Christian Matheson Portrait

Christian Matheson

Independent - Former Member for City of Chester

First elected: 7th May 2015


Pension Dashboards (Prohibition of Indemnification) Bill
19th Oct 2022 - 25th Oct 2022
Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission
21st Jan 2020 - 21st Oct 2022
Shadow Minister (Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
10th Apr 2020 - 4th Dec 2021
Shadow Minister (Cabinet Office)
12th Jan 2018 - 10th Apr 2020
Culture, Media and Sport Committee
11th Sep 2017 - 23rd Jul 2018
Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
11th Sep 2017 - 23rd Jul 2018
Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee
11th Sep 2017 - 23rd Jul 2018
Culture, Media and Sport Committee
8th Jul 2015 - 3rd May 2017


Division Voting information

Christian Matheson has voted in 1131 divisions, and 2 times against the majority of their Party.

27 Mar 2019 - EU: Withdrawal and Future Relationship Votes - View Vote Context
Christian Matheson voted No - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 42 Labour No votes vs 143 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 188 Noes - 283
20 Apr 2016 - Record Copies of Acts - View Vote Context
Christian Matheson voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 23 Labour Aye votes vs 23 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 117 Noes - 38
View All Christian Matheson 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
Chloe Smith (Conservative)
(60 debate interactions)
John Bercow (Speaker)
(50 debate interactions)
Boris Johnson (Conservative)
(38 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
Cabinet Office
(346 debate contributions)
HM Treasury
(80 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
View all Christian Matheson's debates

Latest EDMs signed by Christian Matheson

22nd June 2021
Christian Matheson signed this EDM on Wednesday 23rd June 2021

GKN Automotive alternative plan

Tabled by: Jack Dromey (Labour - Birmingham, Erdington)
That this House is alarmed by GKN Automotive’s decision to close its Birmingham factory next year, with the loss of over 500 highly skilled jobs and work transferred to continental Europe; notes that GKN’s origins trace back to the industrial revolution, with over 260 years of history that include making …
68 signatures
(Most recent: 27 Apr 2022)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 60
Independent: 5
Democratic Unionist Party: 1
Scottish National Party: 1
Alba Party: 1
20th May 2021
Christian Matheson signed this EDM on Monday 24th May 2021

Fire and rehire

Tabled by: Grahame Morris (Labour - Easington)
That this House notes with alarm the growing number of employers who are dismissing and re-engaging staff on worse pay and terms and conditions, a practice commonly known as fire and rehire; agrees with the Government that such tactics represent an unacceptable abuse of power by rogue bosses, many of …
50 signatures
(Most recent: 21 Oct 2021)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 35
Independent: 5
Plaid Cymru: 3
Alba Party: 2
Liberal Democrat: 2
Alliance: 1
Social Democratic & Labour Party: 1
Green Party: 1
Scottish National Party: 1
View All Christian Matheson's signed Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Christian Matheson, 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.


Christian Matheson has not been granted any Urgent Questions

Christian Matheson has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

1 Bill introduced by Christian Matheson


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 establish an independent regulator of football clubs; and for connected purposes.

Commons - 20%

Last Event - 1st Reading: House Of Commons
Wednesday 26th June 2019
(Read Debate)

348 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
15 Other Department Questions
13th Dec 2017
To ask the right hon. Member for Carshalton and Wallington, representing the House of Commons Commission, how many (a) members, (b) members' staff and (c) other pass holders have been reported to the Serjeant at Arms by security officers or police officers for failure to wear or failure to present on request their Palace of Westminster Security Pass in each of the last five years.

The Serjeant at Arms Office does receive emails and phone calls on the subject of failure to wear a Security Pass but the Office does not make a record of these or hold statistics.

5th Sep 2017
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what the Government's policy is on conversion therapy.

The Government does not recognise ‘gay conversion therapy’ as a legitimate treatment. We have already worked with the main registration and accreditation bodies for psychotherapy and counselling practitioners, including the UK Council for Psychotherapy, to develop a Memorandum of Understanding to end this practice.

The Government are not aware of widespread instances of gay conversion therapy happening in the UK but we want to develop a better understanding of the extent to which it is being practised. That is why we included questions on this topic in our national LGBT survey, which was launched this summer.

We will publish the survey results and our response in the new year.

11th Jan 2016
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what progress the Government is making on negotiating the removal of VAT on women's sanitary products.

I have written to the European Commission and other Member States setting out our strong view that Member States should have full discretion over what rate of VAT they can apply to sanitary products, and that this should be considered in the context of the Commission’s Action Plan on VAT, which is now expected to be published in March 2016.

7th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, what initial assessment she has made of the implications of the incident at Porter Ranch, California, for safety and engineering procedures and standards in the UK onshore unconventional gas extraction sector.

In the UK, we have an entirely different regulatory system to the US.

We have over 50 years of experience in safely conducting surface activities and constructing onshore gas wells, regulated by the Health & Safety Executive and Environment Agency.


Our tough regulations ensure on-site safety, prevent water contamination, mitigate seismic activity and air pollution. To reinforce our already robust regulations, the Infrastructure Act 2015 introduced a range of further requirements that must be met before an operator can carry out hydraulic fracturing in a responsible, sustainable and safe manner. These include the assessment of environmental impacts, groundwater monitoring, community benefits and prohibiting hydraulic fracturing in specified protected areas.


The UK has one of the best track records in the world when it comes to protecting our environment while also developing our industries – and we’ve brought that experience to bear on the shale gas protections.

Andrea Leadsom
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
5th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what export licences have been granted to UK manufacturers since 2010 to export (a) military and (b) police-related equipment to Israel.

Information on arms export licences are published as Official Statistics (from January 2015) in the Annual and Quarterly 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. They are available to view at GOV.UK.

The most recently published information covers the period until 30 June 2015.

All export licences are issued in strict accordance with the Consolidated EU and National Arms Export Licensing Criteria.


2nd Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, what estimate her Department has made of the change in the number of jobs in the energy efficiency, solar and low-carbon heating industries during 2015 to date; what estimate it has made of the equivalent change in 2016; and what estimate she has made of the cost to the public purse will be of support packages provided by the Government to people who have lost or will lose their jobs in those industries.

In March 2015, the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills published a report on 'The size and performance of the UK low carbon economy’ which contains estimates for the number of jobs supported by various low carbon sectors. The latest data is for 2013 and suggests that in the UK there were 54,400 directly employed in the energy efficiency products sector, 20,300 directly employed in the solar photovoltaic sector and 19,300 directly employed in the low carbon heating sector (excluding use of biomass). Further employment occurs in the supply chains to these sectors.


Information is not available to robustly estimate the potential cost to the public purse of the changes. However a Government consultation has been run on the changes to the financial support for solar PV within the Renewable Obligationfrom 22 July to2 September and a consultation on the feed-in tariff review from 27 August to 23 October. We welcomed evidence from the sector during these consultations and we will respond in due course. The government is committed to reducing emissions from heating and improving energy efficiency, including a goal to install one million more energy efficiency measures before the end of this Parliament.


Figures quoted above have been rounded to the nearest hundred. The full report and data can be found at the following link:


https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/low-carbon-economy-size-and-performance.

Andrea Leadsom
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
2nd Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what estimate his Department has made of the number of jobs lost in the steel industry in 2015 to date; what estimate it has made of how many jobs in that industry will be lost in 2016; and what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of Government support packages to help people who have lost or are likely to lose their jobs in that industry.

Statistics from the Iron and Steel Statistics Bureau show that between 1997 to 2010, 16,300 jobs were lost in the UK steel industry.

These statistics also show in the last parliament, UK steel jobs remained stable at 18,900.

In 2015, 2,100 direct jobs were lost as a result of the closure of the SSI plant at Redcar on 12th October 2015. On 30th October 2015, 452 immediate redundancies were announced by the Caparo Group. In addition since 16th July Tata Steel has announced proposals for up to 1,920 job losses across its Long Products and Speciality and Bar businesses subject to consultation and business review.

We have not made any estimate of how many jobs will be lost in the steel industry in 2016.

The Government is committed to supporting those made redundant move quickly into new jobs, for example through Jobcentre Plus’ Rapid Response Service. In addition, in view of the exceptional circumstances surrounding SSI’s closure in Redcar, Government announced a support package, worth up to £80 million, to help those affected and invest in the future of the Tees Valley more broadly. We have also committed up to £9m, jointly with Tata, to support Scunthorpe steel workers and the local economy. In both cases, we are working closely with local Task Forces to deliver support that will have the greatest long-term impact.

2nd Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what meetings he has had with (a) business and (b) trade union representatives on job losses in the (i) steel and (ii) energy efficiency, solar and low carbon heating industries since his appointment to his current position.

Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Ministers have held a number of discussions with UK steel companies, industry representatives and trade unions about the current challenges facing the sector.

My rt. hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change (DECC), her Ministers, and DECC officials have had a number of regular meetings and roundtables with external organisations within the energy sector, and will continue to do so, on a wide range of subjects including jobs and growth across different sectors.

29th Oct 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, how many responses she has received to the recent consultation on proposed cuts to the feed-in tariff; how long she plans for her Department to spend on evaluating those responses; and when she plans to make public the Government's proposed next steps on this matter.

The Feed-in-Tariff (FIT) scheme review consultation closed on 23 October and we are currently evaluating the responses received. We have received nearly 55,000 responses to the consultation and we currently estimate that just over 2,600 are unique and detailed responses; the rest are briefer and more uniform responses, generated by campaigns.


We expect to publish a Government response in due course.

Andrea Leadsom
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
9th Oct 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, with which trade associations he has met since his appointment.

Details of Ministers' meetings with external organisations are published up to 31 March 2015 and can be accessed on Gov.uk at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications?keywords=Ministers&publication.

Further publications of Ministerial meetings will be published in due course across Government in the usual way.

9th Oct 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, if he will make it his policy to use the Charity Research Support Fund as a means to secure investment from the charitable sector into universities.

The Government recognises the significant contribution made by charitable funders of research. The charity support element of Quality Related research funding, provided through the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE), has provided £198m per year over the period 2011-16 to support institutions leveraging funding from the charitable sector.

Decisions on any funding beyond 2015-16 will be subject to the outcome of the Spending Review later this year.

9th Oct 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, how many meetings he has held with businesses or industry associations in the (a) aerospace, (b) pharmaceutical, (c) automotive, (d) chemical and (e) financial services sectors since May 2015.

Details of Ministers' meetings with external organisations are published up to 31 March 2015 and can be accessed on Gov.uk at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications?keywords=Ministers&publication.

Further publications of Ministerial meetings will be published in due course across Government in the usual way.

9th Oct 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what assessment his Department has made of the effectiveness of the existing system for dual support for research in providing stability for research infrastructure and supporting competition of research grants; and what plans he has to review that system's use.

The Government’s Productivity plan – “Fixing the foundations: Creating a more prosperous nation” - reiterated our commitment to excellence in science and research, facilitated through a dual support system.

In 2013 the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills published a review of the dual funding system and research income across universities, including analysis of the ways in which UK academics can maximise their impact (available on Gov.uk).

17th Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, how many applications her Department has received for licences for unconventional gas extraction since 2010; how many such applications were approved; how many applications her Department has received for onshore wind generation facilities since 2010; and how many such applications were approved.

Petroleum Exploration and Development Licences (PEDLs) grant exclusive rights to extract hydrocarbons within a particular onshore area. These rights include, but are not exclusive to, unconventional gas. A further consent is required before any extraction can take place. No PEDLs have been issued since 2008. Applications for PEDLs under the 14th Onshore Licensing Round are currently being considered – 95 applications for 295 licence blocks have been made.

Since 2010 DECC has received 3 planning applications for onshore windfarms above 50MW and the Planning Inspectorate has received 1 further application for examination. 6 onshore wind applications above 50MW have been approved by the Secretary of State in the period. In addition, at the end of March 2015, five years after the introduction of the Feed-in Tariff scheme, 6,830 sub 5MW installations totalling 396MW had been registered on the scheme. The Renewables Obligation was introduced in 2002 to support large scale renewable electricity in the UK and since 2010 Ofgem have accredited 415 onshore wind stations totalling 4.28 GW under the scheme.

Andrea Leadsom
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
8th Dec 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many external guests attended the Downing Street social event on 18 December 2020.

I refer the Hon Member to the answers given by my Rt Hon Friend the Prime Minister at Prime Minister's Questions on 8 December and those given by me in the House on 9 December. Copies of the terms of reference for the Cabinet Secretary’s investigations have been placed in the Libraries of the House and are also available on the GOV.UK website.

8th Dec 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will publish a list of attendees of the Downing Street social event on 18 December 2020.

I refer the Hon Member to the answers given by my Rt Hon Friend the Prime Minister at Prime Minister's Questions on 8 December and those given by me in the House on 9 December. Copies of the terms of reference for the Cabinet Secretary’s investigations have been placed in the Libraries of the House and are also available on the GOV.UK website.

8th Dec 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, whether the Prime Minister attended the Downing Street staff social event on 18 December 2020.

I refer the Hon Member to the answers given by my Rt Hon Friend the Prime Minister at Prime Minister's Questions on 8 December and those given by me in the House on 9 December. Copies of the terms of reference for the Cabinet Secretary’s investigations have been placed in the Libraries of the House and are also available on the GOV.UK website.

27th May 2021
What plans the Government has to review the scope of electoral law.

The Government is committed to keeping our elections secure and fit for the modern age. We keep electoral law, and the role and powers of the Electoral Commission, under review to ensure the effective operation of, and public confidence in, an electoral system that is secure, fair, modern and transparent.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
23rd Nov 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, with reference to the recent appointments process for the position of Cabinet Secretary, how many expressions of interest for that position were received from (a) women applicants and (b) applicants from a BAME background.

I refer the hon. Member to my answer to PQ116528 on 23 November.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
17th Nov 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, pursuant to Answer of 12 November 2020 to Question 111564 on Cabinet Office: Senior Civil Servants, if he will specify how many expressions of interest were received for the vacant position of Cabinet Secretary.

As with all competitions for Permanent Secretary roles, details, including the number and names of applicants, are not disclosed.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
11th Nov 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, pursuant to his Answer of 3 November 2020 to Question 102103, what mechanism was used to invite expressions of interest for the vacant position of Cabinet Secretary.

I refer the hon. member to the answer given to PQ111564, I have nothing further to add.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
4th Nov 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, pursuant to the Answer of 3 November 2020 to Question 102103 on Cabinet Office: Senior Civil Servants, how many expressions of interest were received for the position of Cabinet Secretary.

As stated in my answer of 3 November 2020, in line with previous such appointments, the process was overseen by the First Civil Service Commissioner.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
12th Oct 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, who sat on the recent appointment panel for the position of Cabinet Secretary.

The Minister for the Civil Service appointed Simon Case as Cabinet Secretary and Head of the Civil Service, following an expressions of interest process. This is in line with the process used for previous such appointments, and was overseen by the First Civil Service Commissioner. Details of candidates for internal positions are not normally disclosed.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
12th Oct 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many applications were received for the recently vacant position of Cabinet Secretary.

The Minister for the Civil Service appointed Simon Case as Cabinet Secretary and Head of the Civil Service, following an expressions of interest process. This is in line with the process used for previous such appointments, and was overseen by the First Civil Service Commissioner. Details of candidates for internal positions are not normally disclosed.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
4th Sep 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what plans he has to introduce a framework of compensation for the (a) victims and (b) families of the contaminated blood scandal.

This government remains committed to considering a framework for compensation, as well as actions to address disparities in financial and non-financial support for people infected and affected across the UK.

Cabinet Office officials are working with their colleagues in HM Treasury, the Department of Health and Social Care, and health departments in the devolved administrations to take this forward. I will update the House and the Inquiry, and those infected and affected as soon as these considerations have been concluded.

Penny Mordaunt
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
4th Sep 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, when a framework of compensation for the (a) victims and (b) families of the contaminated blood scandal is planned to be introduced.

This government remains committed to considering a framework for compensation, as well as actions to address disparities in financial and non-financial support for people infected and affected across the UK.

Cabinet Office officials are working with their colleagues in HM Treasury, the Department of Health and Social Care, and health departments in the devolved administrations to take this forward. I will update the House and the Inquiry, and those infected and affected as soon as these considerations have been concluded.

Penny Mordaunt
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
13th May 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, pursuant to the Answer of 11 May 2020 to Question 40655, if he will list all newspaper print and online titles that as at 11 May 2020 received Government-funded advertising on covid-19 arising from the Government programme to support news media.

In light of the Coronavirus pandemic, the Government has developed a national campaign to provide information, guidance and reassurance to the public. As part of this, we have partnered with the newspaper industry to help amplify public information on critical coronavirus messaging and ensure it reaches all communities.

To date, the partnership includes over 600 national, regional and local press and online titles including 47 BAME publications. Importantly, all these titles have been selected by our media buying agency (OMNIGOV) on their ability to engage with audiences at a national, regional and local level and are verified by our media auditors.

A list of publications involved in the partnership will be placed in the Commons Library.

12th May 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, pursuant to Answer of 11 May 2020 to Question 40655, what criteria his Department used for selecting the (a) print and (b) online news publications that received government-funded advertising on covid-19.

In light of the Coronavirus pandemic, the Government has developed a national campaign to provide information, guidance and reassurance to the public. As part of this, we have partnered with the newspaper industry to help amplify public information on critical coronavirus messaging and ensure it reaches all communities.

To date, the partnership includes over 600 national, regional and local press and online titles including 47 BAME publications. These titles have been selected by our media buying agency (OMNIGOV) on their ability to engage with audiences at a national, regional and local level.

27th Apr 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, pursuant to the Answers of 27 April 2020 to Questions 37724 and 37725, which newspaper titles have received Government-funded advertising arising from the national campaign to provide information on covid-19.

Further to the answers given to PQs 37724 and 37725 on 27 April 2020, in light of the Coronavirus pandemic, the Government has developed a national campaign to provide information, guidance and reassurance to the public.

The campaign spans owned, earned and paid-for channels, including local radio and TV, to maximise reach and engagement. We are constantly reviewing our use of each of these channels and amending campaign activity accordingly to ensure our messaging reaches as many people as possible.

20th Apr 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, which (a) national, (b) regional and (c) local newspapers were selected to publish the Government's messages on covid-19 in April 2020.

The Government has developed a strong national campaign to provide information and reassurance to the public about COVID-19. As part of this, we have utilised advertising in over 600 national, regional and local titles across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, reaching 49 million people a month.

As with any media planning approach, titles are selected on their ability to engage with audiences at a national, regional and local level.

20th Apr 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what criteria were used to select the (a) national and (b) regional or local newspapers that carried Government's coronavirus crisis advertising wraparound in April 2020.

The Government has developed a strong national campaign to provide information and reassurance to the public about COVID-19. As part of this, we have utilised advertising in over 600 national, regional and local titles across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, reaching 49 million people a month.

As with any media planning approach, titles are selected on their ability to engage with audiences at a national, regional and local level.

16th Mar 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment he has made of the implications for his policies of the payment of compensation to people in Northern Ireland affected by the contaminated blood scandal before the conclusion of the Infected Blood Inquiry.

The Government believes that we should wait until the Inquiry reports before considering compensation. The Inquiry cannot make a finding of legal liability, but it could make a recommendation that the Government fundamentally increases what it pays to the infected and affected, and that it does so on a different basis. Government will act on the Inquiry's recommendations with the utmost urgency, when it reports.

In the meantime, we are working with our partners in the devolved nations, including Northern Ireland, and other relevant Government departments to improve the parity of financial support for those infected by the infected blood scandal, across the United Kingdom.

The Department of Health NI was allocated £1.03 million in January 2020 monitoring, ringfenced for the specific purpose of providing financial support to the infected and affected.

Of this £610,780 was committed in the interim payments announced on 27 January and has been paid out. Therefore £419,220 remains, which the NI Health Minister committed to allocating before the end of this financial year.

9th Mar 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what proportion of staff employed by No. 10 Downing Street (a) were educated at a private school, (b) are from an ethnic minority group, (c) are women and (d) are apprentices.

The Prime Minister’s Office is an integral part of the Cabinet Office.

Information about Cabinet Office staff is available at https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/cabinet-office/about/equality-and-diversity

Information on the school background of staff is not held centrally.

The proportion of Cabinet Office staff actively completing an apprenticeship programme is 1.45%

9th Mar 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what plans he has to bring forward legislative proposals to implement the recommendations of the 2018 Review of Parliamentary constituency boundaries.

I refer the Hon Member to the answer I gave to PQ 431 on the 9th January 2020.

9th Mar 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what estimate he has made of the number of homeless deaths in the UK from members of (a) an ethnic minority group and (b) the LGBTQ population in each year since 2010.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority. I have therefore asked the Authority to respond.

13th Feb 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what plans he has to meet representatives of victims and families of the contaminated blood scandal on a framework for compensation, before the conclusion of the Infected Blood Inquiry.

In January 2020, the then Minister for the Cabinet Office and the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Health met campaigners representing people infected and affected. A number of issues were raised, including support that would assist people outside of the inquiry process. Ministers have committed to looking at these issues carefully and to report back on where progress can be made.

Penny Mordaunt
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
28th Jan 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many international agreements the UK that a party to through its membership of the EU that will require rolling over after the 31 January 2020.

I refer the Hon Member to the Written Ministerial Statement laid on Thursday 30 January 2020, HCWS82, available on the Parliament website.

28th Jan 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will publish the information his Department holds on the number of rollover requests made by the EU to third party countries.

I refer the Hon Member to the Written Ministerial Statement laid on Thursday 30 January 2020, HCWS82, available on the Parliament website.

13th Jan 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many convictions there have been for in-person voter fraud in (a) London, (b) the North West, (c) Chester and (d) the UK in the last five years.

Data on convictions for fraud offences is not collected or held by the Cabinet Office. The Electoral Commission reports on electoral fraud and holds more detailed information.

1st Nov 2019
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, pursuant to the Answer of 31 October 2019 to Question 6416 on Brexit: Publicity, in which cities in those EU 27 countries the Get Ready for Brexit campaign took place.

Further to the answer of 31 October to PQ6416, there is no list of cities in the EU27 countries held by this department.

28th Oct 2019
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, pursuant to the Answer of 22 October 2019 to Question 1712, in which EU countries his Department is running the Get Ready for Brexit campaign.

“Get Ready for Brexit” campaign activity has taken place in all 27 EU countries to make sure citizens and businesses have the facts they need to know about the steps they need to take to be ready for when the UK leaves the EU.

17th Oct 2019
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many women under the age of 25 died from cervical cancer in (a) 2016, (b) 2017, (c) 2018 and (d) 2019.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority. I have therefore asked the Authority to respond.

17th Oct 2019
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what proportion of the money allocated from the public purse to the Government's Get Ready for Brexit campaign was spent on advertisements in (a) London, (b) Edinburgh, (c) Leeds, (d) Chester, (e) Paris and (f) Berlin.

In law the UK is set to leave the EU on 31 October 2019. “Get Ready for Brexit” is a public information campaign providing the facts citizens and businesses need to know about the preparations they need to take to be ready for when the UK leaves the EU.

The ‘Get Ready for Brexit’ campaign is running across television, social media, billboards and other platforms. It also has many direct and local elements including business roundtables, public meetings, ministerial visits and local authority events. Campaign activity is ongoing across the UK and in multiple EU countries.

The Cabinet Office has undertaken to publish information relating to ongoing expenditure on the public information campaign as part of the department’s monthly data transparency releases. We will undertake a regional breakdown of expenditure once the campaign has concluded and will be published on GOV.UK here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/cabinet-office-spend-data)

4th Jul 2019
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, which Departments have introduced the cycle to work scheme.

Seventeen of the eighteen main Whitehall departments have a Cycle to Work Scheme in place. As this policy falls under delegated authority, it is for individual departments to decide whether to offer this scheme to their employees.

Oliver Dowden
Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster
4th Jul 2019
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, whether the Government has plans to implement the cycle to work scheme across all Departments; and if he will make a statement.

Seventeen of the eighteen main Whitehall departments have a Cycle to Work Scheme in place. As this policy falls under delegated authority, it is for individual departments to decide whether to offer this scheme to their employees.

Oliver Dowden
Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster
9th May 2018
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, which senior public appointments have been made by the Government from January to April 2018.

Details of public appointments are on the Centre for Public Appointments website:

https://publicappointments.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/announcements/

Oliver Dowden
Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster
17th Apr 2018
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what the planned effective operational date is for the Government's dedicated national security unit to tackle fake news and disinformation.

The National Security Communications Team is already in operation. Its purpose is to allow government to better tackle the communications elements of interconnected complex challenges to our national security, including (but not limited to) disinformation.

This work differs to that of the Rapid Response Unit which has been recently launched based in No10 & the Cabinet Office, as part of the Government Communications Service (GCS) with the remit to expand existing digital analysis (including, but not limited to, misinformation and disinformation) and content capability to communicate public information that is accurate, clear and responsive.

17th Apr 2018
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what the staffing complement is by grade of the Government's dedicated national security unit to tackle fake news and disinformation.

The National Security Communications Team is expanding in capacity on the recommendations of the National Security Capability Review, published on the 28 March. The enhanced capability provided by the unit will ensure Government has the right mix of skills and expertise to use communications as a lever to support key national security objectives, and allow Government to better tackle the interconnected complex challenges to our national security, including (but not limited to) disinformation.

Recruitment to the National Security team is ongoing.

This work differs to that of the Rapid Response Unit which has been recently launched as a six-month pilot, based in No10 & the Cabinet Office, as part of the Government Communications Service (GCS) with the remit to expand existing digital analysis (including, but not limited to, misinformation and disinformation) and content capability to communicate public information that is accurate, clear and responsive.

26th Mar 2018
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what the timetable is for the Government's announced unit to tackle fake news to commence operations.

Two complementary teams are addressing the Government’s response to the communication challenge posed by disinformation, or so-called “fake news”.

The National Security Communications Team, which is already in operation, has as its purpose to allow government to tackle more effectively the communications elements of complex, interconnected challenges to our national security, including (but not limited to) disinformation.

The Rapid Response Unit, has been recently launched with the remit to expand existing digital analysis (including, but not limited to, misinformation and disinformation) and content capability to communicate public information that is accurate, clear and responsive. The Unit is part of the Government Communications Service (GCS) and based in No10 & the Cabinet Office.

2nd Nov 2017
To ask the Prime Minister, what the total cost to the public purse was of the visit by the Prime Minister, ministers and officials to Florence on 22 October 2017.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given by the First Secretary of State and Minister for the Cabinet Office, my right hon. Friend the Member for Ashford (Mr Green) on 2 November 2017, UIN 109813.

4th Sep 2017
To ask the Prime Minister, how many times since President Trump's inauguration she has made a telephone or other call to the President; and how many times she has received a telephone or other call from President Trump.

Dates of the telephone calls between myself and President Trump are available on the gov.uk website.

13th Mar 2017
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many people who work in 10 Downing Street are not employed in the Civil Service.

The Prime Minister’s Office is an integral part of the Cabinet Office.

The information requested is not held centrally.

1st Mar 2017
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what contracts are undertaken for the Government by Capita; and what the total value is of those contracts.

Since January 2011, details of central government contracts above the value of £10,000 are published on Contracts Finder. Contracts published prior to 26 February 2015 can be viewed at:

https://data.gov.uk/data/contracts-finder-archive.

Those published after 26 February 2015 can be viewed at:

https://www.contractsfinder.service.gov.uk/Search.

23rd Feb 2017
To ask the Prime Minister, in what capacity her address to the Republican Party in Philadelphia on 26 January 2017 was given.

I refer the hon. Member to the press release following my address to the Republican Party, a transcript of which can be found on gov.uk website.

8th Apr 2016
To ask the Prime Minister, if he will make it his policy to revise the Ministerial Code to include an obligation on members of the Government not to use offshore tax arrangements.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to the right hon. Member for Moray (Mr Robertson) during my Oral Statement on 11 April 2016, Official Report, columns 31-32.

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what the planned effective operational date is for the Government's dedicated national security unit to tackle fake news and disinformation.

The National Security Communications Team is already in operation. Its purpose is to allow government to better tackle the communications elements of interconnected complex challenges to our national security, including (but not limited to) disinformation.

This work differs to that of the Rapid Response Unit which has been recently launched based in No10 & the Cabinet Office, as part of the Government Communications Service (GCS) with the remit to expand existing digital analysis (including, but not limited to, misinformation and disinformation) and content capability to communicate public information that is accurate, clear and responsive.

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what the staffing complement is by grade of the Government's dedicated national security unit to tackle fake news and disinformation.

The National Security Communications Team is expanding in capacity on the recommendations of the National Security Capability Review, published on the 28 March. The enhanced capability provided by the unit will ensure Government has the right mix of skills and expertise to use communications as a lever to support key national security objectives, and allow Government to better tackle the interconnected complex challenges to our national security, including (but not limited to) disinformation.

Recruitment to the National Security team is ongoing.

This work differs to that of the Rapid Response Unit which has been recently launched as a six-month pilot, based in No10 & the Cabinet Office, as part of the Government Communications Service (GCS) with the remit to expand existing digital analysis (including, but not limited to, misinformation and disinformation) and content capability to communicate public information that is accurate, clear and responsive.

1st Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how many location bids were (a) invited and (b) received prior to the awarding of the investment to develop the Vaccines Manufacturing and Innovation Centre; and which sites were shortlisted for that Centre.

The competition for the Vaccines Manufacture and Innovation Centre (VMIC) took place in 2018 as part of Wave 1 of the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund Medicines Manufacturing portfolio. This was an open competition call, with no limit on the number of bids. Two sites were shortlisted, the site in Oxfordshire and a site in the North East of England.

The Vaccines Manufacturing and Innovation Centre will sit within the Harwell HealthTec Cluster, comprising 1,000 people across 40 organisations, it will form part of a well-established and proven life sciences community where it will grow to become a vital component of the UK’s national scientific infrastructure.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
27th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment she has made of the potential economic effect on the green technology sector of the withdrawal of research funding for innovative low-carbon technology programmes under the EU emissions trading system after the UK leaves the EU.

The EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) does not provide research funding. The terms of the Withdrawal Agreement mean that the UK will continue to participate in EU Programmes financed by the 2014-2020 Multiannual Financial Framework until their closure.

The UK is the first major economy to legislate for net zero emissions by 2050. The Government’s Clean Growth Strategy sets out how we want to make sure that the UK continues to reap the benefits from the transition to a low carbon economy.

The Government has been investing over £3 billion to support low carbon innovation in the UK over the period 2015 and 2021, to ensure that the UK continues to grasp the economic opportunities of the global shift to a low carbon future, and have committed to raise total research and development investment to 2.4% of GDP by 2027.

This is already benefiting clean growth innovation – for example the £505 million BEIS Energy Innovation Programme, which aims to accelerate the commercialisation of innovative clean energy technologies and processes.

15th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the effect of the loss of research funding from the EU emissions trading system on the UK's green technology sector after the UK leaves the EU.

The EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) does not provide research funding. The terms of the Withdrawal Agreement mean that the UK will continue to participate in EU Programmes financed by the 2014-2020 Multiannual Financial Framework until their closure.

The UK is the first major economy to legislate for net zero emissions by 2050. The Government’s Clean Growth Strategy sets out how we want to make sure that the UK continues to reap the benefits from the transition to a low carbon economy.

The Government is investing over £3 billion to support low carbon innovation in the UK between 2015 and 2021, to ensure that the UK continues to grasp the economic opportunities of the global shift to a low carbon future, and have committed to raise total research and development investment to 2.4% of GDP by 2027.

This is already benefiting clean growth innovation – for example the £505 million BEIS Energy Innovation Programme, which aims to accelerate the commercialisation of innovative clean energy technologies and processes.

24th Oct 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what proportion of the Brexit Readiness Fund has been allocated to Chester.

The Business Readiness Fund was set up to help to prepare businesses for leaving the EU on 31 October. £10.6M has been approved across 139 successful bids, with just under £10.2M already paid to Business Representative Organisations. Applications have spanned a wide range of sectors, with organisations delivering activity across all regions of the UK. A list of all successful organisations will be released in due course.

22nd Oct 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent assessment she has made of the potential effect on average household energy bills of the UK leaving the EU.

The Government recognises the importance to businesses and households of having access to an affordable, secure and sustainable supply of energy. The UK’s exit from the EU will not alter the fact that our energy system is resilient and secure and drawn from a number of sources.

Many factors impact energy prices including fuel prices, exchange rates and generation mix. Great Britain will remain physically linked to the EU post-exit through electricity and gas interconnectors. We expect that any change in electricity prices in Great Britain as a result of changes to interconnector trading arrangements would fall within the normal range of market volatility. For gas markets, the mechanisms of cross-border trade are not expected to fundamentally change after exit. The UK gas market is one of the world’s most developed and provides security through supply diversity, most of which is not dependent on the EU.

Energy regulators in Ireland and Northern Ireland have set out that the Single Electricity Market (SEM) will continue to operate immediately after Brexit, including in a No Deal scenario. The SEM is designed to put downward pressure on consumer electricity prices, facilitate the integration of renewables and provide continued security of supply. The UK is committed to seeking to maintain the SEM in any scenario and will therefore take all possible measures to do so.

The Government has taken steps to enable electricity and gas trade to continue and maintain the effectiveness of domestic regulation, providing legal clarity for industry on the future operations of Great Britain and Northern Ireland’s energy markets.

6th Feb 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what meetings his Department has had with counterparts in the Department for Transport on the forthcoming aviation strategy.

The Department held extensive discussions with the Department for Transport prior to the release of the Aviation 2050 consultation paper. Officials remain closely engaged, including with industry through the Aerospace Growth Partnership, the joint government and industry sector council, as the consultation process continues.

8th May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when he plans to respond to the Freedom of Information Request relating to PEDL 189 submitted by Mr Ben Dean on 21 March 2018.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has not received a Freedom of Information Request relating to PEDL 189 submitted by Mr Ben Dean on 21 March 2018. The Department understands that Mr Dean has approached the Oil and Gas Authority on this matter and that they will respond to Mr Dean as appropriate.

2nd May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what plans he has to vary the work commitments under Petroleum Exploration and Development Licence 189.

The responsibility for onshore oil and gas licensing, including responsibility for variations in work commitments, was transferred to the independent Oil and Gas Authority in 2016. Consequently any decisions relating to variations of a PEDL will be made by the OGA.

1st May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether he plans to issue a third extension to Petroleum Exploration and Development Licence 189; and if he will make a statement.

The responsibility for onshore oil and gas licensing, including responsibility for extending a PEDL was transferred to the independent Oil and Gas Authority (OGA) in 2016. Consequently any decisions relating to variations to licences will be made by the OGA.

1st May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what representations he has received on extending the initial term of the Work Commitment for Petroleum Exploration and Development Licence 189.

The responsibility for onshore oil and gas licensing, including responsibility for extending a PEDL was transferred to the independent Oil and Gas Authority in 2016. As such the OGA is responsible for handling any representations regarding licences.

1st May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what representations he has received on varying the terms of Petroleum Exploration and Development Licence 189.

The responsibility for onshore oil and gas licensing, including responsibility for extending a PEDL was transferred to the independent Oil and Gas Authority in 2016. As such the OGA is responsible for handling any representations regarding licences.

27th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, pursuant to the Answer of 22 April 2016 to Question 34372, whether Petroleum Exploration and Development Licence 189 was one of the licences included in the Deed of Variation dated 4 December 2013, allowing the drilling of 10 wells to a depth of 800 metres and three wells to 3,000 metres on 13 specified licences.

A Deed of Variation was made on 4 December 2013 in respect of Licence PEDL189. It amended both the Licence’s Initial Term Work Programme and the date at which the Licence’s Initial Term would expire. A further variation has been sought by the licensee, and while it remains the case as I said in the answer I gave the hon. Member on 22 April that no such variation has been agreed, that request is under consideration from the Oil and Gas Authority and a decision will be made shortly:

http://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/written-questions-answers-statements/written-question/Commons/2016-04-18/34369/.

Andrea Leadsom
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
18th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, whether a deed of variation has been agreed for Petroleum Exploration and Development Licence 189.

A deed of variation has not been agreed for this licence.

Andrea Leadsom
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
18th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, whether the firm work commitments relating to Petroleum Exploration and Development Licence 189 which expire on 30 June 2016 have been satisfied.

Petroleum Exploration and Development Licence 189 carries an Initial Term Work Programme to obtain and reprocess seismic data and to drill a well. The seismic data has been acquired and reprocessed. The operator has requested from the Oil and Gas Authority an amendment of the licence to allow additional time for the drilling of the well.

Andrea Leadsom
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
14th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions (a) he, (b) his officials and (c) advisors have had with representatives of the BBC about internal staff appointments at the BBC.

The BBC is operationally and editorially independent from the government, and the government has no role in internal or executive recruitment at the BBC.

Meetings with external organisations and individuals undertaken in a ministerial capacity are published on GOV.UK on a quarterly basis.

14th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions his Department has had with representatives of the BBC about internal staff appointments at the BBC.

The BBC is operationally and editorially independent from the government, and the government has no role in internal or executive recruitment at the BBC.

Meetings with external organisations and individuals undertaken in a ministerial capacity are published on GOV.UK on a quarterly basis.

14th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if he will list the members of the interview panel for the first selection process for the Chair of Ofcom.

The first process to appoint the permanent Chair of Ofcom was run in line with the Cabinet Office’s Governance Code for Public Appointments, and regulated by the Commissioner for Public Appointments. In line with the requirements of the Governance Code, the members of the interview panel were published in March 2021 on the Cabinet Office’s Public Appointments Website. The panel consisted of Susannah Storey (Director General, DCMS), Paul Potts (Senior Independent Panel Member), Melanie Richards and Lord Livingston of Parkhead.

14th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how many applicants in the first process for the appointment of Chair of Ofcom had their applications carried forward automatically to the second process.

A second process to appoint a permanent Chair of Ofcom has not yet been launched but announcements will be made in due course. The process will be a fair and open competition, and run in line with the Governance Code for Public appointments and regulated by the Commissioner for Public Appointments.

1st Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps his Department has taken to ensure that the payment of the Cultural Recovery Fund for phase three is made in a timely manner.

Our Culture Recovery Fund (CRF) is worth £2 billion in total and is the largest investment in culture, art & heritage in UK history.

Our delivery bodies are working hard to ensure payments from the first two rounds reach organisations quickly, and so far over 83% of all awarded CRF funding has been paid. Payments through the Culture Recovery Fund (CRF) are typically made in multiple tranches. Final payment is typically made at the very end of the grant period, once activities and costs have been reported.

As part of the design process for the third round of the CRF, the Department has conducted various lessons learnt exercises to help us determine where to make design and delivery changes. Details on the third round of funding were published on 25 June, including a specific ‘emergency resource support’ strand that will provide funding quickly to those who are at imminent risk of failure. As with all large and complex funding packages, we will ensure that key lessons learned from the whole process are captured, and used to help improve grant delivery in the future.

30th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how many of the successful applicants in Phase 2 of the Culture Recovery Fund are awaiting the receipt of funds; and how much funding remains to be paid.

The attached table provides figures addressing the questions asked.

Payments through the Culture Recovery Fund (CRF) are typically made in multiple tranches. Final payment is typically made at the very end of the grant period, once activities and costs have been reported.

In both rounds of the CRF revenue grants programme, DCMS has been able to give recipients the flexibility to extend the grant period. For CRF1 awardees, they have been able to extend until 30 June 2021, and for CRF2 awardees until 31 December 2021.

As such, a significant number of CRF 1 awardees have only very recently concluded the grant period, and many CRF 2 awardees have not concluded the grant period yet.

Accordingly, final payment requests are still outstanding from both CRF1 and CRF 2 recipients. Only when final payment requests have been made will DCMS Arms Length Bodies make final payments.

In addition, payment schedules can be impacted by a number of factors, such as the provision of bank details and activity reports from applicants, as well as assurance processes undertaken by distributing arms-length bodies, in order to ensure best use of tax-payers’ money.

As the numbers show, over 83% of all awarded CRF funding has been paid.

Figures include revenue grants, capital grants, and loans from within the Culture Recovery Fund.

30th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how many of the successful applicants in Phase 2 of the Culture Recovery Fund have received all of the funds awarded to them.

The attached table provides figures addressing the questions asked.

Payments through the Culture Recovery Fund (CRF) are typically made in multiple tranches. Final payment is typically made at the very end of the grant period, once activities and costs have been reported.

In both rounds of the CRF revenue grants programme, DCMS has been able to give recipients the flexibility to extend the grant period. For CRF1 awardees, they have been able to extend until 30 June 2021, and for CRF2 awardees until 31 December 2021.

As such, a significant number of CRF 1 awardees have only very recently concluded the grant period, and many CRF 2 awardees have not concluded the grant period yet.

Accordingly, final payment requests are still outstanding from both CRF1 and CRF 2 recipients. Only when final payment requests have been made will DCMS Arms Length Bodies make final payments.

In addition, payment schedules can be impacted by a number of factors, such as the provision of bank details and activity reports from applicants, as well as assurance processes undertaken by distributing arms-length bodies, in order to ensure best use of tax-payers’ money.

As the numbers show, over 83% of all awarded CRF funding has been paid.

Figures include revenue grants, capital grants, and loans from within the Culture Recovery Fund.

27th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how many applications were received in the initial competition for the post of Chair of Ofcom; and how many candidates were interviewed for that position.

A total of eleven candidates applied and subsequently four were interviewed. This process was conducted in line with the Governance Code for Public Appointments and has been regulated by the Commissioner for Public Appointments.

27th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what representations his Department received on the process for the appointment of the Chair of Ofcom, excluding candidate applications and expressions of interest.

The recent process to appoint the permanent Chair of Ofcom was conducted in line with the Governance Code for Public Appointments and has been regulated by the Commissioner for Public Appointments. In line with the governance code, the Minister is advised during this process by an advisory assessment panel who are required to make an independent and objective assessment as to whether candidates meet the published criteria. The panel included a Senior Independent Panel Member, two further members who are independent of the department and Ofcom and a senior department official.

3rd Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how many candidates (a) applied for and (b) were interviewed for the position of BBC Chair.

In line with the Governance Code on Public Appointments, due diligence checks were conducted on all candidates shortlisted for the BBC Chair role.

As part of these checks, we considered anything in the public domain related to the applicant’s conduct or professional capacity. This included us undertaking searches of previous public statements and social media, blogs or any other publicly available information, as well as checks on relevant registers including the Disqualified Director and Insolvency Registers.

3rd Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that due diligence is undertaken in all public appointments.

In line with the Governance Code on Public Appointments, due diligence checks were conducted on all candidates shortlisted for the BBC Chair role.

As part of these checks, we considered anything in the public domain related to the applicant’s conduct or professional capacity. This included us undertaking searches of previous public statements and social media, blogs or any other publicly available information, as well as checks on relevant registers including the Disqualified Director and Insolvency Registers.

3rd Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what due diligence was undertaken on candidates during the appointment process for the BBC Chair.

In line with the Governance Code on Public Appointments, due diligence checks were conducted on all candidates shortlisted for the BBC Chair role.

As part of these checks, we considered anything in the public domain related to the applicant’s conduct or professional capacity. This included us undertaking searches of previous public statements and social media, blogs or any other publicly available information, as well as checks on relevant registers including the Disqualified Director and Insolvency Registers.

3rd Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what plans his Department has to exclude already regulated news publishers from the upcoming online harms legislation.

As stated in the Full Government Response to the Online Harms White Paper consultation, content and articles produced and published by news publishers on their own sites do not constitute user-generated content and are therefore out of scope of the upcoming online harms legislation. Legislation will also exempt below-the-line comments on news publishers’ sites.

In order to protect media freedom, legislation will include robust protections for journalistic content shared on in-scope services. The government will continue to engage with a wide range of stakeholders to develop proposals that protect the invaluable role of a free media and ensure that the UK is the safest place in the world to be online.

28th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what role the Commissioner of Public Appointments will play in the process of selecting a new Chairman of the BBC.

The Commissioner for Public Appointments is the independent regulator of public appointments. The Commissioner’s statutory functions are set out in the Public Appointments Order in Council 2016. The Commissioner’s primary role is to provide independent assurance that public appointments are made in accordance with the Principles of Public Appointments and the Governance Code on Public Appointments.

28th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, when the process will commence to appoint a new a Chairman of the BBC; and whether that process will be an open competition.

The process to appoint a new Chairman of the BBC will be a fair and open competition, run in accordance with the Governance Code on Public Appointments. We expect to launch the process shortly.

28th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if he will publish the criteria by which he is seeking a candidate for the Chairmanship of the BBC.

Once the process opens to applications, the full role specification will be publicly available on the Cabinet Office’s Public Appointments website, where all roles are advertised.

16th Jan 2020
What plans the Government has to introduce a music strategy.

We recognise the significant contribution of British music to the UK, both culturally and economically and I recognise the case for a music strategy. In 2018, music contributed £5.2bn to our economy, reached £2.5bn in exports and sustained over 190,000 jobs.

We have taken a number of steps to support the industry, including reforming licensing and planning guidance and providing £1.5m ACE funding to support grassroots venues.

We are looking to develop a music strategy in the forthcoming months and will be working closely with the UK music sector.

7th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, pursuant to the Answer of 14 September 2016 to Question 45329, on the culture, practices and ethics of the Press Inquiry, which cases are referred to in that Answer.

All criminal proceedings connected to the subject matter of the Leveson Inquiry, including the relevant appeals processes, have now concluded. The Government is currently consulting on Part 2 of the Leveson Inquiry.

9th Oct 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of guidelines in national planning guidance on archaeology and heritage in managing heritage assets.

Historic England is currently exploring ways of assessing the effectiveness of heritage-related planning policy and law in practice.Its assessment of nearly 200 heritage-related planning appeal decisions, its own experience, and its discussions with practitioners all suggest that the application of national policy in relation to the historic environment appears to be broadly effective, and maintains an appropriate degree of protection.

24th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, for each of the last five years for which figures are available, what was the total number of (a) applicants and (b) graduates for English degree courses at universities in England.

The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) does not publish data on the number of applicants to each course.

However, UCAS does publish data on applications to full-time undergraduate courses at UK higher education (HE) providers in their End of Cycle Data Resources pages. Each applicant can make up to 5 applications.

The table below shows the numbers of main scheme applications to undergraduate English studies courses at English HE providers for application cycles 2016 to 2020.

Applications1 to undergraduate English studies courses at English HE providers - application cycles 2016 to 2020

Cycle year2

Number of applications to English studies course (JACS)3

2016

41,805

2017

39,930

2018

36,245

2019

33,440

2020

29,830

Source: UCAS End of Cycle data resources https://www.ucas.com/data-and-analysis/undergraduate-statistics-and-reports/ucas-undergraduate-sector-level-end-cycle-data-resources-2020.

[1] Does not refer to individual applicants. Each unique applicant can make up to 5 main scheme applications. This does not cover applicants who applied Direct to Clearing or applicants who applied directly to the provider. Figures have been rounded to the nearest 5.

[2] Refers to application cycle year. The 2020 cycle covers applicants typically entering higher education in the 2020/2021 academic year.

[3] English studies defined as principal category Q3 of the Joint Academic Coding System (JACS). This code excludes those studying Imaginative Writing (I8). More information on JACS codes can be found here: https://www.hesa.ac.uk/support/documentation/jacs.

The Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) collects and publishes statistics on qualifications obtained at UK HE providers. The latest data refers to academic year 2019/20.

The table below shows the numbers of first-degree qualifiers in English studies at English HE providers between academic years 2015/16 and 2019/20.

Information for the academic year 2019/20 is provided in a separate column due to the introduction of a new subject classification system, the Common Aggregation Hierarchy (CAH).

Figures for the academic year 2019/20 are not directly comparable with previous years, because “Studies of specific authors” and “Creative writing” are now included in the ‘English Studies’ category. Excluding those categories gives a count of 8,110 qualifiers in the academic year 2019/20, although this is still not directly comparable with earlier years due to the new coding methodology.

First-degree qualifiers4 in English studies courses at English HE providers5 - academic years 2015/16 to 2019/20

Academic year

Number of qualifiers in English studies courses (JACS)6

Number of qualifiers in English studies courses (CAH)7

2015/16

10,475

-

2016/17

10,355

-

2017/18

9,665

-

2018/19

9,165

-

2019/20

-

9,405

Source: HESA Student open data pages, https://www.hesa.ac.uk/data-and-analysis/students/table-19 and https://www.hesa.ac.uk/data-and-analysis/students/table-51.

[4] Counts are based on full-person-equivalents. Where a student is studying more than one subject, they are apportioned between the subjects that make up their course. Figures have been rounded to the nearest 5, in line with HESA rounding conventions: https://www.hesa.ac.uk/support/definitions/students#rounding-and-suppression-strategy.

[5] Data between the academic years 2015/16 and 2018/19 excludes a small minority of qualifiers from alternative providers.

[6] English studies is defined as principal category Q3 of the Joint Academic Coding System (JACS). More information on JACS codes can be found here: https://www.hesa.ac.uk/support/documentation/jacs.

[7] English studies is defined as Common Aggregate Hierarchy level 2 (CAH2), which is the sum of codes “19-01-01 English studies (non-specific)”, “19-01-02 English language”, ”19-01-03 Literature in English”, “19-01-04 Studies of specific authors”, “19-01-05 Creative writing” and “19-01-06 Others in English studies”. More information on CAH codes can be found here: https://www.hesa.ac.uk/support/documentation/hecos/cah-about.

Michelle Donelan
Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology
18th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, when he plans to publish the criteria for applications for the next round of secondary schools buildings funding programme.

We are delivering on my right hon. Friend, the Prime Minister’s commitment to a 10-year school rebuilding programme, which will give long-term stability and certainty both to schools and the construction sector and support more efficient delivery.

The programme is launching with a commitment to 50 new school rebuilding projects a year, replacing many poor condition and ageing school buildings with modern, energy efficient designs, transforming education for thousands of pupils. Investment will continue to be targeted at school buildings in the worst condition across England – including substantial investment in the Midlands and the North. We will set out further details of the programme shortly.

Since 2015, we have allocated £9.5 billion to maintain and improve the condition of the school estate, including an additional £560 million in financial year 2020-21 for essential maintenance. A further £1.8 billion has been committed for 2021-22. On top of that the existing Priority School Building Programme is rebuilding or refurbishing buildings in the worst condition at over 500 schools across England.

16th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to the data breach of the Learning Records Service database by the GB Group, what steps he is taking to review the criteria used by his Department to allow external organisations access to sensitive data.

The registration process for access to the Learning Records Service (LRS) has been tightened up significantly:

Extra checks have been put in place by the UK register of Learning Providers (UKRLP) before an organisation can apply to become a registered training provider (a pre-requisite to registering to use the LRS). They must:

  • provide their Companies House number and be a listed as a registered & active company on the CH website, their ICO registration number and an active UKPRN number.
  • provide details of the Awarding Organisation (AO) that they are accredited with (which will be confirmed independently by ESFA), the approximate volumes of learners that they expect to register per annum and a detailed description of why they need access. If the the purpose for any reason but to enrol their own students this will only be granted by exception after a follow up discussion.
  • submit an LRS agreement that is signed by one of the company directors listed on the Companies House website.

The LRS registration form has been updated to include all of the above information, and any organisations who have had their access revoked as part of the recent incident will need to resign the updated agreement/registration form. The registration form also includes a section cleared by commercial lawyers that:

  • states DFE's right of recourse against licensees to LRS and that we will restrict the rights of licensees with regard to the sublicensing of access to LRS.
  • includes text acknowledging/outlining other sanctions.

Any organisation that requests a change of details (for example when a school becomes an Academy, or when an ITP changes its registered name), must meet the same criteria as the initial registration process.

The housekeeping tasks to de-register organisations from LRS are being automated.

Nightly checks are being run routinely now to identify any cases of excessive usage of the LRS, with automatic suspension for those identified. The housekeeping tasks to de-register organisations from LRS will be enhanced going forwards using a weekly data feed from UKRLP.

We have put in place the following additional checks when new entrants to the market apply to join the UK Register of Learning Providers (UKRLP):

  • Each applicant must register with the ICO and include their ICO number in their UKRLP application.
  • UKRLP will check each applicant’s website(s) and review their line of business (including the description of their business on Companies House).
  • Each new applicant must give a reason for registering with the UKRLP.

IDP-Connect will continuously review the current acceptance / rejection process and monitor frequent requests. Those currently registered with the UKRLP will be reviewed against these new criteria.

IDP-Connect and ESFA are now meeting every 2 weeks to review the changes proposed to the UKRLP process and to evaluate progress with respect to the agreed changes.

All bulk shares of personal data from the department must be independently assessed and reviewed by the department’s Data Sharing Approvals Panel (DSAP). Most requests for data that are granted will be through the Office of National Statistics (ONS) Secure Research Service and will use National Pupil Database (NPD) de-identified individual level ‘standard extracts’ for each academic year.The ONS Secure Research Service (SRS) allows researchers they have accredited under the Digital Economy Act or approved through the ONS Approved Researcher scheme to access secure de-identified data in line with the industry standard “5 Safes. The Five Safes are Safe People, Safe Projects, Safe Settings, Safe Outputs and Safe Data.

Access to the service is through 1 of the 5 research labs run by the ONS or if the researcher’s location meets ONS security standards and have access to the ONS they may access the data remotely through their own machines.

DSAP review each request and only approve the request is within the department’s risk appetite and supports the aims of the department.

Gillian Keegan
Secretary of State for Education
24th Oct 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to the Spring Statement 2019, what the timeframe is for the roll-out of free sanitary products in (a) primary schools, (b) secondary schools and (c) further education colleges.

Evidence suggests that some learners in England may be missing education due to difficulties in managing their periods. Periods should not be a barrier to education for any learner, and the department is introducing this scheme to help state-funded primary and secondary schools and 16-19 institutions respond to the needs of learners in the way that is most appropriate to their circumstances.

Nationwide rollout of this scheme to all state-funded primary and secondary schools and 16-19 institutions will take place in early 2020. To help state-funded primary and secondary schools and 16-19 institutions implement the scheme, the department will publish guidance later this year.

Michelle Donelan
Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology
24th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, which contracts awarded by his Department are operated by Capita.

The Department’s records confirm Capita currently has seven contracts as listed in Annex A attached.

Since January 2011, details of central Government contracts above the value of £10,000 are published on Contracts Finder. Contracts published prior to 26 February 2015 can be viewed at:

https://data.gov.uk/data/contracts-finder-archive.

Those published after 26 February 2015 can be viewed at:

https://www.contractsfinder.service.gov.uk/Search.

3rd Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what arrangements she has put in place to ensure local democratic accountability of multi-academy trusts.

Academy trusts are accountable to my Rt Hon. Friend the Secretary of State through her network of Regional Schools Commissioners (RSCs). RSCs work closely with local councils in driving forward school improvement in their areas

In addition, all academy trusts are required to include two parent governors on their trust board or on each of the local governing bodies in their trusts.

2nd Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many (a) local authorities and (b) multi-academy trusts are responsible for the provision of primary and secondary education in England.

As at 1 November 2017, there are 1,240 Multi-academy Trusts (MATs) and 152 Local Authorities (LAs) responsible for the provision of primary and/or secondary education in England. The breakdown of these is as follows:

  1. 971 MATs that have at least one primary school within them
  2. 715 MATs that have at least one secondary school within them
  3. 151 LAs across England that maintain at least one primary school
  4. 142 LAs across England that maintain at least on secondary school

In addition, there are 626 Single Academy Trusts (SATs) which contain a primary school and 874 SATs which contain a secondary school.

This information was sourced from the “Get Information About Schools” website on 1 November 2017. Further information can be found here: https://get-information-schools.service.gov.uk/.%20.

24th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what proportion of schools were (a) local authority, (b) church and (c) academy and free schools on 31 December 2016.

On 31 December 2016 there were 21,925 state funded schools. 71.1 per cent (15,588) were local authority maintained and 28.9 per cent (6,337) were academies and free schools. In addition, 31.2 per cent (6,839) of state funded schools had either a designated religious character or religious ethos.

23rd Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what proportion of the total number of awards made to state schools in the New Year Honours List 2017 were to governors or employees of (a) local authority, (b) church and (c) academy and free schools.

41 governors and employees of state schools were recognised in the New Year Honours List 2017: 17 were employees or governors of local authority maintained schools, 6 were employees or governors of church schools and 18 were employees or governors of academies and free schools.

11th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what proportion of key stage 2 tests in 2016 have required remarking.

If a school believes that there is a discrepancy between how questions have been marked and the published mark scheme for Key Stage 2 National Curriculum tests, they had until 15 July 2016 to apply for a marking review. Statistics related to marking reviews will be published in November 2016.

11th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many primary schools have raised concerns with her Department on the marking of the key stage 2 reading assessment in 2016.

If a school believes that there is a discrepancy between how questions have been marked and the published mark scheme for Key Stage 2 National Curriculum tests, they had until 15 July 2016 to apply for a marking review. Statistics related to marking reviews will be published in November 2016.

11th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what the (a) provisional overall pass rate was for key stage 2 reading in 2016 and (b) overall pass rate for key stage 2 reading was in each of the preceding four years.

The percentage of pupils who achieved the expected standard (a scaled score of 100 or above) in reading at Key Stage 2 (KS2) in 2016 is 66%. This is published as part of the “National curriculum assessments at KS2 in England, 2016 (interim)”[1] statistical first release (SFR).

Children sitting KS2 tests in 2016 were the first to be taught and assessed under the new National Curriculum, tests and teacher assessments. The expected standard has also been raised. The Head of Profession for Statistics has made clear that due to these changes the expected standard this year is not comparable with the expected standard used in previous years’ statistics; it would be incorrect and misleading to make direct comparisons showing changes over time.

The expected standard under the previous system was the percentage of pupils achieving level 4 or above. Performance against this standard for previous years is published in table 1 of the “National curriculum assessments: key stage 2, 2015 (revised)”[2] SFR.

[1] https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/534573/SFR30_2016_text.pdf

[2] https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/national-curriculum-assessments-at-key-stage-2-2015-revised

8th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what total value of assets has been transferred from local authority control to control by academy schools or combinations of academy schools in each of the last five years.

The majority of the assets that transfer to academy control on conversion are land and buildings. In the vast majority of conversions the local authority (LA) retains the freehold, and will lease the land and buildings to the academy. No academy can dispose of land without the Secretary of State’s consent and – where they retain the freehold – the LA.

In accordance with government accounting requirements the Department for Education is obliged to consolidate academy trust’s accounts into our own and record the total value of net assets that academies control; including land and buildings leased from LAs.

The table below summarises information we hold and have published on the transfer, in accountancy terms, of assets to academies. As the Department for Education has only been required to consolidate academy trust’s accounts into our own from financial year 2012-13, it is not possible to provide individual figures for 2010-11 and 2011-12.

Net assets transferred to EFA on conversion of academy trusts from local authorities.

Year

Net assets transferred from local authorities (£m)

Academies converting before 1st April 2012

13,900

Academies converting in 2012-13

6,213

Academies converting in 2013-14

3,390

Academies converting in 2014-15

2,707

Total

26,210

16th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when he plans to publish the Government's food strategy.

The forthcoming Government Food Strategy will set out the Government’s ambition and priorities for the food system, considering the evidence set out in Henry Dimbleby’s independent review and building on additional topics.

We are actively collaborating across Government to cover the entire food system and consider the unforeseen challenges that the agri-food sector has faced this last year since the independent review was published.

We expect to publish the Government Food Strategy shortly.

Victoria Prentis
Attorney General
8th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what the total amount of funding (a) allocated, (b) earmarked for disbursement and (c) disbursed by the Zoo Animals Fund was as of 7 March 2021.

The Zoo Animals Fund has been extended to continue to provide support until 30 June, with application open until 28 May. To date, just over £5.5 million has been paid to 45 applicants from the Zoo Animals Fund. The Zoo Support Fund awarded 56 grants to successful applicants.

Under both zoo support schemes we have so far awarded over £7.5 million to the zoo sector. This money has provided for animal care costs and essential maintenance costs for those zoos experiencing severe financial difficulties due to COVID-19.

Victoria Prentis
Attorney General
8th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether he has plans to relax the qualification requirements for applicants to the Zoo Animals Fund.

Defra has already made the Zoo Animals Fund more accessible than the previous fund, the Zoo Support Fund. We have expanded the eligibility criteria so that grant payments to zoos begin when zoos reach their final 12 weeks of financial reserves, rather than 6 weeks. We also lifted the payment cap from £100k to £700k and then removed this cap at the end of the implementation period when we were no longer subject to EU state aid rules.

Defra has also expanded the range of costs that are eligible under the Zoo Animals Fund so zoos can now claim costs relating to pre-planned essential maintenance and repair works as well as animal care costs. The fund has also been extended in response to the current lockdown, with applications open until 28 May and support provided until 30 June.

We will continue to monitor the fund to ensure that it achieves its aims. We will continue to engage with the sector to fully understand the ongoing impact of Covid-19 on the sector and provide updates as situations change.

Victoria Prentis
Attorney General
8th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether he has plans to extend qualification for the Zoo Animals Fund to groups involved in zoos conservation and scientific work.

Organisations are eligible to apply for support under the Zoo Animals fund if they hold a zoo licence (full or section 14(2) dispensation) under the Zoo Licensing Act 1981 or have been granted an exemption under the Zoo Licensing Act 1981 and hold a licence under the Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) Regulations 2018.

The Zoo Animals Fund was set up in recognition of the fact that zoos need to continue caring for the animals during the pandemic. The fund supports zoos and aquariums with their animal welfare costs, as well as essential maintenance.

As announced in the recent Budget, the fund has been extended in response to the current lockdown, with applications open until 28 May and support provided until 30 June.

Victoria Prentis
Attorney General
5th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what restrictions are placed on hunts meeting during the November 2020 lockdown restrictions.

The exemption for gathering beyond your household for outdoor sport and licensed physical activity will no longer apply, including on private land. All activities in public outdoor space must therefore abide by broader gathering limits: to be on your own, with one other person, or your own household.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
15th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, with reference to the Queen's Speech of December 2019 and background briefing notes, what plans she has to bring forward legislative proposals on recognising animals as sentient beings.

The Government has committed to bringing in new legislation on animal sentience. Any necessary changes required to domestic law will be made in a rigorous and comprehensive way after we leave the EU. Legislation will be brought forward when Parliamentary time allows.

20th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what financial support the Government has provided for research into the use, composting and tertiary recycling of polylactic acid as fresh feedstock for the manufacture of plastic bottles in the last financial year for which figures are available.

The Government has not provided any financial support for research into the use, composting and recycling of polylactic acid for the manufacture of plastic bottles.

20th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what discussions he has had with industry representatives on setting a date by which polyethylene terephthalate in plastic bottles will have been phased out and replaced by polylactic acid.

The Government has not had any discussions with industry representatives on setting a date by which polyethylene terephthalate in plastic bottles will be phased out and replaced by polylactic acid.

18th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment his Department has made of the potential merits of replacing PET-made plastic drinks bottles with PLA-made bottles.

The Government has not had any specific discussions with manufacturers or made assessments on replacing PET plastic bottles with those made from PLA. We are currently working with industry to produce a UK Bioeconomy Strategy that will bring together biological industries, academia and innovators, linking up farmers and land managers with high-tech industries.

This will cover a range of issues such as: intellectual property practices; policy, regulation and industry guidance on waste; the impact of bio-based procurement; and standards for bio-based plastics and other bio-materials. As part of this, the Government will work with UK Research and Innovation and industry to identify the demand, benefits and implications of a standard for bio-based and biodegradable plastics.

18th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what discussions his Department has had with drinks manufacturers on replacing PET-plastic bottles with PLA-plastic bottles.

The Government has not had any specific discussions with manufacturers or made assessments on replacing PET plastic bottles with those made from PLA. We are currently working with industry to produce a UK Bioeconomy Strategy that will bring together biological industries, academia and innovators, linking up farmers and land managers with high-tech industries.

This will cover a range of issues such as: intellectual property practices; policy, regulation and industry guidance on waste; the impact of bio-based procurement; and standards for bio-based plastics and other bio-materials. As part of this, the Government will work with UK Research and Innovation and industry to identify the demand, benefits and implications of a standard for bio-based and biodegradable plastics.

18th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment his Department has made of the relative biodegradable properties of plastic bottles made with PET and those made with PLA.

The Government has not had any specific discussions with manufacturers or made assessments on replacing PET plastic bottles with those made from PLA. We are currently working with industry to produce a UK Bioeconomy Strategy that will bring together biological industries, academia and innovators, linking up farmers and land managers with high-tech industries.

This will cover a range of issues such as: intellectual property practices; policy, regulation and industry guidance on waste; the impact of bio-based procurement; and standards for bio-based plastics and other bio-materials. As part of this, the Government will work with UK Research and Innovation and industry to identify the demand, benefits and implications of a standard for bio-based and biodegradable plastics.

1st Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many reports his Department received of foxes killed by trail hunts by police force area in 2017.

We have received no reports of foxes killed by trail hunts in 2017.

22nd Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many reports his Department has received of foxes killed by trail hunts by police force area since 26 December 2017.

We have received no reports of foxes killed by trail hunts by police force area since 26 December 2017.

4th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made of the reasons for the decline in the bee population.

In 2014 Defra published independent research on the status of pollinators in the UK. This showed an overall decline in wild bee diversity, a major cause of which has been the loss of flower-rich habitat driven by changes in agricultural land use and urbanisation.

Our National Pollinator Strategy highlights the vital contribution we can all make, from farmers to window box gardeners, to support pollinators by ensuring they have food and a home.

28th Oct 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, how many meetings on the UK leaving the EU his Department has had with businesses with supply chains connected to the EU in (a) Chester and (b) the North West to help prepare those businesses for the UK leaving the EU.

Since July 2016, the Department for Exiting the European Union has organised over 850 recorded engagements with business and civil society stakeholders from every sector and major region of the UK economy. DExEU Ministers have attended over 120 roundtable meetings on preparedness and a wide range of other EU exit topics, and have met national business and sectoral organisations that represent the key industries of the North West’s economy.

Ministers continue to conduct an extensive programme of visits across the UK to engage with business and civil society stakeholders on EU exit. Ministers have visited Chambers of Commerce across the North West, and organisations with supply chains closely connected to the European Union.

30th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, which EU executive and regulatory agencies the Government plans to replicate in the UK after the UK leaves the EU.

We are doing all necessary preparatory work to make sure that we get the best deal for the UK. The UK's formal and informal relationship with the EU's decentralised bodies will depend on the negotiations in each area. Any analysis of the UK's intended relationship with these bodies would presuppose the UK's preferred outcome and red lines in the negotiation, and Parliament has voted repeatedly not to disclose material that could damage the United Kingdom’s position in its negotiations with the European Union.

20th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, how many officials of the three devolved administrations he plans to include in his team to conduct negotiations on the UK leaving the EU.

We have made no decisions yet about the format of the direct negotiations with the European Union. It will be for the Prime Minister to ensure we negotiate the best possible future for the United Kingdom, representing the interests of all of its constituent parts. The Department for Exiting the European Union is committed to the creation of a diverse and inclusive working environment.

24th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, how many posts have been created in his Department; and how many of those posts were filled on 30 November 2016.

As at 30th November the department had over 300 staff. We are equipping ourselves with the resources we need to get the best deal for the UK. We are not in a position to give a final total as recruitment is ongoing.

23rd Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, what the total value is of contracts let between his Department and consultants has been since the establishment of that Department.

The Department for Exiting the European Union has used the services of a number of consultancy firms to support departmental set-up and planning. The cost to the public purse on each occasion was either nil, a nominal fee or at the same rate as a civil service salary.

7th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, what meetings he has had with trades unions to discuss the UK leaving the EU since his Department was established.

One of the Secretary of State’s first meetings was with the General Secretary of the Trades Union Congress. We continue to engage with as many other firms, organisations and bodies, including with trade unions. Details of Ministers’ meetings will be published in the usual way.

27th Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what support the CDC Group has provided to the ventilator manufacturer Skanray Techologies; and how that investment is supporting public health systems in India respond to the covid-19 outbreak.

CDC is an investor in Skanray Technologies Private Limited through the investment fund Ascent India Fund III managed by Ascent Capital Advisors Private Limited. The investment was made by the fund manager in 2013 with the purpose of expanding access to medical equipment in India and across South Asia. CDC continues to work closely with the company which is exploring options to scale-up its production capacity of ventilators in support of the public health response to Covid-19 in India.

27th Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, how the Credit Facility for Access to Medicines is contributing to efforts to tackle covid-19 by making treatments and vaccines affordable.

The UK is at the forefront of efforts to develop a COVID-19 vaccine. At the G20 last month, the Prime Minister called on all governments to work together to develop a vaccine as quickly as possible and make it globally available.

MedAccess, initially called the Credit Facility for Access to Medicines, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of CDC, the UK’s Development Finance Institution, which in turn is owned and funded by DFID. MedAccess provides ‘volume guarantees’ to manufacturers to stimulate production and increase the availability and affordability of medical supplies in developing country markets across Africa and Asia. It has a track record of success with viral testing kits to combat HIV and insecticide treated bednets to combat malaria. MedAccess is in discussions with UN agencies and manufacturers to establish whether it can provide financial guarantees to increase production and enable more rapid procurement of much needed medical supplies at affordable prices to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic in low- and middle-income countries.

24th Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what assessment she has made of the adequacy of Palestinians' access to healthcare throughout the Occupied Palestinian Territories during the covid-19 pandemic.

The UK has pledged £744 million to support the global humanitarian response to COVID-19, including in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPTs). We have delivered additional vital support in the OPTs by providing £840,000 to World Health Organisation and UNICEF to purchase and co-ordinate the delivery of medical equipment, treat critical care patients, train frontline public health personnel and scale up laboratory testing capacity.

The UN assesses that although the current number of detected cases remains relatively low, the capacity of the Palestinian health system to cope with an expected increase in COVID-19 cases is poor. The situation is particularly severe in Gaza, where the health system has shortages in specialised staff, drugs and equipment. We continue to monitor the situation and are working closely with the UN and the international community to ensure a co-ordinated response.

James Cleverly
Home Secretary
17th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what assessment she has made of the effect on the healthcare system in Gaza of the response to the spread of covid-19 in that region.

There are currently two known cases of COVID-19 in Gaza. The World Health Organisation (WHO) has delivered essential equipment such as lab testing kits and personal protective equipment and has used DFID-funded Trauma Stabilisation Tents to quarantine suspected COVID-19 patients at the Rafah border crossing. UN agencies are supporting further measures such as the establishment of a field hospital and the creation of a medical checkpoint at the Erez border crossing.

A widespread outbreak of the virus could overwhelm Gaza’s already overburdened health system - especially given the lack of reliable access to clean water and energy in the strip. We continue to monitor the situation and are working closely with the UN and the international community to ensure agencies are ready to respond to an outbreak.

James Cleverly
Home Secretary
17th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what steps her Department is taking to help strengthen the capacity of primary health care systems in low-income countries to respond to the spread of covid-19.

The Department for International Development (DFID) recognises strong and resilient national health systems are vital to global health security and helping to protect the world from infectious diseases, including COVID-19.

Through our multilateral partnerships, and our regional and national programmes, we support low-income countries to make their health systems, including primary healthcare, stronger and more resilient, and able to prevent, detect and respond to health threats, such as COVID-19.

UK aid has a longstanding record of global support to countries to prepare for large disease outbreaks. DFID provides continued and additional support to the World Health Organization (WHO) and other UN agencies, using their leadership role, through providing technical assistance, setting norms and standards and tracking progress to help countries address key Health System Strengthening bottlenecks.

The Department of Health and Social Care’s £21 million International Health Regulations (IHR) Strengthening Project builds capacity in six countries across Africa and Asia to enable them to observe the IHRs and better enable them to prevent, detect and respond to infectious disease threats.

In addition to the UK’s significant annual funding to the WHO of around £120 million, the UK has committed an additional £10 million to the WHO’s Emergency Flash Appeal through to April and additional funding for other international partners who are helping developing countries develop and deliver their own response to the virus. We are pressing WHO and the UN to develop a follow-up consolidated appeal to address the COVID-19 health and priority secondary impacts developing countries.

17th Oct 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what proportion of his Department's funding for education programmes in Uganda is allocated to for-profit organisations that deliver (a) core education services in schools and (b) ancillary services.

DFID does not currently fund for-profit organisations in Uganda to deliver education services. As a result, no recent assessment has been made of their performance.

Andrew Stephenson
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
17th Jul 2019
What progress his Department has made on achieving sustainable development goal 4 on education for children.

We are one of the largest bilateral donors to education globally


Between 2015 and 2019 we supported 14.3 million children to gain a decent education of which at least 5.8m were girls.

DFID’s focus is on ensuring that children have access to a quality education.

My ambition is that DFID increases the number of its education specialists in the field to support the major shift required in education systems and teaching to deliver improved learning for children.

24th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, which contracts awarded by her Department are operated by Capita.

The Department for International Development does not have any current centrally let contracts with Capita but does have some low value spend with Capita for FY 18/19.

3rd Sep 2020
What recent discussions she has had with UK trade partners on including clauses on human rights in future trade agreements.

While our approach to negotiations will vary between partners, it will always allow HM Government to have open discussions on a range of important issues, including human rights. We have a strong history of safeguarding rights globally and will not compromise our high standards in trade agreements.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
9th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what steps her Department is taking to ensure that UK businesses do not conduct business in illegal Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories.

The UK routinely updates our guidance to British businesses on the Overseas Business Risk website. This is voluntary guidance to British businesses. Ultimately it will be the decision of an individual or company whether to operate in occupied territories.

9th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, if she will make it her policy to exclude the import of goods produced in illegal Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories from future trade deals; and if she will make a statement.

The settlements are not covered by the EU-Israel Association Agreement, which currently governs our trade with Israel, nor by the UK-Israel Trade and Partnership Agreement, which will enter into force at the end of the Transition Period. We are committed to maintaining this position.

13th Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what steps he has taken to help ensure (a) UK supermarkets and (b) Oxfam shops have continued access to imported Palestinian agricultural products.

The UK Government is concerned about the impact of recent Israeli trade restrictions. UK businesses should be free to import Palestinian products without barriers. Her Majesty’s Ambassador to Israel raised this issue with the Government of Israel, most recently on 12 February. We welcome the agreement reached by the Government of Israel and the Palestinian Authority, on 20 February, to lift their respective trade restrictions. We urge both sides to ensure the swift implementation of this agreement.

17th Oct 2019
What recent discussions she has had with her Brazilian counterpart on ensuring that UK-Brazil trade does not adversely affect the preservation of the Amazon rainforest.

With your permission, Mr Speaker, I would like to take question 8 and 12 together.

This Government is committed to protecting the world’s rainforests. During my recent visit to Brazil, I raised the UK’s commitment to environmental protection and offered support to Brazil in the transition to renewable energy and a lower carbon economy.

We are working in partnership with Brazil and through UK Government-led programmes, investing over £150 million of climate finance in forest programmes across the country.

I was delighted that on my return from Brazil in August, the PM announced an extra £10 million in the aftermath of recent fires.

2nd Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what the total expenditure budgeted by his Department is for the on-train market research into the impact of recent industrial action on the railways.

The Department has commissioned research to investigate the disruptive impacts of rail strikes on passengers, including disruption regarding travel to and from work, school, medical appointments and leisure activities. The research has a budget of £218,000.

15th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when he last met the Chair of Transport for the North.

The Secretary of State and Departmental ministers meet regularly with the Chair of Transport for the North.

27th Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether his Department has made an assessment of the economic impact of increasing the regulated per passenger charges at London Heathrow airport for the H7 period by (a) 50 and (b) 100 per cent.

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) is the economic regulator of Heathrow under the Civil Aviation Act 2012, independent of government. The CAA published its consultation on Final Proposals for the H7 price control period (2022-26) on 28 June on 2022. The consultation will run for six weeks, closing on 9 August. A final decision is expected in the Autumn.

The CAA has proposed a cap on the per passenger charge that is on average £24.50 (2020 prices). The charge will start higher and reduce each year as passenger numbers recover.

The CAA’s Final Proposals have been further developed from its Initial Proposals in October 2021, since when it has: engaged extensively with stakeholders including the airport and its airlines and assessed their consultation responses; updated its evidence base; commissioned further independent expert advice; and updated its own analysis.

International connectivity is vital for connecting people and businesses, facilitating tourism and trade, with Heathrow as the UK’s only hub airport a fundamental part of that; and no one wants to see prices at Heathrow Airport rise any more than is necessary. Ultimately though, decisions on routes and fares remain a commercial matter for the airlines.

Robert Courts
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
27th Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what discussions he has had with the Civil Aviation Authority on the regulated price regime for London Heathrow Airport in its next regulated price period.

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) is the economic regulator of Heathrow under the Civil Aviation Act 2012, independent of government. The CAA published its consultation on Final Proposals for the H7 price control period (2022-26) on 28 June on 2022. The consultation will run for six weeks, closing on 9 August. A final decision is expected in the Autumn.

The CAA has proposed a cap on the per passenger charge that is on average £24.50 (2020 prices). The charge will start higher and reduce each year as passenger numbers recover.

The CAA’s Final Proposals have been further developed from its Initial Proposals in October 2021, since when it has: engaged extensively with stakeholders including the airport and its airlines and assessed their consultation responses; updated its evidence base; commissioned further independent expert advice; and updated its own analysis.

International connectivity is vital for connecting people and businesses, facilitating tourism and trade, with Heathrow as the UK’s only hub airport a fundamental part of that; and no one wants to see prices at Heathrow Airport rise any more than is necessary. Ultimately though, decisions on routes and fares remain a commercial matter for the airlines.

Robert Courts
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
27th Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the potential impact of an increase in regulated per passenger charges at Heathrow airport for the H7 period on the UK’s international connectivity.

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) is the economic regulator of Heathrow under the Civil Aviation Act 2012, independent of government. The CAA published its consultation on Final Proposals for the H7 price control period (2022-26) on 28 June on 2022. The consultation will run for six weeks, closing on 9 August. A final decision is expected in the Autumn.

The CAA has proposed a cap on the per passenger charge that is on average £24.50 (2020 prices). The charge will start higher and reduce each year as passenger numbers recover.

The CAA’s Final Proposals have been further developed from its Initial Proposals in October 2021, since when it has: engaged extensively with stakeholders including the airport and its airlines and assessed their consultation responses; updated its evidence base; commissioned further independent expert advice; and updated its own analysis.

International connectivity is vital for connecting people and businesses, facilitating tourism and trade, with Heathrow as the UK’s only hub airport a fundamental part of that; and no one wants to see prices at Heathrow Airport rise any more than is necessary. Ultimately though, decisions on routes and fares remain a commercial matter for the airlines.

Robert Courts
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
27th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the potential role of (a) Cheshire West and Chester Council, (b) Merseyrail, (c) Transport for Wales and (d) other stakeholders in supporting the progress of Chester Station through the Rail Network Enhancement Pipeline.

The Department indicated in its feedback last year on Cheshire West and Chester Council’s initial Strategic Outline Business Case (SOBC) for potential rail enhancements at Chester Station the further work that was required on the business case before a scheme could be considered for inclusion and progression within the Government’s Rail Network Enhancement Pipeline (RNEP), in accordance with the published guidance. The Council is continuing to work in collaboration with Transport for Wales, Network Rail, the Cheshire and Warrington LEP, other regional partners and my officials to assemble the additional evidence needed to finalise the SOBC.

There is no confirmed timescale for regional partners’ completion of that work, and therefore for any submission or decision on inclusion of a scheme in the RNEP, or for forecast delivery of any works proposed subject to subsequent funding decisions. As with any business case, I would expect any submission to set out proposals for consideration on the role of regional and local partners in the funding and management of the proposed scheme.

Chris Heaton-Harris
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
27th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, with reference to the Rail Network Enhancement Pipeline, what estimate he has made of the amount of time it will take for Chester station to move from allocation of funds stage of that programme to the full delivery of works under that programme.

The Department indicated in its feedback last year on Cheshire West and Chester Council’s initial Strategic Outline Business Case (SOBC) for potential rail enhancements at Chester Station the further work that was required on the business case before a scheme could be considered for inclusion and progression within the Government’s Rail Network Enhancement Pipeline (RNEP), in accordance with the published guidance. The Council is continuing to work in collaboration with Transport for Wales, Network Rail, the Cheshire and Warrington LEP, other regional partners and my officials to assemble the additional evidence needed to finalise the SOBC.

There is no confirmed timescale for regional partners’ completion of that work, and therefore for any submission or decision on inclusion of a scheme in the RNEP, or for forecast delivery of any works proposed subject to subsequent funding decisions. As with any business case, I would expect any submission to set out proposals for consideration on the role of regional and local partners in the funding and management of the proposed scheme.

Chris Heaton-Harris
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
27th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, for what reason Chester Station's access to the Rail Network Enhancement Pipeline is delayed.

The Department indicated in its feedback last year on Cheshire West and Chester Council’s initial Strategic Outline Business Case (SOBC) for potential rail enhancements at Chester Station the further work that was required on the business case before a scheme could be considered for inclusion and progression within the Government’s Rail Network Enhancement Pipeline (RNEP), in accordance with the published guidance. The Council is continuing to work in collaboration with Transport for Wales, Network Rail, the Cheshire and Warrington LEP, other regional partners and my officials to assemble the additional evidence needed to finalise the SOBC.

There is no confirmed timescale for regional partners’ completion of that work, and therefore for any submission or decision on inclusion of a scheme in the RNEP, or for forecast delivery of any works proposed subject to subsequent funding decisions. As with any business case, I would expect any submission to set out proposals for consideration on the role of regional and local partners in the funding and management of the proposed scheme.

Chris Heaton-Harris
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
27th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when his Department expects to begin Chester Station's inclusion in the Rail Network Enhancement Pipeline.

The Department indicated in its feedback last year on Cheshire West and Chester Council’s initial Strategic Outline Business Case (SOBC) for potential rail enhancements at Chester Station the further work that was required on the business case before a scheme could be considered for inclusion and progression within the Government’s Rail Network Enhancement Pipeline (RNEP), in accordance with the published guidance. The Council is continuing to work in collaboration with Transport for Wales, Network Rail, the Cheshire and Warrington LEP, other regional partners and my officials to assemble the additional evidence needed to finalise the SOBC.

There is no confirmed timescale for regional partners’ completion of that work, and therefore for any submission or decision on inclusion of a scheme in the RNEP, or for forecast delivery of any works proposed subject to subsequent funding decisions. As with any business case, I would expect any submission to set out proposals for consideration on the role of regional and local partners in the funding and management of the proposed scheme.

Chris Heaton-Harris
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
26th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of the number of direct Avanti services currently being provided to Chester and North Wales.

Currently Avanti West Coast (AWC) operate two direct trains per day in each direction between London Euston and Holyhead via Chester. The Department is working with Train Operating Companies to develop attractive timetables that are reliable, deliver excellent performance for passengers, and offer good value for money for the taxpayer.

Chris Heaton-Harris
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
26th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what plans does his Department has to restore hourly direct Avanti West Coast services between Chester and London that were in place prior to the covid-19 outbreak.

Currently Avanti West Coast (AWC) operate two direct trains per day in each direction between London Euston and Holyhead via Chester. The Department is working with Train Operating Companies to develop attractive timetables that are reliable, deliver excellent performance for passengers, and offer good value for money for the taxpayer.

Chris Heaton-Harris
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
26th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what plans his Department has to include local stakeholders outside of the rail industry in the consultations on covid-19 recovery timetables.

Throughout the pandemic, the Department has been working with the rail industry to keep the country moving while protecting the public purse. Recovery timetables were designed to be flexible, so they could be amended to reflect fluctuating demand. Given the fast-changing nature of the situation, train operators were unable to follow regular railways procedures, including stakeholder consultations. As new passenger demand patterns are established, we expect train operators to consider local stakeholders when developing their plans.

Chris Heaton-Harris
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
26th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what plans his Department has to include Chester Station in the Rail Network Enhancement Pipeline.

Having reviewed an initial proposal from Cheshire West and Chester Council last year, the Department continues to work closely with the Council, Transport for Wales and Network Rail to develop a Strategic Outline Business Case (SOBC) for potential enhancements at Chester Station.

Chris Heaton-Harris
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
28th Aug 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what plans he has to include Portugal on the list of countries from which people are not required to quarantine on return to the UK; and what criteria he will use to make that decision.

Portugal was added to the travel corridor list on 22 August.

28th Aug 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, with reference to his Department's guidance, Coronavirus (covid-19): travel corridors, published on 3 July 2020, what plans he has to include the Maldives on that list; and what criteria his Department uses to decide which countries to include on that list.

The Government takes a range of factors into account when deciding which countries to add or remove from the Travel Corridor list. This includes:

  • an estimate of the proportion of the population that is currently infectious in each country
  • virus incidence rates and rates of change
  • trends in incidence and deaths
  • transmission status and international epidemic intelligence
  • information on a country’s testing capacity, testing regime and test positivity rate
  • an assessment of the quality of the data available
  • effectiveness of measures being deployed by a country
  • volume of travel between the UK and that country

?

We recognise how important travel and tourism is for the Maldives. However, inbound travel from the Maldives presents a high risk to the UK given continued elevated incidence of COVID-19 indicating community transmission of the virus. The Government keeps the list of travel corridors under constant review. We will make further exemptions when we are sure that we can do so safely and responsibly.

22nd Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what plans he has to include Latvia on the list of countries who do not require self-isolation upon arrival back into the UK; and what criteria will be used to make a decision.

Latvia was added to the Travel Corridor list on 28 July 2020.

11th Oct 2018
What recent discussions he has had with Highways England on the next Road Investment Strategy.

I have regular contact with Highways England on this matter. Earlier this year, the Department consulted on Highways England’s proposed priorities for the second Road Investment Strategy. A response to this consultation will be published in the coming weeks.

13th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, which contracts issued by his Department or its executive agencies are held by (a) Balfour Beatty, (b) Mott MacDonald and (c) Balfour Beatty Mott MacDonald joint venture.

The contracts issued by my Department or its executive agencies held by Mott MacDonald are listed in Table A below. No contracts are held by my Department or its executive agencies with Balfour Beatty or Balfour Beatty / Mott MacDonald joint venture.

Table A – live contracts with Mott MacDonald

Title

Reference

Start date

End date

Value

PQQ Passport Evaluation

PPRO 04/101/026

1 June 2016

1 June 2018

£20,000

Network Services Directorate (NSD)` West Team and NSD Intercity Team Economic Advisors

PPRO 04/101/44

3 January 2017

3rd January 2019 Option to extend contract for a further 1 year + 1 year period

£500k + £250k +£250k

Network Services Directorate (NSD) London and South East Team Economic Advisors

PPRO 04/101/046

3 January 2017

3 January 2019 Option to extend contract for a further 1 year +1 year period

£265k, £132.5k and £132.5k

23rd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what factors his Department took into account in taking the decision to discontinue the Marine Accident Investigation Branch inquiry into the disappearance of Rebecca Coriam from the Disney Wonder cruise ship.

Rebecca Coriam disappeared from a Bahamas registered vessel in non-UK waters. The Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) therefore has no jurisdiction in this case and did not initiate an investigation.

An investigation was undertaken by authorities in the Bahamas and the Chief Inspector wrote to the Bahamas Maritime Authority to register the UK as a substantially interested state pursuant to the International Maritime Organization’s Casualty Investigation Code.

MAIB has received one request from a third party into the information it holds on the case.

23rd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what representations the Marine Accident Investigation Branch (a) made to and (b) received from third parties on its inquiry into the disappearance of Rebecca Coriam from the cruise ship Disney Wonder.

Rebecca Coriam disappeared from a Bahamas registered vessel in non-UK waters. The Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) therefore has no jurisdiction in this case and did not initiate an investigation.

An investigation was undertaken by authorities in the Bahamas and the Chief Inspector wrote to the Bahamas Maritime Authority to register the UK as a substantially interested state pursuant to the International Maritime Organization’s Casualty Investigation Code.

MAIB has received one request from a third party into the information it holds on the case.

18th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate he has made of the number of construction jobs that are likely to be created through each construction contract as part of High Speed 2 Phase One in each year.

High Speed 2 Limited estimate that around a total of 25,000 private sector employment opportunities will be generated in the process of building the HS2 railway, with a further 3,000 jobs to operate it once finished. The London-West Midlands Environmental Statement (Volume 3, Route-Wide Effects, November 2013) estimated that the equivalent of 14,600 full time employment opportunities would be generated in the construction of Phase One. The government has not made an estimate of the number of construction jobs created through each construction contract in each year.

18th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps he is taking to promote the recruitment of local workers for the construction and operation of High Speed 2 (HS2) in (a) London, (b) Birmingham and (c) the rest of the HS2 Phase One route; and what reporting requirements he is placing on HS2 contractors with regard to (i) local labour recruitment, (ii) spending with local suppliers and (iii) recruitment from disadvantaged and under-represented groups.

The steps taken to promote the recruitment of local workers (as well as disadvantaged and under-represented groups) are set out at: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/509181/G4_-_Approaches_to_Training_and_Employment_v1.4.pdf

Measures to help small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) and local businesses from across the UK access supply chain opportunities are also included in the major works contracts. HS2 Ltd require every procurement to be fair, transparent and competitive and to maximise the opportunities for SMEs to provide the works.

18th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what definition will be used for the term local workers in relation to recruitment policies introduced for the construction phase of High Speed 2.

The steps taken to promote the recruitment of local workers (as well as disadvantaged and under-represented groups) are set out at: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/509181/G4_-_Approaches_to_Training_and_Employment_v1.4.pdf

18th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, with reference to the chart entitled HS2 Review Phase 1 Target Schedule on page 10 of the High Speed 2 Plus supporting slides, published by HS2 Limited on 17 March 2014, if he will update that chart so that it provides the latest contribution schedule for High Speed 2 Phase One.

HS2 Ltd remain committed to a target date of December 2026 for the introduction of services for Phase One of the project.

18th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 18 November 2016 to Question 52862, if he will make representations to (a) the Home Secretary and (b) Chief Officers of Police to put in place measures to enforce the ban on coloured decorative lights on HGV vehicles.

The road enforcement of road traffic law is an operational matter for individual Chief Police Officers, and their officers can issue verbal warnings, fixed penalty notices or report the driver for formal prosecution.

14th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether he plans to amend the Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) Regulations 1986 to proscribe the use of blue coloured decorative lights on HGV vehicles.

The specification including colour and use of lamps on road vehicles are the subject of The Road Vehicle Lighting Regulations 1989. The Government has no plans to amend the regulations to ban the use of blue coloured decorative lamps on HGV vehicles, as these lamps are already prohibited by the regulations.

11th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will provide a schedule of documents held by his Department relating to the disappearance of Rebecca Coriam from the Disney Wonder cruise ship in March 2011 and the investigation into that disappearance.

I am happy to provide the Honourable Member with full details about the documents held by the Department relating to the disappearance of Rebecca Coriam and have asked officials to write to him with this information.

8th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether his Department issues guidance to bus operators on air pollution control and leaving bus engines running idle while at a bus stand.

The Government fully recognises the potential hazards to health and the environment that pollutant emissions from motor vehicles can cause, including when vehicle engines are left idling. Whilst the Government has not issued specific guidance on the subject of idling by bus operators, under Regulation 98 of the Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) Regulations 1986, as amended, it is an offence to cause emissions or noise by leaving a vehicle’s engine running unnecessarily whilst stationary on the road - other than when in traffic. Local authorities also have powers under the Road Traffic (Vehicle Emissions) (Fixed Penalty) (England) Regulations 2002 to issue fixed penalty notices for this offence.

We are committed to improving the UK’s air quality, reducing health impacts and fulfilling our legal obligations. Our air quality plan for nitrogen dioxide, published on 17 December 2015, sets out a comprehensive approach to meeting our ambition for the UK to have some of the cleanest air in the world, including by implementing a new programme of Clean Air Zones. Under the Plan, by 2020 the most polluting vehicles, including older polluting buses, will be discouraged from entering the centres of Birmingham, Leeds, Southampton, Nottingham and Derby. As part of the plan, London also has a well-developed strategy for improving air quality, including the implementation of an ultra-low emission zone by 2020 - which will cover a range of vehicles, also including buses.

8th Apr 2016
M56
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate his Department has made of the cost of upgrading the M56 to a smart motorway between junctions 12 and 14.

No work has been done to estimate the costs of upgrading the M56 to a smart motorway between Junctions 12 and 14 as this scheme is not within the first Road Investment Strategy (RIS). Highways England is working hard to deliver the schemes set out in the RIS in the first Road Period 2015-20.

Future investment in the strategic road network is currently being developed through Highways England’s Route Strategies process, which will be used to plan new investments in the second Road Period 2020-25.

8th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate he has made of the average cost per mile to upgrade a motorway to a smart motorway.

Highways England has an improvement programme to create additional network capacity by utilising the motorway hard shoulder as an additional lane. This is known as the Smart Motorway Programme.

The cost depends on the scope and nature of each scheme and is heavily influenced by factors such as the number of junctions and the extent of work needed to existing structures.

Based on the actual or forecast actual cost of relevant schemes started over the past five years, the total cost ranges from £7.5-£8.8m per mile of additional network capacity (using a common price base of March 2015).

8th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate he has made of the average cost per mile of electrification of a railway line in the UK.

The Department for Transport does not delineate the average cost per mile of electrification from the wider rail upgrade works that it funds in England and Wales. The Government’s commitment to a rolling programme of electrification is reliant on a wider set of enhancement works to make journeys better. This often includes track works, gauging, signalling upgrades, power supply works and station works to allow electric trains to run. The Department does not make an estimate of the average cost per mile of electrification as the engineering complexity and challenge varies significantly across England and Wales. Electrification works in Scotland are devolved to the Scottish Government.

However, we are aware of the significant cost to the industry and the wider public of the failure of the Labour Governments of 1997 to 2010 to progress electrification schemes across the country. This Government is determined to rectify this failure.

8th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate his Department has made of the cost of electrifying the railway line from (a) Crewe to Chester and (b) Chester to Holyhead.

We await the industry’s advice on future investment priorities for the England and Wales network in the next Control Period, building on the Wales and other Route Studies. We continue to work with the industry, the Welsh Government and local groups, including the recently announced North Wales and Mersey Dee Region Task Force, to see what more can be accomplished to deliver better journeys for passengers and freight customers in this corridor. We welcome the recent submission by the Welsh Government of their Strategic Outline Business Case for electrification from Crewe/Warrington to Holyhead as a contribution to this work.

3rd Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many (a) deaths, (b) missing persons incidents and (c) sexual assaults or serious crimes against the person have been reported against UK citizens whilst at sea in each year since and including 2010.

The Department for Transport does not hold statistics on the number of UK citizens who die at sea, become missing persons or are the victims of sexual assault or serious crimes against the person whilst at sea.

25th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what recent progress his Department has made on its rail electrification programme.

The first ever electric trains are now running between Liverpool and Manchester, and Liverpool and Wigan, and the Farnworth tunnel is now open, further proof of this Government’s commitment to electrification – part of the biggest rail investment since Victorian times.


9th Oct 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of amending the road traffic construction and use regulations to prohibit blue lights on non-emergency vehicles.

The specification including colour and use of lamps on road vehicles are the subject of The Road Vehicle Lighting Regulations 1989. Only emergency vehicles are permitted by this legislation to have blue special warning lamps and warning beacons. No assessment has been made to amend these regulations for blue lamps or warning beacons on non-emergency vehicles, as the prohibitions already exist.


9th Oct 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will amend the road traffic construction and use regulations to require dashboard warning lights for faulty brake lights to be mandatory.

Dash board warning lights are the subject of the Road Vehicle Lighting Regulations 1989. There are no specific requirements for brake light failure warning and there are no plans to amend them. The optional fitment of such a warning light is permitted.


13th Jul 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what recent representations he has received on development of rail infrastructure in the North West; and if he will make a statement.

In the North West Network Rail have recently finished electrifying the route from Liverpool to Manchester and to Wigan, and now have 10 electric trains in service on those routes, with plans to increase this to 20 by the end of the year. The work to electrify the route between Manchester and Preston is progressing, as Network Rail are currently enlarging the Farnworth tunnel to accommodate the wires.

7th Jul 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what his policy is on standardising (a) fast tag and (b) other electronic account metering systems for toll roads in England; and if he will make a statement.

It is for toll operators to decide the toll equipment (such as Fast Tag at the Mersey Tunnels) they deploy on their roads and crossings based on operational needs. We are, however, supportive of toll facilities which ensure compliance and can avoid unnecessary delay for motorists.

We also support interoperability for tolled crossings where this makes sense for road users, but this should not put additional costs on other road users who will not benefit from interoperability.

23rd Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what proportion of universal credit claimants who have been transferred from legacy benefits are receiving (a) more, (b) the same and (c) less financial support than they were receiving in the legacy benefits.

The information requested is not available because claimants who naturally migrate to Universal Credit will do so because they will have had a significant change in their circumstances which previously would have led to a new claim to another existing benefit. In these situations, it has always been the case that the assessment of their new benefit will be based on their new circumstances and under the rules of their new benefit. We do not centrally collate the number of claimants that have made a new claim to Universal Credit as a result of such a change in circumstances.

For people considering claiming Universal Credit, we have updated our information on gov.uk and on understandinguniversalcredit.gov.uk where links to independent benefit calculators can also be found.

30th Sep 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, when she plans to answer Question 287927 tabled on 6 September 2019 by the hon. Member for the City of Chester.

This was answered on the 3rd October 2019.

Guy Opperman
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
6th Sep 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many women affected by the increase in state pension age for women born in the 1950s died before receiving their state pension.

It is not possible to answer the question as no government holds this information..

Data on deaths by single year of age is published by the Office of National Statistics and is available at the link below:

https://www.ons.gov.uk/file?uri=/peoplepopulationandcommunity/birthsdeathsandmarriages/deaths/datasets/deathsregisteredinenglandandwalesseriesdrreferencetables/2018/referencetablesfinalv22.xlsx

Guy Opperman
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
24th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, which contracts awarded by her Department are operated by Capita.

The Department for Work and Pensions has 4 live contracts operated by Capita.

They are;

Personal Independence Payment (PIP) Assessment Service Lot 2: Central England and Wales

Network Management Contact Centre

Jobseeker's Allowance New Claims Contact Centre Service

Improving Access to Psychological Therapies Employment Adviser Training

2nd Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many recipients of employment support allowance have moved into work since changes were made to the level of that benefit in April 2017.

The information is not readily available and to provide it would incur disproportionate cost.

The latest information to February 2017 on the number of Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) claimants by phase of claim is published and available at:

https://stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/

Guidance for users is available at:

https://sw.stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/webapi/online-help/Getting-Started.html

Penny Mordaunt
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
13th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what proportion of personal independence payment cases overturned at reconsideration or appeal stages were initially assessed as scoring zero points by the relevant assessor in 2016.

The table below provides the number of mandatory reconsiderations and appeals where the decision was overturned in 2016, and the proportion of these cases where the individual was initially assessed as scoring zero points by the DWP case manager.

Mandatory Reconsiderations

Appeals

Overturned cases

34,110

32,070

Overturned cases when they initially scored zero points

5,030 (15%)

8,100 (25%)

Notes:

  1. The number of Mandatory Reconsideration (MR) and Appeal overturns includes decisions where a claimant’s monetary award was changed at MR or Appeal.
  2. Data shows the number of MRs and Appeals where the outcome of this decision was reached during 2016.
  3. The data currently available on point scores and reported here shows the points awarded by the DWP case manager at initial decision.
Penny Mordaunt
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
13th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what proportion of personal independence payment cases were overturned on appeal at (a) mandatory reconsideration and (b) appeal stage in 2016.

Statistics on MRs can be found in in tables 7A and 7B of:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/personal-independence-payment-statistics

Information on the number of PIP appeals is published by the Ministry of Justice. A link to the latest national level statistics published on

9 March 2017 is here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/tribunals-and-gender-recognition-certificate-statistics-quarterly-october-to-december-2016. See table SSCS3

Penny Mordaunt
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
6th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what criteria were used to determine individual need in setting the rate of jobseeker's allowance and the lower rate of employment and support allowance for a single adult at £73.10 per week.

The level of Jobseeker’s Allowance and Employment and Support Allowance awarded depends on the claimant’s individual circumstances. The main components of Jobseeker’s Allowance and Employment Support Allowance are the personal allowances, paid according to age and family status.

In many cases the basic rate of Jobseeker’s Allowance and Employment Support Allowance is just one element of the total package of support that a person receives, with additional flat rate premiums payable for groups recognised as having additional needs, such as disability.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Education)
10th Jun 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many applications there were for personal independence payments in the latest year for which figures are available; what proportion of those applications were rejected; and what proportion of unsuccessful applications were subsequently granted on appeal.

Data on the number of claims made for personal independence payment (PIP), and the proportion of such claims which were unsuccessful, are available from Stat-Xplore: https://stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/. Guidance on how to use Stat-Xplore can be found here: https://sw.stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/webapi/online-help/index.html.

Appeals against PIP decisions may be made where an award of benefit has been given or not. Data on appeals is a matter for Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service, an executive agency sponsored by the Ministry of Justice. The latest available data on appeals can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/tribunals-statistics#social-security-and-child-support-statistics.

19th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many employees who were dismissed from employment by his Department or its executive agencies since 2010 were on long-term sickness absence at the time of their dismissal; and how many such employees had been diagnosed with a condition considered (a) incurable, and (b) terminal.

DWP has succeeded in reducing sickness absence from an annual average of 8.4 days per employee in December 2010 to 6.2 days per employee currently.

DWP’s Attendance Management policy is supportive of our people and we are committed to helping them maintain good health. We will support employees during periods of sickness absence as long as there is a realistic prospect they will return to work. However, where this is not the case, we need to take prompt action to manage the situation.

The following table provides a summary of number of employees dismissed while on long-term sickness absence.


Year

Headcount at end of year

Dismissals on Long Term Sick

2010

112,135

450

2011

101,331

439

2012

106,487

333

2013

99,343

423

2014

90,388

453

2015

84,429

421


DWP does not record whether an employee’s condition is diagnosed as incurable or terminal, so cannot provide this information.



10th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment she has made (a) podiatry vacancy rates in the NHS in City of Chester constituency and (b) the impact these vacancies will have on patient treatment for diabetic foot complications.

The information requested is not held centrally.

19th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to help reduce the risk of death and serious illness caused by allergic reactions.

The Government is committed to supporting those living with allergies.

On 1 October 2021 Natasha’s Law made it a legal requirement for food operators to display allergen labelling on food items pre-packed for direct sale, protecting those with allergies and giving them more confidence in the food they buy.

The Medicines and Healthcare Regulatory Agency is taking forward a number of actions to promote the safe and effective use of Adrenaline Auto Injectors, an approved treatment for severe allergic reactions.

14th Apr 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many contribution-based ESA claimants have been fined as a result of an erroneous belief that they were entitled to claim free dental treatment while on benefits.

In 2019/2020, the NHS Business Services Authority issued 12,411 Penalty Charge Notices to patients who had provided receipt of Employment and Support Allowance as an exemption for their dental treatment. Prior to the issuance of a fine, patients are permitted to demonstrate their eligibility for free National Health Service dental treatment.

Exemption checking for NHS dentistry was paused during the pandemic to limit the spread of COVID-19 through the handling and signing of papers between patients and dental staff. Patient signatures were reintroduced on 1 September 2021.

Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
6th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 6 January 2022 to Question 87696 on Protective Clothing: Coronavirus, if he will list the number of sites where unused personal protective equipment is being stored, by county.

The information requested is shown in the following table.

Location

Number of facilities

Durham

3

Essex

2

Leicestershire

4

Greater Manchester

1

Staffordshire

1

Stirlingshire

1

South Yorkshire

2

Suffolk

5

Warwickshire

1

West Yorkshire

2

Shanghai

1

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
6th Dec 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what the allocated expenditure is for the rental of shipping containers by the Government or its agents to store unused personal protective equipment for the 2021-22 financial year.

This information is not held in the format requested. However, by the end of November 2021, £300.7 million had been spent on the storage of personal protective equipment. This includes the rental of shipping containers and storage space in the United Kingdom and overseas.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
6th Dec 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will list the sites that have been used by the Government or its agents for the purpose of storing unused personal protective equipment.

We are unable to provide the location of storage facilities as this information is commercially sensitive.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
6th Dec 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what the allocated expenditure is by the Government or its agents on the rental of storage space to store unused personal protective equipment in the 2021-22 financial year.

The information is not available in the format requested and could only be obtained at disproportionate cost.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what plans he has to identify and invite for covid-19 vaccinations those adults with learning disabilities who are not identified as such on their GP's register.

NHS England and NHS Improvement are asking stakeholders and voluntary and third sector partners to encourage people who have a severe and profound learning disability to come forward to their local general practitioner (GP). GPs should then assess the individual and if appropriate, add them to the list to be offered a vaccine.

24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what estimate he has made of the number of adults with learning disabilities who are not identified as having that disability on the GP register.

We have not made a formal estimate.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
20th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many covid-19 vaccinations have been administered by parliamentary constituency in the North West region as of 20 January 2021.

In England, Public Health England publish daily data on the total first and second doses given to date by region of residence. NHS England and NHS Improvement release a weekly publication of vaccination data across additional cohorts, which from 25 February 2021 includes data by parliamentary constituency and by Sustainability and Transformation Partnerships / Integrated Care Systems area.

This data is available via the following links:

https://coronavirus.data.gov.uk/details/vaccinations

www.england.nhs.uk/statistics/statistical-work-areas/covid-19-vaccinations/

18th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will publish the rationale for the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation's decision not to prioritise people with learning disabilities in the roll out of the covid-19 vaccination programme.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) are an independent expert advisory committee which advise the Government on vaccination. The JCVI advised that the priority for the first phase of the COVID-19 vaccination programme should be the prevention of mortality from COVID-19. The JCVI have advised that adults with severe and profound learning difficulties should be prioritised for vaccine in the first phase of the programme.

18th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what plans he has to ask the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation to prioritise people with learning disabilities for covid-19 vaccinations.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) are the independent experts who advise the Government on which vaccines the United Kingdom should use and provide advice on prioritisation of a COVID-19 vaccine at a population level.  For the first phase, the JCVI has advised that the vaccine be given to care home residents and staff, as well as frontline health and social care workers, then to the rest of the population in order of age and clinical risk factors which includes people who are clinically extremely vulnerable and/or have underlying health conditions. Adults with severe or profound learning difficulties are considered to be ‘at risk’ and adults with Down’s syndrome are included as priorities the first phase.

1st Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will make it his policy to publish statistics at regular intervals on the number of people that have been treated in hospital and recovered from covid-19.

Information on the number of people who have been admitted to hospital with COVID-19 is routinely published on the GOV.UK website at the following link:

https://coronavirus-staging.data.gov.uk/healthcare

In terms of the number of people who have recovered from COVID-19, the figures are difficult to quantify as people recover to different levels and in different settings. Not all recovery cases are picked up through data collections.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
13th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what progress he has made in the creation of a register of defibrillators throughout the UK.

The NHS Long Term Plan recognises the importance of fast and effective action to help save the lives of people suffering a cardiac arrest.

The British Heart Foundation, in partnership with the Resuscitation Council UK (RCUK), the Association of Ambulance Chief Executives and the National Health Service, have set up the Circuit: the national defibrillator network. This is now live in five ambulance services: the West Midlands, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and the East Midlands. The Circuit supports the ambulance services to identify the nearest defibrillator at the time of an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. It will also lead to a national dataset which when combined with other relevant national datasets will inform national policy and support research.

Jo Churchill
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
9th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that women with a family history of cervical cancer are given cervical cancer screening when they request it, regardless of (a) age and (b) time since their last smear test.

Having a family history of cervical cancer does not affect your chances of developing the disease; most cervical cancers are caused by human papillomavirus (HPV). Regular cervical screening is one of the best ways to identify abnormal changes in the cells of the cervix at an early stage.

Evidence shows that using HPV primary screening within the NHS Cervical Screening Programme offers a more sensitive and effective way to let women know whether they have any risk of developing cervical cancer. If the individual tested does not have high risk HPV (high risk HPV is found in 99.7% of cervical cancers), her chances of developing a cancer within five years are very small.

The UK National Screening Committee recommends that anyone experiencing any unusual symptoms, such as abnormal bleeding, should contact their general practitioner who will then decide on the most appropriate next steps and diagnostic tests.

Jo Churchill
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
27th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that women under the age of 25 with a history of cervical cancer can request a smear test.

A cervical smear may not be the most appropriate test for patients presenting with symptoms. The UK National Screening Committee encourages all women who have concerns about their health or who present with symptoms to contact their general practitioner, who will then decide on the most appropriate next steps and diagnostic tests.

Women who have a history of cancer are invited to attend regular appointments for testing, which will usually consist of a physical examination. These examinations will look for signs of cancer returning and are recommended for every three to six months for the first two years, and then every six to 12 months for a further three years.

Jo Churchill
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
29th Oct 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will make it his policy to equalise all payments to those (a) infected and (b) affected by the contaminated blood scandal regardless of route of infection.

The Government remains committed to addressing disparity in the support offered to those infected and affected by the infected blood disaster, across the United Kingdom.

The Department is working with relevant Government departments to resolve the immediate and pressing disparity between the English support scheme and those in Northern Ireland and Wales. The Government intends to launch a consultation between the four nations of the UK to achieve comprehensive parity for all those infected and affected and to consider the broader issues of support.

In addition to considering any recommendations made by the Infected Blood Inquiry.

28th Oct 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 23 October 2019 to Question 1906, what assessment his Department has made of the most appropriate test for patients presenting with symptoms of cervical cancer; and what steps his Department is taking to ensure that women with symptoms of cervical cancer under the age of 25 are encouraged to return to their GP if they are denied a cervical screening test but symptoms continue.

All general practitioners (GPs) should use the latest evidence-based guidance from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) to identify people at risk of cancer. The NICE referral guidelines for suspected gynaecological cancers recommend that GPs consider a suspected cancer pathway referral (for an appointment within two weeks) for women if, on examination, the appearance of their cervix is consistent with cervical cancer.

People of any age who present with symptoms of cervical cancer, should make an appointment with their GP, who may then make a cancer pathway referral to a gynaecologist for examination. This may result in an additional referral for symptomatic colposcopic examination if cancer is suspected.

Jo Churchill
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
28th Oct 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many haemophiliac registrant victims of the contaminated blood scandal were paid the full £20,000 from the £10 million that the Government allocated in 1989 to the Haemophilia Society.

The Haemophilia Society is a national charity founded in 1950 to provide support and services to the haemophilia community. The Department gave an ex gratia grant of £10 million to the Haemophilia Society in 1987 to enable them to establish a special trust fund so that payments could be made to meet the needs of the individuals with haemophilia affected and infected with HIV/AIDS because of receiving contaminated blood and blood products. This trust fund was called the Macfarlane Trust and it began administering the scheme in 1988.

The Macfarlane Trust was wound up in November 2017 and the English Infected Blood Support Scheme took over this scheme from November 2017 along with all other schemes supporting those affected and infected by contaminated blood and blood products.

The Department does not hold data in respect of numbers of people receiving an ex gratia payment.

18th Oct 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what discussions he has had with members of the UK national screening committee on amending NHS guidelines to allow cervical smear test samples from under 25s to be examined if a GP requests an examination.

A cervical smear may not be the most appropriate test for patients presenting with symptoms. The United Kingdom National Screening Committee (UK NSC) encourages all women who have concerns about their health or who present with symptoms to contact their general practitioner (GP), who will then decide on the most appropriate next steps and diagnostic tests.

There have been no discussions with members of the UK NSC in amending National Health Service guidelines to allow cervical smear test samples from under 25s to be examined if a general practitioner requests an examination.

Jo Churchill
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
1st Oct 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, when he plans to publish the green paper on funding social care.

Adult social care is one of the most important priorities for this Government, which is why we will set out a plan to fix the care system and give everyone the dignity and security they deserve.

We are providing councils with access to an additional £1.5 billion for adult and children’s social care next year. This includes an additional £1 billion of grant funding for adult and children’s social care, on top of maintaining £2.5 billion of existing social care grants. This will support local authorities to meet rising demand and continue to stabilise the social care system.

In addition, the Government will consult on a 2% precept that will enable councils to access a further £500 million for adult social care. This new funding will support councils to meet rising demand and continue to stabilise the social care system.

As the Prime Minister said on the steps of Downing Street, the social care crisis will be attended to once and for all. We will set out a plan in due course.

30th Sep 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, when he plans to answer Question 287926 tabled on 6 September 2019 by the hon. Member for the City of Chester.

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

Jo Churchill
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
14th Mar 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether the forthcoming NHS workforce implementation plan will model future patient demands as part of determining NHS future workforce needs.

The National Health Service workforce implementation plan will be based on modelling of future workforce needs in line with delivering the vision of the NHS Long Term Plan.

24th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, which contracts awarded by his Department are operated by Capita.

The Department does not currently hold any contracts with Capita.

10th Jul 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many Chairs of NHS Trusts in the North West have previously been Chairs of other NHS trusts; and if he will list those Chairs.

This is a matter for NHS Improvement.

The information requested is not a standard data set and is not information that NHS Improvement holds. Given this, NHS Improvement is undertaking a data collection exercise which has required them to ask questions of NHS trust chairs in the North West directly.

Steve Barclay
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
2nd Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what the average waiting time has been for a patient between their GP referral and a consultation with a psychiatrist in the NHS in England in the last six months.

The information is not available in the format requested.

5th Sep 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if he will proscribe the practice of conversion therapy in England.

This Government does not recognise so-called ‘gay conversion therapy’ as a legitimate treatment. A person's sexual orientation is not an illness to be cured. We have already worked with the main registration and accreditation bodies for psychotherapy and counselling practitioners, including the UK Council for Psychotherapy, to develop a Memorandum of Understanding to put a stop to this practice.

We are not aware of widespread instances of gay conversion therapy happening in the United Kingdom, but we want to get a better idea of the extent to which it is being practised. That is why we included questions on this topic in our national LGBT survey, which was launched this summer. We will publish the survey results and our response in the new year.

6th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if he will make it his policy to (a) plan no further capital developments using the Private Finance Initiative and (b) place no further NHS contracts with private health firms.

Major investments in new hospital buildings are, in general, undertaken by National Health Service trusts and NHS foundation trusts, not by the Department.

In producing their business cases, those organisations choose their planned procurement and financing routes and they are expected to do so with due regard to value for money and affordability, given the specifics of the facility that they are seeking to have built.

HM Treasury is responsible for the policy on the use of ‘Private Finance 2’ (PF2), the successor to the Private Finance Initiative. Only one PF2 scheme is currently being taken forward in the NHS.

With regard to the commissioning of patient care, any decision about use of the private sector is for local NHS commissioners. We are clear that patients should be able to access the best possible treatments based on quality of care, not the type of provider.

5th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many paediatric intensive care beds were free and available for use on 3 and 4 December 2016 in NHS hospitals in England.

Data for available and occupied paediatric critical care beds, for the week ending 4 December 2016, will be published as part of the winter weekly sitreps on NHS England’s website on 9 December 2016 at 9.30am.

The data will be available at the link below:

https://www.england.nhs.uk/statistics/statistical-work-areas/winter-daily-sitreps/

19th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what legal or other agreements the Government has with suppliers of contaminated blood products to provide for liability and compensatory efforts to support people who contracted illnesses as a result of the use of such products.

There are no legal or other agreements in place between the Government and suppliers of contaminated blood products to provide support for those who contracted illnesses as a result of the use of such products. No money has been received by the Government from suppliers of such products to fund ex-gratia support.

19th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how much funding has been received by the public purse from suppliers of contaminated blood products to support compensation schemes for people adversely affected by the use of such products.

There are no legal or other agreements in place between the Government and suppliers of contaminated blood products to provide support for those who contracted illnesses as a result of the use of such products. No money has been received by the Government from suppliers of such products to fund ex-gratia support.

14th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, whether Lancashire Teaching Hospitals Trust, working with a clinical commissioning group, has asked every GP in Lancashire if it can help cover the staff shortfall in that trust.

These are operational matters for the Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and we have written to Stuart Heys, Chair of the Trust informing him of the hon. Member’s questions. He will reply shortly and a copy of the letter will be placed in the Library.

14th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps were taken to address the risk of staff shortages at Chorley and South Ribble Accident & Emergency unit; and when such steps were reported to (a) the Trust Board, (b) Monitor, (c) the clinical commissioning group and (d) his Department.

These are operational matters for the Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and we have written to Stuart Heys, Chair of the Trust informing him of the hon. Member’s questions. He will reply shortly and a copy of the letter will be placed in the Library.

14th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, when (a) the fact of, (b) the reasons for and (c) consequences of shortages of staff at Chorley and South Ribble Accident and Emergency unit was first reported to (i) him, (ii) the Trust Board, (iii) Monitor, (iv) the Clinical Commissioning Group and (v) the Department of Health.

These are operational matters for the Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and we have written to Stuart Heys, Chair of the Trust informing him of the hon. Member’s questions. He will reply shortly and a copy of the letter will be placed in the Library.

14th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what attempts have been made to begin a national media campaign to recruit doctors at Chorley and South Ribble District Hospital; and in which national papers that campaign was placed.

These are operational matters for the Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and we have written to Stuart Heys, Chair of the Trust informing him of the hon. Member’s questions. He will reply shortly and a copy of the letter will be placed in the Library.

14th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what Lancashire Teaching Hospitals Trust's Business Resilience Plan is to avoid acute shortages of staff at the Accident and Emergency department.

These are operational matters for the Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and we have written to Stuart Heys, Chair of the Trust informing him of the hon. Member’s questions. He will reply shortly and a copy of the letter will be placed in the Library.

14th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, whether Lancashire Teaching Hospitals Trust, working with a Clinical Commissioning Group, has worked with Medex or other private companies embedded within the HR department to recruit doctors.

These are operational matters for the Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and we have written to Stuart Heys, Chair of the Trust informing him of the hon. Member’s questions. He will reply shortly and a copy of the letter will be placed in the Library.

14th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, whether Lancashire Teaching Hospitals Trust has a Risk Register covering staffing at the Accident and Emergency department at Chorley and South Ribble District Hospital.

These are operational matters for the Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and we have written to Stuart Heys, Chair of the Trust informing him of the hon. Member’s questions. He will reply shortly and a copy of the letter will be placed in the Library.

14th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, whether the Chief Executive of the Lancashire Teaching Hospitals Trust has made a request to (a) the military and (b) the Cabinet Office to fully cover the 24 hour accident and emergency service at Chorley and South Ribble Accident & Emergency unit.

These are operational matters for the Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and we have written to Stuart Heys, Chair of the Trust informing him of the hon. Member’s questions. He will reply shortly and a copy of the letter will be placed in the Library.

2nd Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what discussions his Department has had with (a) Cheshire West & Chester Council, (b) Cheshire East Council and (c) East Cheshire NHS Trust on the provision of sexual health services in Cheshire in (i) 2014 and (ii) 2015 to date.

Responsibility for the provision of most sexual health services lies with local authorities.

No discussions have taken place.

1st Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what plans he has to publish the report Distressed Health Communities in East Cheshire NHS Trust.

The Department has not commissioned such a report. In 2014, NHS England, Monitor and the NHS Trust Development Authority (TDA) commissioned research from four consultancies to support 11 challenged local health economies with the development and strengthening of their strategic plans. Eastern Cheshire is one of the 11 health economies covered by this research. An overarching summary, ‘Making Local Health Economies Work Better For Patients’, was published by NHS England, Monitor and TDA in December 2014.

1st Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what recent assessment he has made of the financial viability of East Cheshire NHS Trust.

No such assessment has been made by the Department.

14th Mar 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, if she will publish the UK law firms that have made representations to the Government on behalf of Russian or Russian-linked clients in relation to the UK-Russian sanctions regime.

The UK Government has announced an unprecedented package of sanctions to cut off the funding for Putin's war machine. We have now sanctioned over 1000 individuals, entities and subsidiaries since Putin's invasion of Ukraine. The FCDO regularly receives correspondence regarding designation proposals or specific designations under all sanctions regimes. Law firms that have made representations to the Government on behalf of Russian or Russian-linked clients in relation to the UK-Russian sanctions regime in processed correspondence include BCL Solicitors LLP, W Legal Limited and Peters & Peters.

James Cleverly
Home Secretary
15th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what assessment she has made for the implications of her policies of companies domiciled or listed in the UK threatening environmental defenders in Colombia with legal action, following lawful or legitimate protests on their land.

As set out in the FCDO Annual Human Rights Report, we expect British businesses to respect local and international law wherever they operate.

The UK was the first country to create a National Action Plan to implement the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. This plan sets out what is expected of the conduct of UK businesses, including compliance with relevant laws and respect for human rights; treating the risk of causing human rights abuses as a legal compliance issue; adopting appropriate due diligence policies; and consulting those who could potentially be affected.

15th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what diplomatic steps she is taking to help protect environmental defenders in Colombia who face potential threats and attacks for protecting their lands from corporate activity.

UK ministers and senior officials regularly raise human rights issues, as well as specific cases of concern, with the Colombian Government. The UK's Minister for the Environment, Lord Goldsmith, raised our concerns around violence and threats toward environmental defenders on a visit to Colombia from 5-8 October.

Colombia is a UK 'Human Rights Priority Country' and we consistently raise our concerns regarding violence against human rights defenders and social leaders at the UN Security Council, as we did at meetings in July and on 14 October. We will continue to raise our concerns with the relevant state actors in Colombia.

Through our Conflict, Stability, and Security Fund (CSSF) programme, which has provided £63 million in support of peace agreement implementation, security, and stability in Colombia since 2015, we will continue to prioritise funding interventions to protect human rights defenders, including environmental activists, and social leaders.

15th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what diplomatic steps she is taking to help protect environmental defenders in Colombia who are being threatened by international companies as a result of their lawful and legitimate protest against illicit activities on their land.

UK ministers and senior officials regularly raise human rights issues, as well as specific cases of concern, with the Colombian Government. The UK's Minister for the Environment, Lord Goldsmith, raised our concerns around violence and threats toward environmental defenders on a visit to Colombia from 5-8 October.

Colombia is a UK 'Human Rights Priority Country' and we consistently raise our concerns regarding violence against human rights defenders and social leaders at the UN Security Council, as we did at meetings in July and on 14 October. We will continue to raise our concerns with the relevant state actors in Colombia.

Through our Conflict, Stability, and Security Fund (CSSF) programme, which has provided £63 million in support of peace agreement implementation, security, and stability in Colombia since 2015, we will continue to prioritise funding interventions to protect human rights defenders, including environmental activists, and social leaders.

19th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, pursuant to the answer of 17 December 2020 to Question 128190, whether his Department plans to launch a public consultation as part of the internal prioritisation process.

We are working closely with our partners on the impacts and priorities of our Official Development Assistance (ODA) spend, including through roundtables with Civil Society Organisations such as one recently chaired by Lord (Tariq) Ahmad of Wimbledon. Country Plans will also be informed by consultation with partner governments and other partners on key priorities.

As with any major fiscal event, it is right the outcome of the process is formally communicated to Parliament first. We will work closely with our partners and suppliers to explain how this will impact our joint work.

8th Sep 2020
What recent discussions he has had with his Colombian counterpart on increased incidents of violent conflict in that country.

Colombia has made significant progress since the 2016 peace agreement was signed with the FARC. For Colombians in most parts of the country where security was an issue, conditions are much improved. Significant challenges remain in some areas, due to illegal armed groups competing for territory and control of the drugs trade and other illicit activities. This has led to violence, and the death and displacement of ordinary Colombians. We regularly raise this violence with Colombian counterparts and in multilateral bodies. I discussed the UK’s concerns in a phone call with Claudia Blum, Colombian Foreign Minister, on 2 June. We also use our position as UNSC penholder on Colombia’s peace process to emphasise the issue and to urge the Colombian government to ensure the rule of law applies to the entire country, most recently at the UNSC session on 14 July. The UK is the biggest donor to the UN Trust Fund for Colombia. Since 2015 we have contributed over £53m to support implementation of the peace agreement. Programmes run by our Embassy in Bogotá aim to tackle the root causes of this violence, by helping communities develop sustainable livelihoods. This issue is a priority for the Colombian government. We will continue to support their efforts to bring long-term security to all communities.

11th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, with reference to the testimonies of Israeli army snipers reported in the Ha’aretz newspaper on 6 March 2020, what assessment he has made of the accuracy of reports of the Israeli army’s use of live fire on Palestinians.

We have repeatedly made clear to Israel our longstanding concerns about the manner in which the Israel Defense Forces police non-violent protests and the border areas, including the use of live ammunition. We encourage Israel to carry out transparent investigations into whether the use of live fire had been appropriate. While Israel has a legitimate right to self-defence, it is vital that all its actions are proportionate, in line with International Humanitarian Law, and are calibrated to avoid civilian casualties.

James Cleverly
Home Secretary
13th Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what assessment he has made of the effect of the decision by the Government of Israel to ban export of Palestinian agricultural products on Palestinian farmers in the West Bank.

The UK is concerned about the impact of recent Israeli trade restrictions in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. The British Government strongly supports the principle of free trade. British businesses should be free to import Palestinian products without barriers. Our Ambassador to Israel raised this issue with the Government of Israel, most recently on 12 February. We welcome the agreement reached by the Government of Israel and the Palestinian Authority, on 20 February, to lift their respective trade restrictions. We urge both sides to ensure the swift implementation of this agreement.

James Cleverly
Home Secretary
17th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what progress has been made by the team of specialists from defence, health and fire sent by his Department to Australia to assess what support to provide to emergency responders tackling bushfires.

As I (Minister Wheeler) set out in my Oral Statement of 9 January, we deployed a team of UK experts to Australia, including a senior member of UK Fire and Rescue Service, a medical specialist in trauma and mental health, and a military liaison officer specialising in crisis response. The team returned to the UK on 16 January having engaged closely with Australian counterparts.

Drawing on the team's findings we are working to establish what further UK support would be of most use to the Australian authorities, and ensure that any such contributions are appropriate to Australia's needs. At this stage the Australian government has made no specific requests for assistance.

28th Oct 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, how many requests by the US Administration were (a) made to and (b) granted by HM Embassy Washington DC for diplomatic immunity to be waived for (i) motoring and (ii) other offences by UK personnel and their families covered by diplomatic immunity in each of the last five years for which information is available.

The diplomatic immunity of United Kingdom staff or their family members has been waived, in response to the below requests from the US Administration, over the last five years, in relation to motoring and other offences:

Year

Driving offences

Other offences

2019

2

2018

1

2017

2016

1

2015

1

Diplomatic immunity is governed by the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations or the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations and in agreement with the host nation in accordance with its laws and regulations.

All British diplomatic staff are expected to respect and comply with local laws. HMG's policy is that immunity should not be unreasonably maintained and may only be claimed in exceptional circumstances, such as to protect staff from hostile action from host authorities. We expect the highest standard of conduct from British civil servants, and their families, when serving overseas and staff are expected to answer to any criminal or civil charge brought against them.

24th Oct 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will make representations to his Colombian counterpart to investigate the reported murders of (a) Alberto Armando Sánchez, (b) Fernando Salcedo and (c) Cristian Sánchez by paramilitaries in northern Colombia on 30 September 2019.

We are saddened by the reported murders of Alberto Armando Sánchez, Fernando Salcedo and Cristian Sánchez. We share the concern of the Colombian Government that organised armed groups continue to operate in large parts of Colombia, and at the impact their activities continue to have on people's lives, and on the ability of the state, civil society and business to operate and develop.

We remain steadfast in our support of the Colombian authorities as they seek to ensure sustainable peace in Colombia, and will continue to work closely with the Colombian government and civil society on the peace process and related matters.

22nd Jan 2019
What assessment he has made of progress on the peace process in Colombia.

I strongly condemn the ELN's terrorist attack in Bogota last week. Colombia has been steadfast in its rejection of violence for political ends. The 2016 historic peace deal has shown the way, the FARC is now a political party and last year's elections were the safest in decades. The UK continues to support the Colombian authorities as they seek to ensure sustainable peace for all Colombians. Last month I announced an extra £5 million from the Conflict Stability and Security Fund to support Colombia's efforts to secure lasting peace for all its citizens.

12th Nov 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what assessment he has made of the accuracy of recent press reports on threats to members of the LGBT community in Tanzania.

​We are concerned by reports in the media. As I tweeted on 2 November, language that invites violence against any community in society should be rejected. The British High Commission, alongside international partners, carried out a demarche on the Tanzanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on 2 November urging the Tanzanian authorities to respect human rights and protect all Tanzanian citizens from discrimination. We welcome the subsequent statement by the Tanzanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs restating their protection of rights enshrined in their Constitution. We will continue to raise our human rights concerns with the Government of Tanzania and did so most recently at senior official level on 12 November with the Tanzanian High Commissioner to London.

5th Nov 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent representations his Department has made to the Government of Tanzania on the level of the threat to (a) the LGBT community and (b) supporters of opposition parties in that country.

I am concerned by reports of threats against the LGBT community in Tanzania. The British High Commission, alongside international partners, carried out a demarche on the Tanzanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on 2 November, urging the authorities to respect human rights and protect all citizens from discrimination. I welcome the Government of Tanzania's statement on 4 November making clear that such threats do not represent government policy, and that it will protect human rights as enshrined in the country's constitution. We must all reject language that invites violence against any group in society. The UK will also continue to raise the importance of wider political freedoms with the Government of Tanzania.

5th Nov 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what assessment he has made of the effect of charges of sedition against former members of the Government of Tanzania on the democratic process in that country.

The UK remains concerned about the closing down of political space in Tanzania. Following the recent arrest and detention beyond the period allowed without charge of Zitto Kabwe, a prominent opposition leader, the British High Commission in Dar es Salaam raised the case with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on 2 November, urging the Tanzanian authorities to follow due process. We will continue to raise our concerns with the Government of Tanzania.

24th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, which contracts awarded by his Department are operated by Capita.

We centrally hold eleven contracts with Capita. These include the fire alarm upgrade works, the Diplomatic Academy learning space design and several Learning and Development courses.

26th Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what the total cost to the public purse was of his visit to Afghanistan on 25 June 2018.

The Foreign Secretary visited Afghanistan on 25 June ahead of a National Security Council discussion. Following the recent ceasefires in Afghanistan, and with elections due later this year, this was a timely opportunity to take stock of progress and the UK’s supportive role in providing peace and stability to Afghanistan (full details can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/foreign-secretary-flies-into-kabul-to-support-signs-of-progress-in-afghanistan). The Foreign Secretary also visited the United Arab Emirates, meeting the Deputy Foreign Minister. The cost of the Foreign Secretary’s travel will be disclosed in the usual way and published as part of transparency data in accordance with Cabinet Office requirements. We do not discuss operational planning of any visits by the Foreign Secretary.

25th Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, which countries he visited on 25 June 2018; and on what date the arrangements for those visits were confirmed.

The Foreign Secretary visited Afghanistan on 25 June ahead of a National Security Council discussion. Following the recent ceasefires in Afghanistan, and with elections due later this year, this was a timely opportunity to take stock of progress and the UK’s supportive role in providing peace and stability to Afghanistan (full details can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/foreign-secretary-flies-into-kabul-to-support-signs-of-progress-in-afghanistan). The Foreign Secretary also visited the United Arab Emirates, meeting the Deputy Foreign Minister. The cost of the Foreign Secretary’s travel will be disclosed in the usual way and published as part of transparency data in accordance with Cabinet Office requirements. We do not discuss operational planning of any visits by the Foreign Secretary.

11th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent assessment he has made of the level of religious freedom in Uzbekistan; and what steps the Government is taking to promote and protect the right to freedom of religion or belief in that country.

​In October 2017 Dr Ahmed Shaheed, the UN Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief, spent two weeks in Uzbekistan. He was received by the government, travelled to the regions, met religious groups, civil society and visited Jaslyk prison. We agree with his initial report which recognised Uzbekistan's relatively tolerant approach to the major religions and acknowledged the measures taken over the past year. These were mainly towards the Muslim communities; the review of prisoners which has led to several releases; the removal of 16000 names from a government watch list for suspected religious extremism, along with the reintegration of those individuals and rehabilitation of prisoners. His report also set out recommendations for reducing the legal constraints around religious practice.

We regularly raise individual human rights cases with the Uzbek authorities and play an active and visible part in human rights activities in Uzbekistan. We have stressed the importance of constructive, private dialogue on human rights issues, including the freedom of religious expression. On 27 October our Ambassador highlighted the importance of freedom of religion or belief and Dr Shaheed's recommendations in a video on Facebook. We expectDr Shaheed's report to the UN Human Rights Council in March.

5th Sep 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what benefits he anticipates will accrue to the British public from President Trump's forthcoming official visit to the UK.

​The United States is one of our closest allies and a Presidential visit is an opportunity to further advance that important relationship. It remains in the UK's public interest to work closely with the US on a range of foreign, security and trade policy issues.

4th Sep 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will arrange for President Trump to meet representatives of the Muslim and ethnic minority communities during his forthcoming official visit to the UK.

​A State Visit invitation has been offered and accepted. The precise dates and programme have yet to be confirmed. Once the dates are agreed, Government officials will begin work on the programme.

10th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, which countries that are allies of the UK are not governed through some form of parliamentary democracy.

Allies, in a strict legal sense, are those states with whom the UK has a Treaty-based commitment to militarily assist each other in the event of an armed attack. As such I can confirm that all of the UK’s allies are governed by forms of parliamentary or other representative democracy.

20th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, how many and what proportion of serving HM Ambassadors and High Commissioners are not career diplomats.

As at 21 March 2017, 12 of the UK's 157 serving HM Ambassadors and High Commissioners were recruited to these roles from another UK Government Department or from outside the UK Civil Service. This represents 8 per cent of the total.

15th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what representations he has made to his counterpart in the US on the access of British media organisations to official press conference held by the US President.

The White House's engagement with the media is a matter for the White House.

21st Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will make arrangements for an early state or official visit to the UK by the recently elected President of Germany.

Germany is one of our most important partners in the world; in trade, foreign policy and in Europe. We are working to strengthen the bilateral relationship further following the UK’s decision to leave the EU, including through high level visits, however there are no plans for President-elect Steinmeier to visit the UK in the immediate future.

24th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what representations he has made to his Colombian counterpart on the murder of (a) Aldemar Parra García on 7 January 2017, (b) Olmeido Pito Garcia in Cauca on 6 January 2017 and (c) Yanetin Alejandra Calvache in Balboa in Cauca on 30 December 2016; and what reports he has received on the circumstances of those murders.

We are concerned by the increasing number of reported killings of civil society figures and activists in Colombia. Since the beginning of 2017, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office has received reports of at least ten murders where the victims appear to have been targeted for their role as human rights defenders, or because they are members of unions or political groups such as Marcha Patriotica, including Hernan Agames, Yanetin Calvache, Olmeido Pito Garcia, Aldemar Parra Garcia, Emilsen Manyoma, Joe Javier Rodallega and Juan de la Cruz Mosquera.

The Prime Minister raised the issue of the levels of violence against human rights defenders with President Santos during the State Visit in November. Respect for human rights was also included in their joint declaration. I and Ministerial colleagues will continue to raise our human rights concerns with our Colombian counterparts.

Working together to improve respect for human rights is a key part of our relationship with the Colombian Government and civil society. At a practical level, our Ambassador to Colombia is a member of the group "Ambassadors with Defenders" which promotes the work of human rights defenders and raises concerns about specific cases with the Colombian Government. The group will meet the Colombian Attorney-General to discuss the continued murders against human rights defenders, including those killed in recent weeks. On 19 January, British Embassy staff in Bogota met Colombian NGO Somos Defensores to discuss the recent murders. They also took part in a visit to South Bolivar, where local community leaders have voiced concerns about their security. As a result of this visit, the Office of the Presidential Advisor on Human rights committed to request the Colombian Ministry of Defence to provide additional security measures for community leaders.

The Colombian Government recognises the threats faced by human rights defenders and acknowledges the challenges it faces in implementing the peace agreement with the FARC. In December, the Office of the Presidential Advisor for Human Rights (OHCHR) made a statement which linked an increase in incidents to areas vacated by the FARC. President Santos also gave a speech on 22 November in which he said he would work with Governors of affected areas and the Attorney General to accelerate investigations into murders of human rights defenders to find those responsible.

5th Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 19 July 2016 to Question 42328, for what reasons his Department did not provide the schedule of documents requested in that Question relating to the disappearance of Rebecca Coriam.

Further to your meeting with consular officials in August, a schedule of documents has been provided to you.

20th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 19 July 2016, to Question 42328, if he will provide (a) a schedule of the consular documents and (b) a copy of the investigation report referred to in that Answer.

The consular documents referred to in my Answer of 19 July, to Question 42328, contain numerous pieces of correspondence between the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the many interested parties in the case, including the Governments of the Bahamas and Mexico. However, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office does not hold a copy of the police report, which was passed to Cheshire Police. Officials will meet you and the Coriam family to discuss the case, and our engagement with the Governments of the Bahamas and Mexico.

11th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will provide a schedule of documents held by his Department that relate to the disappearance of Rebecca Coriam from the Disney Wonder cruise ship in March 2011 and the investigation into that disappearance.

Consular documents show that the Foreign and Commonwealth Office provided assistance to the Coriam family at the time of their daughter’s disappearance in 2011, and provided updates on the progress of the Bahamian investigation through the Family Liaison Officer assigned by Cheshire Police. We also facilitated the handover of a copy of the Bahamian investigation report to Cheshire Police.

11th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will provide a schedule of communications that have taken place between the Government and the governments of (a) Bahamas, (b) Mexico and (c) any other country relating to the disappearance of Rebecca Coriam in March 2011 from the Disney Wonder cruise ship.

Consular documents show that the Foreign and Commonwealth Office communicated initially with the Government of Mexico as the Disney Wonder was in Mexican Waters when Ms Coriam was discovered missing. We subsequently communicated with the Government of the Bahamas. As the ship’s flag state, the Bahamian Government was responsible for the investigation into Ms Coriam’s disappearance.

11th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will take steps to ensure that there is a formal mechanism for Colombian civil society involvement in the decision-making process for allocation of the EU Trust Fund for the implementation of the peace agreement in Colombia.

The EU Trust Fund will become established following formal signature of a peace agreement between the Government of Colombia and the FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia). Civil society can play a key role in successful implementation of a Colombian peace deal. In discussions with the EU institutions, the UK has repeatedly encouraged inclusion of civil society organisations in the EU Trust Fund draft strategy, and continues to promote civil society involvement in delivering the Trust Fund priorities once the fund is operational. Through meetings in Bogota, the EU has set in place a consultation mechanism for civil society organisations. The first formal consultation with NGOs took place on 28 June.

20th Jun 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, how many UK citizens have been (a) refused entry to and (b) deported from Tanzania in each of the last five years for which figures are available.

The British Government does not hold information on UK citizens who have been refused entry to Tanzania.

There was only one case of a UK citizen being deported from Tanzania during this period, in 2014.

24th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what information he holds on the (a) military representation that will accompany President Santos of Colombia on his state visit to the UK in November 2016 and (b) rank and function of each such military representative.

I am delighted that Her Majesty The Queen has invited President Santos and the First Lady of Colombia to the UK for the Autumn State Visit. HMG is in regular communication with the Colombian Government in the preparation for the Visit. Details of the programme including the composition of the Official Suite accompanying the President are yet to be confirmed.

6th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will make representations to the Colombian government about alleged historical practices by the Colombian security services against trade unions.

British Embassy officials in Bogotá raised actions against trade unionists in October when they discussed human rights with the Colombian Vice Minister of the Interior.

5th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will make representations to his Colombian counterpart to ensure that the Mothers of Soacha are able to keep their relatives' graves in their current cemetery without incurring financial costs.

Any claim in negotiating compensation for the preservation of the graves must be requested directly via the government of Colombia, through the local compensation courts. Her Majesty's Government is unable to interfere directly in this process.

5th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what reports he has received on the use of illegal sub-contracting employment arrangements in Colombia.

Her Majesty's Government has not received official reports on the scale of illegal sub-contracting employment in Colombia.
11th Oct 2022
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what recent discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport on financial support for historical and heritage assets.

The Government continues to support the heritage and cultural sector. There are several sources of funding from Government Arm’s Length Bodies, such as the National Lottery Heritage Fund and Historic England’s repair grants. I would encourage the Honourable Gentleman to look into those.

Felicity Buchan
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
9th Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what recent estimate he has made of the number of people working on self-employed PAYE conditions who are not eligible for (a) the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and (b) the Self Employment Income Support Scheme.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer regularly meets with parliamentary colleagues and has answered questions on this issue in the House.

The Government has recently announced further measures as part of the comprehensive economic response, taking unprecedented steps to support families, businesses and the most vulnerable. The fiscal response so far totals £160bn.

As well as the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) and Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS), this package includes a comprehensive set of Government-backed loans and grants to businesses, tax deferrals, rental support and mortgage and consumer credit holidays.

This package also includes extra funding for the welfare safety net, in order to help those unable to access other forms of support to get through the coronavirus outbreak. The temporary welfare measures include increases to Universal Credit and Local Housing Allowance, a relaxation of the Universal Credit minimum income floor and making Statutory Sick Pay easier to access.

The Government’s Plan for Jobs will support, protect and create jobs. This plan will make available up to £30bn to help kickstart the nation’s economic recovery ahead of a fuller package of medium-term recovery measures in the forthcoming Autumn Budget and Spending Review.

9th Mar 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what the value of goods imported to the UK from the occupied Palestinian territories was in (a) 2017, (b) 2018, and (c) 2019.

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) are responsible for the collection of statistics on goods imported to and exported from the United Kingdom, which are published on a monthly basis as the Overseas Trade Statistics.

The value (GB pounds sterling) of goods imported into the UK from the occupied Palestinian Territories in calendar years 2017, 2018 and 2019 is as follows:

UK Goods Imports From:

2017

2018

2019

Occupied Palestinian Territories

£1,246,795

£1,713,290

£1,794,947

Source: HMRC – UK Overseas Trade Statistics (extracted from uktradeinfo.com).

9th Mar 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the (a) proportion of goods imported to the UK from Israel that were produced in Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories in 2019 and (b) value of those goods.

The information requested is not available.

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) are responsible for the collection of statistics on goods imported to and exported from the United Kingdom, including (separately) those to and from Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories. However, HMRC do not produce estimates or hold data on goods imported into the UK from Israel that were produced in Israeli settlements of the occupied Palestinian Territories.

29th Oct 2019
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the potential reduction in the number of contracting roles as a result the roll-out of the off-payroll rules.

The off-payroll working rules (sometimes known as IR35) have been in place since 2000. They are designed to ensure that individuals working like employees pay broadly the same amount of tax and NICs, regardless of the structure they work through. They do not affect the self-employed.

In 2017 the Government reformed the way the rules operate in the public sector in order to address widespread non-compliance. Evidence shows that compliance is improving without reducing the flexibility of the labour market.

Budget 2018 announced that the reform would be extended to all sectors, but not until April 2020, giving businesses more time to prepare. The Government has consulted extensively on the reform and HMRC are rolling out guidance as well as an education and support programme.

On 11 July 2019, HMRC published a Tax Information and Impact Note setting out the costs to business and individuals of the reform. This can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/rules-for-off-payroll-working-from-april-2020/rules-for-off-payroll-working-from-april-2020.

30th Sep 2019
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what proportion of the funding for preparations for the UK leaving the EU have been allocated to preparations for leaving (a) with and (b) without a deal.

Between 2016 and this summer, the government has provided over £6bn of additional funding for departments and devolved administrations to prepare for EU exit. This has all been core funding, for any scenario.

In addition to this core funding, the Chancellor announced £2.1bn on 1 August 2019 specifically to prepare for leaving the EU without a deal.

Further to these allocations of funding, on 30 September 2019 the government reaffirmed its funding guarantee if the UK leaves the EU without a deal and should the EU cease to fund UK organisations after EU exit. This guarantee relates to UK organisations in receipt of certain EU programme funding. The total amount expected to be covered by the guarantee would be £4.3bn for this financial year.

Rishi Sunak
Prime Minister, First Lord of the Treasury, Minister for the Civil Service, and Minister for the Union
16th Apr 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will take steps to ensure that banks maintain records for longer than five years in response to possible legal actions on the mis-selling of (a) tailored business loans and (b) other financial products to small businesses.

Oversight of banks’ record-keeping processes for regulated activities, certain related activities, and other ancillary services specifically covered under EU law is the responsibility of the operationally independent Financial Conduct Authority.

For other activities, such as traditional commercial lending, including Tailored Business Loans, record keeping processes are not subject to FCA requirements and are therefore legal and commercial decisions for banks.

John Glen
Paymaster General and Minister for the Cabinet Office
9th Oct 2015
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, when his Department plans to respond to the Eleventh Report of the Treasury Committee, Conduct and competition in SME lending, Session 2014-15, HC 204, published on 10 March 2015.

The Parliament, and its then Treasury Select Committee, dissolved shortly after this report was published and HM Treasury was not able to prepare a response before dissolution.


HM Treasury is considering the Committee’s recommendations and will be responding to the new Committee in due course.

9th Oct 2015
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of the Financial Conduct Authority in dealing with complaints relating to the misselling of interest rate swaps.

Treasury Ministers and officials meet with a wide range of organisations as part of the usual policy making process.


It might be useful to know that the Treasury publishes a list of ministerial meetings with external organisations. This is available online at: www.hm-treasury.gov.uk/minister_hospitality.htm.


As you are aware, the FCA is an independent non-governmental body responsible for regulating and supervising the financial services industry. Although the Treasury sets the legal framework for the regulation of financial services, it has strictly limited powers in relation to the FCA. In particular, the Treasury has no general power of direction over the FCA and cannot intervene in individual cases.


The independence of the FCA is vital to the role it provides as a safety net for consumers with complaints against financial services firms. Their credibility, authority and value to consumers would be undermined if it were possible for the Government to intervene in their decision-making.


The FCA regularly publishes information on the progress of the redress scheme. This can be found here: www.fca.org.uk/consumers/financial-services-products/banking/interest-rate-hedging-products.


You may be aware that the Treasury Select Committee’s report into SME lending, published on 10 March, recommended that the FCA collect the information necessary to establish whether there are systemic failures in the redress scheme. The FCA has responded and the Committee, which published this response on 12 October 2015. It can be found here: www.parliament.uk/documents/commons-committees/treasury/Responses/Financial-Conduct-Authority-response-to-Conduct-and-Competition-in-SME.pdf

9th Oct 2015
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what recent discussions he has had with the Financial Conduct Authority on the misselling of interest rate swaps.

Treasury Ministers and officials meet with a wide range of organisations as part of the usual policy making process.


It might be useful to know that the Treasury publishes a list of ministerial meetings with external organisations. This is available online at: www.hm-treasury.gov.uk/minister_hospitality.htm.


As you are aware, the FCA is an independent non-governmental body responsible for regulating and supervising the financial services industry. Although the Treasury sets the legal framework for the regulation of financial services, it has strictly limited powers in relation to the FCA. In particular, the Treasury has no general power of direction over the FCA and cannot intervene in individual cases.


The independence of the FCA is vital to the role it provides as a safety net for consumers with complaints against financial services firms. Their credibility, authority and value to consumers would be undermined if it were possible for the Government to intervene in their decision-making.


The FCA regularly publishes information on the progress of the redress scheme. This can be found here: www.fca.org.uk/consumers/financial-services-products/banking/interest-rate-hedging-products.


You may be aware that the Treasury Select Committee’s report into SME lending, published on 10 March, recommended that the FCA collect the information necessary to establish whether there are systemic failures in the redress scheme. The FCA has responded and the Committee, which published this response on 12 October 2015. It can be found here: www.parliament.uk/documents/commons-committees/treasury/Responses/Financial-Conduct-Authority-response-to-Conduct-and-Competition-in-SME.pdf

9th Oct 2015
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what recent discussions his Department has had with the Serious Fraud Office on allegations relating to (a) systematic undervaluing of properties owned by small businesses and (b) misselling of interest rate swaps.

Treasury Ministers and officials meet with a wide range of organisations as part of the usual policy making process.


It might be useful to know that the Treasury publishes a list of ministerial meetings with external organisations. This is available online at: www.hm-treasury.gov.uk/minister_hospitality.htm.


As you are aware, the FCA is an independent non-governmental body responsible for regulating and supervising the financial services industry. Although the Treasury sets the legal framework for the regulation of financial services, it has strictly limited powers in relation to the FCA. In particular, the Treasury has no general power of direction over the FCA and cannot intervene in individual cases.


The independence of the FCA is vital to the role it provides as a safety net for consumers with complaints against financial services firms. Their credibility, authority and value to consumers would be undermined if it were possible for the Government to intervene in their decision-making.


The FCA regularly publishes information on the progress of the redress scheme. This can be found here: www.fca.org.uk/consumers/financial-services-products/banking/interest-rate-hedging-products.


You may be aware that the Treasury Select Committee’s report into SME lending, published on 10 March, recommended that the FCA collect the information necessary to establish whether there are systemic failures in the redress scheme. The FCA has responded and the Committee, which published this response on 12 October 2015. It can be found here: www.parliament.uk/documents/commons-committees/treasury/Responses/Financial-Conduct-Authority-response-to-Conduct-and-Competition-in-SME.pdf

17th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether she has plans to introduce visa-free travel to the UK for Colombian passport holders.

The UK keeps its visa system under regular review. Decisions on changes reflect a range of factors. These will vary globally, but often include security, compliance, returns and prosperity.

26th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what representations she has received on the Independent Panel into the Murder of Daniel Morgan since January 1st 2020.

As sponsoring Minister for an inquiry, it is not uncommon to receive queries and correspondence regarding the progress of an inquiry. Representations with regards to the content of the report would be a matter for the Independent Panel.

The Home Secretary is kept up to date on the work of the Panel and her responsibilities by her officials, and meets with them when required.

26th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what meetings have been held with her officials on the Independent Panel into the Murder of Daniel Morgan since 1 January 2020.

As sponsoring Minister for an inquiry, it is not uncommon to receive queries and correspondence regarding the progress of an inquiry. Representations with regards to the content of the report would be a matter for the Independent Panel.

The Home Secretary is kept up to date on the work of the Panel and her responsibilities by her officials, and meets with them when required.

27th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether she plans to introduce visa-free entry to the UK for holders of Colombian passports.

The UK keeps its visa system under regular review. Decisions on changes are always taken in the round, and reflect key facets of the bilateral relationship with the country concerned. These will vary globally, but often include security, compliance, returns, and prosperity.

There are no current plans to change the visa requirements for citizens of Columbia.

9th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, if she will publish her assessment of the economic effect on the UK aerospace manufacturing sector of the Government's policy of introducing a 14 day quarantine period for travellers arriving from overseas.

A range of criteria informed the development of the introduction of new health measures at the border, including the urgent requirement to protect our progress in countering the spread of the virus and reducing the risk of a second wave whilst doing all we can to protect vital supply chains and infrastructure work.

It is unfortunately unavoidable there will be an economic impact in the UK if we are to take necessary steps like this to protect public health and save lives.

The Government has committed to keeping the border health measures under regular review to ensure they remain effective and proportionate.

28th Oct 2019
What steps her Department is taking to tackle recent increases in knife crime.

This Government is taking action by recruiting an additional 20,000 police officers, by easing restrictions on the use of stop and search, and through supporting the police operational response through the £100 million Serious Violence Fund.

We are also investing in early intervention and, as announced in the Queen’s speech, we will legislate for a new serious violence duty.

17th Oct 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many Border Force officers are on standby to be placed at the Irish border on 31 October 2019 in the event that the UK leaves the EU without a deal.

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

31st Jan 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what plans he has to publish UK Border Force performance data by port of entry.

Border Force does not routinely publish data that does not meet the Home Office standard for publication or that could impact its operational effectiveness. There are no current plans to publish this data in the future.

Border Force transparency data can be found at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/border-force-statistics

24th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, which contracts awarded by his Department are operated by Capita.

The Home Office currently holds 2 contracts with Capita, with a total contract value of £16.4m

Title

Start Date

End Date

Value

Electronic Monitoring Services

01/02/2014

31/03/2020

£16.0m

Immigration IT Test Analysis Services

01/11/2017

01/05/2019

£440,352

The Home Office has since 2010, published details of its contracts over 10K on the Pan-Gov’t Contracts Finder portal, as part of the HMT Transparency Agenda. The link to the portal is as follows: https://www.gov.uk/contracts-finder .

Victoria Atkins
Secretary of State for Health and Social Care
1st Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many (a) arrests and (b) convictions were made relating to offences committed under the Hunting Act 2004 in the last two years for which figures are available.

The Home Office does not centrally hold the information requested.

The Home Office collects and publishes data on the number of arrests for notifiable offences on a financial year basis. The Home Office collects and publishes these data at the offence group level, for example, ‘Sexual offences’ or ‘Miscellaneous crimes against society’. More detailed information on the specific offence or the Act under which the individual is arrested is not collected.

Data on the number of arrests are published in the ‘Police Powers and Procedures, England and Wales’ statistical bulletin, which can be accessed here: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/police-powers-and-procedures-england-and-wales

Information on convictions is the responsibility of the Ministry of Justice.

22nd Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many (a) arrests and (b) convictions were made relating to offences committed under the Wild Mammals Protection Act 1996 in the last two years for which figures are available.

The Home Office collects and publishes data on the number of arrests for notifiable offences on a financial year basis. The Home Office collects and publishes these data at the offence group level, for example, ‘Sexual offences’ or ‘Miscellaneous crimes against society’. More detailed information on the specific offence or the act under which the individual is arrested is not collected.

Data on the number of arrests are published in the ‘Police Powers and Procedures, England and Wales’ statistical bulletin, which can be accessed here: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/police-powers-and-procedures-england-and-wales

Information on convictions is the responsibility of the Ministry of Justice.

7th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many complaints were made about the loss of passport application packs or documents contained within those packs by Sopra Steria in the last year for which figures are available.

Her Majesty’s Passport Office is unable to specify the number of complaints in relation to losses of passport applications or supporting documents by Sopra Steria, as this level of detail is not recorded.

25th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what checks are applied by the UK Border Agency to Heads of State and Heads of Government, and their staff, who visit the UK.

Heads of State are exempt from Immigration control. Heads of Government visiting the UK for official reasons are also exempt. Border Force officers conduct Home Office checks on these categories of visitors to confirm the identity of the visitor and to endorse passports if required.

7th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to the Answer of 30 September 2016 to Question 46253, what steps her Department has taken via (a) broadcast media, (b) UK Visas and Immigration, and (c) agencies of her Department to advise employers of their responsibilities under a points-based immigration system on employing non-EU nationals in the UK; and what the cost of that advice was to the public purse in the latest period for which figures are available.

Comprehensive guidance for employers is published on the gov.uk website, and we regularly engage with employers and trade bodies, at no additional cost to routine business.

13th Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to the Answer of 8 September 2016 to Question 45595, how much her Department spent from the public purse on advertising and promoting the previously proposed points-based immigration system for non-EU nationals in the latest period for which figures are available.

We have spent no money promoting a proposed points-based immigration system for non-EU nationals.

8th Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how much her Department has spent on advertising and promoting the proposed points-based immigration system in the latest period for which figures are available.

We have spent no money promoting a proposed points-based immigration system for EU nationals. The precise way in which the Government will control the movement of EU nationals to Britain after Brexit is yet to be determined. However, as the PM has said many times in the past, a PBS will not work and is not an option.

2nd Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what representations her Department has received on alleged conflicts of interest in the appointment of Sir John Chadwick to head an inquiry into the mistreatment of live foxes by the South Herefordshire Hunt.

The Home Office has not received any representations regarding the appointment of Sir John Chadwick to head the independent inquiry into the mistreatment of live foxes by the South Herefordshire Hunt.

30th Aug 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what recent assessment she has made of trends in the level of cybercrime.

As crime falls, we know that it is also changing. The internet and new technology offer criminals new opportunities to commit crimes such as fraud and cyber crime. This is why we have committed to spending a further £1.9 billion on cyber security over the next five years.

15th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, which agreement takes precedence in areas where she has accepted a business case for the police and crime commissioner to become the fire and rescue authority, or where such a transfer is in progress, and where the Government has also agreed a City Deal that would give combined authorities responsibility over fire and rescue services.

The transfer of responsibility for fire and rescue services to either Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) or mayoral combined authorities is consistent with the Government’s broader approach to devolution. Joining up oversight of public services in this way will promote further collaboration and enable local leaders to pursue ambitious reforms that improve local services and deliver value for money.

The Government has been clear that it is for local leaders to determine how fire and rescue services are delivered in the best interests of their communities. The Government will consider any proposals to transfer responsibility for fire and rescue to a PCC or to a combined authority mayor on a case by case basis. There is no pre-determined order of preference.

29th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what contribution she made at the meeting of EU interior ministers on the refugee crisis on 25 February 2016; and if she will make a statement.

A meeting of the Justice and Home Affairs (JHA) Council took place in Brussels on 25 February, which my Rt. Hon Friend the Home Secretary attended on behalf of the UK.

It is protocol for a Written Ministerial Statement (WMS) to be made in Parliament after each JHA Council, reporting the meeting and setting out the position taken by the UK. In this instance, a WMS will be made in both Houses on Thursday 3 March, which is within the agreed timescale.

7th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many terrorism-related suspects on police bail have (a) been ordered to relinquish and (b) relinquished their UK passports since January 2013.

Individuals suspected of terrorism-related offences can be arrested under the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 (PACE) or the Terrorism Act 2000 (TACT). The decision on which power of arrest to use is an operational judgement for police, and will depend on the circumstances of the case.

Individuals arrested under TACT cannot be released on police bail. By contrast, those suspected of terrorism-related offences arrested under PACE must be bailed once the grounds for detention no longer apply. Figures for the number of terrorism-related suspects on police bail that have been ordered to relinquish their passports, or have relinquished their passports, are not collected.

As the Secretary of State for the Home Department said in the House on 05 January 2016, figures for the number of people who have absconded whilst on police bail for terrorism offences are also not collected.

Figures for those who fail to surrender to bail are collected, but these figures are not separated into categories of offence. These figures are publically available and can be found as follows: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/criminal-justice-system-statistics-quarterly-december-2014

7th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many terrorism-offence related suspects on police bail are understood by her Department to have broken bail and left the UK since January 2013.

Individuals suspected of terrorism-related offences can be arrested under the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 (PACE) or the Terrorism Act 2000 (TACT). The decision on which power of arrest to use is an operational judgement for police, and will depend on the circumstances of the case.

Individuals arrested under TACT cannot be released on police bail. By contrast, those suspected of terrorism-related offences arrested under PACE must be bailed once the grounds for detention no longer apply. Figures for the number of terrorism-related suspects on police bail that have been ordered to relinquish their passports, or have relinquished their passports, are not collected.

As the Secretary of State for the Home Department said in the House on 05 January 2016, figures for the number of people who have absconded whilst on police bail for terrorism offences are also not collected.

Figures for those who fail to surrender to bail are collected, but these figures are not separated into categories of offence. These figures are publically available and can be found as follows: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/criminal-justice-system-statistics-quarterly-december-2014

4th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, which police forces have imported policing-related equipment from Israel since 2010; and what equipment was so imported by each such force concerned.

This information is not held centrally and could only be obtained at disproportionate cost.

The procurement of goods and services for police forces is a matter for Police and Crime Commissioners and Chief Constables locally.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, which agreement takes precedence in areas where she has accepted a business case for the police and crime commissioner to become the fire and rescue authority, or where such a transfer is in progress, and where the Government has also agreed a City Deal that would give combined authorities responsibility over fire and rescue services.

The transfer of responsibility for fire and rescue services to either Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) or mayoral combined authorities is consistent with the Government’s broader approach to devolution. Joining up oversight of public services in this way will promote further collaboration and enable local leaders to pursue ambitious reforms that improve local services and deliver value for money.

The Government has been clear that it is for local leaders to determine how fire and rescue services are delivered in the best interests of their communities. The Government will consider any proposals to transfer responsibility for fire and rescue to a PCC or to a combined authority mayor on a case by case basis. There is no pre-determined order of preference.

21st Sep 2020
What recent assessment he has made of the contribution of defence procurement contracts to the UK economy.

The Ministry of Defence spent £19.2 billion with UK industry and commerce in financial year 2018-19, directly supporting 119,000 jobs across the country and indirectly supporting many thousands more.

15th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, if he will delay the decision on disposal of his Departments land at Chorlton Cum Backford, Chester, until further consultation with (a) previous landowners and (b) local residents has been undertaken.

In accordance with the Crichel Down Rules, the Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO) offered the land at Chorlton Cum Backford, to the former owner. These rules require all Government Departments to offer back surplus land (that meets the conditions set out in the rules) to the former owner at current market value.

Consultation with the former owner began in September 2019. The former owner has had the opportunity to consider the formal valuation of current market value since June 2020. The former owner has provided his response. The DIO are reviewing the former owner’s proposal.

If the sale to the former owner does not proceed, then the site will be offered to the open market, in line with Treasury Guidance. This enables consultation with all interested parties, including local residents.

11th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what assessment he has made of the sale of land which was the site of his Departments former fuel store depot at Chorlton by Backford, Chester, is subject to the Crichell Down rules.

In January 2019, it was declared that land at Backford Depot at Chorlton by Backford in Chester was surplus to Ministry of Defence requirements and was to be sold by the Defence Infrastructure Organisation.

In accordance with Treasury Guidelines, any disposal action commences with an investigation of whether the Crichel Down Rules (CDR) apply, this was undertaken for the Backford site and the CDR were found to apply. Potential Former Owners were asked to identify themselves following an advertisement in January 2019. The Department is currently in negotiations with a Former Owner and the CDR process is ongoing.

22nd Oct 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what assessment his Department has made of the effect on military research and development of the UK leaving the EU without a deal.

The Ministry of Defence does not anticipate any significant effect on military Research and Development should the UK leave the EU without a deal and has put in place plans to manage the most likely short-term impacts.

We will continue to work with our European partners to improve our defence capabilities through co-operative research and armaments projects via our existing bilateral and multilateral relationships - and much of this already takes place outside an EU framework. This will help UK defence industry to continue to operate effectively in the global markets as a trusted, capable, collaborative partner.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
22nd Oct 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what assessment he has made of the effect on the development of future combat air systems of the UK leaving the EU.

The UK defence industry is globally competitive, and we are confident it will continue to thrive in the future. We will continue to work with our allies and partners on the development of capability that we need to keep us safe, and much of this, such as Typhoon, already takes place outside of an EU framework.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
24th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, which contracts awarded by his Department are operated by Capita.

The Ministry of Defence has 81 current contracts with Capita and 49 contracts which have end dates in the past but which are still to receive final payments or be formally closed down on the system. The total value of these arrangements is £1.28 billion.

This analysis incorporates contracts with Capita subsidiaries including PageOne Communications and Trustmarque Solutions.

These contracts cover a range of services, including the Army Recruiting Partnering Project, the Defence Infrastructure Organisation Strategic Business Partner and the Higher Education Pathway contract.

3rd Jul 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, how many UK military helicopters have been used to fight moorland fires in Lancashire and Greater Manchester to date.

No Military helicopters have been used in support of the firefighting efforts in Lancashire and Greater Manchester. Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service (GMFRS) did, at the outset of the incident, request the support of an RAF Chinook helicopter. However, after an early scene assessment on the morning of 28 July GMFRS notified the Ministry of Defence that the planned helicopter support was no longer necessary. As with all major incidents, military liaison officers remain engaged at the local level, providing advice and support.

14th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, how many residential properties there are on the Dale barracks site in Chester; and how many such properties are (a) occupied by servicemen, servicewomen or service families, (b) unoccupied and (c) privately owned.

There are no Service Family Accommodation properties on Dale Barracks. Those which support the Barracks are all outside the wire.

There are 564 Single Living Accommodation bed spaces of which 402 are occupied and 162 are unoccupied. These unoccupied rooms are routinely used for people attending courses at Dale Barracks.

27th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what steps his Department is taking to support veterans into employment.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) ensures that Armed Forces personnel can serve safe in the knowledge that when they leave active service they will be well supported to translate their acquired skills, experience and qualifications into the second career they aspire to. Service life is positive in this regard and the skills Service leavers possess are in demand from UK employers who recognise the benefits of bringing this talent into their organisation.

To support this the MOD has a robust and effective resettlement system in place - this includes the highly successful Career Transition Partnership (CTP) which has helped 85 per cent of Service Leavers in 2014/15 find sustainable employment within six months of leaving the Armed Forces. This is particularly notable when compared to an employment rate of 73 per cent in the General UK population. The CTP is the MOD's official provider of resettlement services to those leaving the Armed Forces and provides one-to-one guidance, training and signposts employment opportunities to about 15,000 Service Leavers.

All personnel are eligible for the CTP resettlement provision including those medically discharged, or leaving the Armed Forces due to redundancy. Personnel with less than four years' Service receive CTP Future Horizons. Personnel with between four and five years' Service receive the Employment Support Programme. Personnel with at least six years' Service receive an enhanced service - the Core Resettlement Programme. These free resettlement services are offered to all ranks of Service personnel and offers flexible support which can be accessed two years before discharge, through to two years post discharge in order to ensure that making the transition to civilian life is as smooth as possible.

3rd Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, what plans he has to publish the criteria and framework used to assess successful bids to round 1 of the Levelling Up Fund bid process.

Unsuccessful applicants received a letter from the department informing them of the outcome of the Levelling Up Fund. Officials will be in touch shortly with unsuccessful applicants to offer feedback to those whose bids passed the gateway stage.

All bids were subject to the assessment process detailed in the published Levelling Up Fund Prospectus and the Technical Note. An Explanatory Note detailing the Levelling Up Fund assessment, shortlisting and decision-making processes was published on the 27 October alongside the announcement.

3rd Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, what plans he has to provide detailed feedback to hon. Members and local authorities who submitted unsuccessful bids for round 1 of the Levelling Up Fund process.

Unsuccessful applicants received a letter from the department informing them of the outcome of the Levelling Up Fund. Officials will be in touch shortly with unsuccessful applicants to offer feedback to those whose bids passed the gateway stage.

All bids were subject to the assessment process detailed in the published Levelling Up Fund Prospectus and the Technical Note. An Explanatory Note detailing the Levelling Up Fund assessment, shortlisting and decision-making processes was published on the 27 October alongside the announcement.

4th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, if he will publish the (a) selection criteria, (b) assessment criteria and (c) scoring system for the assessment of applications for the first round of the Levelling Up Fund.

The £4.8 billion Levelling Up Fund will invest in infrastructure that improves everyday life across the UK, including regenerating town centres and high streets, upgrading local transport, and investing in cultural and heritage assets.

We have published the following on gov.uk at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/levelling-up-fund-additional-documents. The methodology used to calculate the index of places set out in the prospectus, a technical note setting out further guidance on eligibility, MP support and the application and assessment process for the first round of the Levelling Up Fund.

4th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what representations he has received on the proposed merger of Southern Housing and Sanctuary Housing.

Housing associations are independent organisations and Government does not control the way in which they run their businesses. It is for the Board of individual housing associations to carefully consider the merits of such a merger, in consultation with tenants.

Registered providers of social housing are required to comply with the regulatory standards set by the Regulator of Social Housing. These include a requirement that private registered providers deliver their aims, objectives and intended outcomes for their tenants in an effective and transparent manner.

The Department has received no representations on the proposed merger.

4th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what assessment he has made of the effect on housing provision of the proposed merger of Southern Housing and Sanctuary Housing.

Housing associations are independent organisations and Government does not control the way in which they run their businesses. It is for the Board of individual housing associations to carefully consider the merits of such a merger, in consultation with tenants.

Registered providers of social housing are required to comply with the regulatory standards set by the Regulator of Social Housing. These include a requirement that private registered providers deliver their aims, objectives and intended outcomes for their tenants in an effective and transparent manner.

The Department has received no representations on the proposed merger.

9th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what estimate he has made of the number of homeless deaths in (a) Chester, (b) England and (c) the UK in each year since 2010.

Every premature death of someone homeless is one too many and we take this matter extremely seriously.?It should not happen that people die prematurely?and on the street?because they are homeless.???

We are absolutely committed to ending rough sleeping by the end of this parliament. To achieve this, we are providing £492 million to tackle homelessness and rough sleeping in 2020/2021.This marks a £124 million increase in funding from the previous year.?

In December 2018, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) began to produce data on deaths of homeless people in England and Wales. The first release showed homelessness deaths in England and Wales from 2013-2017. Deaths of homeless people were identified from the death registration records held by the ONS, and a statistical method called capture-recapture modelling was applied to estimate the most likely number of additional registrations not identified as homeless people.

The ONS now publishes official estimates of the number of deaths of homeless people in England and Wales annually. However, the statistics are still classed as experimental. The latest release was October 2019.

13th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what plans he has to change building regulations to mandate all new-build homes to be eco-friendly through the installation of (a) solar panels (b) sustainable heat pumps and (c) advanced insulation.

The Government has committed to introduce a Future Homes Standard by 2025. This means new homes will be future proofed, with low carbon heating and lower energy use through high levels of energy efficiency. We propose that new homes built to the Future Homes Standard from 2025 should have carbon dioxide emissions up to 80 per cent lower than those built to current building regulations standards.

Esther McVey
Minister without Portfolio (Cabinet Office)
22nd Oct 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what steps the Government is taking to prepare the homeless population for the winter months.

We recognise the challenges that the cold weather poses for those who are sleeping rough. Last month, we launched a second year of the Cold Weather Fund, doubling its funding. This £10 million fund will be available to all local authorities in England to provide a robust, local response to support as many rough sleepers as possible off the streets during the winter period.

In periods of severe weather, Severe Weather Emergency Provision (SWEP) is triggered and local authorities work closely with charities to provide basic emergency accommodation to minimise the risk of harm to individuals who are sleeping rough when the temperature drops. Many local authorities will already make sure warm places to stay are available throughout the winter, not just during times when SWEP is in force.

24th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, which contracts awarded by his Department are operated by Capita.

The Department currently has no contracts with Capita.

16th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, if he will publish the evidence cited by the Minister for Housing, the hon. Member for Esher and Walton in the Sunday Times article of 8 April 2018, that immigration has increased house prices.

I refer the Hon Member to my answer to Question UIN 135737 on 18 April 2018. The evidence was published on 13 April 2018.

3rd Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what assessment he has made of recent trends in the level of housebuilding.

Housing starts have almost doubled since 2009. Over 608,000 new homes have been built since April 2010 – there are now 795,000 more homes in England than in 2009.

Trends in housebuilding are published in the quarterly House Building Release.

14th Oct 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what assessment he has made of the effect of reductions in central government revenue support to local government since 2010 on the management of the historic environment through the planning process.

Local authorities are independent from Central Government and are responsible for managing their budgets in line with local priorities. Since 2010 there has been a slight increase in the number of listed building consent decisions issued and slight increase in the proportion of those that were granted consent.

20th Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what assessment he has made of the effect on UK media freedom policy of the use by Nursultan Nazarbayev of Kazakhstan of libel actions against UK journalists in English courts.

The government is committed to a free and independent media. The Ministry of Justice is currently developing reforms regarding the challenges which Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation (SLAPPs) present to journalists and others involved in freedom of expression relating to the public interest. Our recent Call for Evidence response, published on 20 July, sets out the Government’s intention to tackle SLAPPs.

10th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many (a) psychiatrists and (b) psychologists are employed in prison and young offender institutions.

As at 31 March 2017, there were 655 full-time equivalent psychologists working in prison establishments (including young offender institutions) across England and Wales.

Psychiatrists are employed as part of the NHS health service provision to prisoners, commissioned by NHS England and by the NHS in Wales. Prisons work closely with NHS services to enable access to high quality care in prisons.

13th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what proportion of the prisons budget was spent on prisoners' (a) education, (b) healthcare and (c) rehabilitation in 2015-16.

As part of our prison safety and reform plans, we are giving governors in all prisons more powers and more responsibility. This includes key roles at each stage of the healthcare commissioning cycle, and the ability to decide how to structure their education regime, how it is sequenced and who provides it.

These new responsibilities for prison governors will be accompanied by new accountability, buttressed by a set of performance standards that will hold them to account for the progress prisoners make.

The budget for education and healthcare in 2015-16 was the responsibility of other Government Departments or a devolved function of the Welsh Government.

The Department for Business Innovation and Skills allocated £128.9m for prison education in that year.

The Department for Health allocated spend on offender health in 2015/16 but it is not possible to breakdown how much of this was spent in prisons.

In the case of some Privately Managed Prisons, education and healthcare was delivered by the prison operator and funded as part of the overall contract price. These costs are therefore not all held in the budget overseen by NOMS to deliver services in prisons.

We do not allocate a separate budget for rehabilitation. Offender rehabilitation is an integral part of the prison regime, from offending behaviour programmes to working in prison catering services.

3rd Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many inquests have taken place related to the death of UK citizens whilst at sea in each year including and since 2010.

The information requested is not held centrally.

19th Oct 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, pursuant to the Answer of 19 October 2015 to Question 11221, how many prosecutions or fixed penalty notifications have occurred for non emergency vehicles displaying static blue lighting in the last three years for which figures are available.

This information is not held centrally and could only be obtained at disproportionate cost.

2nd Dec 2020
What steps the Government is taking to support the aerospace sector in Northern Ireland during the covid-19 outbreak.

This is clearly an uncertain time for many businesses, including those in the aerospace industry, a sector valued at over £1.8bn in Northern Ireland.

As well as the Furlough Scheme, the Government is supporting the UK’s aerospace and aviation industries with over £8.5bn in grants, loans and export guarantees. UK Export Finance is supporting £3.5bn of sales in the next 18 months, and £2.1bn has been made available through the COVID Corporate Financing Facility.

Having met recently with both management and Unite union representatives, I am pleased that Spirit and Bombardier have completed a deal that will end uncertainty for some 3,000 employees. This is a major vote of confidence in Northern Ireland’s highly skilled aerospace workforce.

30th Sep 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, when he plans to answer Question 287929, on Public Expenditure: Northern Ireland, tabled on 6 September 2019 by the hon. Member for the City of Chester.

Alongside the Confidence and Supply Agreement, the UK Government committed to providing £1 billion of additional funding to the Northern Ireland Departments, which is released to the Northern Ireland Grant through the usual estimates process.

The Government has so far allocated £763 million to the Northern Ireland Block Grant, including £333m for the current financial year, through Parliament’s approval in the normal estimates process.

This funding is to the benefit of all communities across the whole of Northern Ireland and is not broken down into individual constituencies.

6th Sep 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, what proportion of the confidence and supply agreement between the Conservative Party and Democratic Unionist Party is allocated to each constituency.

Alongside the Confidence and Supply Agreement, the UK Government committed to providing £1 billion of additional funding to the Northern Ireland Departments, which is released to the Northern Ireland Grant through the usual estimates process.

The Government has so far allocated £763 million to the Northern Ireland Block Grant, including £333m for the current financial year, through Parliament’s approval in the normal estimates process.

This funding is to the benefit of all communities across the whole of Northern Ireland and is not broken down into individual constituencies.

24th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, which contracts awarded by her Department are operated by Capita.

The Northern Ireland Office has awarded one contract which is currently operated by Capita. This contract is to maintain financial data held on the Department’s legacy accounting system.

24th Oct 2019
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what progress has been made by the joint taskforce on period poverty on bringing together (a) public, (b) private and (c) third sector organisations to tackle period poverty.

The Period Poverty Taskforce has made excellent progress in bringing together organisations such as the PSHE Association from the public sector, the phs group from the private sector, Bloody Good Period from the third sector and other experts to tackle period poverty in the UK. The Taskforce and its composite workstreams have met twice and begun to identify: access barriers and the groups that are most affected by them; a programme of work to tackle stigma and shame surrounding menstruation; and research priorities to improve the evidence surrounding period poverty and menstrual stigma in the UK.

Victoria Atkins
Secretary of State for Health and Social Care
27th Jan 2021
What discussions he has had with Cabinet colleagues on the use of fire and rehire employment practices in Scotland.

The Secretary of State for Scotland regularly discusses issues such as protecting workers' rights with his Cabinet colleagues.

For example, the UK Government has acted decisively to provide an unprecedented package of support to protect people’s jobs and livelihoods right across the United Kingdom in response to the Covid pandemic.

24th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, which contracts awarded by his Department are operated by Capita.

The Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland has not awarded any contracts which are operated by Capita.

24th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, which contracts awarded by his Department are operated by Capita.

The Office of the Secretary of State for Wales has no contracts operated by Capita.

Mims Davies
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
22nd Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what discussions he has had with (a) his Ministerial colleagues and (b) the Chancellor of the Exchequer on future infrastructure development in Wales.

This Government is prioritising high-value investment, particularly in infrastructure and innovation, to drive economic growth and raise productivity. At Autumn Statement, the Chancellor increased the Welsh Government’s capital budget by £436m. This is in addition to the £500m in borrowing powers we committed to three years ago. These measures enable the Welsh Government to invest directly in modernising Wales’ infrastructure for the benefit of people throughout Wales.