintenance Service, but when system data become available and fully assured they will be released as part of a managed process, which will be pre-announced and in line with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics.

12th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the average cost per case is under the new child maintenance system.

We are not yet in a position to release full statistics on the 2012 Scheme, administered by the Child Maintenance Service, but when system data become available and fully assured they will be released as part of a managed process, which will be pre-announced and in line with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics.

12th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether the £2,000 tax free childcare allowance is available to those on universal credit.

In 2013 Budget, the Government announced a new childcare scheme called Tax-Free Childcare to provide further support for working families who do not receive Universal Credit. Tax-Free Childcare will offer working families, where neither parent is an additional rate tax payer, 20% support towards qualifying childcare costs – the equivalent of basic tax relief.

Childcare support is offered to parents on Universal Credit as part of a welfare system designed to make sure that work pays for those who need the most support. Childcare costs are taken into account in calculating working parents’ Universal Credit awards, and it is therefore right that a parent in receipt of Universal Credit cannot receive support under this scheme at the same time. The new Tax-Free Childcare scheme will support families as they increase their income and, for the first time, families can be sure that support for childcare costs will be available as they move off benefits altogether.

Whilst parents can only receive support from one scheme at any time, where families are eligible for both they will have the freedom to choose the scheme which best meets their needs and will be able to move freely between schemes when they experience a relevant change in circumstances. Draft guidance for parents on Tax-Free Childcare has already been published online for consultation.

9th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what incentives jobcentres have to sanction benefit claimants.

Jobcentres have no incentives to sanction benefit claimants.

9th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if he will publish the performance metrics for jobcentres.
9th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how much has been spent on in-work housing benefit for migrant workers from the European Economic Area who have arrived in the UK within the last (a) six months, (b) 12 months and (c) 24 months.

Whilst the Government checks the immigration status of benefit claimants to ensure the benefit is paid properly and to prevent fraud, historically that information has not been collected as part of the payment administrative systems. It is therefore not possible to supply the information requested.

However, the Government is looking at ways to reform the current administrative system under Universal Credit so that it will systematically record nationality and immigration status of migrants who make a claim.

The Government has introduced a number of measures to restrict access to benefits over the last year in support of Government policy to focus support towards those who come to the UK in order to contribute.

6th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people have (a) begun and (b) stopped paying the under-occupancy penalty in 2014-15 to date.

We published an analysis of the changes to the number of people subject to a reduction in their Housing Benefit award from May to December 2013. This was published here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/removal-of-the-spare-room-subsidy-analysis-july-2014

It is not possible at this time to update this information within the disproportionate cost limit. I will however consider if an update can be published in the future.

16th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many calls there were to the Child Maintenance Options Service from September 2014 to the end of November 2014.

The number of inbound calls received by the Child Maintenance Options Service from September 2014 to the end of November 2014 is shown in the table below.

Month

Number of calls received by the Child Maintenance Options Service

Sep-14

31,390

Oct-14

30,460

Nov-14

27,300

Notes:

- Data Sourced from CMO Monthly MI Service Pack

- Data rounded to nearest 5

11th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many staff are employed in his Department's headquarter buildings.

DWP employs 90,577 people, and as of 30 November 2014 there were 7579 staff based across 8 headquarter sites.

8th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many desks are in his Department's main building; how many such desks are (a) owned and (b) leased by his Department; and what the cost is per desk of leasing.

There are 2125 desks in the Department’s main building.

(a) The Department does not own any of these desks.

(b) Since 1998 the Department for Work and Pensions occupies the majority of its accommodation under a Private Finance Initiative (PFI) known as the PRIME Contract.

Under the terms of this PFI, the Department leases back fully serviced accommodation from its private sector partner Telereal Trillium. We pay an all-inclusive unitary price, known as the Facility Price (FP), for all our furniture (including desks), fixtures, equipment and FM services.

It is not possible to break FP down into individual items.

25th Nov 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether an Access to Work claimant has to be paying class 2 national insurance contributions in order to qualify for the scheme as a self-employed person.

In order to be eligible for funding through the Access to Work programme customers must satisfy certain eligibility criteria. One of these criteria is that they are employed or self employed. For Access to Work purposes, self-employment is defined as:

• operating a business either alone or in partnership, or working for an employer on a self-employed contractual basis;

• operating a franchised business on a self-employed basis;

• paying Class II or class IV National Insurance contributions.

• If the applicant is over retirement age (and therefore no longer liable to pay National Insurance) AtW staff will seek to determine that the person is self-employed by requesting a business plan approved by a bank or other financial authority.

31st Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, for how long the average employment and support allowance sanction lasted in each year since 2008.

The information requested in relation to both Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) and Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) sanction durations is not readily available and could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

31st Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, for how long the average jobseeker's allowance sanction lasted in each year since 2008.

The information requested in relation to both Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) and Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) sanction durations is not readily available and could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

14th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if he will take steps to ensure that the gainful self-employment test under universal credit takes into account (a) the freelance status of performers and (b) the irregular work patterns of performers when applied to those applicants.

In Universal Credit a claimant is gainfully self-employed where:

· They are carrying on a trade, profession or vocation as their main form of employment;

· Their earnings from the trade, profession or vocation are self-employed earnings;

· The trade, profession or vocation is organised, developed, regular and carried on in expectation of profit.

The freelance status of performers would not affect their eligibility for Universal Credit, or whether they meet the definition of gainful self-employment .

Whilst the self-employment must be regular, neither the work patterns nor the claimant’s earnings need to be so. The Department recognises that self-employment work patterns often vary and a range of factors can influence the amount and duration of self-employed work.

Universal Credit is assessed and paid monthly, which enables it to adjust quickly to take account of changes in earnings, ensuring claimants receive the right level of support at the right time.

14th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what changes have been made to the benefits sanctions regime since 2010.

For most recent changes please see the following link for the Government response to Matthew Oakley’s Review of Sanctions:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/jobseekers-allowance-sanctions-independent-review-government-response

13th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the average wait for a mandatory reconsideration decision is in the (a) Bishop Auckland and (b) Spennymoor areas.

The information requested is not currently available. DWP statisticians are currently working to collate and quality assure data on Mandatory Reconsideration. The Department has committed to publishing statistics when Departmental statisticians judge that the data meets the standards set out in the UK Statistics Authority’s Codes of Practice. The aim is to release an initial set of official statistics on Mandatory Reconsideration by the end of 2014.

10th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if he will extend the start-up period under universal credit for entertainers and other groups whose chosen profession has a large lead-in time before they have an established business.

The DWP recognises the need for claimants who wish to establish themselves as self-employed within their chosen vocation to be given time to establish themselves and develop their business. This is why we have put in place the start-up period, which is a one year period that enables new enterprises to develop and provides them with the financial room to grow.

Within this period claimants will receive their full entitlement to Universal Credit support.

The Department believes that setting the start-up period at one year strikes the right balance between enabling enterprise to grow whilst protecting the taxpayer from supporting unviable businesses.

10th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if he will introduce sector-specific guidance to his Department's decision-makers on work patterns and job searching in the entertainment industry.

The department has robust guidance in place for decision makers which sets out the requirements for working patterns and job search. We have no current plans to issue sector specific guidance to decision makers.

10th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if he will take steps to ensure that private sector job search providers delivering under universal credit are aware of the typical work patterns and job search methodology of performers in the entertainment industry.

The Government believes that local providers are best placed to understand their local labour market and identify the most effective way of helping people into sustained work. They have been given the freedom to personalise support for an individual in a way that fits the local labour market.

10th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if he will take steps to ensure that work search and work availability requirements under universal credit are applied in a way that respects the particular training, skills, work patterns and job search methodology of performers.

There is a general expectation on Universal Credit claimants subject to work search and work availability requirements to look for full-time work. These requirements can be limited as set out in Regulation 97 of the Universal Credit Regulations 2013. Work-related requirements on claimants under Universal Credit will be tailored to the needs, experience and circumstances of the individual.

10th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment his Department has made of the potential effect of the application of the Minimum Income Floor or In-work Conditionality under universal credit on the ability of workers to sustain careers in the creative industries; and what steps he is taking to ensure that the roll-out of universal credit does not undermine the creative industries.

The objective of the Minimum Income Floor is to incentivise work and protect the taxpayer against fraud or non-profitable forms of self-employment. Claimants who have the Minimum Income Floor applied, are not required to look or be available for paid employment.

Claimants who have started a new business in the last 12 months will qualify for a one year start-up period during which the Minimum Income Floor will not be applied to their claim. This is intended to provide self-employed claimants with the room to grow and establish their business during the start-up period.

As Universal Credit rolls out in a careful and controlled way, we will continue our Test and Learn approach to drive continuous improvement of the service ensuring it is built on experience and evidence.

Under Universal Credit we will be supporting people in low paid employment to get on in-work. We are committed to testing a variety of approaches to help people to earn more and will use the analysis from these trials to understand the impacts on all industries including the creative industries.

10th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many claimants have had their employment and support allowance stopped due to delays in processing medical certificates in (a) Bishop Auckland constituency and (b) Spennymoor in each year since 2010.

Claim would not be stopped for any delays in processing medical certificates. If there are delays in receipt of a medical certificate from the customer unfortunately, this can delay payment being made.

10th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what average length of time is taken to process medical certificates of people in (a) Bishop Auckland constituency and (b) Spennymoor.

We are unable to provide specific information for these locations however on receipt of a medical certificate into the office we aim to update computer records within 24 hours of receipt.

2nd Sep 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will make it compulsory for all residential nursing and care homes to have outdoor recreational space.

The Government has no plans to make it compulsory for residential care settings to have outdoor recreational space but is committed to ensuring that local authorities offer a meaningful choice of adult social care services to people in their local area. That is why the Care Act 2014 places a duty on local authorities to shape their local markets and ensure that people have a range of high-quality, person-centred care and support options available to them, and that they can access the services that best meet their needs.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence has published guidance on improving the experience of care and support for people using care services and recommends that day and residential care settings should enable people to choose from a range of leisure activities that allow them to participate in a variety of aspects of daily life. This includes recreational activities that take place outside the home.

The Care Quality Commission, which monitors, inspects and regulates the quality of adult social care services, is also clear that everyone should have the right to person-centred care that is tailored to and meets their needs and preferences.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
20th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether the accounting officer for his Department has sought a written ministerial direction for expenditure on contingency planning for the UK leaving the EU without a deal.

The Accounting Officer for the Department has not sought a written ministerial direction for expenditure on contingency planning for the United Kingdom leaving the European Union without a deal.

3rd Sep 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 11 July 2018 to Question 160713, if he will publish that same information for dental prescriptions wrongly claimed as free.

The following table shows numbers of Penalty Charge Notices (PCNs) issued each year since then for individuals who have claimed exemption from dental treatment charges, but that exemption could not be verified. It also shows the funds recovered from this activity.

PCN issued year

PCNs Issued

Value Recovered

2014

73,103

£3,459,178.70

2015

191,091

£9,021,841.80

2016

324,373

£15,500,230.70

2017

429,623

£16,885,447.67

2018

243,590

£8,023,643.66

Notes:

- Date range covered September 2014 – July 2018.

- Value recovered can change overtime.

11th Jul 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to the oral contribution of the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State of 21 November 2017, Official Report, column 352, when he plans to hold the ministerial meeting on the future of medical regulations.

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (Lord O’Shaughnessy) is arranging the ministerial meeting on the future of medical regulations as soon as possible, subject to diary constraints.

4th Jul 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many fines were levied on people who wrongly claimed free prescriptions in each year for which information is available; and how much money was raised for the public purse from those fines.

The NHS Business Services Authority assumed responsibility for the Prescription Exemption Checking Service in September 2014. The following table shows numbers of Penalty Charge Notices issued each year since then for individuals who have claimed exemption from prescription charges, but that exemption could not be verified. It also shows the funds recovered from this activity.

Penalty Charge Notice (PCN) issued year

PCNs Issued

Value recovered

2014

35,812

£525,658.38

2015

408,478

£7,308,289.64

2016

864,366

£13,825,459.09

2017

1,052,430

£18,180,971.12

2018

629,202

£9,745,351.97

Notes:

- Date range covered September 2014 – 1 July 2018

- Value recovered can change overtime

30th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, when the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of his Department plans to respond to the remarks of the hon. Member for Bishop Auckland of 21 November 2017 made at the debate on medicines regulation, Official Report. columns 322 to 353.

I responded to the hon. Member on 30 November 2017 and a copy of the letter is attached.

17th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the effect of appeals for public fundraising to finance NHS healthcare and equipment on geographical health inequalities.

This information is not collected centrally. The Department does not set criteria to assess the merits of launching such appeals and no assessment has been made of their effect on geographical health inequalities. We are aware that many people are keen to support the National Health Service through charitable activity, often after they or their family have received good care from their local NHS.

NHS charities are independent of NHS trusts, their funds and assets are not Exchequer funds, and are held for the beneficiaries of the charity only. Funds donated to the NHS must therefore be managed separately from an NHS body’s own monies.

17th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what criteria his Department has in place to assess the merits of launching appeals for public fundraising for NHS services and equipment.

This information is not collected centrally. The Department does not set criteria to assess the merits of launching such appeals and no assessment has been made of their effect on geographical health inequalities. We are aware that many people are keen to support the National Health Service through charitable activity, often after they or their family have received good care from their local NHS.

NHS charities are independent of NHS trusts, their funds and assets are not Exchequer funds, and are held for the beneficiaries of the charity only. Funds donated to the NHS must therefore be managed separately from an NHS body’s own monies.

17th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many appeals for fundraising by the public have been supported by the NHS for (a) NHS equipment and (b) NHS services in the last three years.

This information is not collected centrally. The Department does not set criteria to assess the merits of launching such appeals and no assessment has been made of their effect on geographical health inequalities. We are aware that many people are keen to support the National Health Service through charitable activity, often after they or their family have received good care from their local NHS.

NHS charities are independent of NHS trusts, their funds and assets are not Exchequer funds, and are held for the beneficiaries of the charity only. Funds donated to the NHS must therefore be managed separately from an NHS body’s own monies.

25th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what the timetable is for a decision to be taken on the proposed closure of the accident and emergency wing at Darlington Hospital.

The Better Health Programme is part of the Durham, Darlington, Tees, Hambleton, Richmondshire and Whitby Sustainability and Transformation Plan.

At this stage no decisions have been made about changes to individual hospitals, and once firm proposals have been agreed, these will need to be subject to public consultation, planned for later this year.

NHS England is working with the local ambulance service to work through issues such as travel time, capacity and demand.

25th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of the proposed closure of the accident and emergency wing at Darlington Memorial Hospital on mortality rates in that area.

The Better Health Programme is part of the Durham, Darlington, Tees, Hambleton, Richmondshire and Whitby Sustainability and Transformation Plan.

At this stage no decisions have been made about changes to individual hospitals, and once firm proposals have been agreed, these will need to be subject to public consultation, planned for later this year.

NHS England is working with the local ambulance service to work through issues such as travel time, capacity and demand.

25th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what his policy is on the proposed closure of the accident and emergency wing at Darlington Memorial Hospital.

The design and delivery of frontline health services is a matter for the National Health Service to determine locally – clinically led by frontline NHS organisations and clinicians who are closest to the needs of communities and therefore best placed to make decisions in the interests of their patients.

The principles for service change are enshrined in the four reconfiguration tests which state that all local reconfiguration plans should demonstrate: support from commissioners, strong public and patient engagement, clear clinical evidence base and support for patient choice.

25th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of the proposed closure of the accident and emergency wing at Darlington Memorial Hospital on waiting times for ambulances in that area.

The Better Health Programme is part of the Durham, Darlington, Tees, Hambleton, Richmondshire and Whitby Sustainability and Transformation Plan.

At this stage no decisions have been made about changes to individual hospitals, and once firm proposals have been agreed, these will need to be subject to public consultation, planned for later this year.

NHS England is working with the local ambulance service to work through issues such as travel time, capacity and demand.

25th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of the proposed closure of the accident and emergency (A&E) wing at Darlington Memorial Hospital on average length of journey times to A&E for those patients whose nearest A&E is currently based at that hospital.

The Better Health Programme is part of the Durham, Darlington, Tees, Hambleton, Richmondshire and Whitby Sustainability and Transformation Plan.

At this stage no decisions have been made about changes to individual hospitals, and once firm proposals have been agreed, these will need to be subject to public consultation, planned for later this year.

NHS England is working with the local ambulance service to work through issues such as travel time, capacity and demand.

13th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what estimate he has made of the number of women qualifying for free prescriptions who have requested prescriptions for sanitary products from their GP.

The Department has made no such estimate. Products allowable on a National Health Service prescription should be for the treatment of a medical condition, which can include diagnosis and prevention. This does not include items that could be considered more appropriate for the social care of an individual e.g. incontinence pads or sanitary products.

9th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the average weekly nutritional intake of households in (a) AB, (b) C1, (c) C2, (d) D and (e) E NRS social gradings.

Public Health England has not made a recent assessment of nutrient intake by socio-economic classification. The National Data and Nutrition Survey provides detailed, quantitative information on food consumption, nutrient intakes and nutritional status, which is available at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/national-diet-and-nutrition-survey-results-from-years-1-to-4-combined-of-the-rolling-programme-for-2008-and-2009-to-2011-and-2012

6th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what records his Department holds of the number of children born with cerebral palsy each year in (a) each Community Care Group area, (b) each local authority area, (c) each region and (d) nationally.

The Department has made no formal assessment of the recommendations in Action Cerebral Palsy's audit of cerebral palsy provision, ‘Variations in Care’.

Information of the number of children born with cerebral palsy in each year is not held centrally.

6th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, whether his Department has made an assessment of the recommendations in Action Cerebral Palsy's audit of cerebral palsy provision, Variations in Care; and if he will make a statement.

The Department has made no formal assessment of the recommendations in Action Cerebral Palsy's audit of cerebral palsy provision, ‘Variations in Care’.

Information of the number of children born with cerebral palsy in each year is not held centrally.

14th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, with reference to the oral contribution by the Chancellor of the Exchequer to the Treasury Committee on 12 December 2016, in response to Q311, who in his Department is responsible for assessing whether grant applications for Horizon 2020 funding are (a) value for money and (b) in line with Government objectives.

In response to Q311, at the Treasury Committee on Monday 12 December, the Chancellor referenced the process for European Union Structural Funds rather than for Horizon 2020.

The Treasury will underwrite all successful bids for Horizon 2020 that are approved by the Commission, even when specific projects continue beyond the departure from the EU.

The Department of Health and other Government departments will not assess Horizon 2020 grant applications – Horizon 2020 is an EU programme, independent of the United Kingdom government, and grant funding is awarded by the Commission based on peer review.

2nd Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what the average waiting time was for a person to receive a wheelchair through the NHS in the last three years.

The requested data is not held centrally.

2nd Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many people wait more than (a) three, (b) six and (c) 12 months to receive a wheelchair through the NHS.

The requested data is not held centrally.

17th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if he will take steps to make training on how to respond to cases of female genital mutilation mandatory for all doctors, nurses and medical staff.

The Department’s Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) Prevention programme is continuing its work with NHS England and across the health service to tackle FGM. Launched in 2014 with total funding of over £4 million the programme has delivered training and outreach nationally reaching thousands of National Health Service professionals, introduced data collection and statistics, and developed policy and guidance on safeguarding and commissioning services. The programme in 2016/17 is focussing on the mental health needs of survivors and on embedding change across the NHS.

Last year the Department commissioned Health Education England to develop a range of FGM e-learning sessions available free of charge to NHS staff. These sessions include training on the mandatory reporting duty.

As part of the Department’s FGM Prevention Programme an FGM Mandatory Reporting awareness pack was sent to all hospitals and general practitioner practices in February 2016. In addition, the Department has worked with partners to support them in hosting articles and awareness raising information; one example of this was the provision of a flyer insert about the new FGM mandatory reporting duty which was included in the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) magazine, sent to approximately 45,000 RCM members.

16th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if he will make an assessment of the possible link between the use of aspartame and seizures ahead of VimPat gaining approval by the European Commission.

In 2013, the European Food Safety Agency (EFSA) completed a comprehensive risk assessment of the safety of aspartame as a food additive and concluded that aspartame and its breakdown products are safe for human consumption, including pregnant women and children, at the current level of exposure. The EFSA panel agreed with previous opinion that the available data did not provide evidence for a relationship between aspartame consumption and enhanced susceptibility to seizures.

In April 2016, taking the EFSA review into account, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) published a draft of updated labelling guidance for products containing aspartame, which can be found at the EMA website below:

www.ema.europa.eu/docs/en_GB/document_library/Scientific_guideline/2016/05/WC500205999.pdf

There were no significant changes proposed to the current guidance on ‘Excipients in the label and package leaflet of medicines for human use’ (CPMP/463/00 Rev 1), which can be found at the EMA website below:

http://www.ema.europa.eu/docs/en_GB/document_library/Scientific_guideline/2009/09/WC500003412.pdf

Vimpat (lacosamide), an antiepileptic drug, has been authorised in the European Union since 29 August 2008 and is currently approved as an add-on therapy to other antiepileptic medicines in the treatment of partial onset seizures with or without secondary generalisation in adult and adolescent (16-18 years) patients with epilepsy. Vimpat syrup contains aspartame and this is declared in the product literature.

As with all medicines, after approval, the safety of the medicine is continuously monitored throughout their use in healthcare practice by pharmacovigilance activities. New safety signals reported by patients/healthcare professionals will be monitored/reviewed continuously.

15th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the number of delayed transfers of care attributable to patients awaiting a care package in their own home; and what steps he is taking to reduce the number of such delays.

NHS England publishes a snapshot of the number of patients ready for transfer but still occupying a hospital bed on the last Thursday of each month, and the total number of delayed days during the month for all patients delayed throughout the month. The data show the reasons for these delays, including how many were attributable to patients awaiting a care package in their own home, awaiting nursing home placement or availability, and awaiting residential home placement or availability. A national time series of the data from August 2010 is available at:

https://www.england.nhs.uk/statistics/statistical-work-areas/delayed-transfers-of-care/2016-17-data/

The organisation level data, also available at this link, shows that there is considerable variation between local authorities in the number of delayed transfers.

The Department is working closely with NHS England, NHS Improvement and local government to support local areas reduce delayed transfers of care. This includes nationally mandated interventions to support discharge processes and patient flow during the winter months.

15th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what estimate he has made of the number of delayed transfers of care attributable to patients awaiting either a nursing or residential care placement; and what steps he is taking to reduce the number of such delays.

NHS England publishes a snapshot of the number of patients ready for transfer but still occupying a hospital bed on the last Thursday of each month, and the total number of delayed days during the month for all patients delayed throughout the month. The data show the reasons for these delays, including how many were attributable to patients awaiting a care package in their own home, awaiting nursing home placement or availability, and awaiting residential home placement or availability. A national time series of the data from August 2010 is available at:

https://www.england.nhs.uk/statistics/statistical-work-areas/delayed-transfers-of-care/2016-17-data/

The organisation level data, also available at this link, shows that there is considerable variation between local authorities in the number of delayed transfers.

The Department is working closely with NHS England, NHS Improvement and local government to support local areas reduce delayed transfers of care. This includes nationally mandated interventions to support discharge processes and patient flow during the winter months.

8th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what estimate he has made of the potential cost to the public purse of replacing NHS funded (a) hearing aids, (b) cochlear implants and (c) assistive listening devices in the event that such devices suffer from interference as a result of the release of the 2.35 to 2.39 GHz spectrum bands.

The Office of Communications (OFCOM) is managing the release of the 2.35 to 2.39 GHz spectrum bands. OFCOM has carried out careful tests of listening devices and sought evidence from across the deaf community to ensure these devices will not be affected by future mobile signals.

7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what estimate he has made of the number of areas of the country with a relatively low level of social care provision; and what steps he plans to take to reduce that number.

There has been no estimate of the number of local authorities with low level of social care provision. Access to adult social care is based on the level of need an adult has and not on the number of users.

In April 2015, the Care Act 2014 introduced a national eligibility criteria for access to adult social care. The Act requires that local authorities must meet the needs of any adult whose needs meet this national criteria. Authorities cannot restrict eligibility beyond this threshold. This ensures that the most vulnerable adults have their eligible needs met.

7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what recent discussions he has had with the Home Secretary on work permits and immigration rules for EU citizens working in the NHS, health and pharmaceutical industries after the UK leaves the EU.