Oliver Colvile

Conservative - Former Member for Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport

Ecclesiastical Committee (Joint Committee)
28th Oct 2015 - 3rd May 2017
Northern Ireland Affairs Committee
6th Jul 2015 - 21st Nov 2016
Backbench Business Committee
30th Jun 2014 - 30th Mar 2015
Northern Ireland Affairs Committee
26th Jul 2010 - 30th Mar 2015
Backbench Business Committee
10th Dec 2013 - 14th May 2014


Division Voting information

Oliver Colvile has voted in 1386 divisions, and 7 times against the majority of their Party.

24 Nov 2014 - Recall of MPs Bill - View Vote Context
Oliver Colvile voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 63 Conservative No votes vs 79 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 236 Noes - 65
21 May 2013 - Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill - View Vote Context
Oliver Colvile voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 124 Conservative Aye votes vs 134 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 366 Noes - 161
20 May 2013 - Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill - View Vote Context
Oliver Colvile voted No - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 99 Conservative No votes vs 121 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 150 Noes - 340
20 May 2013 - Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill - View Vote Context
Oliver Colvile voted No - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 95 Conservative No votes vs 125 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 148 Noes - 339
20 May 2013 - Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill - View Vote Context
Oliver Colvile voted No - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 92 Conservative No votes vs 126 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 163 Noes - 321
5 Feb 2013 - Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill - View Vote Context
Oliver Colvile voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 131 Conservative Aye votes vs 139 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 400 Noes - 175
7 Sep 2011 - Health and Social Care (Re-committed) Bill - View Vote Context
Oliver Colvile voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 94 Conservative Aye votes vs 115 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 118 Noes - 368
View All Oliver Colvile 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.

View all Oliver Colvile's debates

Latest EDMs signed by Oliver Colvile

Oliver Colvile has not signed any Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Oliver Colvile, 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.


Oliver Colvile has not been granted any Urgent Questions

Oliver Colvile has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

2 Bills introduced by Oliver Colvile


A Bill to require universities to report to those paying tuition fees on how those fees are treated and spent; and for connected purposes.


Last Event - 1st Reading: House Of Commons
Tuesday 10th February 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. A Bill to make provision for husbands and civil partners of those receiving honours to be allowed to use equivalent honorary titles to those available to women; and for connected purposes.


Last Event - 1st Reading: House Of Commons
Tuesday 3rd July 2012

Oliver Colvile has not co-sponsored any Bills in the current parliamentary sitting


205 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
25 Other Department Questions
30th Mar 2017
To ask the right hon. Member for Meriden, representing the Church Commissioners, what support the Church of England provides for people affected by domestic violence and abuse.

On 15th March 2017 the Church of England’s House of Bishops published “Responding Well to Domestic Abuse: Policy and Practice Guidance”, which urges church communities to address the issue of domestic abuse and raise awareness of its impact on adults and children. The document can be seen at: https://www.churchofengland.org/media/3896806/responding-well-to-domestic-abuse-2017.pdf

The updated practice guidance and policy encourages churches to become places of safety where domestic abuse is taken seriously, survivors are believed and respected, and alleged or known perpetrators challenged. The updated document reflects legislative and other changes since guidance was last issued in 2006.

Under the policy Church leaders and Officers working with children, young people and vulnerable adults will be expected to undergo domestic abuse training, with the issue being raised in appropriate contexts within church life including youth groups, marriage preparation and ordinand training. They will also be expected to work closely with statutory and other specialist organisations.

In the House of Lords this session bishops supported the passage of the Preventing and Combating Violence Against Women and Domestic Violence (Ratification of Convention) Bill.

13th Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, how many members of the new Construction Leadership Council have been confirmed in their positions; what the roles of those members are; and if he will make a statement.

Membership and general terms of reference for the Construction Leadership Council (CLC) have been published on the Government website (https://www.gov.uk/government/groups/construction-leadership-council).

Detailed terms of reference were drafted by the secretariat, discussed by the co-chairs and circulated to members, along with other papers for the October 2015 meeting.They will be published, along with the minutes, on the Government website in due course.

Under co-chairs myself and Andrew Wolstenholme, Chief Executive of Crossrail, the CLC has a number of work streams led by council members:

  • Business models / supply chain - Madani Sow (Bouygues UK)
  • Skills - Anna Stewart (Laing O’Rourke)
  • Sustainability - Mike Putnam (Skanksa UK)
  • Trade – David Cash (BDP)
  • Communications – Simon Rawlinson (Arcadis).

Discussions on the lead for the innovation work stream are ongoing.

The Chief Construction Adviser role covered a range of functions which will be absorbed by Government and industry, including the CLC. In addition to identifying and delivering priority actions under the themes above, the Government will look to the CLC for advice on specific policy challenges - as is the case with the recently announced review of the practice of cash retention.

13th Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, who drafted the terms of reference for the new Construction Leadership Council; how those terms of reference were decided on; and if he will make a statement.

Membership and general terms of reference for the Construction Leadership Council (CLC) have been published on the Government website (https://www.gov.uk/government/groups/construction-leadership-council).

Detailed terms of reference were drafted by the secretariat, discussed by the co-chairs and circulated to members, along with other papers for the October 2015 meeting.They will be published, along with the minutes, on the Government website in due course.

Under co-chairs myself and Andrew Wolstenholme, Chief Executive of Crossrail, the CLC has a number of work streams led by council members:

  • Business models / supply chain - Madani Sow (Bouygues UK)
  • Skills - Anna Stewart (Laing O’Rourke)
  • Sustainability - Mike Putnam (Skanksa UK)
  • Trade – David Cash (BDP)
  • Communications – Simon Rawlinson (Arcadis).

Discussions on the lead for the innovation work stream are ongoing.

The Chief Construction Adviser role covered a range of functions which will be absorbed by Government and industry, including the CLC. In addition to identifying and delivering priority actions under the themes above, the Government will look to the CLC for advice on specific policy challenges - as is the case with the recently announced review of the practice of cash retention.

13th Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, whether the new Construction Leadership Council will assume the responsibilities previously held by the Chief Construction Adviser from November 2015; and if he will make a statement.

Membership and general terms of reference for the Construction Leadership Council (CLC) have been published on the Government website (https://www.gov.uk/government/groups/construction-leadership-council).

Detailed terms of reference were drafted by the secretariat, discussed by the co-chairs and circulated to members, along with other papers for the October 2015 meeting.They will be published, along with the minutes, on the Government website in due course.

Under co-chairs myself and Andrew Wolstenholme, Chief Executive of Crossrail, the CLC has a number of work streams led by council members:

  • Business models / supply chain - Madani Sow (Bouygues UK)
  • Skills - Anna Stewart (Laing O’Rourke)
  • Sustainability - Mike Putnam (Skanksa UK)
  • Trade – David Cash (BDP)
  • Communications – Simon Rawlinson (Arcadis).

Discussions on the lead for the innovation work stream are ongoing.

The Chief Construction Adviser role covered a range of functions which will be absorbed by Government and industry, including the CLC. In addition to identifying and delivering priority actions under the themes above, the Government will look to the CLC for advice on specific policy challenges - as is the case with the recently announced review of the practice of cash retention.

13th Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, whether the terms of reference for the new Construction Leadership Council have been published; and if he will make a statement.

Membership and general terms of reference for the Construction Leadership Council (CLC) have been published on the Government website (https://www.gov.uk/government/groups/construction-leadership-council).

Detailed terms of reference were drafted by the secretariat, discussed by the co-chairs and circulated to members, along with other papers for the October 2015 meeting.They will be published, along with the minutes, on the Government website in due course.

Under co-chairs myself and Andrew Wolstenholme, Chief Executive of Crossrail, the CLC has a number of work streams led by council members:

  • Business models / supply chain - Madani Sow (Bouygues UK)
  • Skills - Anna Stewart (Laing O’Rourke)
  • Sustainability - Mike Putnam (Skanksa UK)
  • Trade – David Cash (BDP)
  • Communications – Simon Rawlinson (Arcadis).

Discussions on the lead for the innovation work stream are ongoing.

The Chief Construction Adviser role covered a range of functions which will be absorbed by Government and industry, including the CLC. In addition to identifying and delivering priority actions under the themes above, the Government will look to the CLC for advice on specific policy challenges - as is the case with the recently announced review of the practice of cash retention.

4th Sep 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, how her Department plans to feed into the upcoming OFGEM consultation on the costs of pre-payment meters.

Ofgem’s prepayment meter review into understanding supplier charging practices found around half of the suppliers who offer prepayment meter tariffs choose not charge for the installation and/or removal of prepayment meters. We welcome Ofgem’s plans to consult further on how this good practice could be extended it to all suppliers. DECC officials continue to work with Ofgem to achieve this aim.

4th Sep 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, when she plans to publish her Department's new strategy and policy statement.

We plan to consult later this year on a new draft of the Strategy and Policy Statement which will take account of the Competition and Market Authority’s energy market investigation and their proposed remedies. We expect to publish the statement in 2016.

4th Sep 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, what the average cost to a consumer is of the (a) installation and (b) removal of a pre-payment meter.

The Department does not hold the information requested.

In June this year Ofgem published a report of its Prepayment Review: 'Understanding Supplier Charging Practice and Barriers to Switching' - https://www.ofgem.gov.uk/sites/default/files/docs/2015/06/prepayment_report_june_2015_finalforpublication.pdf.

Ten of the 19 suppliers who offer prepayment meter tariffs do not charge for the installation of prepayment meters. Of the companies that charge for home visit and the cost of physical prepayment meter installation Ofgem found the cost ranged from £46.84 - £160.00 for customers who gave consent and £69.00 - £179.96 installed under warrant.

Nine of the 19 suppliers do not charge for the removal of prepayment meters. Of the companies that charge Ofgem found the cost ranged from £46.84 - £160.00.

16th Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, pursuant to the Answer of 9 January 2015 to Question 219617, whether further evaluation of the benefits of supporting projects of outside the UK has been undertaken since the publishing of that paper in August 2014; and if he will reconsider the expansion of the list of technologies eligible for support from UK CfDs.

The priority of the department is to finalise the implementation of the CFD scheme across the UK.

There has been no further evaluation into the benefits of supporting projects outside of the UK since publishing the paper in August 2014.

5th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, what steps he is taking in working with EU partners to encourage the development of concentrated solar power in the desert regions of North Africa as part of plans to meet the 15 per cent interconnections target for Europe.

The UK fully supports EU efforts to bring about further energy interconnection, both within the EU and linking the EU with third countries, in order to meet energy security and low carbon objectives. Developing concentrated solar power (CSP) in North Africa is potentially a part of these efforts among many others, although more research and development is required to demonstrate further improvements in CSP technology. The UK fully supports EU work in this area, such as in the Horizon 2020 Energy Programme.

Geographical and cost factors mean that CSP development in North Africa is not currently of direct interest to the UK.

2nd Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, what assessment he has made of the potential role of imported concentrated solar power in meeting the energy requirements of the UK.

I am aware of proposals to invest in concentrated solar power (CSP) projects in the desert regions of North Africa and the Middle East. The UK supports in principle such proposals as a means of providing local energy supply and economic development, reducing greenhouse emissions and potentially contributing to the EU’s security of electricity supply. We continue to monitor developments in this area. However, in present circumstances, geographical factors, costs, and the need to further reinforce electricity connections within the EU and linking the EU with third countries mean that the majority of Member States, including the UK, would not currently be in a position to benefit from imports of CSP generated electricity.

1st Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that the production of building materials keeps up with increases in the number of house-build starts.

The general picture on material supply is one of gradual re-adjustment to the return to growth. Domestic brick production increased by 5.8% during the 12 months to October 2014 and has been augmented by an increase in imports, which is normal at this stage of the economic cycle, because of lead times in raising domestic output.

Government is in touch with the building products sector to understand and act on factors affecting building materials production. It is committed to a stable climate for business investment, which is the most important requirement for investment in building materials production.

1st Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what steps his Department is taking to improve skills in the construction industry.

Under the auspices of the Construction Leadership Council, the house building industry is developing an action plan to address three immediate priorities: improving the image of house building; attracting back experienced workers who left during the recession; and attracting other workers with relevant skills.

More widely, this Government is making a number of reforms to the skills system to improve skills supply; putting employers in the driving seat and making providers more responsive to their needs. Government is also currently undertaking a triennial review of the way the Construction Industry Training Board operates. CITB is undertaking reforms that will seek to improve the service it delivers to the sector.

In addition, Government believes that a more robust and more visible Government construction procurement pipeline is key to improving investment decisions in construction. We are working to enhance the pipeline to give construction businesses the confidence to upskill staff, to recruit, and to commit to apprenticeships.

26th Nov 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, if he will make an assessment of the potential risk that the development of Hinkley Point C power station may cause a shortage of nuclear engineering skills at Devonport dockyard.

A detailed assessment has been carried out of future skills needs for the civil nuclear new build programme, including the Hinkley Point C development. That assessment, carried out by skills bodies on behalf of the Nuclear Industry Council, included input from Ministry of Defence (MoD), who are members of that Council.

The relevant departments – Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), Energy & Climate Change (DECC), Ministry of Defence (MoD) and Work & Pensions (DWP) – are working with industry to ensure that a coordinated approach is taken to meeting future skills demand, including for engineers in both the civil and defence sectors.

18th Nov 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, when a decision will be made on the location of the new nuclear engineering college.

The industry is developing a detailed proposal which is designed to meet the skill specialisms that will be needed by different parts of the industry, including for new build and decommissioning. The proposal will build on existing and planned capital investment in facilities and equipment, and ensure strong alignment with higher education institutions and other providers of vocational education. A decision on location will be made once this work has been completed.

10th Nov 2014
To ask the Deputy Prime Minister, what discussions he has had with the Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership about the timing and size of the second phase of local growth deals.

Discussions are ongoing with officials across all 39 Local Enterprise Partnerships on round two of Growth Deals. Heart of the South West LEP secured £118m from the Local Growth Fund in the first round of Growth Deals, which when combined with other investments produced a total package of £258m to support economic growth in the area.

30th Jun 2014
To ask the hon. Member for South West Devon, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, if the Electoral Commission will take steps to ensure that schools are only used as polling stations as a last resort, in order to minimise disruption to pupils' education.

The Electoral Commission informs me that the Returning Officer (RO) at an election is responsible for deciding which polling stations will be used for the poll. The Electoral Commission issues guidance to ROs to support them in reaching decisions on the selection of venues for polling stations. Electoral legislation provides that ROs can require a room in publicly-funded schools for use as a polling station and can use these rooms free of charge.

5th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what specialist one-to-one study skills support will be available for students with specific learning difficulties following the review of the disabled students allowance; and who will provide that support.

Discussions are underway with stakeholders, including those who specialise in supporting students with Specific Learning Difficulties. This will help determine how specialist one-to-one support will be delivered in the future and where the responsibility for funding such support will fall.

I will not make a final decision on this matter until I have considered the necessary Equality Analysis, which is in preparation, and will take account of any relevant evidence provided by stakeholders.

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, pursuant to the Answer from the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government of 27 March 2014, Official Report, columns 345-6W, on the Green Deal scheme, if he will take steps to enable Green Deal providers to access all the supporting data for Green Deal reports held by Landmark Information Group.

The supporting data for Green Deal Advice Reports held by Landmark Information Group contains sensitive personal data, such as how householders use energy. We do not think it appropriate for Providers to have access to this data, given Data Protection considerations.

We understand that Providers would find the raw data useful to tailor Green Deal Advice Reports around the measures customers want installed. However, they have access to the Green Deal Improvement Package Tool – which would allow them to tailor the Reports as necessary. This tool can be found at:

https://www.gdsap.org.uk

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, whether the Renewables Obligation will remain open to all new renewable electricity generation projects until 2017.

The Government's approach to the Renewables Obligation through to its closure is set out in the Government response to the consultations on Renewables Obligation transition and grace periods published on 12 March and which can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/289076/Transition_and_Grace_Periods_Government_Response_-_12_Mar_2014.pdf

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, what his policy is on granting support to renewable electricity generation technologies under the Renewables Obligation before that scheme's closure in 2017.

The Government's approach to the Renewables Obligation through to its closure is set out in the Government response to the consultations on Renewables Obligation transition and grace periods published on 12 March and which can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/289076/Transition_and_Grace_Periods_Government_Response_-_12_Mar_2014.pdf

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, what assessment he has made of the effect on investment in renewable electricity generation if the Renewables Obligation were closed to new projects before 2017.

The Government's approach to the Renewables Obligation through to its closure is set out in the Government response to the consultations on Renewables Obligation transition and grace periods published on 12 March and which can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/289076/Transition_and_Grace_Periods_Government_Response_-_12_Mar_2014.pdf

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, what assessment he has made of the potential benefits to the customer experience if Green Deal providers were able to access the supporting data for Green Deal reports held by Government.

Green Deal customers receive a Green Deal Advice Report which provides energy savings estimates for the package of improvements recommended by a Green Deal Advisor. These savings are calculated by approved Green Deal software. The Green Deal Advice Report can subsequently be tailored by Green Deal Providers using the Green Deal Improvement Package Tool and following discussions with customers of the improvements they want to take up. Providers will also discuss the detail of any financing arrangement that the customer wants. Providing customers with access to supporting data held on the Green Deal Register is unnecessary as part of the Green Deal process and would not change the savings that accrue to customers.

A list of approved Green Deal software can be found at:

http://www.bre.co.uk/filelibrary/SAP/2009/GD_OA_software.pdf

The Green Deal Improvement Package Tool can be found at:

https://www.gdsap.org.uk.

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, what savings would accrue to Green Deal customers of Green Deal providers were able to access the supporting data for Green Deal reports held by his Department.

Green Deal customers receive a Green Deal Advice Report which provides energy savings estimates for the package of improvements recommended by a Green Deal Advisor. These savings are calculated by approved Green Deal software. The Green Deal Advice Report can subsequently be tailored by Green Deal Providers using the Green Deal Improvement Package Tool and following discussions with customers of the improvements they want to take up. Providers will also discuss the detail of any financing arrangement that the customer wants. Providing customers with access to supporting data held on the Green Deal Register is unnecessary as part of the Green Deal process and would not change the savings that accrue to customers.

A list of approved Green Deal software can be found at:

http://www.bre.co.uk/filelibrary/SAP/2009/GD_OA_software.pdf

The Green Deal Improvement Package Tool can be found at:

https://www.gdsap.org.uk

27th Jan 2016
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how much real estate the Government owns in Plymouth.

The Government owns the following properties in Plymouth:

  • Buildings : 8 Freeholds, 21 leaseholds and 8 Private Finance Initiatives
  • Land: 7 freeholds and 4 leaseholds

Details available at the following website: https://data.gov.uk/dataset/epims.

21st Jan 2016
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, who is on the board of the Dormant Assets Commission, announced on 19 December 2015.

Nick O’Donohoe, outgoing Chief Executive of Big Society Capital, was announced as Chair of the new Commission on Dormant Assets on December 19 2015. The Commission is still being set up and I expect the appointments of commissioners who will work with the Chair to be finalised shortly.

21st Jan 2016
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what criteria have been set to access Dormant Assets Commission funds.

The Commission on Dormant Assets will will provide advice on which dormant assets can be brought into an expanded dormant assets scheme. The Committee remit will also include a suggested mechanism through which dormant assets could be redirected by Government to good causes.

4th Jan 2016
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many sexual assault crimes have been reported in Plymouth in the last three years.

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

5th Jun 2014
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many people died from prostate cancer in (a) Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport constituency and (b) England in each of the last five years.

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

24th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment his Department has made of the effect on the luxury yacht building industry in the UK since the EU referendum.

The Department works closely with the marine engineering and manufacturing sector, which includes the yacht building industry. The Ministerial Working Group for Maritime Growth continues to engage with the industry on the issues and opportunities for the maritime sector resulting from the UK leaving the EU.

23rd Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what plans the Government has to tackle future skills shortages in the construction industry.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy works closely with the Department for Education (DfE) which is responsible for skills policy and also the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB), the body that supports training and skills in construction.

DfE is currently working with employers in the construction industry to develop new apprenticeships for the sector. While evidence suggests there are sufficient learners going through the skills system, with over 200,000 construction qualifications being taken each year, reforms set out in the skills plan (July 2016) will ensure these qualifications become more relevant and meet the industry’s needs.

Additionally, the Construction Leadership Council, the business led sector council which advises Government on key strategic issues, has investigated the labour model in their construction and commissioned an independent report from Mark Farmer ( published in October 2016, http://www.cast-consultancy.com/news-casts/farmer-review-uk-construction-labour-model-3) making recommendations for industry and Government. Both the Government and the Construction Leadership Council is currently considering the review’s recommendations.

23rd Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment the Government has made of the potential effect of the UK leaving the EU on the availability of skilled construction workers.

The Government continues to monitor the potential impacts that leaving the EU may have on the availability of skilled workers. We cannot speculate on the outcome of Brexit negotiations, but the Government has made it clear that the UK remains open to the talent we need from Europe and the rest of the world.

The Department for Education (DfE) is currently working closely with employers in the construction industry to develop new apprenticeships for the sector. While evidence suggests there are sufficient learners going through the skills system, with over 200,000 construction qualifications being taken each year, reforms set out in the skills plan (July 2016) will ensure these qualifications become more relevant and meet the industry’s needs.

12th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what the average time taken for housing associations' titles to be registered at the Land Registry has been in each month of the last three years for which figures are available.

The data requested is complex and will take some time to collate. I will place this in the Libraries of the House as soon as the information is available.

2nd Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department is taking to maximise the potential benefits of the UK leaving the EU for businesses.

The UK remains the top destination in Europe for Foreign Direct Investment, unemployment is at its lowest level since 2005. It has a record number of private businesses, and we are going to build on these fundamental strengths to make a Britain that works for everyone; that remains the same outward-looking, globally-minded, big-thinking country it has always been.

24th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether the potential economic benefits of tidal power lagoons will be considered in the development of the Government's new Industrial Strategy.

The independent review on Tidal Lagoons in the UK, headed by Charles Hendry will report towards the end of the year and will consider, among other things, whether and in what circumstances tidal lagoons could play a cost effective role in the energy mix.

6th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what steps her Department is taking to encourage the hosting of major sporting and tourism events in the UK.

Since London 2012, the UK has hosted nearly 100 major sporting events. We will host the World Athletic and Para-Athletic Championships in this summer, and after that, the women's World Cups in Cricket, Hockey and Netball, cycling's World Championships and the Euro 2020 semi finals and final.

The government is committed to bringing sport and tourism events to the UK. The Government’s Tourism Action Plan highlights the work we are doing to encourage major tourism events here.

5th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what funding his Department provides to promote tennis for children under 10 years.

Government are committed to providing the best sporting opportunities for children. DCMS leads the School Games programme which involves the Youth Sport Trust and Sport England working with 38 of the National Governing Bodies of Sports, including the Tennis Foundation, to support schools in delivering competitions for all children. In addition, our Sports Strategy, published in December 2015, has enabled Sport England to fund sport for children from the age of 5 onwards.

4th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what support lottery regulations permit to be given to gaming, live digital and other features of cultural technology.

National Lottery funding supports projects within the four good causes - arts; sport; heritage; voluntary and community. The arts good cause covers a broad range of arts and media forms and there are no specific regulations against funding gaming, live digital and other features of cultural technology. Decisions on which individual projects to fund are made by the twelve Lottery distribution bodies.

26th Sep 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what steps his Department plans to take to ensure that newspapers only publish photographs of children when they have parental consent to do so.

The Government has introduced a new system of independent self-regulation of the press that protects press freedom whilst offering real redress when mistakes are made. This is a matter for independent press self-regulators. The Government has no plans formally to review the law in this particular area.

30th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, when his Department plans to publish its response to the findings of the Farrell review of architecture and the built environment.

The Department is grateful to Sir Terry Farrell for undertaking this review, but does not intend to publish a formal response to it. Instead it looks to industry, under the leadership of the RIBA, to respond to the challenges identified by the review, supported – where appropriate – by government. I continue to meet Terry Farrell on a regular basis to discuss how to take work forward.

12th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what guidance her Department publishes for parents and social workers on the use of restraining techniques for children with autism who exhibit or demonstrate violent behaviour.

The Department for Education and the Department of Health jointly published non-statutory Guidance for Restrictive Physical Interventions: How to provide safe services for people with Learning Disabilities and Autistic Spectrum Disorder (July 2002).

The guidance is aimed at those who are responsible for social services, including social workers. It is not guidance for parents, though it would be of interest to them.

It promotes effective policies, planning and staff training for those who work with people who have severe behavioural difficulties associated with learning difficulties or autism spectrum disorder. It does not provide guidance on techniques of restraint – that is best delivered through specialised training.

The Department for Education and the Department of Health are working to produce for consultation new guidance which is intended to replace the 2002 guidance.

Weblink to the above guidance: http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20130107105354/http:/www.dh.gov.uk/prod_consum_dh/groups/dh_digitalassets/@dh/@en/documents/digitalasset/dh_4068461.pdf

5th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment she has made of the potential effect that the proposals in the Education excellence everywhere White Paper, Cm 9230, will have on (a) Church of England and (b) Roman Catholic schools.

We value the important and longstanding role played by the Church of England and Catholic Church in our education system. Around 1,200 Church schools have already become academies. The White Paper is clear that Church schools’ role and their religious character will be protected as more become academies. We continue to work closely with the National Society and Catholic Education Service and recently published Memoranda of Understanding to provide a strong basis for our ongoing relationship with Church schools and their dioceses.

20th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what plans the Government has to improve employment and careers advice.

The Government has introduced a number of measures to improve employment and careers advice. We have established The Careers & Enterprise Company (CEC) to strengthen links between employers, schools and colleges, and careers and enterprise organisations to inspire young people and help them take control of their own futures. The CEC is rolling out the Enterprise Adviser Network, which connects employees from firms of all sizes to schools through a network of volunteer enterprise advisers. The Company has also launched its £5m Careers & Enterprise Fund to scale up good ideas and fill gaps in provision.

The Prime Minister recently announced a new campaign to encourage a new generation of high quality mentors. The campaign, which will be led by the CEC, will aim to increase the number of business and professional mentors working with teenagers who are under-achieving or at risk of dropping out of education.

The Government is also introducing a new initiative which will see Jobcentre Plus staff offer support, where schools request it, to supplement careers guidance and to help schools deliver their statutory duty to provide high quality, independent and impartial careers advice. Jobcentre Plus staff will focus support on those students at risk of not participating in education, employment or training. The scheme will be aligned with the CEC’s Enterprise Adviser network and will be rolled out later this academic year.

Building on these measures, we want to go further to improve careers education and guidance for all young people. We will launch a careers strategy in the spring of 2016, which will set out the government’s vision for careers education and how we will get there by 2020.

18th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many children under the age of 16 in Plymouth who have been diagnosed with an autism spectrum condition or have been identified as having autism-related needs are being home educated.

Our reformed system for meeting the needs of children and young people with Special Educational Needs (SEN) and Disabilities is designed to ensure that their needs are identified at an early stage, that the right support is in place, and that problems do not escalate.

All early years providers are required to have arrangements in place to identify and support children with SEN or disabilities and to promote equality of opportunity for children in their care. All schools should have a clear approach to identifying and responding to SEN and must use their best endeavours to ensure that children with SEN, including those with autism, get the support they need.

As part of their Initial Teacher Training, all teachers are expected to learn to identify and address various types of SEN, including autism. The Government is also funding the Autism Education Trust in 2015-16, providing £650,000 to provide tiered training at universal, enhanced and specialist levels for early years, school and post-16 staff to help them understand how best to recognise and support children and young people with autism.

The Department does not hold data on the numbers of autistic children who are home educated nor the numbers of children who are not in school. The Alternative Provision Census does collect data about children who are not in school or in a pupil referral unit. However, it covers as a single ‘Not in School’ category only those who are educated otherwise than at school under arrangements made and funded by local authorities. The information does not reflect types of special educational need.

The data may be available from Plymouth City Council, since it has a duty under Section 22 of the Children and Families Act 2014 to carry out its functions with a view to identifying all the children and young people in its area who have or may have special educational needs or a disability, and also a duty to provide children of compulsory school age with an education.

18th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many children under the age of 16 in Plymouth who have been diagnosed with an autism spectrum condition or have been identified as having autism-related needs are not in education.

Our reformed system for meeting the needs of children and young people with Special Educational Needs (SEN) and Disabilities is designed to ensure that their needs are identified at an early stage, that the right support is in place, and that problems do not escalate.

All early years providers are required to have arrangements in place to identify and support children with SEN or disabilities and to promote equality of opportunity for children in their care. All schools should have a clear approach to identifying and responding to SEN and must use their best endeavours to ensure that children with SEN, including those with autism, get the support they need.

As part of their Initial Teacher Training, all teachers are expected to learn to identify and address various types of SEN, including autism. The Government is also funding the Autism Education Trust in 2015-16, providing £650,000 to provide tiered training at universal, enhanced and specialist levels for early years, school and post-16 staff to help them understand how best to recognise and support children and young people with autism.

The Department does not hold data on the numbers of autistic children who are home educated nor the numbers of children who are not in school. The Alternative Provision Census does collect data about children who are not in school or in a pupil referral unit. However, it covers as a single ‘Not in School’ category only those who are educated otherwise than at school under arrangements made and funded by local authorities. The information does not reflect types of special educational need.

The data may be available from Plymouth City Council, since it has a duty under Section 22 of the Children and Families Act 2014 to carry out its functions with a view to identifying all the children and young people in its area who have or may have special educational needs or a disability, and also a duty to provide children of compulsory school age with an education.

18th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what early intervention and education support is available for children who are on the autism spectrum to prevent them developing mental health difficulties later in their school career.

Our reformed system for meeting the needs of children and young people with Special Educational Needs (SEN) and Disabilities is designed to ensure that their needs are identified at an early stage, that the right support is in place, and that problems do not escalate.

All early years providers are required to have arrangements in place to identify and support children with SEN or disabilities and to promote equality of opportunity for children in their care. All schools should have a clear approach to identifying and responding to SEN and must use their best endeavours to ensure that children with SEN, including those with autism, get the support they need.

As part of their Initial Teacher Training, all teachers are expected to learn to identify and address various types of SEN, including autism. The Government is also funding the Autism Education Trust in 2015-16, providing £650,000 to provide tiered training at universal, enhanced and specialist levels for early years, school and post-16 staff to help them understand how best to recognise and support children and young people with autism.

The Department does not hold data on the numbers of autistic children who are home educated nor the numbers of children who are not in school. The Alternative Provision Census does collect data about children who are not in school or in a pupil referral unit. However, it covers as a single ‘Not in School’ category only those who are educated otherwise than at school under arrangements made and funded by local authorities. The information does not reflect types of special educational need.

The data may be available from Plymouth City Council, since it has a duty under Section 22 of the Children and Families Act 2014 to carry out its functions with a view to identifying all the children and young people in its area who have or may have special educational needs or a disability, and also a duty to provide children of compulsory school age with an education.

9th Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if she will take steps to maintain current levels of the schools budget and per-pupil spending.

As we pledged in our manifesto, we are protecting funding for our schools and the money spent on our children because nothing is more important than investing in the next generation. This will mean that as pupil numbers increase, so too will the amount of money schools receive.

20th Feb 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, which schools in England and Wales have a dementia strategy.

All schools have a duty to ensure the wellbeing, health and safety of their staff. The Department for Education does not hold data on the number of schools which have a dementia strategy, but all schools are required to have systems in place to monitor staff who show signs of suffering from a medical condition and to provide necessary support.

14th Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what figures her Department holds on total local authority spending on school travel in each of the last five years, including the amount spent on (a) discretionary services, (b) statutory services and (c) travel for SEN and other eligible groups.
28th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 19 January 2017 to Question 908267, if she will publish a list of the fish stocks of UK interest for which total allowable catches (TACs) are set with advice on maximum sustainable yield (MSY) provided by the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea; and how many of those TACs she expects will be fished at or below MSY in 2017.

The information is in the table attached.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
22nd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what estimate her Department has made of the economic costs to the UK of illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing (a) globally and (b) in the Western Indian Ocean.

The UK Government has made no specific assessment of the economic cost to the UK of illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing either globally or in the West Indian Ocean. IUU poses a threat to the economic livelihood for many countries with consequences for the marine environment. The UK fulfils its IUU obligations to prevent trade in illegally caught fish by prohibiting the import of fish from countries, identified by the European Union, as not supporting sustainable fisheries.

In 2009, prior to the implementation of the regulation, the European Commission commissioned an evaluation report on the expected impacts of the EU IUU Regulation on third countries. This report aimed to help third countries and the EU access the training requirements to implement this measure successfully, and is available at

https://ec.europa.eu/fisheries/sites/fisheries/files/docs/body/iuu_consequences_2009_en.pdf.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
18th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether fishing policy will be national or regional after the UK leaves the EU.

We want to deliver a Brexit that works for the whole of the UK. We will work very carefully to ensure the right powers are returned to Westminster and the right powers are passed to the devolved administrations. No decisions currently taken by the devolved administrations will be removed from them.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
7th Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when the archaeological survey for Sutton Harbour in Plymouth will be allowed to commence.

The marine licence application has yet to be determined, but archaeological interests, including the need for any survey, will be considered as part of the Marine Management Organisation’s decision making.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
7th Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what the reasons are for the time taken by the Marine Management Organisation to process the licence application for the boardwalk development at Sutton Harbour in Plymouth.

The application for the proposed boardwalk development is currently on hold until further information is provided by the applicant, which is necessary to continue assessing the application to make a determination. The Marine Management Organisation continues to work with the applicant to ensure issues can be resolved in a timely manner, in addition to having sufficient information to allow a full assessment of any impact on the environment prior to determining the licence.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
14th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what funding her Department is making available to replace trees that die of ash dieback disease.

The Forestry Commission provides advice to woodland managers about how best to manage and adapt to ash dieback, for example by planting a variety of tree species as diversity brings resilience to pests and diseases.

Support is available for some landowners for the replacement of infected ash trees with alternative species in woodland situations under the Countryside Stewardship scheme, subject to grant conditions being met.

The Government is not encouraging felling of large infected ash trees as they can survive dieback for many years. They continue to provide recreational and biodiversity benefits as well as a vital role in protecting our environment through use in flood control measures.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
5th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what progress her Department is making on developing effective management strategies for Marine Conservation Zones.

The Government is committed to delivering a ‘Blue Belt’ of well-managed Marine Protected Areas around our coasts. Marine Conservation Zones (MCZs) are given legislative protection under the Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009. Under this Act, a consent or licence can only be agreed where there is no significant risk to the conservation objectives of the MCZ, except in exceptional cases and subject to stringent conditions.

Where fishery management measures are required, Defra is working with the Inshore Fisheries Conservation Authorities and the Marine Management Organisation to identify appropriate fisheries management measures for all Tranche 1 MCZs by the end of this year and, as a result, those site features considered to be at “high risk” are already being protected. For Tranche 2 MCZ sites, appropriate fisheries management measures will be identified by the relevant authority within two years of designation.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
14th Oct 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what progress her Department is making on research on the production of diverse forage mixtures to optimise animal production.

Innovate UK, Defra and BBSRC are co-funding the Sustainable Agriculture and Food Innovation Platform (SAFIP), worth £90 million over five years with match funding by industry. There are a number of projects funded under SAFIP on the development of alternative and diverse forages to optimise the sustainability of animal production in the UK.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
17th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, whether he plans for negotiations on fisheries to be conducted separately or within general Article 50 negotiations.

We want to have reached an agreement about our future partnership, which will cover issues such as fisheries, by the time the two-year Article 50 process has concluded.

We seek a new and equal partnership – between an independent, self-governing, Global Britain and our friends and allies in the EU. As we negotiate that partnership, we will be driven by some simple principles: we will provide as much certainty and clarity as we can at every stage.

Robin Walker
Minister of State (Education)
14th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, whether her Department has made an assessment of the potential merits of providing financial support to increase the level of activity at the fisheries research laboratory in Monkey Bay, Malawi.

The Department for International Development (DFID) is supporting Malawi to diversify its economy, improve inclusive growth and eradicate extreme poverty. My Department has not made an assessment of the merits of providing support to the fisheries research laboratory in Monkey Bay. However, a new programme of agricultural support is currently in design and assessing potential options for UK support, including on fisheries.

6th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what recent progress has been made on developing the solar market in Malawi.

During my visit to Malawi last year, I signed a Compact with the Government of Malawi as part of the UK’s “Energy Africa” campaign. The Compact sets out agreed actions to remove policy and regulatory barriers to Malawi’s solar market expansion. The UK is also working alongside energy companies to develop inclusive business models for solar products, providing technical support to improve markets, distribution and access to consumer and business finance.

1st Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what steps her Department has taken to encourage other donors to scale up nutrition investment programmes to tackle malnutrition in high-burden countries.

DFID is encouraging donors to prioritise nutrition, through the G7, the Scaling Up Nutrition movement, and through bilateral channels. We are encouraging both increased nutrition specific work as well as a greater nutrition focus in donors’ broader development work. We are also tracking Nutrition for Growth commitments through the Global Nutrition Report.

1st Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what steps her Department is taking to monitor and report on the effect of its nutrition investment programmes in low and middle income countries.

DFID monitors and publishes reviews on all its nutrition programmes in low and middle income countries on an annual basis. For example, DFID’s programme in northern Nigeria aims to reduce stunting and wasting by at least 4% over 7 years and includes investment with partners to monitor impact. DFID is also building the capacity of governments to collect and use nutrition data effectively. DFID supports the Global Nutrition Report which tracks progress to reduce undernutrition globally.

18th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what plans her Department has for the inclusion of HIV and AIDS within its Leaving No-One Behind framework.

The Leave No One Behind Promise means we will focus on the most vulnerable and disadvantaged, which includes groups affected by HIV and AIDS. The UK’s recent £1.1 billion pledge to the Global Fund to fight AIDs, TB and Malaria is a practical example of this commitment.

15th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, if she will offer assistance to New Zealand to manage the effects of the recent earthquakes in that country.

The UK has monitored the situation since the earthquake occurred and stood ready to offer assistance if required.

The UK will not be providing a response in the aftermath of the earthquake, as the Government of New Zealand have not requested international assistance.

29th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what discussions her Department has had with the Department of Health on implementation of the Ross Fund.

The Ross Fund is a new £1 billion fund that will be used to support the global fight against malaria and other infectious diseases. Programmes will be led by either the Department for International Development or the Department of Health. By bringing together the range of DFID and DH’s activity into the Ross Fund and ensuring coordination, we can maximise synergies and avoid duplication.

The accountability and responsibility of delivering on the individual programmes within the Ross Fund is with the respective lead department. The teams in each department are working closely together to ensure there is a complementary approach. A cross-government senior officials group (including Department for International Development and Department of Health) is also meeting on a regular basis to provide strategic direction in global health, including for the Ross Fund.

29th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, when investments pledged under the Ross Fund will be made available for research and development into infectious diseases.

The Ross Fund is a new £1 billion fund that will be used to support the global fight against malaria and other infectious diseases.

Programmes under the Ross Fund will be led by either the Department of Health or the Department for International Development. Details about the exact nature and timing of investments pledged under the Ross Fund are still under development.

12th Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, how many (a) NHS staff and (b) NHS staff in Plymouth have been involved in operations to control the outbreak of Ebola in West Africa.

UK-Med is working with the Department for International Development (DFID), Department of Health and International NGOs to recruit NHS volunteers through its International Emergency Medical Register (UKIEMR) to work in a number of DFID-funded Ebola Treatment Centres in Sierra Leone.

To date, UK-Med has deployed 153 NHS volunteers including 3 NHS volunteers from Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust.

I pay tribute to the bravery and professionalism of the fantastic NHS workers from Plymouth who are helping to defeat Ebola, some of whom I have been lucky enough to meet in Sierra Leone. Their hard work has saved countless lives.

8th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what progress has been made on improving of the reliability and availability of wifi and mobile connectivity on trains between (a) Penzance and London and (b) Taunton and Bristol.

Great Western is providing free Wi-Fi on a large majority of their services and Cross Country will be providing this from April 2018.

Our priority is for passengers to experience a reliable and highly available mobile service and we will be securing this within future franchises.

Great Western’s new franchise is due to start from December 2019.

Cross Country’s new franchise is due to start from June 2019.

23rd Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, with reference to paragraph 3.19 of the Autumn Statement 2016, how much of the £450 million funding for trialling digital signalling technology to expand capacity and improve reliability will be allocated to improving signalling on the Great Western line from Paddington to Cornwall.

At the 2016 Autumn Statement, Government announced £450 million to trial innovative digital rail signalling technology to increase capacity and reliability on our railways. A range of schemes are being considered and the exact location and scope will be announced in due course.

2nd Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what improvements to WiFi coverage on trains are being made by Great Western Railways.

First Great Western InterCity and Thames Valley trains have been fitted with on-train Wi-Fi. Following the Direct Award Great Western Railway is fitting free Wi-Fi to all Super Express Trains, Electrical Multiple Units and long term diesel trains remaining in the fleet.

The fitted trains include the new AT300 trains providing London to South West services. Great Western Railway state in their ‘Annual Stakeholder Report 2015-16’ that this work will be completed by December 2018.

25th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate his Department has made of the economic benefits of the construction of a second rail line into the South West.

The reinstatement of the Exeter - Okehampton - Plymouth route and the economic value of re-opening it is being looked at by the Peninsula Rail Task Force (PRTF). They will report to the Secretary of State in July 2016.

14th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what funding his Department has allocated to Plymouth City Council for pothole maintenance since 2010; and what estimate he has made of how many potholes have been repaired as a result of that funding.

The Department for Transport allocated funding of £4.7 billion for local highways maintenance to local highway authorities in England from 2010 to 2015 which would be enough to repair approximately 89 million potholes based on an average of £53 per pothole. A further £6.1 billion is being allocated between now and 2021, including £250 million as part of a Pothole Action Fund, which could fix a further 115 million potholes. For Plymouth City Council we are providing over £25 million for local highways maintenance between 2010 and 2021 enough to help them repair over 400,000 potholes.

4th Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether Sir Peter Hendy's work to re-plan the Network Rail enhancements programme in Control Period 5, 2014-19, takes account of maximising the journey time benefit for the South West peninsula by use of the new high-speed AT300 trains which are due to be introduced in December 2018.

Sir Peter Hendy has been asked to review Network Rail’s enhancement portfolio, so that works may be delivered over a more realistic timeframe. The terms of reference are clear that work is to be prioritised to take “particular account of interfaces with other infrastructure programmes and the need to deliver the required passenger and freight benefits, franchise or rolling stock commitments”. Sir Peter Hendy is due to report later in the Autumn.


14th Oct 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what geological assessment his Department has made to ensure the stability of (a) the sea wall at Dawlish, (b) the cliff at Teignmouth and (c) the line between Newton Abbott and Plymouth.

Network Rail is carrying out a further study to look at options to increase the long term geo-environmental resilience of the existing main line from Exeter to Newton Abbot. The study looks at the coastal and sea wall elements and the cliffs. It is due to be fully complete in April 2016 with an options assessment report available by the end of 2015. There has been no geological assessment of the rail route from Newton Abbot to Plymouth.

9th Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when his Department will decide whether to order additional new rolling stock from Hitachi to service the far South West; and if he will include a more powerful hybrid engine to account for the undulating geography of the South West in such an order.

First Great Western’s procurement exercise for new trains to serve the South West is making good progress; and we expect them to submit final proposals to the Department for consideration over the summer. The new train fleet will have appropriate performance characteristics to operate on the far South West routes.

9th Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, which organisation will be responsible for the inquiry into the viability of the re-opening of Plymouth Airport.

The Department for Transport is looking at how best to take this study forward and hopes to be in position to announce shortly how this will be undertaken. We recognise the need to consider the views of all stakeholders who have an interest in the site and take to account of previous studies that have been commissioned with regards to Plymouth airport.

9th Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what the terms of reference are for the inquiry into the re-opening of Plymouth Airport.

The Department for Transport is looking at how best to take this study forward and hopes to be in position to announce shortly how this will be undertaken. We recognise the need to consider the views of all stakeholders who have an interest in the site and take to account of previous studies that have been commissioned with regards to Plymouth airport.

9th Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will publish the timetable for the inquiry into the viability of Plymouth Airport; and when that report will be published.

The Department for Transport is looking at how best to take this study forward and hopes to be in position to announce shortly how this will be undertaken. We recognise the need to consider the views of all stakeholders who have an interest in the site and take to account of previous studies that have been commissioned with regards to Plymouth airport.

4th Feb 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how much funding his Department has provided for railway and station infrastructure projects in (a) Plymouth, (b) Devon, (c) Cornwall, (d) Torbay, (e) Somerset, (f) Durham, (g) Newcastle, (h) North Tyneside, (i) Northumberland, (j) South Tyneside and (k) Sunderland since 2010; and what estimate he has made of the contribution of the local councils in those locations to such projects.

We do not hold the information in the format requested and collating it could only be done at disproportionate cost. However, significant infrastructure improvements have been delivered across the UK since 2010. Further details of this, and committed spend in future years, are available at https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/national-infrastructure-plan.

14th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what plans his Department has to increase capacity on the railway between Exeter and Plymouth.

Future rail proposals are being developed with local stakeholders the department and Network Rail, this group will be deliver a local plan for rail investment covering the next 10-20 years. The first step in this process is a meeting of interested parties which is being organised by the South West Peninsular Group, and is due to take place early February. This meeting will work through what is required to provide the South West with greater accessibility and to examine wider issues surrounding connectivity to and within the South West Peninsula.

14th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what plans his Department has to improve signalling on the railway between (a) Exeter and Plymouth and (b) Reading and Exeter; and what assessment he has made of the potential effect of improved signalling on those routes.

Signal failures are one of the biggest causes of delays on the network. For that reason, Network Rail has an extensive programme underway to improve both the standard and reliability of signalling across the national network.

The Western Route is gradually benefitting from transfer of signalling to a single control centre in Didcot, and this process will eventually encompass the entire route, including those stretches mentioned by my Hon Friend. This will allow a faster and better coordinated response to delays across the route.

My Hon Friend will also be aware of the very large investment which is being made by Network Rail, Cornwall Council and others into the Totnes-Penzance resignalling scheme, which will radically improve the train flow and reliability. It will do this by allowing bidirectional running on the line, meaning that maintenance and disruption can be managed vastly more effectively.

Further details of Network Rail’s plans can be found at the links below. These documents also provide information on the benefits of improved signalling:

http://www.networkrail.co.uk/publications/strategic-business-plan-for cp5/

http://www.networkrail.co.uk/publications/delivery-plans/control-period-5/cp5-delivery-plan/

24th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how much his Department plans to spend on improving the road network (a) in Devon and Cornwall and (b) within a 30 mile radius of the centre of Plymouth in each of the next five years.

The Government is committed to improving the road network in the South West over the next five years.

This includes committing £5.8 billion for local highways maintenance, between 2015 and 2021, to English local authorities. We anticipate announcing local highway allocations by the end of the year.

We have also announced funding for integrated transport which could include road improvement schemes as follows:

Authority

2015/16 (£m)

2016/17 (£m)

2017/18 (£m)

2018/19 (£m)

2019/20 (£m)

2020/21 (£m)

Devon

3.60

3.60

3.60

3.60

3.60

3.60

Cornwall

4.10

4.10

4.10

4.10

4.10

4.10

Plymouth City

1.94

1.94

1.94

1.94

1.94

1.94

Torbay

1.63

1.63

1.63

1.63

1.63

1.63

A number of other major Schemes which help to improve the local road network which are receiving specific funding in 2015/16 are currently under construction and these are as follows:

Council

Project

Total Funding

(DfT) (£m)

Timeline

Devon

A380 Kingskerswell Bypass

76.40

Completion Date:

December 2015

Cornwall

Camborne-Pool-Redruth Transport Package

16.10

Completion Date:

April 2015

Cornwall

A3059/A3058 Rialton Link

2.00

Completion Date:

May 2015

Cornwall

A386 Union Corner Junction Improvements

1.60

Completion Date:

July 2015

The Local Growth Deals announced in July 2014 provided funding for a number of schemes to improve the road network in Devon, Cornwall and Plymouth. Further details can be found at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/local-growth-deals

The total funding provided which will be spent on road schemes is:

Area

Funding (£m)

Devon and Cornwall

74.77

Plymouth (within 30 mile radius)

52.87

For the strategic road network, the Department is undertaking a feasibility study of the A303/A30/A358 corridor. This is expected to report back at Autumn Statement 2014.

Looking forward to the next five years, the Highways Agency is currently developing route strategies which outline investment priorities for the strategic road network for the period up to March 2021 and beyond. Proposals emerging from this will be considered by Ministers leading up to the Autumn Statement, with completion of the route strategies programme by the end of March 2015.

20th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what financial assistance he is providing to local authorities to repair potholes.

The Government recognises that potholes are a menace for all road users. We are providing over £10 billion for local highways maintenance between 2010 and 2021, including £168 million through the Pothole Fund announced in the March 2014 Budget.

7th Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what progress his Department has made on a second railway line to connect Plymouth with London and the Midlands.

It is for the south west local authorities and the local enterprise partnership to continue to stress the importance of additional rail route to connect Plymouth to London and the Midlands.

However, I would like to emphasise that a long term resilient rail route to Plymouth and far South West is a priority for this Government. Network Rail is reviewing measures of improvement in a number of key locations on the Western Route.

27th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps his Department is taking to ensure parity of treatment for people with physical and mental health issues when applying for benefits.

DWP is totally committed to delivering good quality services that are accessible to all customers. We offer services through face to face, telephone and a range of digital channels, ensuring that the needs of all customer groups are considered. All DWP digital services meet Government accessibility standards and have assisted digital plans in place to support customers that need help to apply for benefits online. A Ministerial Taskforce of disability organisations meets several times a year to advise and support DWP in making customer information and contact more accessible and understandable. We have recently amended the “how to claim” pages for all benefits on GOV.UK, to make it clearer how disabled customers can request information in alternative formats. DWP is also trialling Video Relay Service and Next Generation Text Services for Deaf and hard of hearing customers so they receive as good a service from telephony agents as non-disabled customers. Specialist services are available for relevant groups and training is given to colleagues to identify and support customers with mental health conditions and learning difficulties.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Home Office) (Security)
26th Nov 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps his Department has taken to increase awareness among pensioners of the benefits for which they are eligible.

Four months before people reach State Pension age, the Department writes, inviting them to claim their State Pension. An information leaflet about the State Pension is enclosed with that letter; it provides details of how to claim Pension Credit.

The easiest way for customers to claim Pension Credit is by telephone removing the need to complete lengthy application forms; they can also claim Housing Benefit at the same time, and are advised of Pension Credit when they claim their State Pension.

DWP has also introduced a web-based Pension Credit toolkit at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/pension-credit-toolkit

Its purpose is to provide customer representative organisations with all the information needed in order to talk to pensioners about Pension Credit and other benefits they may be entitled to such as Attendance Allowance. In partnership with Age UK, local authorities and other groups, a structured campaign was undertaken to create awareness of the Toolkit amongst those who support our customers.

24th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if he will initiate a review of the operation of the shared accommodation rate.

The Department has no plans to review the way the Shared Accommodation Rates are calculated. The Rent Officer Services set the rates in line with the current DWP policy for uprating Local Housing Allowance and with reference to evidence of achieved rents in the local area.

In 2014/15, 56 out of the 192 Shared Accommodation Rates have been increased by 4% in those areas where there is the greatest divergence between LHA rates and local rents.

23rd Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what estimate his Department has made of the number of breast cancer treatments potentially affected by the proposed £20 million budget impact test.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence estimates that around 80% of technologies appraised between June 2015 and June 2016 fell below the level of the proposed budget impact test. The level of the budget impact test does not represent a maximum that the National Health Service will spend on an individual drug in any year, but represents the point at which NHS England will seek to agree a commercial agreement with the drug company.

20th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what advice is given to patients and families of deceased patients who no longer require prescribed medicines, aids and medical equipment.

Disposal of waste medicines is an essential service within the community pharmacy contractual framework, to be provided by all community pharmacies in England. NHS England is responsible for commissioning National Health Service pharmaceutical services.

Patients are normally advised to return unused medicines to their local community pharmacy for safe disposal. This is the case also for patients and families of deceased patients who no longer require prescribed medicines.

Appliances are normally collected by community nurses. Occasionally there is a local amnesty with appeals to patients to return equipment, for example crutches and wheelchairs to accident and emergency departments.

2nd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what recent assessment he has made of the sustainability of the GP network.

The General Practice Forward View, published in April 2016, announced that investment in General Practice will increase from £9.6 billion in 2015/16 to over £12 billion by 2020/21, a major financial investment to transform primary care.

Work is underway to increase the primary care workforce and reduce workload, to improve primary care estates and infrastructure, and to redesign care and spread innovation throughout the country.

It is also becoming increasingly normal for general practices to work together at scale in networks or federation of practices, bringing greater opportunities for practices to work collaboratively to strengthen services and their sustainability.

1st Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what recent steps his Department has taken to improve recruitment of nurses to the NHS.

Health Education England (HEE) is responsible for the forecasting and planning of the future nursing workforce supply needs for the National Health Service.

HEE has increased nurse training commissions by nearly 15% over the last three years and is forecasting that up to 40,000 additional nurses could be available to the NHS by 2020.

In addition to the increase in training commissions HEE has also implemented a number of steps to increase nurse numbers within the NHS these include:

- proactively promoting the Return to Practice programme, aimed at encouraging previously qualified nurses that have left the NHS, to update their skills and qualifications and return to practice within the NHS;

- the provision of flexible routes into nursing for pre-existing support staff; and

- working closely with universities to improve attrition rates from courses which will further increase the number of nursing students who graduate.

1st Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how much of the funding that has been allocated to the GP Development Programme remains unspent.

The General Practice Development programme covers a number of initiatives set out in the General Practice Forward View, including: £6 million for practice manager development, which runs over three years; £45 million for reception and clerical training, which runs over five years; £30 million for a national development programme, which runs over three years; and £45 million for online consultations, which will run over three years from 2017/18.

NHS England is working to spend up to allocation and final outturn figures will be published later in year in the NHS England accounts for 2016/17 with more detail provided in the Investment in General Practice Report for 2016/17 published by NHS Digital.

31st Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what progress the Government has made on recruiting more GPs in (a) Devon and (b) Plymouth.

The General Practice Forward View (GPFV), published in April 2016, sets out that the Government is investing an extra £2.4 billion a year nationally for general practice services by 2020/21, with the set aim to have an extra 5,000 doctors working in general practice in England by 2020.

NHS England’s South West Development Fund is being used to implement the GPFV locally, with a team of change managers – including one in Plymouth – in place to support practices and make them more sustainable and attractive to new doctors. In addition, Health Education England’s south west team has been active in promoting general practice as a career both by working with national incentives and addressing local opportunities.

31st Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what systems his Department plans to put in place to support the recruitment of GPs from abroad.

The General Practice Forward View (GPFV), published in April 2016, includes a commitment to deliver a major international recruitment drive to attract at least 500 appropriately trained and qualified general practitioners from overseas by 2020.

Following publication of the GPFV, NHS England’s general practice workforce team has been engaging with regional and local National Health Service teams, Health Education England, and other stakeholders, including the Royal College of General Practitioners and the British Medical Association, to agree an approach for delivering the commitment. These different stakeholders have agreed that the programme will be locally led and delivered with national oversight, co-ordination and support by the national general practice workforce team.

Each overseas recruitment project will be expected to satisfy a set of national principles; the national principles are set out at the following link:

https://www.england.nhs.uk/gp/gpfv/workforce/international-gp-recruitment/national-principles/

The contracts and support packages for international doctors recruited into general practices will vary across the country, to be tailored to the opportunities and needs of the local health system. A budget of up to £20 million has been identified to support schemes up to 2020.

31st Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that Capita improves its performance relating to the processing of dental performer list applications.

NHS England is meeting with Capita on a weekly basis to oversee the delivery of its plans for the Dental Performers Lists and other key services and to ensure the right improvements are in place to address the backlogs and delays.

My hon. Friend, the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Public Health and Innovation (Nicola Blackwood), continues to work directly with Capita and NHS England to ensure that services are restored to an acceptable and sustainable standard.

9th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, when his Department plans to bring forward legislative proposals to stop pharmacists from facing criminal prosecution for making prescription errors.

We remain fully committed to making this change. We have consulted on our proposals to put in place a defence to the criminal sanction for inadvertent dispensing errors and received good support from patients, carers, healthcare professionals, pharmacy organisations and other bodies. We are working through the necessary processes to change the law. We are in the final stages of clearance and hope to lay the Order shortly.

12th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment his Department has made of the potential merits of expanding the accessibility and availability of intravenous iron services to treat patients with iron deficiency before that condition develops into anaemia.

It is for local National Health Service organisations to develop their own policy to treat patients with iron deficiency or iron deficiency anaemia, based on their clinical needs.

12th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what plans his Department has to address regional variation in iron deficiency.

Public Health England (PHE) has assessed the prevalence of iron deficiency in the United Kingdom as a whole and in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland as part of the National Diet and Nutrition Survey. The results indicate little difference between the UK countries. Numbers are too small to permit a more detailed regional analysis and no further assessment has been made.

PHE provides public–facing advice on how to achieve the dietary recommendations for iron as part of its general advice on a healthy balanced diet, as set out in the Eatwell Guide.

12th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the causes of regional variation in rates of iron deficiency and anaemia.

Public Health England (PHE) has assessed the prevalence of iron deficiency in the United Kingdom as a whole and in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland as part of the National Diet and Nutrition Survey. The results indicate little difference between the UK countries. Numbers are too small to permit a more detailed regional analysis and no further assessment has been made.

PHE provides public–facing advice on how to achieve the dietary recommendations for iron as part of its general advice on a healthy balanced diet, as set out in the Eatwell Guide.

29th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what the implications for his Department's policies are of the Crisp Commission Report on mental health; and if he will make a statement.

As a result of the recommendations from the Crisp Commission and the Five Year Forward View for Mental Health, the Government set a national ambition in April 2016 to eliminate inappropriate out of area placements (OAPs) for adult acute inpatient care by 2020/21.

To ensure progress towards this ambition in 2016/17, the Department asked that areas put in place local action plans to achieve reductions in OAPs during 2016/17. NHS England will seek assurance that plans are in place, as well as demonstrable reductions, through the Clinical Commissioning Group Improvement and Assessment Framework. In addition, NHS Improvement will ensure best practice is shared more widely.

On the wider Crisp Commission recommendations, NHS England is working with the National Collaborating Centre for Mental Health at the Royal College of Psychiatrists (RCPsych) to develop an evidence-based treatment pathway for adult acute mental health care (including older adults), covering both inpatient and community settings from referral through to discharge, so that adult acute inpatient care can be used effectively for patients who need it. A national quality assessment and improvement scheme developed by the RCPsych will be launched during 2017/18, with the aim of improving acute care to meet the pathway standards during 2018/19.

NHS England has committed to publish a formal response to the Commission’s report shortly.

16th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if his Department will bring forward legislative proposals to decriminalise dispensing errors by pharmacists.

We have consulted on our proposals to put in place a defence to the criminal sanction for inadvertent dispensing errors and received good support from patients, carers, healthcare professionals, pharmacy organisations and other bodies. We are working through the necessary processes to change the law. We are in the final stages of clearance and hope to lay the Order shortly.

14th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many local authorities have published an autism strategy; and what steps the Government is taking to ensure that all local authorities are producing such strategies.

This information is not held centrally.

The autism strategy Think Autism published in 2014 and statutory guidance published in 2015 for local authorities and National Health Service organisations encourages the effective development of local autism strategies for meeting the needs of adults with autism in their local population, as identified in their local needs assessments. Local authorities and clinical commissioning groups should work together to commission services for children with special educational needs, including autism. This should include publishing a ‘Local Offer’ of services.

18th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps his Department is taking to reduce medicine waste.

Information is not held centrally on the annual cost or amount of dispensed but unused prescription drugs in the National Health Service.

The Department commissioned the York Health Economics Consortium and the School of Pharmacy at the University of London to carry out research to determine the scale, causes and costs of waste medicines in England. The report, Evaluation of the Scale, Causes and Costs of Waste Medicines, was published on 23 November 2010. This found that the gross cost of unused prescription medicines in primary and community care in the NHS in England in 2009 was £300 million a year and that up to £150 million of this was avoidable. The report is available at:

https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/111804.pdf?repositoryId=90

NHS England is working with the Department and the NHS Business Services Authority to consider how value can best be obtained from the use of medicines, both in terms of patient outcomes and financial implications. This work, along with the medicines optimisation programme, will help ensure best value for both taxpayers and patients.

2nd Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many non-medical prescribing nurses there are at level (a) PL1, (b) PL2, (c) PL3 and (d) PL4.

This information is not collected by the Department.

2nd Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps the Government is taking to increase the number of non-medical prescribing nurses.

The Department and NHS England have successfully extended prescribing responsibilities to a wider group of health professions, including nurses. This is helping the National Health Service to deliver more timely and effective patient care. These professionals are termed ‘non-medical prescribers’, in order to distinguish them from doctors and dentists.


There are two types of non-medical prescriber:

― Independent Prescribers are able to complete whole episodes of care for a patient, taking responsibility from consultation through to diagnosis and finally, if appropriate, prescription.

― Supplementary Prescribers work in conjunction with a doctor to provide patient care. Supplementary Prescribing is a voluntary partnership between an independent prescriber (in this case a doctor) and a supplementary prescriber, to implement a patient-specific clinical management plan, with the patient’s agreement.

To become a non-medical prescriber, nurses must undertake a recognised Nursing and Midwifery Council accredited prescribing course through a United Kingdom university, sponsored by their employer on the basis of service need.

Local NHS organisations with their knowledge of the healthcare needs of their local population are therefore responsible for investing in training for nurses’ prescribing roles to deliver the best patient care and meet the changing needs of patients and services.

2nd Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what his Department is doing to narrow the 12 year difference in life expectancy between council wards in Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport constituency.

Addressing health inequalities is a Government priority. This was clearly set out in the Prime Minister’s inaugural speech in July. Key to this message was the importance of addressing the gap in life expectancy.

Achieving measurable and sustained reductions in health inequalities by 2020 and reducing the gaps in life expectancy and healthy life expectancy are priority objectives in the Department’s Shared Delivery Plan: 2015 – 2020. Action is largely led locally to ensure that the solutions put in place reflect the needs of individual communities.

To address the differences in life expectancy across Plymouth, Plymouth Clinical Commissioning Group and health services have introduced the ‘Thrive’ initiative. This aims to tackle the four lifestyle choices (inactivity, diet, alcohol consumption and smoking) that lead to respiratory diseases, cancer, stroke and heart disease. The work, currently in its second year, is the start of the long term drive to improve health and reduce inequalities in Plymouth. Health organisations such as Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust, Livewell Southwest and general practitioner Practices have signed up in support of the Thrive initiative.

In order to ensure that health services are supporting those communities with the highest need, the ‘Success Regime’ has been introduced across Devon, which aims to protect and promote services for patients in local health and care systems that are struggling with financial or quality problems. Additionally, the Sustainability and Transformation Plan for Wider Devon includes a requirement to ensure that sustainable general practice is in place for all populations with equitable access times for routine and urgent treatment.

11th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if his Department will encourage Northern, Eastern and Western Devon Clinical Commissioning Group to commission a minor eye conditions service in Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport constituency.

General practitioners (GPs), working with secondary care consultants, nurses and lay members, are best placed to co-ordinate the commissioning of high quality care for their patients. They ensure that commissioning decisions are underpinned by clinical insight and knowledge of local health care needs.

Clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) have the freedom and autonomy to take responsibility for meeting the needs of local patients and the public by working closely with secondary care, other health and care professionals and with community partners to design joined up services. As such, while CCGs are led by primary care professionals, they are also guided by the expertise of other local clinicians.

The current commissioning arrangements encourage innovation by placing commissioning with those who know patients best and are aware of the latest clinical evidence and technological advances in health and care.

NHS England advises that Northern, Eastern and Western Devon CCG have no imminent plans to commission a specific minor eye conditions service at this time. CCGs are also able to commission services from local optometrists to provide treatment for minor eye conditions if they feel that is necessary to meet local needs.

Those concerned they may have a minor eye condition can visit their GP, optical practice or pharmacy.

24th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, for what reasons people in Plymouth who have epilepsy are waiting six months from having a seizure to see a consultant of specialist nurse.

There are no national measures or means by which the Department monitors frequency of patients reviews, either by consultants or nurses. Guidance is issued by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence however this does not replace the skills and knowledge of health professionals in managing patients. The arrangements for the management and follow up of people with epilepsy are a local matter and decisions on the frequency with which patients are seen should be made on a case by case basis, taking into account the individual circumstances of each patient.

NHS England advises that the maximum wait for outpatients to receive a neurology appointment is 12 weeks currently. Additionally 92% of patients are being seen under the specified ‘Referral To Treatment’ waiting times of 18 weeks which is within the national target.

The information on the number of people with epilepsy in Plymouth is not available in the format requested.

24th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many people with epilepsy there are in Plymouth.

There are no national measures or means by which the Department monitors frequency of patients reviews, either by consultants or nurses. Guidance is issued by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence however this does not replace the skills and knowledge of health professionals in managing patients. The arrangements for the management and follow up of people with epilepsy are a local matter and decisions on the frequency with which patients are seen should be made on a case by case basis, taking into account the individual circumstances of each patient.

NHS England advises that the maximum wait for outpatients to receive a neurology appointment is 12 weeks currently. Additionally 92% of patients are being seen under the specified ‘Referral To Treatment’ waiting times of 18 weeks which is within the national target.

The information on the number of people with epilepsy in Plymouth is not available in the format requested.

24th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what measures his Department uses to identify how often people with a diagnosis of epilepsy receive treatment from a consultant or nurse.

There are no national measures or means by which the Department monitors frequency of patients reviews, either by consultants or nurses. Guidance is issued by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence however this does not replace the skills and knowledge of health professionals in managing patients. The arrangements for the management and follow up of people with epilepsy are a local matter and decisions on the frequency with which patients are seen should be made on a case by case basis, taking into account the individual circumstances of each patient.

NHS England advises that the maximum wait for outpatients to receive a neurology appointment is 12 weeks currently. Additionally 92% of patients are being seen under the specified ‘Referral To Treatment’ waiting times of 18 weeks which is within the national target.

The information on the number of people with epilepsy in Plymouth is not available in the format requested.

18th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what plans he has to ensure that the workforce requirements for the delivery of the NHS England transformation plan can be met with qualified clinical psychologists within the five-year timescale of the plan.

As set out in the independent Mental Health Taskforce report, Health Education England is working with NHS England, Public Health England, the Local Government Association and local authorities, professional bodies, charities, experts-by-experience and others to develop a costed, multi-disciplinary, five-year workforce strategy. This will focus on the future shape and skill mix of the workforce required to deliver both the Taskforce’s recommendations and the workforce recommendations set out in the Future in Mind strategy for improving children and young people’s mental health.

Health Education England will also consider the future requirements for training new clinical psychologists and psychotherapists as part of its workforce strategy. Health Education England published its commissioning and investment plan for 2016/17 which sets out plans to commission 526 training places for clinical psychologists in 2016/17 and 43 child psychotherapist places.

18th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what plans he has to ensure levels of bursaries and salary support for trainee clinical psychologists for the 2017-18 cohort are adequate to ensure a diverse future workforce.

Health Education England (HEE) funding for trainees in clinical psychology is currently determined at a local level based on local need and is subject to annual workforce planning. For 2016-17, HEE will fund those commissions set out in the HEE Commissioning and Investment Plan for 2016-17. HEE’s plans for training clinical psychologists remain unchanged from 2015-16 with 526 commissions proposed for 2016-17. HEE will set out its plans for 2017-18 training commissions in its next annual Commissioning and Investment Plan or Workforce Plan for England which is expected to be published in December 2016 prior to the start of the financial year.

The Government is currently consulting on the implementation of the education funding reforms for pre-registration undergraduate and postgraduate nursing, midwifery and allied health courses which are currently funded through both HEE funded tuition, a National Health Service bursary and reduced rate loan for maintenance. Respondents to the consultation may wish to raise issues relating to the funding for courses operating outside of this model, such as clinical psychology training programmes. The Government will consider these in the context of its consultation response.

18th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what plans he has to consult on levels of bursaries and salary support for trainee clinical psychologists for the 2017-18 cohort.

Health Education England (HEE) funding for trainees in clinical psychology is currently determined at a local level based on local need and is subject to annual workforce planning. For 2016-17, HEE will fund those commissions set out in the HEE Commissioning and Investment Plan for 2016-17. HEE’s plans for training clinical psychologists remain unchanged from 2015-16 with 526 commissions proposed for 2016-17. HEE will set out its plans for 2017-18 training commissions in its next annual Commissioning and Investment Plan or Workforce Plan for England which is expected to be published in December 2016 prior to the start of the financial year.

The Government is currently consulting on the implementation of the education funding reforms for pre-registration undergraduate and postgraduate nursing, midwifery and allied health courses which are currently funded through both HEE funded tuition, a National Health Service bursary and reduced rate loan for maintenance. Respondents to the consultation may wish to raise issues relating to the funding for courses operating outside of this model, such as clinical psychology training programmes. The Government will consider these in the context of its consultation response.

4th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many specialist centres for severe asthma there are in England.

Services for people with severe asthma are commissioned by NHS England in line with a national specification to ensure patient numbers are sufficient to support safe services. NHS England has no plans to change the way it commissions these services in south west England.

Nationally, there are 27 trusts that have identified themselves as providing severe asthma services. NHS England is revising the national service specification to assist local teams in verifying and redefining the local service model to confirm the severe asthma services within each region.

4th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, whether his Department plans to create a specialist centre for severe asthma in the South West of England.

Services for people with severe asthma are commissioned by NHS England in line with a national specification to ensure patient numbers are sufficient to support safe services. NHS England has no plans to change the way it commissions these services in south west England.

Nationally, there are 27 trusts that have identified themselves as providing severe asthma services. NHS England is revising the national service specification to assist local teams in verifying and redefining the local service model to confirm the severe asthma services within each region.

18th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps his Department is taking to simplify and make more accessible the diagnostic pathway in order to improve speed of diagnosis and access to support.

In September 2015, the NHS England Board approved the development of a personalised medicine strategy for the National Health Service which will be based around four overarching principles: the prediction and prevention of disease; more precise diagnoses; targeted and personalised interventions; and a more participatory role for patients.


The strategy will build on the 100,000 Genomes Project, which is moving the NHS to a new model of diagnosis and treatment based on the understanding of underlying genetic causes and drivers of disease and a comprehensive phenotypic characterisation of the disease (rather than deduction from symptoms and individual diagnostic tests). Personalised medicine informs the selection of the most appropriate treatment and better outcomes for individual patients – the right drug at the right time, earlier screening and treatment, smarter monitoring and the adjustment of treatments.


Furthermore, the Independent Cancer Taskforce recognised the need for more accessible molecular diagnostic provision in their report ‘Achieving World-Class Cancer Outcomes’ published in July 2015. In September 2015, the Department confirmed a commitment from NHS England to implement the Taskforce’s recommendations on molecular diagnostics.


NHS England is currently working with partners across the healthcare system to determine how best to take forward the recommendations of the Taskforce, and has appointed Cally Palmer as National Cancer Director to lead on implementation, as well as new cancer vanguards to redesign care and patient experience.


She has set up a new Cancer Transformation Board to implement the strategy, and this met for the first time on Monday 25 January 2016. There will also be a Cancer Advisory Group, chaired by Sir Harpal Kumar, to oversee and scrutinise the work of the Transformation Board. Timeframes and phasing for implementation will be dependent on the final financial settlement reached as a result of the spending review.

7th Dec 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps his Department has taken to assure the public of the safety and quality of laser eye surgery.

Providers of laser eye surgery are required to register with the Care Quality Commission (CQC), as this is a regulated activity. All providers of regulated activities under the Health and Social Care Act 2008 must be registered with the Care Quality Commission and meet the new fundamental standards of safety and quality that came into force on 1 April this year. The CQC has a range of enforcement actions that it can take if providers do not meet the fundamental standards.


Doctors performing laser eye surgery in the United Kingdom must also be registered with the General Medical Council (GMC). All registered doctors are expected to be familiar with the GMC’s publication Good medical practice and supporting guidance, which describes what is expected of them. This document makes clear that medical doctors must recognise and work within the limits of their competence.


It has now been agreed that work to improve the delivery, safety and standards for patient information for laser eye surgery will be taken forward separately from the work to implement the Keogh Review, and that, as the professional body for setting the standards of practice for refractive procedures, the Royal College of Ophthalmologists will lead on this work.

7th Dec 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what his timetable is for implementing the recommendations of the Keogh Review with regard to the safety and quality of laser eye surgery.

Providers of laser eye surgery are required to register with the Care Quality Commission (CQC), as this is a regulated activity. All providers of regulated activities under the Health and Social Care Act 2008 must be registered with the Care Quality Commission and meet the new fundamental standards of safety and quality that came into force on 1 April this year. The CQC has a range of enforcement actions that it can take if providers do not meet the fundamental standards.


Doctors performing laser eye surgery in the United Kingdom must also be registered with the General Medical Council (GMC). All registered doctors are expected to be familiar with the GMC’s publication Good medical practice and supporting guidance, which describes what is expected of them. This document makes clear that medical doctors must recognise and work within the limits of their competence.


It has now been agreed that work to improve the delivery, safety and standards for patient information for laser eye surgery will be taken forward separately from the work to implement the Keogh Review, and that, as the professional body for setting the standards of practice for refractive procedures, the Royal College of Ophthalmologists will lead on this work.

8th Sep 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, which hospitals offer breast reconstruction to breast cancer patients.

The attached table provides – for each trust where there is data showing that either primary breast reconstruction, secondary breast reconstruction, or both, were carried out – the hospitals within that trust that have a multi-disciplinary team treating breast cancer. There are 191 hospitals in the list, which is an approximate number and may vary.

8th Sep 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many hospitals offer breast reconstruction to breast cancer patients.

The attached table provides – for each trust where there is data showing that either primary breast reconstruction, secondary breast reconstruction, or both, were carried out – the hospitals within that trust that have a multi-disciplinary team treating breast cancer. There are 191 hospitals in the list, which is an approximate number and may vary.

4th Sep 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if he will establish a cross-government Huntington's Disease strategy.

There were less than six admissions with a primary diagnosis of Huntingdon’s Disease for Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust in the year 2013-14; this is not a count of people as the same person may have had more than one admission episode within the same time period. This does not include any cases there may have been with independent providers.

The Department published a UK Strategy for Rare Diseases in 2013 and established the UK Rare Disease Forum to monitor the progress against the UK Strategy. The UK Rare Disease Forum is due to report on the progress made against the recommendations made in the UK Strategy in 2016.

Patients with Huntington's disease already have access to a range of NHS services including those provided by general practitioners and associated health professionals, neurology services, occupational therapists, speech and language therapists, local mental health services and palliative care where appropriate.

Patients with Huntington’s disease will benefit from the implementation of the UK Rare Disease Strategy that will lead to further improvements in the diagnostic pathway for this condition.

George Freeman
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
4th Sep 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many cases of Huntington's Disease there are in Plymouth.

There were less than six admissions with a primary diagnosis of Huntingdon’s Disease for Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust in the year 2013-14; this is not a count of people as the same person may have had more than one admission episode within the same time period. This does not include any cases there may have been with independent providers.

The Department published a UK Strategy for Rare Diseases in 2013 and established the UK Rare Disease Forum to monitor the progress against the UK Strategy. The UK Rare Disease Forum is due to report on the progress made against the recommendations made in the UK Strategy in 2016.

Patients with Huntington's disease already have access to a range of NHS services including those provided by general practitioners and associated health professionals, neurology services, occupational therapists, speech and language therapists, local mental health services and palliative care where appropriate.

Patients with Huntington’s disease will benefit from the implementation of the UK Rare Disease Strategy that will lead to further improvements in the diagnostic pathway for this condition.

George Freeman
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
3rd Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps his Department is taking to assist Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust to deal with increased patient numbers at Derriford Hospital.

We are advised by NHS England that it has provided two tranches of resilience funding to Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust totalling £4,885,000, and that the Northern, Eastern and Western Devon Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has provided an additional £1,500,000 in recognition of the impact of the additional activity pressures.

The following actions have been taken to reduce demand to the hospital site and facilitate discharge from the hospital:

- Detailed Activity Management Plan agreed between the providers and the CCG which is being monitored through the integrated performance and assurance meeting process and the System Resilience Group/Urgent Care Partnership;

- Additional investment to an in-hours general practitioner (GP)/paramedic visiting service in order to bring primary care visits forward in the day and stagger demand (demand reduction of c. 12 patients per day);

- GP practice (30,000 patients) has been operating an in-hours visiting service and has reduced c. 12 admissions per month. This is continuing;

- Establishment of an “alternative front door” to emergency department reduced in the region of 30 non-elective admissions in one week;

- Increased consistency of minor injuries unit service across Devon to increase dispositions from 111, reducing accident and emergency attends;

- 96 additional GP appointments per weekend funded from the Prime Ministers’ Challenge Fund;

- £140,000 allocated through winter monies for 111 Clinical Streaming by Devon Doctors Ltd; and

- Consistent use of the Special Patient Message (SPM) service with GP out-of-hours service to ensure SPMs are in place for at least the 2% of people.

The NHS Trust Development Authority (NHS TDA) advises that a number of steps are being taken to address increased demand, including opening 68 extra beds and increasing accident and emergency capacity through the use of Trust and agency staff.

NHS TDA further advises that a de-escalation plan has been developed by the Trust with the support of NHS England’s Devon, Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Area Team, and is intended to be submitted to the CCG shortly.

12th Feb 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, pursuant to the Answer of 3 July 2014, Official Report, column 710W, on pharmacy, what progress his Department has made on the introduction of data-sharing between GPs and pharmacists.

The Proof of Concept (POC) project is making good progress. The project has completed the implementation stage of providing Summary Care Record (SCR) access for community pharmacies.

By the end of 2014, 135 pharmacies across all five areas (West Yorkshire, Sheffield, Northamptonshire, Derbyshire and Somerset), have been enabled to have access to the SCR. The pharmacies involved include independent pharmacies, national multiple providers, and representatives from the major supermarkets. Over 1,300 patient SCRs have been accessed to date to support direct patient care.

The POC project team are now working on the findings and associated recommendations. Initial analysis is promising and the final report is due in the coming months.

11th Feb 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what plans his Department has to review the regulatory framework for the dental profession.

The Law Commissions’ completed a review of the regulation of all health and social care professionals including dentists and reported in April 2014. They made 125 recommendations to improve the legislative framework and we published the Government response on 29 January 2015, accepting the vast majority of these recommendations.

The Government remains committed to legislate on this important issue when parliamentary time allows and are working closely with the regulatory bodies and the Professional Standards Authority to build on the important work the Law Commissions have done.

In the meantime we are taking forward a section 60 Order to amend the Dentists Act 1984 to make changes to the General Dental Council’s (GDC’s) investigation stage fitness to practise processes. A consultation has recently been undertaken on these measures which will be introduced subject to Parliamentary approval. It is expected the provisions should lead to the swifter resolution of complaints, as ultimately they will improve the efficiency of the GDC’s fitness to practise processes, whilst also enhancing patient protection and public confidence in dental regulation.

9th Feb 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many days of staff sickness absence there were in (a) Derriford Hospital and (b) Mount Gould Hospital in 2014.

The information is not available in the format requested. Such information as is available is in the following table.

NHS Hospital and Community Health Service monthly workforce statistics: Full Time Equivalent Days Lost to Sickness Absence in selected trusts, 12 month period from October 2013 to September 2014

Organisation

October 2013 to September 2014

Plymouth Community Healthcare CIC

30,236

Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust

77,215

Source: Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC)

Notes:

1. While lower sickness absence figures, in general, indicate lower levels of sickness absence it should be noted that lower figures can also indicate under reporting of sickness absence.

2. Data presented is Full Time Equivalent Days Lost to Sickness Absence (includes non-working days).

3. Figures are rounded to the nearest 1.

4. The HSCIC seeks to minimise inaccuracies and the effect of missing and invalid data but responsibility for data accuracy lies with the organisations providing the data. Methods are continually being updated to improve data quality where changes impact on figures already published. This is assessed but unless it is significant at national level figures are not changed. Impact at detailed or local level is footnoted in relevant analyses.

14th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many people have been diagnosed with chest infections in 2014.

There is no national system currently for collecting data relating to diagnoses of chest infections specifically. However, we are able to provide the latest data on patients admitted to hospital with two of the infections that are relevant, namely upper respiratory tract infections and lower respiratory tract infections. These are provided in the table below. The data do not include infections treated by general practitioner practices.

In terms of information on chest infections in Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport, data collections systems do not exist to provide the requested data at constituency level.

Hospital Episode Statistics (HES) for England. Inpatient Statistics 2012/13 for England.

Summary code

Primary diagnosis and description

Finished consultant episodes

J00-J06

Acute upper respiratory infections

138,673

J20-J22

Other acute lower respiratory infections

192,271

Source: Health and Social Care Information Centre. HES.

Note:

A “finished consultant episode” is an inpatient or day case episode where the patient has completed a period of care under a consultant and is either transferred to another consultant or discharged.

14th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many people in Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport constituency have been diagnosed with chest infections in 2014.

There is no national system currently for collecting data relating to diagnoses of chest infections specifically. However, we are able to provide the latest data on patients admitted to hospital with two of the infections that are relevant, namely upper respiratory tract infections and lower respiratory tract infections. These are provided in the table below. The data do not include infections treated by general practitioner practices.

In terms of information on chest infections in Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport, data collections systems do not exist to provide the requested data at constituency level.

Hospital Episode Statistics (HES) for England. Inpatient Statistics 2012/13 for England.

Summary code

Primary diagnosis and description

Finished consultant episodes

J00-J06

Acute upper respiratory infections

138,673

J20-J22

Other acute lower respiratory infections

192,271

Source: Health and Social Care Information Centre. HES.

Note:

A “finished consultant episode” is an inpatient or day case episode where the patient has completed a period of care under a consultant and is either transferred to another consultant or discharged.

11th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many local authorities have an autism strategy.

This information is not recorded centrally. Local joint commissioning plans for services for adults with autism should be developed and updated based on effective joint strategic needs assessment. The second national Public Health England self-assessment exercise reported on progress being made by the end of September 2013 across all 152 local authority areas in England.


Details can be found at:

www.ihal.org.uk/projects/autism2013

The exercise is a key means of identifying progress in implementing the strategy as a whole and for demonstrating local accountability. The most recent exercise started on 12 December 2014 for completion by 9 March 2015.

10th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps his Department is taking to maximise the coverage of testing for (a) hepatitis C and (b) other blood-borne viruses in a range of healthcare settings.

Public Health England (PHE) has undertaken various activities to increase the number of people tested for blood-borne viruses (BBV) including contributing to and developing a range of guidance:

- The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guidance to promote and offer testing for hepatitis B and C [1]

- Best practice guidance on hepatitis B antenatal screening and the newborn immunisation programme [2]

- NICE guidance on increasing human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) testing among Men who have Sex with Men (MSM) [3] and Black African [4] communities in a variety of community and medical settings.

- An offer of antenatal HIV screening is recommended for all pregnant women [5].

- Piloting models of service delivery and exploiting novel testing methods, including point of care testing and alternatives to venepuncture to test for HIV, hepatitis B and C in community settings.

- Working collaboratively with the National Health Service and non-governmental organisations to advocate for increased uptake of screening for BBV and monitoring testing uptake of BBV in the United Kingdom [6],[7].

Notes:

[1] Hepatitis B and C: ways to promote and offer testing to people at increased risk of infection; Issued: December 2012 last modified: March 2013 NICE public health guidance 43 http://publications.nice.org.uk/hepatitis-b-and-c-ways-to-promote-and-offer-testing-to-people-at-increased-risk-of-infection-ph43/considerations

[2] Department of Health. Hepatitis B antenatal screening and newborn immunisation programme: Best practice guidance 2011 www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/215622/dh_132637.pdf

[3] Increasing the uptake of HIV testing among Men who have Sex with Men. NICE public health guidance 34 http://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ph34/resources/guidance-increasing-the-uptake-of-hiv-testing-among-men-who-have-sex-with-men-pdf

[4] Increasing the uptake of HIV testing among black Africans in England NICE public health guidance 33 http://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ph33/resources/guidance-increasing-the-uptake-of-hiv-testing-among-black-africans-in-england-pdf

[5] Yin Z et al. HIV in the United Kingdom 2014 Report: data to end 2013. November 2014. Public Health England, London. https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/377194/2014_PHE_HIV_annual_report_19_11_2014.pdf

[6] Public Health England. Hepatitis C in the UK: 2014 Report. https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/337115/HCV_in_the_UK_2014_24_July.pdf

[7] Public Health England. HIV in the UK: 2014 Report https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/377194/2014_PHE_HIV_annual_report_19_11_2014.pdf

30th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, when his Department expects to announce the timetable for developing a successor strategy to the National Dementia Strategy for England and the Prime Minister's Challenge on Dementia.

The Department has established a new time-limited Stakeholder Advisory Group to help inform the next phase of work on dementia, post the current Prime Minister’s Challenge on Dementia, which superseded the National Dementia Strategy and which is due to end in March 2015.

The Advisory Group is providing advice to help inform the Department’s work to shape the future direction of domestic dementia policy to 2020. The group met for the first time on 17 October to discuss their draft terms of reference for the proposed work programme and timeline.

Once finalised the terms of reference for the group and other details including the envisaged timeline for the work will be published on the Department of Health’s Prime Ministers Challenge website.

30th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what detailed assessments he has made of the effectiveness of the National Dementia Strategy; and if he will publish the full results of that assessment.

While the Department has not undertaken a detailed assessment of the effectiveness of the National Dementia Strategy, it has commissioned an independent assessment of the improvements in dementia care and support since 2009, which incorporates the progress made under both the National Dementia Strategy (2009-14) and the current Prime Minister’s Challenge on Dementia. The National Dementia Strategy was superseded by the Prime Minister's Challenge on Dementia launched in 2012, which builds on and takes forward at pace the work commenced as part of the National Dementia Strategy. The Prime Minister's Challenge concludes at the end of March 2015.

The National Dementia Strategy has been the subject of more detailed work by the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Dementia and other organisations this year, which is being used to inform the Department’s work on the future of dementia care and support. The APPG published a report in May 2014, ‘Building on the National Dementia Strategy: Change, progress and priorities’.

30th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, whether an official review of the National Dementia Strategy has taken place.

While the Department has not undertaken a detailed assessment of the effectiveness of the National Dementia Strategy, it has commissioned an independent assessment of the improvements in dementia care and support since 2009, which incorporates the progress made under both the National Dementia Strategy (2009-14) and the current Prime Minister’s Challenge on Dementia. The National Dementia Strategy was superseded by the Prime Minister's Challenge on Dementia launched in 2012, which builds on and takes forward at pace the work commenced as part of the National Dementia Strategy. The Prime Minister's Challenge concludes at the end of March 2015.

The National Dementia Strategy has been the subject of more detailed work by the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Dementia and other organisations this year, which is being used to inform the Department’s work on the future of dementia care and support. The APPG published a report in May 2014, ‘Building on the National Dementia Strategy: Change, progress and priorities’.

30th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, when his Department will publish guidance on the timeline for a successor to the National Dementia Strategy for England and the Prime Minister's Challenge on Dementia.

The Department has established a new time-limited Stakeholder Advisory Group to help inform the next phase of work on dementia, post the current Prime Minister’s Challenge on Dementia, which superseded the National Dementia Strategy and which is due to end in March 2015.

The Advisory Group is providing advice to help inform the Department’s work to shape the future direction of domestic dementia policy to 2020. The group met for the first time on 17 October to discuss their draft terms of reference for the proposed work programme and timeline.

Once finalised the terms of reference for the group and other details including the envisaged timeline for the work will be published on the Department of Health’s Prime Ministers Challenge website.

10th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many hip replacement operations were conducted in (a) Devon and Cornwall and (b) England in (i) 2013 and (ii) 2014.

In the following table, we have provided information concerning the number of finished consultant episodes (FCEs)1 with a main or secondary procedure2 of hip replacement3 in Devon, Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Area Team of Treatment, and England.

Data for 2013-14 is currently provisional and will be published once it has been validated.

Year

Devon, Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Area Team of Treatment

England

2012-13

5,311

105,499

Activity in English NHS Hospitals and English NHS commissioned activity in the independent sector

Notes:

1. A finished consultant episode (FCE) is a continuous period of admitted patient care under one consultant within one healthcare provider. FCEs are counted against the year in which they end. Figures do not represent the number of different patients, as a person may have more than one episode of care within the same stay in hospital or in different stays in the same year.

2. The number of episodes where the procedure (or intervention) was recorded in any of the 24 (12 from 2002-03 to 2006-07 and 4 prior to 2002-03) procedure fields in a Hospital Episode Statistics (HES) record. A record is only included once in each count, even if the procedure is recorded in more than one procedure field of the record. Note that more procedures are carried out than episodes with a main or secondary procedure.

3. Coding used includes replacements, revisions and conversions of both hip replacements and hemiarthroplasty.

Source: Hospital Episode Statistics (HES), Health and Social Care Information Centre


9th Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if he will include forming and developing relationship in the eligibility criteria of the Care Act 2014 Part 1 regulations.

The Care Act 2014 will introduce a modern system thatwill promote and maintain the wellbeing of people who have care and support needs and support them in living independent lives. These enhance the areas of action set out in the 2010 Autism Strategy and reaffirmed recently in Think Autism.

The Care Act includes a power to make regulations to set the national eligibility criteria for adult care and support. The national eligibility threshold will provide a similar level of access to care and support when we move from the current system to the reformed system in April 2015.

The Department is currently consulting on the draft regulations and statutory guidance that will support the implementation of the Care Act. This includes the draft eligibility regulations which set the level of the threshold, and your comments will be considered when we finalise and publish the regulations in October. The public consultation started on 6 June and runs until 15 August 2014.

30th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps he is taking to ensure that the expertise of community pharmacists is fully utilised to reduce the burden on general practice.

Pharmacy already plays a vital role in supporting the health of people in their local communities, providing high quality care and support, improving people's health and reducing health inequalities. As we move to more integrated care, there is real potential for pharmacists and their teams to play an even greater role in the future, particularly in keeping people healthy, supporting those with long-term conditions and helping make sure patients and the National Health Service get the best use from medicines.

The Department and NHS England's publication Transforming Primary Care - Safe, proactive, personalised care for those who need it most, sets out plans for more proactive, personalised and joined up care, part of which is harnessing the potential of pharmacists. This recognises the vital role that pharmacists have in optimising medicines use, helping to prevent avoidable hospital admissions and supporting people to manage their own care. A copy has already been placed in the Library.

NHS England's public consultation, Improving care through community pharmacy – a call to action, has provided an important opportunity to explore the contribution community pharmacists and their teams can make. This will inform a strategic framework for commissioning wider primary care services in the autumn, including consideration of fully utilising the expertise of community pharmacists in reducing burdens on other health services, such as general practice. A copy of the consultation document is at:

www.england.nhs.uk/ourwork/qual-clin-lead/calltoaction/pharm-cta/

30th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, when he expects to be able to introduce the sharing of patient data with community pharmacists in support of patient safety in England.

Local solutions are presently being developed. In addition, NHS England has commissioned the Health and Social Care Information Centre to deliver a “proof of concept” project in order to enable 80-100 community pharmacies, across 2 or 3 geographical areas, to access the Summary Care Record (SCR). Subject to the proof of concept, the SCR should provide a platform which will enable pharmacists and pharmacy technicians to view prescribed medicines, allergies and adverse reactions for patients who go to their pharmacy for urgent or unscheduled care.

The project aims to:

- determine if SCR viewing can be safely implemented in community pharmacies and will add value to existing practice and patients' experience by improving quality, safety and continuity of care;

- identify the optimum model for implementation should the proof of concept conclude that SCR access provides added value; and

- assess whether providing community pharmacies with access to the SCR has the potential to relieve the increasing demands on the wider healthcare system.

It is planned that the first pharmacies will go live towards the end of 2014, with the project due to provide its findings and recommendations early in 2015. Further plans will be developed based on those findings and will be published in due course.

5th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the changes in the level of access to prostate cancer treatments since 2010.

The NHS England Specialised Commissioning team introduced nationally developed service specifications for a range of areas, including prostate cancer, during 2013-14. Prior to 2013, prostate cancer was routinely commissioned by primary care trusts, and as such an assessment of the changes in the level of access to prostate cancer treatments since 2010 is not technically feasible.

Routinely commissioned treatments for prostate cancer are: (i) radical prostatectomy; (ii) radical external beam radiotherapy; and (iii) radical brachytherapy. In addition, NHS England routinely commissions systemic treatments for prostate cancer, including hormone therapy and chemotherapy.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has published technology appraisal guidance which recommends docetaxel (Taxotere) for hormone-refractory prostate cancer and abiraterone (Zytiga), in combination with prednisolone or prednisone, for castration-resistant metastatic prostate cancer previously treated with one docetaxel-containing regimen. NICE is also currently developing technology appraisal guidance on a number of other drugs for prostate cancer.

National Health Service commissioners are legally required by regulations to fund those treatments recommended by NICE in its technology appraisal guidance.

Five-year survival rates improved from around 42% in the late 1980s to 79.7% in 2007 (currently 80.2% according to data for 2006-2010 published in October 2012) due in part to the effects of increased Prostate Specific Antigen testing and earlier detection. However, survival rates in England are still lagging behind comparable countries in Europe.

Cancer Research UK has estimated that men with advanced, incurable prostate cancer treated in trials or under drug access schemes at the Royal Marsden Hospital survived on average 41 months, compared to between 13 and 16 months 10 years ago.

The Government's Mandate to NHS England sets out an ambition to make England one of the most successful countries in Europe at preventing premature deaths from all cancers, including prostate cancer. Cancer indicators in the NHS Outcomes Framework and the Public Health Outcomes Framework will help NHS England to assess progress in improving cancer survival and mortality for men with prostate cancer.

5th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what treatments for prostate cancer are routinely funded by NHS England.

The NHS England Specialised Commissioning team introduced nationally developed service specifications for a range of areas, including prostate cancer, during 2013-14. Prior to 2013, prostate cancer was routinely commissioned by primary care trusts, and as such an assessment of the changes in the level of access to prostate cancer treatments since 2010 is not technically feasible.

Routinely commissioned treatments for prostate cancer are: (i) radical prostatectomy; (ii) radical external beam radiotherapy; and (iii) radical brachytherapy. In addition, NHS England routinely commissions systemic treatments for prostate cancer, including hormone therapy and chemotherapy.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has published technology appraisal guidance which recommends docetaxel (Taxotere) for hormone-refractory prostate cancer and abiraterone (Zytiga), in combination with prednisolone or prednisone, for castration-resistant metastatic prostate cancer previously treated with one docetaxel-containing regimen. NICE is also currently developing technology appraisal guidance on a number of other drugs for prostate cancer.

National Health Service commissioners are legally required by regulations to fund those treatments recommended by NICE in its technology appraisal guidance.

Five-year survival rates improved from around 42% in the late 1980s to 79.7% in 2007 (currently 80.2% according to data for 2006-2010 published in October 2012) due in part to the effects of increased Prostate Specific Antigen testing and earlier detection. However, survival rates in England are still lagging behind comparable countries in Europe.

Cancer Research UK has estimated that men with advanced, incurable prostate cancer treated in trials or under drug access schemes at the Royal Marsden Hospital survived on average 41 months, compared to between 13 and 16 months 10 years ago.

The Government's Mandate to NHS England sets out an ambition to make England one of the most successful countries in Europe at preventing premature deaths from all cancers, including prostate cancer. Cancer indicators in the NHS Outcomes Framework and the Public Health Outcomes Framework will help NHS England to assess progress in improving cancer survival and mortality for men with prostate cancer.

5th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment his Department has made of outcomes for men with advanced prostate cancer.

The NHS England Specialised Commissioning team introduced nationally developed service specifications for a range of areas, including prostate cancer, during 2013-14. Prior to 2013, prostate cancer was routinely commissioned by primary care trusts, and as such an assessment of the changes in the level of access to prostate cancer treatments since 2010 is not technically feasible.

Routinely commissioned treatments for prostate cancer are: (i) radical prostatectomy; (ii) radical external beam radiotherapy; and (iii) radical brachytherapy. In addition, NHS England routinely commissions systemic treatments for prostate cancer, including hormone therapy and chemotherapy.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has published technology appraisal guidance which recommends docetaxel (Taxotere) for hormone-refractory prostate cancer and abiraterone (Zytiga), in combination with prednisolone or prednisone, for castration-resistant metastatic prostate cancer previously treated with one docetaxel-containing regimen. NICE is also currently developing technology appraisal guidance on a number of other drugs for prostate cancer.

National Health Service commissioners are legally required by regulations to fund those treatments recommended by NICE in its technology appraisal guidance.

Five-year survival rates improved from around 42% in the late 1980s to 79.7% in 2007 (currently 80.2% according to data for 2006-2010 published in October 2012) due in part to the effects of increased Prostate Specific Antigen testing and earlier detection. However, survival rates in England are still lagging behind comparable countries in Europe.

Cancer Research UK has estimated that men with advanced, incurable prostate cancer treated in trials or under drug access schemes at the Royal Marsden Hospital survived on average 41 months, compared to between 13 and 16 months 10 years ago.

The Government's Mandate to NHS England sets out an ambition to make England one of the most successful countries in Europe at preventing premature deaths from all cancers, including prostate cancer. Cancer indicators in the NHS Outcomes Framework and the Public Health Outcomes Framework will help NHS England to assess progress in improving cancer survival and mortality for men with prostate cancer.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what his policy is on the licensing of e-cigarettes.

On 14 March 2014, European Union member states formally adopted the revised Tobacco Products Directive, including the provisions for regulation of electronic cigarettes. Article 18 of the Directive will subject electronic cigarettes to consumer products legislation, with specific additional regulatory requirements unless they fall under the definition of a medicinal product.

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency is continuing to focus on regulating medicinal nicotine containing products, including electronic cigarettes, to enable licensed products that meet appropriate standards of safety, quality and efficacy to be available. Marketing authorisation applications have been submitted and interest in licensing continues.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, whether his Department has given consideration to licensing e-cigarettes as medicines.

On 14 March 2014, European Union member states formally adopted the revised Tobacco Products Directive, including the provisions for regulation of electronic cigarettes. Article 18 of the Directive will subject electronic cigarettes to consumer products legislation, with specific additional regulatory requirements unless they fall under the definition of a medicinal product.

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency is continuing to focus on regulating medicinal nicotine containing products, including electronic cigarettes, to enable licensed products that meet appropriate standards of safety, quality and efficacy to be available. Marketing authorisation applications have been submitted and interest in licensing continues.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if his Department will put restrictions in place to prevent the promotion of e-cigarettes to people under the age of 16 years.

The revised Tobacco Products Directive (Directive 2014/40/EU) will prohibit the advertising of e-cigarettes marketed as consumer electronic products where there is a cross-border dimension, for example television, radio, newspapers and magazines. The Department will consult on the transposition of the Directive into United Kingdom law and seek views on the need for domestic provisions on advertising.

It was not possible to achieve age of sale controls through the revised Directive so the Government has already moved quickly to take regulation-making powers for Ministers in England and Wales to prohibit the sale of e-cigarettes to under-18s, through the Children and Families Act. In England, we plan to bring this new law into effect within the current Parliament.

22nd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what assessment his Department has made of the level of risk to the security of UK citizens posed by illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing in the Western Indian Ocean.

Illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing in the West Indian Ocean poses a limited security threat to British nationals, so we have not made a formal assessment.

9th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to (a) support democracy in and (b) strengthen UK relations with countries in Africa.

The UK’s links with Africa are profound. We spend almost £5 billion a year supporting Africa’s stability and prosperity. My Rt. Hon Friend the Foreign Secretary (Mr Johnson) last week visited The Gambia which recently saw its first democratic transfer of power, and in May my Rt. Hon Friend the Prime Minister (Mrs May) will host a major conference to agree a new international partnership for Somalia, demonstrating UK leadership and commitment to democracy and stability in Africa.

12th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what assessment his Department has made of the potential implications for Zimbabwe's political and economic future in the event of the death of President Mugabe.

Zimbabwe faces enormous political and economic challenges. A peaceful transition to a leader willing to make reforms could move Zimbabwe towards a more democratic, prosperous future. The UK does not support parties or individuals, but rather the implementation of policies that could lead to eventual normalisation of Zimbabwe’s international relations.

27th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what steps he is taking to support a UN implementing agreement for the establishment and management of marine protected areas in the high seas.

The UK supports the need for a new implementing agreement and the need to establish a mechanism to deliver Marine Protected Areas in areas beyond national jurisdiction. This is because whilst a range of different bodies with varying responsibilities address the protection of marine bio-diversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction, these bodies have sectorally or regionally restricted mandates.

The first session of the Preparatory Committee (Prepcom) to develop a new implementing agreement took place at the UN from 28 March to 8 April. The UK was represented by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Defra officials. We will continue to engage on this issue in preparation for the remaining three sessions of the Prepcom.

27th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what estimate his Department has made of the number and area of marine protected areas established beyond national jurisdiction through regional seas agreements or other instruments.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office is aware of eight Marine Protected Areas that have been established beyond national jurisdiction. One has been designated by the Commission on the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources and seven have been designated by the OSPAR Commission in the North-East Atlantic. The UK plays an active role in both of these organisations and is fully supportive of their work to establish networks of Marine Protected Areas in the Antarctic and the North-East Atlantic.

27th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what steps he is taking to (a) promote the protection of marine biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction and (b) ensure that the agreed commitment to establish marine protected areas in 10 per cent of the world's oceans by 2020 is effectively implemented in such areas.

The UK is fully committed to promoting the protection of marine biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction.

Without prejudice to Article IV of the Antarctic Treaty 1959, in 2009 the UK led negotiations within the Commission on the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources which resulted in the establishment of the world’s first high-seas Marine Protected Area (MPA) covering 94 000 km2. The UK supports the establishment of further MPAs within the area covered by the Convention on the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources, and is working closely with members to designate MPAs in the Ross Sea, East Antarctic and the Weddell Sea.

The UK is a leading member of the OSPAR Commission which has designated 7 MPAs in the high seas of the North-East Atlantic and works closely with other regional and international organisations to manage these.

We are a signatory to the Hamilton Declaration on Collaboration for the Conservation of the Sargasso Sea 2014, which established the Sargasso Sea Commission to encourage and facilitate voluntary collaboration toward the conservation of the Sargasso Sea.

We support the work of the International Seabed Authority in establishing Areas of Particular Environmental Interest in the Clarion-Clipperton Zone. We also support the work of the International Maritime Organisation in identifying “Special Areas” which benefit from additional pollution protection and “Particularly Sensitive Sea Areas” which may benefit from specific measures to control certain maritime activities.

19th Oct 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what his Department's policy is on the inclusion of a broad definition of permanent establishment in the UK-Malawi tax treaty.

As is usual in any negotiation, the text of a tax treaty remains confidential between the two governments during the negotiations. It is not therefore possible to comment on the contents of a treaty before it is signed.

The majority of the UK’s double taxation treaties are based on the OECD Model Double Taxation Convention. However, some developing countries prefer to follow the United Nations Model, whose provisions differ in some respects from the OECD Model, including in the “permanent establishment” article. Many of the UK’s treaties with developing countries contain at least some of these provisions. A treaty will be signed only when both governments are satisfied with its contents.

It has long been the UK’s policy to include robust anti-abuse provisions in its tax treaties to ensure that they operate as intended and in particular that residents of third countries cannot indirectly benefit from their provisions.

The text of the new treaty with Malawi was substantively agreed some time ago. However, in August 2016 Malawi raised some further points for consideration, which we will work together on. When that process is complete, and both countries are satisfied with contents of the new treaty, it will be signed and published. Parliament will scrutinise the revised agreement, as part of the affirmative Statutory Instruments procedures, before the treaty can enter into force.

19th Oct 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what his Department's policy is on the inclusion of anti-abuse clauses in the UK-Malawi tax treaty to prevent tax avoidance through treaty shopping.

As is usual in any negotiation, the text of a tax treaty remains confidential between the two governments during the negotiations. It is not therefore possible to comment on the contents of a treaty before it is signed.

The majority of the UK’s double taxation treaties are based on the OECD Model Double Taxation Convention. However, some developing countries prefer to follow the United Nations Model, whose provisions differ in some respects from the OECD Model, including in the “permanent establishment” article. Many of the UK’s treaties with developing countries contain at least some of these provisions. A treaty will be signed only when both governments are satisfied with its contents.

It has long been the UK’s policy to include robust anti-abuse provisions in its tax treaties to ensure that they operate as intended and in particular that residents of third countries cannot indirectly benefit from their provisions.

The text of the new treaty with Malawi was substantively agreed some time ago. However, in August 2016 Malawi raised some further points for consideration, which we will work together on. When that process is complete, and both countries are satisfied with contents of the new treaty, it will be signed and published. Parliament will scrutinise the revised agreement, as part of the affirmative Statutory Instruments procedures, before the treaty can enter into force.

19th Oct 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what progress has been made in renegotiating the UK-Malawi tax treaty since January 2016.

As is usual in any negotiation, the text of a tax treaty remains confidential between the two governments during the negotiations. It is not therefore possible to comment on the contents of a treaty before it is signed.

The majority of the UK’s double taxation treaties are based on the OECD Model Double Taxation Convention. However, some developing countries prefer to follow the United Nations Model, whose provisions differ in some respects from the OECD Model, including in the “permanent establishment” article. Many of the UK’s treaties with developing countries contain at least some of these provisions. A treaty will be signed only when both governments are satisfied with its contents.

It has long been the UK’s policy to include robust anti-abuse provisions in its tax treaties to ensure that they operate as intended and in particular that residents of third countries cannot indirectly benefit from their provisions.

The text of the new treaty with Malawi was substantively agreed some time ago. However, in August 2016 Malawi raised some further points for consideration, which we will work together on. When that process is complete, and both countries are satisfied with contents of the new treaty, it will be signed and published. Parliament will scrutinise the revised agreement, as part of the affirmative Statutory Instruments procedures, before the treaty can enter into force.

19th Oct 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans his Department has for the revised UK-Malawi tax treaty to be signed.

As is usual in any negotiation, the text of a tax treaty remains confidential between the two governments during the negotiations. It is not therefore possible to comment on the contents of a treaty before it is signed.

The majority of the UK’s double taxation treaties are based on the OECD Model Double Taxation Convention. However, some developing countries prefer to follow the United Nations Model, whose provisions differ in some respects from the OECD Model, including in the “permanent establishment” article. Many of the UK’s treaties with developing countries contain at least some of these provisions. A treaty will be signed only when both governments are satisfied with its contents.

It has long been the UK’s policy to include robust anti-abuse provisions in its tax treaties to ensure that they operate as intended and in particular that residents of third countries cannot indirectly benefit from their provisions.

The text of the new treaty with Malawi was substantively agreed some time ago. However, in August 2016 Malawi raised some further points for consideration, which we will work together on. When that process is complete, and both countries are satisfied with contents of the new treaty, it will be signed and published. Parliament will scrutinise the revised agreement, as part of the affirmative Statutory Instruments procedures, before the treaty can enter into force.

19th Oct 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what the Government's priorities are for the renegotiation of the UK-Malawi tax treaty.

As is usual in any negotiation, the text of a tax treaty remains confidential between the two governments during the negotiations. It is not therefore possible to comment on the contents of a treaty before it is signed.

The majority of the UK’s double taxation treaties are based on the OECD Model Double Taxation Convention. However, some developing countries prefer to follow the United Nations Model, whose provisions differ in some respects from the OECD Model, including in the “permanent establishment” article. Many of the UK’s treaties with developing countries contain at least some of these provisions. A treaty will be signed only when both governments are satisfied with its contents.

It has long been the UK’s policy to include robust anti-abuse provisions in its tax treaties to ensure that they operate as intended and in particular that residents of third countries cannot indirectly benefit from their provisions.

The text of the new treaty with Malawi was substantively agreed some time ago. However, in August 2016 Malawi raised some further points for consideration, which we will work together on. When that process is complete, and both countries are satisfied with contents of the new treaty, it will be signed and published. Parliament will scrutinise the revised agreement, as part of the affirmative Statutory Instruments procedures, before the treaty can enter into force.

24th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, when she next plans to review the shortage occupation list.

The independent Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) reviews the Shortage Occupation List when commissioned to do so by the Government.

The MAC has carried out two full reviews and four partial reviews of the Shortage Occupation List since May 2010. The MAC recently reviewed the teaching sector and has submitted its report. The Government is considering further reviews of the list as part of the MAC’s wider work plan.

Further information about the MAC’s methodology and the reviews it has carried out are available at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/migration-advisory-committee

5th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what training is given to Border Force staff on dealing with people with dementia.

People who present at the border with possible signs of dementia are treated as vulnerable adults. Consideration for how to adjust business processes to accommodate and safeguard the vulnerable is incorporated in a range of training and guidance products delivered to Border Force officers, including the core skills training that all Border Force officers receive. There are also special teams across Border Force who provide support to frontline colleagues by providing expert help in identifying those who may be at risk or are vulnerable.

18th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps her Department is taking to ensure that police have better training for people in custody suites suffering with mental health issues.

It is the role of the College of Policing to set the standards for training and professional development for police forces in England and Wales. The College has recently published Authorised Professional Practice on mental health. This guidance will support all police officers, including custody staff, in responding effectively to people suffering with mental health issues. It is the responsibility of Chief Constables and Police and Crime Commissioners, to ensure officers and police staff receive appropriate training and that they have regard to this Authorised Professional Practice when discharging their responsibilities.

Brandon Lewis
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
2nd Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what support her Department is giving to dispersal centres for asylum seekers to help foster community cohesion.

The Home Office funds strategic migration partnerships which are local authority-led partnerships designed to provide structures and support services for those organisations working with migrants and refugees in local communities.

The Home Office also provides a dedicated integration loan directly to recognised refugees. The loan is designed to help refugees integrate into UK society by offering financial support towards housing costs, employment and training.

2nd Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps her Department is taking to create more cohesive societies in areas with dispersal centres for asylum seekers.

The Home Office funds strategic migration partnerships which are local authority-led partnerships designed to provide structures and support services for those organisations working with migrants and refugees in local communities.

The Home Office also provides a dedicated integration loan directly to recognised refugees. The loan is designed to help refugees integrate into UK society by offering financial support towards housing costs, employment and training.

21st Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what advice his Department gives to military personnel on alcohol intake and good health.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) provides a package of measures to educate Service personnel on the dangers of alcohol misuse to help them make informed decisions, and has introduced extensive policy and guidance for Commanding Officers. Each Service has a clear substance misuse education and training policy. We believe personnel have the necessary information to allow them to make informed decisions, but the focus of all activities is to encourage a sensible social approach to alcohol consumption.

The Department has also established a working group to look at the research outcomes and identify key policy or behavioural changes to support the reduction in alcohol misuse. The working group has introduced a number of initiatives to promote a sensible attitude to alcohol and encourage all Service personnel to take responsibility for their own actions. An alcohol strategy is being developed along four lines; Prevention, Intervention, Protection and Engagement. The emphasis will be on good leadership and role modelling behaviour at all levels as well as supporting alcohol-free social and leisure initiatives, and ensuring alternative options are available to support individuals to make informed choices. The MOD has also entered into a partnership with DrinkAware to identify methods to increase awareness of the dangers of alcohol misuse across the Armed Forces.

15th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, when the Government will decide in which port HMS Tamar will be based.

HMS TAMAR will be based in Her Majesty’s Naval Base Portsmouth.

30th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, whether his Department has undertaken a dilapidation survey of the Citadel in Plymouth.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) has not conducted a dilapidation survey of the Citadel in Plymouth. The estimated date of release is 2024.

The MOD holds condition records as part of its normal estate maintenance programmes; dilapidation and other surveys will be undertaken in the early stages of the disposal process. The Citadel is a historic Grade 2 monument, which the MOD has taken great care to maintain under the direction of English Heritage; this maintenance will continue up to the disposal date.

30th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, whether his Department has conducted a dilapidation survey of Stonehouse Barracks.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) has not conducted a dilapidation survey of Stonehouse Barracks. The estimated date of release is 2023. The MOD holds condition records as part of its normal estate maintenance programmes; dilapidation and other surveys will be undertaken in the early stages of the disposal process.

29th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, if he will make it his policy that Devonport dockyard is considered a potential location for the building of new ships as part of his National Shipbuilding Strategy.

As the hon. Member will be aware, although ship building in Devonport has ceased, the dockyard plays a leading role in UK naval ship repair, maintenance and support.

The Government published Sir John Parker's independent report to inform the National Shipbuilding Strategy in full on 29 November. It is important that the Government gives Sir John's work the full consideration that it deserves. I have asked Ministry of Defence officials, working with others across Government, to examine the report and recommendations, and to discuss them with Industry. Sir John has set Industry the challenge to deliver higher productivity and shorter build cycle times, and it will be for Industry to consider the optimum locations to base their shipbuilding work.

The Government's response in spring 2017, which will be the National Shipbuilding Strategy, will detail how we are dealing with all of Sir John's recommendations.

14th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, which Ministry of Defence contractors have signed the community covenant.

This information is not held in the format requested.

However, over 1,200 commercial organisations have signed the Armed Forces Covenant, pledging specific support for the Armed Forces Community.

Details of them can be viewed at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/armed-force-corporate-covenant-signed-pledges

Some of our major contractors who have signed the Covenant are:

Airbus

Amey

Atkins

Atos

Babcock

BAE Systems

Boeing

Capita

Carillion

Compass Group

Deloitte

EY

G4S

General Dynamics

Hewlett Packard

Interserve

KBR

KPMG

Leonardo

PwC

Rolls Royce

Serco

Sodexo

Thales

24th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what recent progress his Department has made in the Army Recruiting Partnership Project; and if he will make a statement.

The Army's recruiting performance continues to get better, and the candidate's experience is improved through better communication processes, with improved processing and greater levels of candidate involvement. Inflow has increased year on year.

However, the delivery of the ICT has been further delayed, and approval has been requested for a revised Go-Live date of November 2017. Capita is working to deliver an earlier date of spring 2017 and I maintain a keen oversight of this issue.

12th Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, how many (a) regular and reserve armed forces personnel and (b) regular and reserve armed forces personnel based in Plymouth have been involved in operations to control the outbreak of Ebola in West Africa.

As at 17 March 2015, the total number of Regular and Reserve Armed Forces personnel who have deployed to Sierra Leone on operations to assist in controlling the recent Ebola outbreak is 1,310. Of these, 109 were undertaking roles based in Plymouth prior to their deployment. These figures include both those who are currently deployed in Sierra Leone and those who have completed their deployment and returned to the UK or other duties.

14th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what the effect of the Maritime Support Delivery Framework will be on employment levels at HMNB Devonport.

The Maritime Support Delivery Framework contracts will sustain around 7,500 jobs in total, with around 4,000 of these jobs at Her Majesty’s Naval Base (HMNB) Devonport, a further 1,500 at HMNB Clyde and more than 2,000 at HMNB Portsmouth.

11th Sep 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, which organisations in the South West received funding from the Veterans Accommodation Fund in 2014.

The £40 million Veterans Accommodation Fund received over £163 million worth of applications from across the UK. To date nine successful projects, in the South East, Scotland and Wales, worth £22 million have been announced. We expect to make further announcements over the coming months.

29th Aug 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, when he expects a decision to be made on the naming of the new Type 26 frigates.

The Ships’ Names and Badges Committee (SNBC) is responsible for considering and assessing the possible names for a new ship or class of ship. The committee considers all names which have been proposed, formally and informally, and presents its recommendations to the Navy Board. The name(s) chosen by the Navy Board are forwarded to my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Defence before being submitted to Her Majesty the Queen for final approval.

A final decision with regards to this process is not expected until the Type 26 Global Combat Ship programme has completed its assessment phase and any subsequent investment decisions are complete. The SNBC has noted the proposal to use the name HMS PLYMOUTH.

29th Aug 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what the process is for the naming of Royal Navy ships.

The Ships’ Names and Badges Committee (SNBC) is responsible for considering and assessing the possible names for a new ship or class of ship. The committee considers all names which have been proposed, formally and informally, and presents its recommendations to the Navy Board. The name(s) chosen by the Navy Board are forwarded to my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Defence before being submitted to Her Majesty the Queen for final approval.

A final decision with regards to this process is not expected until the Type 26 Global Combat Ship programme has completed its assessment phase and any subsequent investment decisions are complete. The SNBC has noted the proposal to use the name HMS PLYMOUTH.

29th Aug 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, if he will name one of the new Type 26 frigates HMS Plymouth.

The Ships’ Names and Badges Committee (SNBC) is responsible for considering and assessing the possible names for a new ship or class of ship. The committee considers all names which have been proposed, formally and informally, and presents its recommendations to the Navy Board. The name(s) chosen by the Navy Board are forwarded to my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Defence before being submitted to Her Majesty the Queen for final approval.

A final decision with regards to this process is not expected until the Type 26 Global Combat Ship programme has completed its assessment phase and any subsequent investment decisions are complete. The SNBC has noted the proposal to use the name HMS PLYMOUTH.

29th Aug 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, which organisations working with veterans in the South West have received money under the Armed Forces Covenant Fund to date.

To date the Government has invested £105 million in support of the Armed Forces Covenant much of which is benifiting or will benefit veterans across the UK. Veterans in the South West have benefited from a range of projects based either in the South West or operating UK wide worth in excess of £11.5 million. We expect further projects in the South West to benefit in the near future and in the long term when the new £10 million Armed Forces Covenant Fund is introduced in 2015.

Projects in the South West are funded via the Community Covenant Grant Scheme and a £35 million LIBOR Fund.

A list of successful projects to date can be found attached.

29th Aug 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what progress he has made in establishing pals reservists regiments as part of Army 2020.

The Army is not directly seeking to recreate ' Pals' regiments under Army 2020. Pals regiments were historic First World War formations mainly raised through the efforts of local authorities, industrialists or committees of private citizens and were composed of men who lived in a particular city or district, or who shared a common social or occupational background.
Army units, both Regular and Reserve, remain a key part of UK society and their local communities. Many continue to have a natural affinity to a particular part of the country in their recruiting. We encourage all serving Reservists to ‘bring a friend’ along to training. Significant work has gone into ensuring that there is an effective regional footprint of Army Reserve units under Army 2020. This, coupled with a strong recognition of the benefits of local and regional recruiting activity, alongside a wider national profile for the Army Reserve are key parts of the growth and investment in the Reserve Forces under Army 2020.

The Reserve Forces and Cadets Associations continue to play an important role in maintaining and developing that profile.

9th Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, when his Department plans to release land at South Yard as agreed under Plymouth's City Deal.

The Government intention is to release the land at South Yard on 31 March 2015 subject to the satisfactory conclusion of the work by the South Yard Programme Board.

13th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, whether he plans to strengthen provisions in building regulations on ensuring that materials and methods used in housing construction are more resilient to the risk of flooding and damage caused by water leaks.

The statutory guidance in Approved Document C (Site preparation and resistance to contaminants and moisture) which supports the Building Regulations promotes the use of flood resilience and resistance measures in flood prone areas. The document references guidance produced jointly by the Department for Communities and Local Government, Defra and the Environment Agency – Improving the flood performance of new buildings – Flood resilient construction. Much of the information is applicable to resilient repair as well as new build.

The Building Regulations also require that floors, roof and walls of buildings should be adequately protected from harmful effects caused by spillage of water from or associated with sanitary fittings or fixed appliance. Guidance on how to meet this requirement is set out in Approved Document C.

13th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what use is made of Clerks of Works in evaluating building projects.

It is for those commissioning building work to decide whether to employ a clerk of works to evaluate or supervise the building work they wish to carry out. In many cases architects, structural and civil engineers and other professionals are used as an alternative to a clerk of works.

20th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, if his Department will publish a definition of the term social lettings agencies as used in the white paper, Fixing our broken housing market, published in February 2017.

Social letting agencies can support vulnerable people and people on low incomes to access and sustain tenancies in the private rented sector. We want to prevent people reaching crisis point, and for those who are already homeless to be able to move out of temporary accommodation or hostels to a settled home as quickly as possible. There are a number of different models of social letting agencies and in the Housing White Paper we set out our interest in exploring the relative effectiveness of these different models with the aim of securing more housing for households who would otherwise struggle – providing security for landlords and support for tenants.

21st Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what steps he is taking to build and develop more homes.

The Government is committed to building the homes our country needs.

Measures in the recent White Paper will ensure more homes are planned for where they are needed most, that homes are built more quickly once they have planning permission, and will diversify the housing market so it works for everyone.

Sajid Javid
Secretary of State for Health and Social Care
15th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what progress has been made on ensuring that all registered social housing association tenants have the right to buy their own homes since the conclusion of the pilot scheme.

We remain committed to the Voluntary Right to Buy for housing association tenants and the pilot scheme is informing the design of the main scheme. The Government is continuing to work closely with the National Housing Federation and the housing association sector on the implementation of the main scheme and will announce more details in due course.

4th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, how many affordable rent-to-buy houses are being constructed.

Through the Autumn Statement 2015, the Government has committed to investing £8 billion to deliver over 400,000 affordable housing starts by 2020/21. This includes £1.7 billion to deliver around 100,000 homes for affordable or intermediate rent, of which 10,000 are to be affordable rent to buy homes that enable tenants to have the opportunity to save for a deposit while renting.

Bids into the Rent to Buy 2015-2017 programme are currently being considered. The prospectus for the new Affordable Homes Programme 2016-21 will be launched shortly.

Brandon Lewis
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
13th Oct 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what steps he is taking to promote tenant management.

We have allocated funding of £1million in 2015/16 (through the Tenant Empowerment Programme) to support social housing tenants' involvement in their local communities. This includes support to those who wish to manage delivery of services to their homes and estates by taking up their Statutory Right To Manage.

Brandon Lewis
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
11th Feb 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what steps his Department is taking to better enforce building regulation inspections to ensure quality housing builds.


The duty to comply with the requirements of the Building Regulations lies on the person carrying out the building work. The duty of the building control bodies, local authorities and approved inspectors, is to take all reasonable steps to satisfy themselves that the requirements have been satisfied. Where they have not been complied with a compliance certificate should not be given. It is also possible for building control bodies to take formal enforcement action in the courts against builders for non-compliance where they consider this would be justified. Issues relating to warranties which may be provided for new homes are matters for the relevant warranty body.

24th Nov 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what assistance his Department provides to local authorities on replacing trees in pavements.

The Government has funded the “Big Tree Plant” scheme, giving up to £4 million in grants from 2011 to 2015 to help pay for the planting of at least once million new trees in urban areas. The scheme is now closed to new applicants, but nearly 820,000 new trees have already been planted.

Councils also receive general funding from central government and locally-raised sources which can be used to support tree planting, if they wish.

The “Manual for Streets”, while out of date in certain areas (e.g. on parking and density), contains some guidance on street trees and tree planting. It can be found at:

www.gov.uk/government/publications/manual-for-streets

Brandon Lewis
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
28th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what records his Department keeps of the number of retaliatory evictions; what criteria he uses to define retaliatory eviction; and how many retaliatory evictions took place in the last (a) 12 months and (b) five years.

This information is not centrally recorded.

Brandon Lewis
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
28th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, how many section 21 notices were served in each of the last (a) 12 months and (b) five years.

The Government does not collect this information.

A section 21 notice is a notice served under section 21 of the Housing Act 1988 by a landlord on their tenant which informs the tenant that the landlord requires possession of the property and that it must be vacated by the tenant.

The service of a section 21 notice, like any other termination of a contract, is a private matter between the landlord and tenant.

Brandon Lewis
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
9th Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, how many local authorities have introduced an Article Four Direction within all or part of their geographic boundary.

My Department is aware of 168 local authorities who have issued an Article 4 direction which apples to either all or part of their geographic boundary.

2nd Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what steps her Department is taking to combat the supply of drugs into prisons.

The Justice Secretary is clear that safety is fundamental to the proper functioning of our justice system and a vital part of our reform plans. There are a number of factors, including the availability of drugs in prisons, which must be tackled in order to make our prisons safe and places of rehabilitation.

We have introduced tough new laws which will see those who smuggle packages over prison walls, including new psychoactive substances, face up to two years in prison. Those who involve themselves in the distribution of drugs in our prisons should know that they could face prosecution and extra time behind bars. We have a range of security measures and searching techniques in place to detect drugs, and to prevent smuggling into prisons.

I am looking closely at this important issue, and will be setting our further plans in due course.

2nd Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what steps her Department is taking to reduce the level of drugs in prisons.

The Justice Secretary is clear that safety is fundamental to the proper functioning of our justice system and a vital part of our reform plans. There are a number of factors, including the availability of drugs in prisons, which must be tackled in order to make our prisons safe and places of rehabilitation.

We have introduced tough new laws which will see those who smuggle packages over prison walls, including new psychoactive substances, face up to two years in prison. Those who involve themselves in the distribution of drugs in our prisons should know that they could face prosecution and extra time behind bars. We have a range of security measures and searching techniques in place to detect drugs, and to prevent smuggling into prisons.

I am looking closely at this important issue, and will be setting our further plans in due course.

12th Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what training and information is given to magistrates' clerks to ensure that they operate in accordance with the Armed Forces Covenant.

The responsibility for the training of Magistrates and their legal advisers lies with the Lord Chief Justice as head of the judiciary and is exercised through the Judicial College.

The Government’s response to the November 2014 Stephen Phillips’ Review into ‘Former Members of the Armed Forces and the Criminal Justice System’, included a commitment by the Judicial College to consider whether the Bench Book should be updated to include former service personnel as a separate group.

The Judicial College concluded that their Equal Treatment Bench Book already sufficiently covers many of the important aspects of fair treatment and makes some suggestions as to the steps that judges can take in different situations, to ensure that there is fairness and equality of outcome for all those involved in the justice process.

10th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what estimate he has made of the value to Scotland's economy of Scotland's trade with the rest of the UK.

Trade between Scotland and the UK is worth nearly £50 billion, a figure that has increased by around 70% since 2002. There is no doubt that the United Kingdom is the vital union for Scotland’s economy.

10th Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what progress has been made on the proposals for a Cardiff City Deal.

Cardiff is one of Europe’s youngest and most innovative capital cities. Last week the Government received Cardiff Capital Region’s latest proposals for the Cardiff City Deal. We are currently considering the submission and will continue to work with the Cardiff Capital Region to progress the Deal.


1st Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what assessment he has made of the potential benefits of the 2014 NATO Summit to Wales.

The NATO Summit – hosted in the City of Newport – will be an important event to showcase Wales to an international audience. This will be the largest gathering of World Leaders the UK will have ever hosted. It will highlight and help further strengthen the economic opportunities for the country.