Edward Leigh Portrait

Edward Leigh

Conservative - Gainsborough

Draft Parliamentary Buildings (Restoration and Renewal) Bill
26th Nov 2018 - 6th Nov 2019
Procedure Committee
19th Mar 2018 - 6th Nov 2019
Panel of Chairs
22nd Jun 2017 - 6th Nov 2019
International Trade Committee
31st Oct 2016 - 3rd May 2017
Public Accounts Commission
4th Nov 2015 - 3rd May 2017
Procedure Committee
13th Jul 2015 - 3rd May 2017
Panel of Chairs
7th Jul 2010 - 3rd May 2017
Members' Expenses Committee
18th Jul 2011 - 30th Mar 2015
Public Accounts Commission
16th Mar 2011 - 30th Mar 2015
Liaison Committee (Commons)
5th Nov 2001 - 6th May 2010
Public Accounts Committee
14th Apr 2000 - 6th May 2010
Public Accounts Committee
17th Oct 2001 - 1st Jan 2010
International Development Committee
14th Jul 1997 - 19th Jul 2001
Social Security
11th Dec 1995 - 13th Dec 2000
Deregulation
29th Jul 1997 - 4th Dec 1997
Agriculture
26th Feb 1996 - 17th Oct 1996
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Trade and Industry)
2nd Nov 1990 - 27th May 1993
Defence Committee
9th Jun 1983 - 15th May 1987


Select Committee Meeting
Monday 29th November 2021
16:00
National Security Strategy (Joint Committee) - Oral evidence
Subject: National security spending
29 Nov 2021, 4 p.m.
At 4.30pm: Oral evidence
The Rt Hon Simon Clarke MP - Chief Secretary to the Treasury at HM Treasury
Catherine Little - Director General Public Spending at HM Treasury
View calendar
Select Committee Meeting
Tuesday 30th November 2021
15:45
Select Committee Meeting
Monday 13th December 2021
16:00
Division Votes
Tuesday 23rd November 2021
Health and Care Bill
voted Aye - in line with the party majority
One of 290 Conservative Aye votes vs 3 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 294 Noes - 244
Speeches
Thursday 25th November 2021
Freedom of Religion or Belief: 40th Anniversary of UN Declaration

I congratulate the hon. Member for North Ayrshire and Arran (Patricia Gibson) on her speech. I particularly follow her very …

Written Answers
Friday 12th November 2021
Police: Demonstrations
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether police forces receive training on methods of removing those …
Early Day Motions
Wednesday 21st October 2020
Psoriasis Awareness Week 2020
That this House notes that Psoriasis Awareness Week takes place between 29 October and 4 November 2020; recognises the vital …
Bills
Tuesday 17th November 2015
House of Lords (Parliamentary Standards Etc) Bill 2015-16
A Bill to amend the Parliamentary Standards Act 2009 to make provision for the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority to be …
MP Financial Interests
Monday 17th May 2021
1. Employment and earnings
Until 5 April 2021, non-executive director of Europe Arab Bank, 15 Moorgate, London EC2R 6AD. From 1 October 2017 I …
EDM signed
Monday 19th July 2021
Mountbatten diaries
That this House notes with concern that the personal diaries of Lord and Lady Mountbatten were purchased from the family's …
Supported Legislation
Tuesday 5th September 2017
Free Trade (Education and Reporting) Bill 2017-19
The Bill failed to complete its passage through Parliament before the end of the session. This means the Bill will …

Division Voting information

During the current Parliamentary Session, Edward Leigh has voted in 286 divisions, and 3 times against the majority of their Party.

17 Jun 2020 - Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Bill [Lords] - View Vote Context
Edward Leigh voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 23 Conservative Aye votes vs 283 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 31 Noes - 400
8 Jun 2020 - Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Bill [Lords] - View Vote Context
Edward Leigh voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 12 Conservative No votes vs 207 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 231 Noes - 16
27 Apr 2021 - Delegated Legislation - View Vote Context
Edward Leigh voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 77 Conservative No votes vs 222 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 431 Noes - 89
View All Edward Leigh Division Votes

Debates during the 2019 Parliament

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
Matt Hancock (Conservative)
(23 debate interactions)
Jacob Rees-Mogg (Conservative)
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
(21 debate interactions)
Boris Johnson (Conservative)
Prime Minister, First Lord of the Treasury, Minister for the Civil Service, and Minister for the Union
(19 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
HM Treasury
(37 debate contributions)
Cabinet Office
(36 debate contributions)
Department of Health and Social Care
(31 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
View all Edward Leigh's debates

Gainsborough Petitions

e-Petitions are administered by Parliament and allow members of the public to express support for a particular issue.

If an e-petition reaches 10,000 signatures the Government will issue a written response.

If an e-petition reaches 100,000 signatures the petition becomes eligible for a Parliamentary debate (usually Monday 4.30pm in Westminster Hall).

Edward Leigh has not participated in any petition debates

Latest EDMs signed by Edward Leigh

19th July 2021
Edward Leigh signed this EDM on Monday 19th July 2021

Mountbatten diaries

Tabled by: Julian Lewis (Conservative - New Forest East)
That this House notes with concern that the personal diaries of Lord and Lady Mountbatten were purchased from the family's Broadlands Archive Trust, a decade ago, by Southampton University with a substantial sum of public money including almost £2 million from the Heritage Lottery Fund; that, until the sale to …
24 signatures
(Most recent: 25 Oct 2021)
Signatures by party:
Conservative: 11
Labour: 5
Scottish National Party: 3
Democratic Unionist Party: 3
Liberal Democrat: 2
11th May 2021
Edward Leigh signed this EDM as a sponsor on Wednesday 12th May 2021

At home abortions

Tabled by: Carla Lockhart (Democratic Unionist Party - Upper Bann)
That this House recognises that legalising the unsupervised self-administration of both sets of abortion pills at home following a telephone or digital consultation has placed women’s safety at risk by removing a routine in-person appointment which allows medical practitioners to certify gestation and potential coercion or abuse; expresses concern that …
21 signatures
(Most recent: 13 Jul 2021)
Signatures by party:
Conservative: 9
Democratic Unionist Party: 7
Scottish National Party: 2
Alba Party: 1
Labour: 1
Liberal Democrat: 1
View All Edward Leigh's signed Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Edward Leigh, 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.


Edward Leigh has not been granted any Urgent Questions

Edward Leigh has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

2 Bills introduced by Edward Leigh


A Bill to amend the Parliamentary Standards Act 2009 to make provision for the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority to be responsible for determining, paying, maintaining oversight of, and adjudicating complaints relating to, the allowances, expenses and financial interests of members of the House of Lords; to amend the House of Lords Reform Act 2014 to provide for the compulsory retirement of members of the House of Lords under certain conditions; to make provision for the reduction of the number of members in the House of Lords; and for connected purposes.


Last Event - 1st Reading: House Of Commons
Tuesday 17th November 2015

The Bill failed to complete its passage through Parliament before the end of the session. This means the Bill will make no further progress.


Last Event - 1st Reading: House Of Commons
Tuesday 29th January 2013

19 Bills co-sponsored by Edward Leigh

Free Trade (Education and Reporting) Bill 2017-19 - Private Members' Bill (Presentation Bill)
Sponsor - Christopher Chope (CON)

Green Belt (Protection) Bill 2017-19 - Private Members' Bill (Presentation Bill)
Sponsor - Christopher Chope (CON)

Coastal Path (Definition) Bill 2017-19 - Private Members' Bill (Presentation Bill)
Sponsor - Christopher Chope (CON)

Value Added Tax Bill 2017-19 - Private Members' Bill (Presentation Bill)
Sponsor - Christopher Chope (CON)

Student Loans (Debt Interest) Bill 2017-19 - Private Members' Bill (Presentation Bill)
Sponsor - Christopher Chope (CON)

Principal Local Authorities (Grounds for Abolition) Bill 2017-19 - Private Members' Bill (Presentation Bill)
Sponsor - Christopher Chope (CON)

Local Authorities (Borrowing and Investment) Bill 2017-19 - Private Members' Bill (Presentation Bill)
Sponsor - Christopher Chope (CON)

National Health Service (Co-Funding and Co-Payment) Bill 2017-19 - Private Members' Bill (Presentation Bill)
Sponsor - Christopher Chope (CON)

Public Sector Exit Payments (Limitation) Bill 2017-19 - Private Members' Bill (Presentation Bill)
Sponsor - Christopher Chope (CON)

Local Audit (Public Access to Documents) Bill 2017-19 - Private Members' Bill (Presentation Bill)
Sponsor - Christopher Chope (CON)

Border Control Bill 2017-19 - Private Members' Bill (Presentation Bill)
Sponsor - Christopher Chope (CON)

Voter Registration Bill 2017-19 - Private Members' Bill (Presentation Bill)
Sponsor - Christopher Chope (CON)

June Bank Holiday (Creation) Bill 2017-19 - Private Members' Bill (Presentation Bill)
Sponsor - Peter Bone (CON)

BBC Licence Fee (Civil Penalty) Bill 2017-19 - Private Members' Bill (Presentation Bill)
Sponsor - Christopher Chope (CON)

Judicial Appointments and Retirements (Age Limits) Bill 2017-19 - Private Members' Bill (Presentation Bill)
Sponsor - Christopher Chope (CON)

Electronic Cigarettes (Regulation) Bill 2017-19 - Private Members' Bill (Presentation Bill)
Sponsor - Christopher Chope (CON)

Benefits and Public Services (Restriction) Bill 2017-19 - Private Members' Bill (Presentation Bill)
Sponsor - Christopher Chope (CON)

International Development Assistance (Definition) Bill 2017-19 - Private Members' Bill (Presentation Bill)
Sponsor - Christopher Chope (CON)

Local Authorities (Removal of Council Tax Restrictions) Bill 2017-19 - Private Members' Bill (Presentation Bill)
Sponsor - Christopher Chope (CON)


62 Written Questions in the current parliament

(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
13th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether it is his Department's policy that schools retain discretion as to the use of the resources recommended within the Relationships and sex education statutory guidelines including the Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare's Abortion Care Factsheet.

The Department does not comment on individual resources and schools retain discretion over the resources they use. Schools must have in place a written policy for Relationships Education and Relationships and Sex Education (RSE), and they must consult with parents in developing and reviewing their policy.

The Department expects schools to make reasonable decisions about the content of their curriculum and use of resources. The implementation guidance for the RSE and Health Education (RSHE) curriculum, which came into force in September 2020, sets out clear advice for schools in choosing resources. It states that schools should assess all resources carefully to ensure they are age appropriate, meet the outcome of the relevant part of the curriculum, and are in line with the school’s legal duties in relation to impartiality. The list at annex B of the statutory guidance for RSHE illustrates some of the free resources that are available to schools.

The Department does not have a role in reviewing the content of the resources listed and cannot advise schools on which resources will be the most suitable to use. Schools operate in a variety of different contexts and have both the expertise and knowledge that makes them best placed to make these decisions.

The statutory guidance makes clear that by the end of secondary education young people should know the facts relating to pregnancy and states that there should be medically and legally impartial information on all options. Pupils should be made aware of the relevant legal provisions when particular topics are being taught. It is for schools to decide how best to comply with this in order to meet the needs of their pupils.

To support teachers to deliver these topics safely and with confidence the Department has produced RSHE Teacher Training Modules which are available for all schools. The intimate and sexual relationships training, including a sexual health teacher training module, covers pregnancy specifically. Each training module covers safeguarding to make sure teachers, pastoral staff, and the designated safeguarding lead are equipped to deal with sensitive discussions and disclosures.

23rd Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if he will make it his policy to remove the 50 per cent cap on faith-based admissions to religious schools.

The Government strongly supports schools with a religious character and recognises that they are often high performing and popular with parents.

We are pleased that the Voluntary-Aided scheme has allowed the creation of new Catholic and Church of England schools, but we recognise that some groups, including the Catholic Church, feel unable to participate in the free schools programme because of the 50% cap on faith admissions.

We will continue to keep the 50% cap under review and are open to discussing this issue with groups who provide schools with a religious character, including the Catholic Church.

16th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, how much funding from the public purse has been allocated to Marie Stopes International in each of the last two years.

The Department for International Development gave Marie Stopes International £57.1million in 2017-18 and £54.9million in 2018-19.

This data comes from DFID’s supplier analysis portal and funding comes from 12 programmes located in Africa and Asia working on the full range of sexual and reproductive health. It reflects actual spend rather than the value of programmes awarded in these years.

12th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether she has made an assessment of the causes of poverty and deprivation in the South West ward of Gainsborough in Lincolnshire; and if she will make a statement.

No such assessment has been made.

The Government’s long-term ambition is to level up across the country and continue to tackle poverty through our reformed welfare system that works with the labour market to encourage people to move back into and progress in work wherever possible. Our £30bn Plan for Jobs is the first step on the ladder to achieving this and will support economic recovery through new schemes including Kickstart and Job Entry Targeted Support.

The Government has also been taking various steps to help vulnerable people and those on low incomes, especially during the pandemic. This includes an additional £9.3bn boost to our safety net welfare system, and £63m fund for councils to help with targeted support for people and families in need. We have gone further this winter, recently introducing a new £170m Covid Winter Grant Scheme to support children, families and the most at risk over the coming months. The funding will be ring-fenced, with at least 80% earmarked to help with food and bills, and will cover the period to the end of March 2021.In Lincolnshire, we have allocated £45 million of additional COVID19 funding.

In May, the Government also provided £16m to charities to provide food for those struggling due to the immediate impacts of the pandemic. Earlier this month, a further £16m was announced to fund local charities through well-established networks and provide immediate support to front-line food aid charities who have a vital role to play in supporting people of all ages.

Will Quince
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
13th Jul 2021
What assessment his Department has made of the future of the provision allowing both sets of abortion pills to be taken at home.

The Government has undertaken a public consultation on whether to make permanent the current temporary measure for home use of both pills for early medical abortion. We are considering all evidence submitted and plan to publish our response later this year. The temporary measure will be kept in place until a decision has been made.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
28th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the implications for his policies of the guidance from the British Association of Perinatal Medicine, published in 2019, that neonatal stabilisation may be considered from 22 weeks gestation.

The Department has considered the ‘Framework on Perinatal Management of Extreme Preterm Birth before 27 Weeks of Gestation’ published by the British Association of Perinatal Medicine.

MBRRACE-UK published guidance in November 2020 to support health care professionals in the assessment and documentation of signs of life in extremely preterm births to support consistent decision making about birth classification.

Nadine Dorries
Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
28th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to the research by Hakansson et alia, published in the journal Pediatrics in July 2004, on increases in the number of babies born at 22 weeks gestation that can survive outside the womb and the increase in that number with proactive perinatal care, what plans his Department has to review the time limits on abortion in the UK.

It is for Parliament to decide whether to make any changes to the law on abortion. As with other matters of conscience, abortion is an issue on which the Government adopts a neutral stance and allows hon. Members to vote according to their moral, ethical or religious beliefs.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
11th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to the Answers of 16 February 2021 and 8 February 2021 to Questions 151601 and 150684 respectively, what assessment his Department has made of the effect of the disposal of human remains in the sewage system since the temporary measure to allow home abortions in March 2020 on people working in (a) sewage and (b) waste disposal; and if the Department will consider making such an assessment.

No assessment has been made and there are no plans to do so.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
13th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what plans his Department has to increase regional availability of palliative, respite, and end-of-life care to babies and infants by supporting the establishment of more baby and infant-specific hospices.

Clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) are responsible for the commissioning of end of life and palliative care services. CCGs develop strategic clinical plans covering a wide range of health care services based on their local population needs. This includes specialised care for babies and infants with complex needs at children’s hospices.

Within the NHS Long Term Plan, NHS England is increasing its contribution to the national children’s hospice grant by match-funding CCGs who commit to increase their investment in local children’s palliative and end of life care services including children’s hospices. This will increase funding from £11 million to a combined total of £25 million a year by 2023/24.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
9th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether domestic waste companies and sewage treatment services were consulted before the approval of home use of both abortion pills in March 2020.

No such assessment has been made.

Domestic waste companies and sewage treatment services were not consulted before the temporary approval in March 2020.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
8th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether he has made an assessment of the effect on the (a) sewage and (b) non-recyclable waste systems of home abortions since March 2020.

No such assessment has been made.

Domestic waste companies and sewage treatment services were not consulted before the temporary approval in March 2020.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
1st Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 14 December 2020 to Question 125929 on Abortion: Drugs, whether people can respond by email to respondents to his Department's consultation on whether to make permanent the current temporary measure allowing for home use of both pills for early medical abortion up to 10 weeks gestation for all eligible women; and what email address his Department has made available for that purpose.

People cannot respond this consultation by email. We do not have a dedicated email inbox set up for the consultation. This is to ensure all responses are processed securely and following data protection best practice. The Department’s preferred method of response to the consultation is via submission online at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/home-use-of-both-pills-for-early-medical-abortion

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if his Department will increase their investment in (a) palliative and (b) hospice care for 2021 to support people approaching the end of life.

As with the vast majority of NHS services, the funding and commissioning of palliative and end of life care, is a local matter, over which individual National Health Service commissioners have responsibility. Local commissioners are best placed to understand the needs of local populations and commission services to meet those needs accordingly.

Following the publication of the NHS Long Term Plan in January 2019, NHS England and NHS Improvement committed to increasing its contribution towards palliative care over the next five years, by match-funding clinical commissioning groups who commit to increase their investment in local children’s palliative and end of life care services, including children’s hospices. This should more than double the NHS support, from £11 million up to a combined total of £25 million a year by 2023/24.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent assessment he has made of the effect of improved recognition of palliative care needs and services outside hospitals on (a) the standard of palliative care in the UK and (b) annual hospital costs.

No specific recent assessment of palliative and end of life care needs and services outside hospitals in England has taken place. As health is a devolved matter, any such action or assessment in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland would be decisions for the respective devolved administrations.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
2nd Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to an NHS email of 21 May 2020 from a Regional Chief Midwife on the reported escalating risk relating to home medical abortions, what assessment he has made of the veracity of incidents cited in that email of (a) women attending ED with significant pain and bleeding related to the process through to ruptured ectopics, major resuscitation for major haemorrhage and the delivery of infants who are up to 30 weeks gestation, (b) three police investigations including a murder investigation as there is a concern that the baby was live born and (c) a woman receiving pills at 32 weeks' gestation; and whether he holds information on similar incidents and in that or other regions in the last eight months.

Safe, continued access to key services is our priority during this difficult period. We are aware of a small number of incidents which we are looking into alongside with the Care Quality Commission (CQC) and other partners.

The Department is aware of reports of two women who died after seeking abortion treatment earlier this year. Both deaths have been appropriately investigated and in one case investigations are continuing. For the other case, the coroner concluded that there was no evidence to suggest the pregnancy or abortion contributed to the death either directly or indirectly. Both women attended an abortion service in person and based on information provided to the Department at least one of these women was supplied with pills to take at home under the 2018 approval.

We continue to closely monitor the impact of the temporary approval for women’s homes to be classed as of place where both sets of medication for early medical abortion can be taken. Officials have regular meetings with the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, the CQC and abortion service providers to ensure the appropriate safeguards are in place to protect women accessing this service.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
2nd Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 3 November 2020 to Question 99518 on Abortion: Private Sector, whether the incidents of complications relating to home medical abortion referred to in an NHS email of 21 May 2020 from a regional chief midwife describing an escalating risk of the Pills by Post scheme have been investigated.

Safe, continued access to key services is our priority during this difficult period. We are aware of a small number of incidents which we are looking into alongside with the Care Quality Commission (CQC) and other partners.

The Department is aware of reports of two women who died after seeking abortion treatment earlier this year. Both deaths have been appropriately investigated and in one case investigations are continuing. For the other case, the coroner concluded that there was no evidence to suggest the pregnancy or abortion contributed to the death either directly or indirectly. Both women attended an abortion service in person and based on information provided to the Department at least one of these women was supplied with pills to take at home under the 2018 approval.

We continue to closely monitor the impact of the temporary approval for women’s homes to be classed as of place where both sets of medication for early medical abortion can be taken. Officials have regular meetings with the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, the CQC and abortion service providers to ensure the appropriate safeguards are in place to protect women accessing this service.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
3rd Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what plans his Department has to review the 2010 guidelines on the Termination of Pregnancy for Fetal Abnormality in England, Scotland and Wales from the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists with respect to advancements in antenatal screening since those guidelines were published.

The Department does not set clinical practice. It is for the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists to consider whether to revise their guidelines, having looked at the available evidence.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
30th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to the HSA4 Abortion Notification forms received by the Department of Health and Social Care since 1st January 2020, how many abortions have been carried out under Ground E; and how many of the Ground E abortions (a) mentioned medical condition, (b) method of diagnosis, and (c) whether that was the only ground for abortion given.

Under the Abortion Act 1967, a pregnancy may be lawfully terminated by a registered medical practitioner in approved premises, if two medical practitioners are of the opinion, formed in good faith, that the abortion is justified under one or more of grounds A to G. Ground E refers to cases where “there is substantial risk that if the child were born it would suffer from such physical or mental abnormalities as to be seriously handicapped”. There can be multiple reasons for an abortion for a fetal abnormality, therefore there can be more than one medical condition mentioned on a HSA4 form.

This data should be treated as provisional, meaning that it may be subject to revision if the Department receives further information from hospitals and clinics on missing information from HSA4 forms, or more forms are received.

There were 1,619 abortions performed under ground E between January to June 2020.

The attached table shows abortions performed under ground E, between January to June 2020 as follows:

- Total number of abortions performed under ground E alone or with any other ground;

- Total number of abortions performed under ground E alone;

- Total mentions of medical conditions; and

- Method of diagnosis.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
21st Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent assessment he has made of the implications for his policies on second trimester abortion of the finding of the British Medical Journal article, Reconsidering fetal pain, published on 14 January 2020 that pain emerges around 18-20 weeks of gestation.

The Department does not set clinical practice. To support clinical practice, the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) has considered the issue of fetal pain and awareness in its guideline on ‘Fetal Awareness: Review of Research and Recommendations for Practice’, published in March 2010.

The Department has brought the article by Dr Stuart W G Derbyshire and John C Bockmann to the attention of the RCOG. It is for the RCOG to consider whether to revise the guidelines, having looked at the available evidence.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
13th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent steps his Department has taken to ensure that safe and healthy pregnancy information is communicated effectively as outlined in the NHS' guidance entitled Saving Babies’ Lives Version Two, published in March 2019.

The second version of the Saving Babies’ Lives Care Bundle has been updated since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic to reflect the most up to date information for women to receive safe and healthy pregnancy information. NHS England and NHS Improvement are asking trusts to work towards full implementation of the Care Bundle as the safety of maternity services is a key priority.

Information and advice for the public from the Care Bundle is contained on the NHS.UK Start 4 Life webpages, which women are encouraged to use. The Care Bundle document is also available on NHS England and NHS Improvement’s webpages, and has been promoted widely to all Local Maternity Systems.

Nadine Dorries
Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
6th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether he plans to investigate the reasons for the annual increase in the number of abortions performed in private clinics.

The Department has no specific plans to investigate the reasons for the number of abortions performed in private clinics. However, the Department has commissioned the King’s Fund to undertake a piece of work to provide insights into factors contributing to changing patterns of abortion uptake in England.

Clinical commissioning groups are responsible for commissioning termination of pregnancy services and are increasingly commissioning from the independent sector abortion providers. All independent sector clinics wishing to perform abortions must be approved by the Secretary of State under section 1(3) of the Abortion Act 1967 and registered with the Care Quality Commission.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
6th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many people have died as a result following abortion carried out in a private clinic in the last five years.

Mortality statistics published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that between 2015 and 2019 there was one death where abortion was listed as the underlying cause of death on the death certificate. It is not possible to identify whether this abortion was performed at a National Health Service hospital or at an independent clinic.

The Department is aware of reports of two women who died after seeking abortion treatment earlier this year. Both deaths have been appropriately investigated and in one case investigations are continuing. For the other case, the coroner concluded that there was no evidence to suggest the pregnancy or abortion contributed to the death either directly or indirectly.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
28th Aug 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference Melanoma UK's report entitled, State of the Nation: Non Melanoma Skin Cancer, published in March 2020, what steps he is taking to increase public awareness of non-melanoma skin cancer.

Public Health England (PHE) supports Melanoma UK’s ambition to increase awareness of non-melanoma skin cancer.

PHE ran a regional Be Clear on Cancer campaign in 2014 to raise awareness of the signs of skin cancer aimed at people aged 50 and over, the age group most likely to be diagnosed with the most serious form of skin cancer, malignant melanoma.

The Be Clear on Cancer campaigns are designed to improve rates of early diagnosis of cancer by raising the public’s awareness of specific cancer symptoms and encouraging people with those symptoms to go to the doctor promptly. The Be Clear on Skin Cancer advertising resources are available on the PHE Campaign Resource Centre, to a range of partners including the National Health Service, charities and local authorities for their continued use where needed. The Be Clear on Cancer Resources can be accessed at the following link:

https://campaignresources.phe.gov.uk/resources/campaigns/16-be-clear-on-cancer/resources

PHE also provides advice to other Government departments, such as the Health and Safety Executive, on sun safety to help develop their policies.

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
28th Aug 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference Melanoma UK's report entitled, State of the Nation: Non Melanoma Skin Cancer, published in March 2020, if he will make it his Department's policy to highlight the importance of wearing (a) sunscreen and (b) a hat when outside in the sun to help prevent skin cancer.

Public Health England (PHE) is supportive of Melanoma UK’s initiative to increase awareness of non-melanoma skin cancer.

PHE supports the guidance on sun protection provided on the NHS website at the following link:

https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/healthy-body/sunscreen-and-sun-safety/

This guidance supports the wearing of hats and mentions the use of sunscreen. However, it states that sunscreen should not be relied upon alone to provide protection.

The ultraviolet (UV) Index provides an indication of the likelihood that the UV from the sun will cause sunburn. The BBC and the Met Office provide UV Index forecasts and advises that people check the UV Index forecasts. PHE reports near-live data from its monitoring sites across the UK at the following link:

https://uk-air.defra.gov.uk/data/uv-index-graphs

Further advice on sun safety is included in the Heatwave Plan for England, available to view at the following link: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/888668/Heatwave_plan_for_England_2020.pdf

PHE also provides advice to other Government departments, such as the Health and Safety Executive, on sun safety to help develop their policies.

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
28th Aug 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what support is available patients with non-melanoma skin cancer to help with the psychological effect of (a) the disease and (b) the treatment for that disease.

The NHS Long Term Plan sets a clear ambition that where appropriate every person diagnosed with cancer should have access to personalised care by 2021. Over the next five years, Cancer Alliances will be embedding personalised care interventions, which will identify and address the changing needs of cancer patients from diagnosis onwards.

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
2nd Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what correspondence his Department has had with (a) Marie Stopes, (b) BPAS, (c) RCOG, and (d) CQC on (a) monitoring compliance of use of abortion pills at home with the practice of use before the end of 10 weeks' gestation and (b) recording the number of instances of prescription of those pills to women beyond that gestation period.

Abortion data is published annually and data for 2020 is not due to be published until 2021. The data requires full quality assurance prior to release. The Code of Practice outlined in the Statistics and Registration Service Act 2007 prohibits the pre-release of official statistics before the due date of publication.

The Department is carefully monitoring the impact of and compliance with the temporary approval of home administration of both sets of abortion medication during the COVID-19 pandemic. Officials have regular meetings with the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, the Care Quality Commission and abortion service providers to discuss the impact and any issues arising.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
2nd Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, at what phase of the easing of covid-19 restrictions the Government plans to reverse the changes to abortion regulation made on 30 March 2020.

The measures were put in place to ensure that the vast majority of women and girls could continue to access abortion services whilst limiting COVID-19 transmission. This change was made on a temporary basis only and is time limited for two years, or until the pandemic is over. The Department is keeping under review when the temporary approval will be removed.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
2nd Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many women beyond 10 weeks' gestation have taken both sets of abortion pills in their home since 1 April 2020.

Abortion data is published annually and data for 2020 is not due to be published until 2021. The data requires full quality assurance prior to release. The Code of Practice outlined in the Statistics and Registration Service Act 2007 prohibits the pre-release of official statistics before the due date of publication.

The Department is carefully monitoring the impact of and compliance with the temporary approval of home administration of both sets of abortion medication during the COVID-19 pandemic. Officials have regular meetings with the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, the Care Quality Commission and abortion service providers to discuss the impact and any issues arising.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
1st Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department has taken to support the needs of (a) autistic people and (b) people with learning difficulties during the covid-19 outbreak.

On 15 April, we set out our comprehensive action plan to support the adult social care sector in England throughout the COVID-19 outbreak, including ramping up testing, overhauling the way personal protective equipment is being delivered to care homes and helping to minimise the spread of the virus to keep people safe.

NHS England and NHS Improvement have published a range of guidance to support management of people with autism and learning disabilities during the COVID-19 outbreak which has been updated throughout the pandemic at the following link:

https://www.england.nhs.uk/coronavirus/publication/letter-responding-to-covid-19-mental-health-learning-disabilities-and-autism/

On 8 April, the Chancellor announced £750 million to support the charity sector in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. On 22 May a further announcement was made which detailed the health and social care charities that would be in receipt of a further £22 million of that funding, which includes funding for learning disability and autism charities. Further information is available at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/22-million-awarded-to-life-saving-health-charities-during-virus-outbreak

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
12th May 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether his Department undertook a risk assessment before issuing the March 2020 Approval of a Class of Places approval enabling at-home abortions.

Powers under the Abortion Act 1967 were used to temporarily approve women’s homes as a class of place where both abortion pills can be taken for early medical abortion following careful consideration of the risks and issues. In particular account was taken of social isolation and social distancing advice, that services were closing and appointments being cancelled. The measures were put in place to ensure that the vast majority of women and girls could continue to access abortion services whilst limiting COVID-19 transmission. In addition, access to abortion is an urgent matter as the procedure’s risk increases at later gestations and there are legal gestational limits for accessing services. This change was made on a temporary basis only and is time limited for two years, or until the pandemic is over.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
12th May 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether his Department is able to ensure that a woman prescribed both abortion pills (a) over the phone, (b) via video conference and (c) by other electronic means will consume (i) both pills and (ii) both pills in the manner required; and if he will make a statement.

Ministers have used powers under the Abortion Act 1967 to temporarily approve women’s homes as a class of place where both abortion pills can be taken for early medical abortion up to 10 weeks gestation.

As part of their consultation prior to treatment commencing, women will be clearly informed that medical abortion is a two-stage process which requires the administration of Mifepristone followed by Misoprostol to successfully complete the procedure.

In addition, the taking of Misoprostol at home, a policy which has been in place since December 2018 and has not led to any identified clinical compliance or other concerns.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
12th May 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how his Department plans to record any complications that result from at-home abortions; and whether the NHS will be required to report on the number of women that are admitted to hospital for complications after being prescribed (a) Mifepristone and (b) Misoprostol by telephone, video conference or other electronic means.

The Department is carefully monitoring the impact of home use of the administration of abortion medication which has been introduced as a temporary measure during the COVID-19 pandemic. Complications are recorded on the HSA4 abortion notification form sent to the Chief Medical Officer. In addition, there is a statutory requirement for providers to notify the Care Quality Commission (CQC) in cases of serious injury. Providers should be reporting and escalating issues to the CQC, who will follow up directly with the provider as required. Patients presenting in a National Health Service setting unexpectedly, due to complications, should be highlighted to the relevant independent health provider and all cases should be reported on the Strategic Executive Information System. The CQC engages regularly with the Department and NHS England and NHS Improvement on these matters.

The Required Standard Operating Procedures set out in the Department’s Procedures for the Approval of Independent Sector Places for the Termination of Pregnancy require that all providers should have in place a formal risk management system and keep a risk register to identify and minimise any risks to patients and staff.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
4th Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he has (a) taken and (b) plans to take to ensure that abortion clinics (i) report cases of suspected sexual abuse and exploitation, (ii) flag cases of underage girls being brought to their clinic for an abortion by the same unrelated adult and (iii) ensure that consent is properly obtained from minors; and if he will make a statement.

All abortion providers must comply with legal requirements and have regard to any statutory guidance relating to safeguarding of children, young people and vulnerable adults. All providers must have policies and protocols in place for dealing with these groups. Health professionals are required to be competent in child protection and are expected to participate in regular training to update their skills. All clinical staff working in abortion services should be trained to at least level 3 of the intercollegiate framework, Safeguarding Children and Young people: roles and competences for health care staff. Providers should have protocols in place for obtaining consent and pathways and support for all women who lack capacity to consent. Officials meet regularly with abortion service providers and discuss a range of issues.

4th Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent discussions he has had with representatives of abortion clinics licenced by his Department on ensuring that those clinics (a) report cases of suspected sexual abuse and exploitation, (b) flag cases of underage girls being brought to their clinic for abortion by the same unrelated adult, (c) ensure that consent is provided in writing by minors; and if he will make a statement.

All abortion providers must comply with legal requirements and have regard to any statutory guidance relating to safeguarding of children, young people and vulnerable adults. All providers must have policies and protocols in place for dealing with these groups. Health professionals are required to be competent in child protection and are expected to participate in regular training to update their skills. All clinical staff working in abortion services should be trained to at least level 3 of the intercollegiate framework, Safeguarding Children and Young people: roles and competences for health care staff. Providers should have protocols in place for obtaining consent and pathways and support for all women who lack capacity to consent. Officials meet regularly with abortion service providers and discuss a range of issues.

4th Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to his Department’s guidance allowing misoprostol to be taken at home, what steps he has (a) taken and (b) plans to take in the next six months to ensure that (i) misoprostol is only given to the woman who wish to use it, and (ii) there is appropriate screening to ensure women are not being compelled to take misoprostol against their will; and if he will make a statement.

Medical abortion is a two-stage process which requires the administration of Mifepristone followed by Misoprostol to successfully complete the procedure. Misoprostol can only prescribed for home use when the woman has requested an early medical abortion and given her informed consent after being assessed by two doctors as meeting the legal grounds for termination of pregnancy as set out in the Abortion Act 1967. The first stage, Mifepristone, must continue to be administered in an National Health Service hospital or an approved independent sector clinic.

Safeguards are in place under the Department’s required standard operating procedures (RSOPs) for independent sector abortion providers to identify women and young girls who may feel coerced or endangered and enable them to raise their concerns in confidence. Guidance produced by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists outlines best clinical practice for medical abortion at home and safeguarding vulnerable women and young girls and is available at the following link:

https://www.rcog.org.uk/globalassets/documents/guidelines/early-medical-abortion-at-home-guideline-england.pdf

13th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, how much funding from the public purse has been allocated to Marie Stopes International over the last five years for spending overseas (a) in total and (b) on the provision of abortion.

(a) From January 2015 to December 2019 FCDO allocated a total of £240 million to Marie Stopes International (MSI), broken down as follows:

2015

2016

2017

2018

2019

£38,808,563

£42,970,672

£47,347,033

£62,344,791

£48,686,615

Comparable figures beyond December 2019 are not yet available.

(b) As FCDO takes an integrated approach to our programming on sexual and reproductive health and rights, it is not possible to give a specific figure for our funding to MSI for the provision of safe abortion services.

Wendy Morton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
21st Apr 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what information his Department holds on the value of the (a) former HMRC property Custom House in the City of London and (b) land attached to that property.

HMRC still retain ownership of the freehold interest in Custom House, London. The advice they have received from external surveyors is that the value of their freehold interest is probably negligible as it is subject to an unexpired long lease on the property which is owned by Mapeley, the Private Finance Initiative (PFI) contractor. The value of the grant of the long leasehold interest was reflected in the PFI contractor’s bid price at the start of the contract.

HMRC understand that Mapeley have received an offer for their unexpired long leasehold interest in the property, subject to planning permission being granted, for the development of a hotel, but is not party to the details of that proposal. HMRC have no interest in, or information about, any additional land that may be proposed as part of a wider redevelopment of the area.

1st Sep 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of increasing the rate of Gift Aid under an enhanced Gift Aid scheme to help civil society sector recover from the covid-19 outbreak.

The Government is fully committed to supporting charities through the Gift Aid regime. This relief is tied to the basic rate of tax paid by donors, currently at 20%, so can only be changed if the personal basic tax rate changes.

The Government recognises that the sector is experiencing significant pressures and has made available an unprecedented package of economic support, including a £750 million package specifically for charities.

Kemi Badenoch
Minister for Equalities
4th Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether police forces receive training on methods of removing those who obstruct public highways and thoroughfares.

The actions being taken by the Insulate Britain (IB) group to block the M25 have caused major upheaval and disruption to the public. That is why we intend to use the PCSC Bill to increase the maximum penalty for obstruction of a highway from the current £1,000 fine to an unlimited fine, six months’ imprisonment, or both.

The police have extensive training programmes for dealing with public order, this includes tactics for removing those who are obstructing public highways and thoroughfares.

Each public order trained officer receives a concentrated training refresher at least once a year. Police forces have specialist “protester removal teams” who are trained to quickly and effectively remove those who are obstructing public highways and thoroughfares, and who will receive even more regular training.

Individual training packages are determined by police forces with guidance provided by the college of policing.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice) (jointly with Home Office)
14th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what feedback her Department has received on the quality of the manufacture and printing of new UK passports; and what estimate she has made of value for money in the award of the contract for the manufacture and printing of those passports.

The new British passport is a highly secure document containing some of the most sophisticated security technologies. Its components are rigorously tested to simulate normal passport handling over its ten-year lifespan.

Her Majesty's Passport Office undertakes routine quality assurance, and remains content the latest version of the British passport, including the personalisation process, continues to meet its requirements. The current contract to design, manufacture, and personalise the British passport continues to ensure good value for the taxpayer, with expected savings of approximately £140m compared to the previous contract awarded in 2009.

Kevin Foster
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
10th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what estimate she has made of the disparity in per capita funding of police forces between urban and rural areas.

On the 4th February 2021, the Government published a total police funding settlement of up to £15.8 billion in 2021/22, an increase of up to £636 million compared to 2020/21. This continued investment shows the Government is committed to supporting the entire policing sector.

The police funding formula remains the most reliable mechanism we have to distribute core grant funding although this Government is alive to the concerns many in the policing sector hold over the current formula and we acknowledge that the current arrangements are out of date. Careful consideration will be given during the upcoming Spending Review and as part of our longer-term vision for policing.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice) (jointly with Home Office)
25th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what her Department's policy is on a potential offer of asylum to Maira Shahbaz.

I am not able to provide specific information with regards to Maira Shahbaz’s case as it is a longstanding Government policy not to comment on individual cases. Departing from this policy may put individuals and their family members in danger.

The UK has a proud record of providing protection for people who need it, in accordance with our obligations under the Refugee Convention and the European Convention on Human Rights. However, there is no provision within our Immigration Rules for someone to be allowed to travel to the UK to seek asylum or temporary refuge.

Whilst we sympathise with people in many difficult situations around the world, we are not bound to consider asylum claims from the very large numbers of people overseas who might like to come here. Those who need international protection should claim asylum in the first safe country they reach – that is the fastest route to safety.

The UK Government strongly condemns the forced marriage and forced conversion of women and girls from religious minorities in Pakistan. Our concerns about such cases, as well as Freedom of Religion or Belief, women and girls’ rights and gender equality more broadly, are regularly raised with the Government of Pakistan.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
4th Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what recent research her Department has undertaken into victims of sexual abuse and exploitation being forced to undergo abortions; and if she will make a statement.

Neither the Home Office nor the Department of Health and Social Care have commissioned research into coerced or forced abortions. All abortion providers must comply with legal requirements and have regard to any statutory guidance relating to safeguarding of children, young people and vulnerable adults. All providers must have policies and protocols in place for dealing with these groups. Health professionals are required to be competent in child protection and are expected to participate in regular training to update their skills. All clinical staff working in abortion services should be trained to at least level 3 of the intercollegiate framework, Safeguarding Children and Young people: roles and competences for health care staff. Providers should have protocols in place for obtaining informed consent abortion including identifying women and girls who may feel coerced or endangered and enable them to raise their concerns in confidence.

Victoria Atkins
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
16th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many people were arrested for praying in buffer zones around abortion clinics in 2018.

The Home Office collects and publishes statistics on the number of arrests for notifiable offences, conducted by each police force in England and Wales, on an annual basis.

Information on the number of arrests for praying in buffer zones around abortion clinics in 2018 is not held centrally, as it is not a notifiable offence.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice) (jointly with Home Office)
23rd Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what maintenance or other works have been undertaken on the defence estate in the last six months.

This information is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost, as across every Ministry of Defence site maintenance tasks are carried out on a daily basis.

For example, Amey, who are responsible for the maintenance of Service Family Accommodation, carry out approximately 250,000 maintenance tasks per year under the National Housing Prime contract.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
27th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what discussions his Department has had with parties interested in the future use of RAF Scampton after its decommissioning.

The Department is engaging with both Lincolnshire and West Lindsey Councils to explore potential uses for the site. However in line with disposals guidelines, no discussions have been held with any potential acquirors of the RAF Scampton site. Any interested third parties should register their interest with the department via DioAsp-AcqDispOffice@mod.gov.uk.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
2nd Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what steps he has taken to progress the development of the RAF Scampton site; if he will engage with potential developers or purchasers for the site; and what steps he is taking to ensure that the disposal of the site is undertaken in such a way as to maximise public benefit for Lincolnshire.

RAF Scampton will be disposed of in accordance with Treasury guidelines following the closure of the site, which is currently planned for 2022. The Ministry of Defence is aware of the interest in the future of the site and will continue to engage with the local authority as plans develop.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
8th Jun 2020
To ask the Right hon. Member for East Hampshire representing the Parliamentary Works Sponsor Body, with reference to the Houses of Parliament Restoration and Renewal press release published on 19 May 2020, what the names are of the people appointed to the expert team to examine the plans for the restoration.

On 19 May the Sponsor Body announced it would conduct a strategic review of the Restoration and Renewal Programme.

The review team will be led by the chief executives of the Sponsor Body and Delivery Authority, Sarah Johnson and David Goldstone, who will be supported by infrastructure and programme management experts drawn from both organisations. The chairs of the Sponsor Body and Delivery Authority, Liz Peace and Mike Brown, will also provide input.

As the review progresses input and challenge will be sought from within Parliament and externally.

The review is expected to conclude in the autumn and its findings will be considered by the Sponsor Body Board and the Commissions of both Houses in the first instance.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Home Office) (Security)
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, when the Royal Air Force Aerobatic Team plans to vacate RAF Scampton; and to which RAF base that Team will relocate.

As announced in July 2018, RAF Scampton is due to close in 2022. The future location of the Red Arrows is still being determined, with RAF Leeming, RAF Waddington and RAF Wittering identified as potential sites.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
7th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what assessment he made of (a) the historical importance of the Whitechapel Bell Foundry and (b) its potential viability as a commercial operation as part of his decision on the Whitechapel Bell Foundry site.

The decision to grant planning permission for the proposals at Whitechapel Bell Foundry was published on 13 May. The Secretary of State did not make this decision. In reaching his decision, the Minister of State for Regional Growth and Local Government took into account a wide range of issues, based on the detailed findings of the Planning Inspector who held a public local inquiry into the case. The published decision letter sets out in detail the full reasoning and conclusions and, like all decisions, is published on the gov.uk website.

As the decision is final, unless challenged through the courts, the Government has no further jurisdiction in this matter and I am unable to give any further comment on the merits of the proposals.

Eddie Hughes
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
10th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what discussions he has had with representatives of the (a) Society of Antiquaries,(b) Royal Astronomical Society, (c) Geological Society, (d) Linnean Society and (e) Ministers and officials in other Government departments on the future of the aforementioned learned societies at Burlington House.

Five Learned Societies are tenants of New Burlington House, owned by the Department. Following a High Court settlement, all parties agreed in 2005 that rent would increase to market levels over a period of 80 years. The Department clarified that the referenced rent is limited to reflect cultural and educational purposes, rather than commercial office rent. A market rental valuation was agreed between the Department and the Learned Societies; mostly recently in 2019. The Learned Societies currently pay around 30% of this agreed market rent and will not pay full market rent until 2085.

The Department is sympathetic to the Societies’ position and is exploring whether there is a solution that can deliver value for taxpayers and help the Learned Societies to remain at New Burlington House, and an assessment of value will be made as part of an agreement. The Department has been discussing options with the Learned Societies and DCMS given their responsibility for policy in regards to culture, museums and heritage.

Eddie Hughes
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
10th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what assessment his Department has made of the long-term (a) scientific and (b) academic effect of seeking to charge a commercial rent to non-commercial occupants of properties owned by his Department, with specific reference to the learned societies at Burlington House.

Five Learned Societies are tenants of New Burlington House, owned by the Department. Following a High Court settlement, all parties agreed in 2005 that rent would increase to market levels over a period of 80 years. The Department clarified that the referenced rent is limited to reflect cultural and educational purposes, rather than commercial office rent. A market rental valuation was agreed between the Department and the Learned Societies; mostly recently in 2019. The Learned Societies currently pay around 30% of this agreed market rent and will not pay full market rent until 2085.

The Department is sympathetic to the Societies’ position and is exploring whether there is a solution that can deliver value for taxpayers and help the Learned Societies to remain at New Burlington House, and an assessment of value will be made as part of an agreement. The Department has been discussing options with the Learned Societies and DCMS given their responsibility for policy in regards to culture, museums and heritage.

Eddie Hughes
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
2nd Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what assessment he has made of the effect of the (a) covid-19 lockdown process on the human right to practice religion corporately and (b) ban on marriages during lockdown on the right to family life.

Freedom of religion or belief is a fundamental human right, and one which underpins many of the others. The closure of our places of worship for communal prayer and for weddings is a step to be considered only in the most exceptional circumstances. However, our view is that this is a qualified right, subject to necessary limitations in the interest of public safety.

This includes the protection of health to protect the fundamental right to life of the population set out in Article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights. Article 2 remains the overriding concern for the protection of the nation’s health as a whole.

2nd Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, whether the Places of Worship Taskforce was consulted on the announcement that communal worship will not be allowed during the new covid-19 lockdown.

The Places of Worship Taskforce met on 2 November. In addition, roundtables have been held with the country’s major faith groups to discuss the now published guidance.

Discussions with our faith groups at these meetings, as they have been throughout the pandemic, have proved to be extremely helpful in sharing information with our faith groups, as well as hearing of their concerns. We are very grateful to all members of the Taskforce for their support and understanding during these difficult times for our faith communities, and we will continue to draw on the expertise of the Taskforce members.

22nd Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, with reference to the new edition of the Equal Treatment Bench Book, published in February 2021 and the Answer of 29 June 2021 to Question 19486, what legal advice was used to inform the information and guidance provided in Chapter 12 on Transgender People.

No assessment of the effect of the Equal Treatment Bench Book is made by the Ministry of Justice. To preserve the independence of the judiciary, the Lord Chief Justice (LCJ), the Senior President of the Tribunals, and the Chief Coroner have statutory responsibility for judicial training. These responsibilities are exercised through the Judicial College, which also produces the Equal Treatment Bench Book.

Fair treatment is a fundamental principle embedded in the judicial oath and the Equal Treatment Bench Book is compiled by the judiciary to provide general guidelines for judicial office holders to apply as appropriate in any particular case. It is reviewed by a judicial editorial panel, with content from judicial experts and information from subject experts. The identities of the principal contributors appear in the Acknowledgments. The external documentary sources relied upon by the editors of the Bench Book are set out in full in the footnotes.

James Cartlidge
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Ministry of Justice) (and Assistant Government Whip)
22nd Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, with reference to page 330 in Chapter 12 of the Equal Treatment Bench Book, what evidence exists to support the claim that It is important to be alive to the fact that the gender history of a person may be something an opponent litigant may seek to use in order to place pressure on them.

No assessment of the effect of the Equal Treatment Bench Book is made by the Ministry of Justice. To preserve the independence of the judiciary, the Lord Chief Justice (LCJ), the Senior President of the Tribunals, and the Chief Coroner have statutory responsibility for judicial training. These responsibilities are exercised through the Judicial College, which also produces the Equal Treatment Bench Book.

Fair treatment is a fundamental principle embedded in the judicial oath and the Equal Treatment Bench Book is compiled by the judiciary to provide general guidelines for judicial office holders to apply as appropriate in any particular case. It is reviewed by a judicial editorial panel, with content from judicial experts and information from subject experts. The identities of the principal contributors appear in the Acknowledgments. The external documentary sources relied upon by the editors of the Bench Book are set out in full in the footnotes.

James Cartlidge
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Ministry of Justice) (and Assistant Government Whip)
22nd Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, with reference t to Chapter 12 of the Equal Treatment Bench Book, what assessment he has made of the effect on victims of violent and sexual assault of instances where those victims are instructed to use preferred pronouns instead of referring to their alleged attacker as a member of the sex that they experienced them to be.

No assessment of the effect of the Equal Treatment Bench Book is made by the Ministry of Justice. To preserve the independence of the judiciary, the Lord Chief Justice (LCJ), the Senior President of the Tribunals, and the Chief Coroner have statutory responsibility for judicial training. These responsibilities are exercised through the Judicial College, which also produces the Equal Treatment Bench Book.

Fair treatment is a fundamental principle embedded in the judicial oath and the Equal Treatment Bench Book is compiled by the judiciary to provide general guidelines for judicial office holders to apply as appropriate in any particular case. It is reviewed by a judicial editorial panel, with content from judicial experts and information from subject experts. The identities of the principal contributors appear in the Acknowledgments. The external documentary sources relied upon by the editors of the Bench Book are set out in full in the footnotes.

James Cartlidge
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Ministry of Justice) (and Assistant Government Whip)
21st Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, with reference the advice of Chapter 12 of the Equal Treatment Bench Book, what assessment has been made of the potential effect of the advice that the court may consider making reporting restrictions under section 4 of the Contempt of Court Act 1981 to prevent disclosure of a transgender person’s previous name and transgender history or it may direct a private hearing on the freedom of the press.

To preserve the independence of the judiciary, the Lord Chief Justice, the Senior President of the Tribunals, and the Chief Coroner have statutory responsibility for judicial training, under the Constitutional Reform Act 2005, Courts and Enforcement Act 2007, and Coroners and Justice Act 2009 respectively. These responsibilities are exercised through the Judicial College and are outside the remit of the Ministry of Justice which means that no assessment is undertaken by the Ministry of Justice of its effect.

The Equal Treatment Bench Book (ETBB), reviewed by a judicial editorial panel, with content from judicial experts and other subject experts including academics and external bodies, is a general guidance document designed to encourage effective communication between all court users. It is not legally binding on judges or court users, who are free to decide what is appropriate in any given set of circumstances.

The content referred to in chapter 12 reflects the current law in the Gender Recognition Act 2004 regarding the revealing of transgender history of applicants for a Gender Recognition Certificate. It is for individual judges to balance reporting restrictions with the requirements of open justice in any particular case involving a transgender person where transgender history is not at all relevant to the subject of the proceedings.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
10th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, pursuant to the oral contribution of 3 March 2020 of the Advocate General for Scotland in Committee on the Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Bill, HL Deb column 579, if he will publish the evidence base for the assertion that rather more than 80% of divorces take place sooner than the timescale set out in the Bill.

The Government published an Impact Assessment for the Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Bill when first introduced to Parliament in June 2019. This document can be found at

https://services.parliament.uk/Bills/2017-19/divorcedissolutionandseparation/documents.html

The Bill seeks to introduce a new minimum 20-week period between the start of divorce proceedings and when the court can be asked to make the conditional order of divorce (currently known as Decree Nisi). Together with the existing 6-week minimum period between Decree Nisi and Decree Absolute a divorce under the Bill would take a minimum of 26-weeks overall. The Impact Assessment estimates that 78% of cases with no linked financial remedy application and 82% of cases with such a linked application would take longer under the Bill.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)