Stephen Hammond Portrait

Stephen Hammond

Conservative - Wimbledon

Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
16th Nov 2018 - 25th Jul 2019
Treasury Sub-Committee
14th Sep 2017 - 3rd Dec 2018
Treasury Committee
11th Sep 2017 - 3rd Dec 2018
Statutory Instruments (Joint Committee)
13th Jul 2015 - 3rd May 2017
Statutory Instruments (Select Committee)
13th Jul 2015 - 3rd May 2017
Treasury Committee
8th Jul 2015 - 3rd May 2017
Public Accounts Committee
8th Dec 2014 - 30th Mar 2015
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport) (Roads and Motoring)
6th Sep 2012 - 15th Jul 2014
Shadow Minister (Transport)
8th Dec 2005 - 6th May 2010
Regulatory Reform
12th Jul 2005 - 23rd Jun 2008
Crossrail Bill
14th Nov 2007 - 18th Nov 2007


There are no upcoming events identified
Division Votes
Friday 22nd October 2021
Prayers
voted No - in line with the party majority
One of 210 Conservative No votes vs 2 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 3 Noes - 336
Speeches
Thursday 21st October 2021
Covid-19 Update

I thank my hon. Friend for her statement today and her confirmation of the Government’s plans. I particularly welcome the …

Written Answers
Thursday 22nd July 2021
Buildings: Fire Prevention
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what assessment he has made of how funding …
Early Day Motions
None available
Bills
Tuesday 23rd October 2012
HGV Road User Levy Act 2013
Following agreement by both Houses on the text of the Bill it received Royal Assent on 28 February. The Bill …
MP Financial Interests
Monday 18th October 2021
4. Visits outside the UK
Name of donor: Hanns Seidel Foundation
Address of donor: Hanns Seidel Stiftung e.V., Lazarettstr. 33, 80636 Muenchen, Germany
Estimate of …

Division Voting information

During the current Parliamentary Session, Stephen Hammond has voted in 296 divisions, and 3 times against the majority of their Party.

22 Mar 2021 - Fire Safety Bill - View Vote Context
Stephen Hammond voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 33 Conservative No votes vs 320 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 322 Noes - 253
27 Apr 2021 - Fire Safety Bill - View Vote Context
Stephen Hammond voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 31 Conservative No votes vs 320 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 320 Noes - 256
28 Apr 2021 - Fire Safety Bill - View Vote Context
Stephen Hammond voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 32 Conservative No votes vs 321 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 322 Noes - 256
View All Stephen Hammond Division Votes

Debates during the 2019 Parliament

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

Sparring Partners
Matt Hancock (Conservative)
(21 debate interactions)
Boris Johnson (Conservative)
Prime Minister, First Lord of the Treasury, Minister for the Civil Service, and Minister for the Union
(14 debate interactions)
Steve Barclay (Conservative)
Minister for the Cabinet Office and Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster
(8 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
HM Treasury
(26 debate contributions)
Department of Health and Social Care
(18 debate contributions)
Cabinet Office
(11 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
View all Stephen Hammond's debates

Wimbledon Petitions

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

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

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

Petition Debates Contributed

To not decide to scrap free travel for those who are under 18. As a teenager who has relied so much on free travel, it has allowed for me to go to school without the worry of an extra expense and explore around the beautiful city of London also. Destroying free travel would hurt so many of us.

If nurseries are shut down in view of Covid-19, the Government should set up an emergency fund to ensure their survival and ensure that parents are not charged the full fee by the nurseries to keep children's places.

The prospect of widespread cancellations of concerts, theatre productions and exhibitions due to COVID-19 threatens to cause huge financial hardship for Britain's creative community. We ask Parliament to provide a package of emergency financial and practical support during this unpredictable time.

The cash grants proposed by Government are only for businesses in receipt of the Small Business Rates Relief or Rural Relief, or for particular sectors. Many small businesses fall outside these reliefs desperately need cash grants and support now.

For the UK government to provide economic assistance to businesses and staff employed in the events industry, who are suffering unforeseen financial challenges that could have a profound effect on hundreds of thousands of people employed in the sector.

After owning nurseries for 29 years I have never experienced such damaging times for the sector with rising costs not being met by the funding rates available. Business Rates are a large drain on the sector and can mean the difference between nurseries being able to stay open and having to close.

As we pass the COVID-19 Peak, the Government should: State where the Theatres and Arts fit in the Coronavrius recovery Roadmap, Create a tailor made financial support mechanism for the Arts sector & Clarify how Social Distancing will affect arts spaces like Theatres and Concert Venues.

As a result of the COVID-19 outbreak there are travel bans imposed by many countries, there is a disastrous potential impact on our Aviation Industry. Without the Government’s help there could be an unprecedented crisis, with thousands of jobs under threat.

To extend the business rate relief to all dental practices and medical and aesthetics clinics and any small business that’s in healthcare

Zoos, aquariums, and similar organisations across the country carry out all sorts of conservation work, animal rescue, and public education. At the start of the season most rely on visitors (who now won't come) to cover annual costs, yet those costs do not stop while they are closed. They need help.


Latest EDMs signed by Stephen Hammond

Stephen Hammond has not signed any Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Stephen Hammond, 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.


Stephen Hammond has not been granted any Urgent Questions

Stephen Hammond has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

1 Bill introduced by Stephen Hammond

Introduced: 23rd October 2012

Following agreement by both Houses on the text of the Bill it received Royal Assent on 28 February. The Bill is now an Act of Parliament (law). A Bill to make provision charging a levy in respect of the use or keeping of heavy goods vehicles on public roads in the United Kingdom, and for connected purposes.

This Bill received Royal Assent on Thursday 28th February 2013 and was enacted into law.

Stephen Hammond has not co-sponsored any Bills in the current parliamentary sitting


103 Written Questions in the current parliament

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department
2nd Jul 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what plans he has to update the Government’s covid-19 recovery strategy for the period after 4 July 2020.

The Government set out our COVID-19 recovery strategy, ‘Our Plan to Rebuild’ in May. The Government has been regularly publishing information on the recovery effort and setting out its plans, updating guidance on GOV.UK as appropriate. The Government is committed to keeping the public informed and will continue to publish documents when it is appropriate to do so.

Penny Mordaunt
Minister of State (Department for International Trade)
15th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will regulate umbrella companies.

Agency workers’ rights are protected by legislation that covers employment businesses and employment agencies. Umbrella companies are not covered by this legislation, and they fall outside the remit of the Employment Agency Standards (EAS) Inspectorate, which is the body responsible for enforcing these protections.

The Government has committed to expand state enforcement for agency workers to cover umbrella companies. This will enable inspectors to investigate relevant complaints involving umbrella companies and take action where necessary. This will require primary legislation, which the Government will bring forward in due course.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
10th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to ensure that disinfectant products sold on the market (a) meet the highest clinical standards and (b) do not make misleading and unsubstantiated claims about their efficacy.

Disinfectant products must comply with the relevant laws, depending on the products’ intended use, function, composition and how they are described and marketed. Consumer law requires traders to provide consumers with information on the main characteristics of goods. This information must be accurate and not mislead.

In May, the Office for Product Safety and Standards worked with the HSE to publish guidance for manufacturers and importers on hand cleaning and sanitising products. In order to ensure effective enforcement, the Office for Products Safety and Standards has provided training for trading standards enforcement officers on hand cleansing products and access to technical and scientific advice.

If consumers believe there has been a breach of the legislation then they should report the matter in the first instance to the Citizens Advice consumer service on 0808 223 1133; www.citizensadvice.org/.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
8th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what discussions the Government has had with representatives of the business travel sector during the covid-19 outbreak.

The Government holds regular discussions with businesses and others to assess the impact of the covid-19 outbreak. The Government is working to find a balanced and a coordinated solution to the difficulties to the sector that have arisen as a result of covid-19.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
1st May 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what plans he has to expand the (a) Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund and (b) the business rate holiday to all businesses involved in the retail, hospitality and leisure supply chain during the covid-19 outbreak.

Businesses are eligible for the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund and the business rate holiday scheme if they are based in England with a property that is wholly or mainly being used for the purposes of retail, hospitality and/or leisure.

The Government has announced an additional discretionary fund to support small businesses that fall outside the scope of the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grants Fund and the Small Business Grants Fund, which have under 50 employees and have seen a significant drop of income due to Coronavirus restriction measures.

The Government is also providing an unprecedented package of wider support available to SMEs. This includes business interruption loan schemes, job retention and self-employed income support schemes, as well as a bounce back loan scheme. The full details of all these measures have been published at: https://www.businesssupport.gov.uk/coronavirus-business-support/.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
1st May 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether he has made an assessment of the potential merits of expanding the (a) Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund and (b) Small Business Grants Fund so that businesses that pay business rates through their rent can directly benefit.

Businesses are eligible for the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund if they are based in England with a property that has a rateable value of up to £51,000 and is wholly or mainly being used for the purposes of retail, hospitality and/or leisure. The Small Business Grant Fund is available to businesses with a property that on the 11 March 2020 were eligible for Small Business Rate Relief Scheme or Rural Rate Relief Scheme.

The Government has announced an additional discretionary fund to support small businesses that fall outside the scope of the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grants Fund and the Small Business Grants Fund, including those in shared spaces who do not have their own business rates assessment, which have under 50 employees and have seen a significant drop of income due to Coronavirus restriction measures.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
29th Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether event hire companies that pay business rates are eligible for the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund during the covid-19 outbreak.

Businesses in England that would have been in receipt of the Expanded Retail Discount (which covers retail, hospitality and leisure) on 11 March with a rateable value of less than £51,000 are eligible for support via the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund.

The Government has published guidance on the types of businesses that would be eligible for the Expanded Retail Discount. The list is not exhaustive and it is for local authorities to determine whether particular properties not listed are broadly similar in nature to those that are included and, if so, to consider them eligible for the relief.

In addition, on the 1 May 2020 the Business Secretary announced that a further up to £617 million is being made available to local authorities as a discretionary fund so that they can address cases that are out-of-scope from the Small Business Grants Fund and Retail Hospitality and Leisure Grants Fund, including business sectors that weren’t previously covered and businesses that occupy space and pay rent and rates through a landlord.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
29th Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what plans he has to implement a London weighting to increase the £51,000 rateable value limit for the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund.

There are no plans to introduce a London weighting into the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Fund. The Department is in regular contact with local authorities to understand the impact that the scheme is having on the ground.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
16th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent discussions he has had with the BBC on holding a public consultation on (a) offering monthly license subscriptions and (b) other future funding proposals.

It is already possible to pay for a TV licence in monthly instalments. More information is set out on the TV Licensing website: https://www.tvlicensing.co.uk/pay-for-your-tv-licence/ways-to-pay.

The government has no plans to offer a public consultation on TV licence payment plans at this time.

On future funding proposals, the government has committed to maintain the licence fee funding model for the duration of this 11 year Charter period, until 2027.

The Secretary of State has recently written to the BBC and S4C to begin the process of setting the licence fee for at least 5 years from April 2022.

4th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether an internationally recognised music artist would be exempt from the covid-19 quarantine rules when entering England for the purpose of filming a global pay per view livestream and DVD recording.

At present there are no such exemptions available for musicians coming to the UK.

We continue to work with the cultural and creative sectors to explore all options to support them through this challenging period, including on proposals for exemptions from quarantine. We are continuing to work with the Department for Transport on proposals for an exemption for Performing Arts professionals.

All decisions about exemptions and other measures will need to be considered in light of the wider public health context and the bar for exemptions remains very high.

14th Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, when he plans to publish bespoke covid-19 guidance for businesses providing activity classes for children under 5 years old.

On 13 August, the Government announced that indoor play and indoor soft play venues can open from 15 August. We have also been working with BALPPA, the trade body that represents the industry to develop guidance that lays out detailed measures that should be taken by indoor play and indoor soft play operators to make venues COVID-secure. These include closing ball pits and sensory areas, reducing capacity of venues and soft play frames, regular deep cleaning, pre-bookable timed sessions, increased sanitation, and a rigorous process to support track and trace. Sports and physical activity facilities play a crucial role in supporting adults and children to be active and the Government is committed to reopening facilities as soon as it is safe to do so. Since 4 July other indoor facilities, including some indoor games, recreation and entertainment venues have reopened.


As with all aspects of the Government’s response to COVID-19, we continue to be guided by public health considerations to ensure that as restrictions are eased people can return to activity safely.

Nigel Huddleston
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
8th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, when the Charity Commission plans to publish the report on its inquiry into Wimbledon And Putney Commons Conservators.

As the independent regulator of charities in England and Wales, the Charity Commission always aims to conclude investigations as soon as is practicable, but the length of an inquiry can depend on many factors including the nature and complexity of the issues and any involvement with or representations from third parties.

The Charity Commission’s planned publication of its concluding report on its inquiry into Wimbledon and Putney Commons Conservators was delayed earlier this year as a result of a potential legal challenge. The Charity Commission is currently considering a large number of complex representations made in relation to the report. The report will be published on GOV.UK and shared with interested third parties as soon as possible once these representations have been fully considered.

8th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what the reasons are for the delay in publication of the Charity Commission’s report on its inquiry into Wimbledon And Putney Commons Conservators.

As the independent regulator of charities in England and Wales, the Charity Commission always aims to conclude investigations as soon as is practicable, but the length of an inquiry can depend on many factors including the nature and complexity of the issues and any involvement with or representations from third parties.

The Charity Commission’s planned publication of its concluding report on its inquiry into Wimbledon and Putney Commons Conservators was delayed earlier this year as a result of a potential legal challenge. The Charity Commission is currently considering a large number of complex representations made in relation to the report. The report will be published on GOV.UK and shared with interested third parties as soon as possible once these representations have been fully considered.

1st Mar 2021
What steps his Department is taking to maintain levels of funding for universities and higher education institutes based in London.

The London Weighting element of the Strategic Priorities Grant accounts for a small proportion of London-based providers’ income. Providers in London received around £64 million London Weighting in academic year 2020-21, which was less than 1% of their estimated total income.

The Strategic Priorities Grant, formerly referred to as the Teaching Grant, plays an important role in supporting providers and students to develop the skills and knowledge needed locally, regionally and nationally to support the economy.

The grant is funding supplied by the government on an annual basis to support higher education (HE) providers’ ongoing teaching and related activities. In the financial year 2020-21, the Department for Education provided £1,253 million in recurrent Teaching Grant funding. In financial year 2021-22, the department will maintain this level of funding and is providing £1,253 million in recurrent Strategic Priorities Grant funding.

We have asked the Office for Students (OfS) to reform the grant for the 2021-22 financial year to ensure that more of taxpayers’ money is spent on supporting HE provision which aligns with national priorities, such as healthcare, science, technology, engineering and mathematics and subjects meeting specific labour market needs.

We have also asked the OfS for a £10 million increase to the specialist provider allocation, to support these institutions which are particularly reliant on Strategic Priorities Grant funding, many of whom are London-based. We want to ensure that our small and specialist providers, including some of our top music and arts providers, receive additional support, and that grant funding is used to effectively support students.

Even with the removal of the London Weighting, the reforms mean that around 1 in 6 London providers are estimated to see an increase in their Strategic Priorities Grant funding. These are HE providers offering courses aligned with the government’s strategic priorities.

The OfS will consult on these changes, before final allocations for the 2021-22 financial year are confirmed, and carefully consider the impact of any changes on providers.

Michelle Donelan
Minister of State (Department for Education) (Higher and Further Education)
18th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what guidance the Government has issued on whether parent and pre-school children classes and groups are categorised as a support group for the purposes of Exception 5 of the Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England) (No. 4) Regulations 2020.

Parent and pre-school children classes and groups need to meet necessary exceptions to continue during the November 2020 national restrictions.

Where these are held in Ofsted registered settings, they should follow government guidance on the COVID-19 outbreak for early years and childcare providers. This is available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-early-years-and-childcare-closures/coronavirus-covid-19-early-years-and-childcare-closures.

Support groups for new parents in community settings, such as places of worship, community centres or halls, or libraries, and that are essential to deliver in person, can continue. These can be conducted with up to 15 participants where formally organised to provide mutual aid, therapy, or any other form of support. These groups must be organised by a business, a charitable, benevolent, or philanthropic institution, or a public body, and must follow COVID-19 secure guidance. Restricted businesses which are required to close, such as coffee shops, cannot hold support groups. When national restrictions apply, in determining the limit of 15 participants, no account is to be taken of any child who is below the age of 5.

Informal groups, such as those organised by a parent, need to comply with the gathering and household mixing rules. In practice, during the period of national restrictions, this means these groups should only meet virtually.

Supervised activity for children can continue to take place where it is reasonably necessary to enable parents to work, search for work or to undertake training or education, for example in indoor gyms, fitness studios, indoor sports facilities and other indoor leisure centres, community centres or halls.

For further information, Cabinet Office guidance on the new national restrictions can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/new-national-restrictions-from-5-november#childcare-and-childrens-activities.

The department's guidance for education and childcare setting during national restrictions can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/education-and-childcare-settings-new-national-restrictions-from-5-november-2020#early-years-and-childcare.

Vicky Ford
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
9th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps the Government is taking to ensure disinfectant products being used in educational establishments meet the required high clinical standards and are effective against covid-19.

The measures set out in the guidance for safe working in education provide a framework for leaders to put in place proportionate protective measures for children, pupils, students and staff. This guidance can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/safe-working-in-education-childcare-and-childrens-social-care/safe-working-in-education-childcare-and-childrens-social-care-settings-including-the-use-of-personal-protective-equipment-ppe.

All elements of the system of controls are essential, and all educational establishments must cover each of them. Due to the range of educational establishments, from schools to colleges, the implementation of the requirements will differ based on their individual circumstances. These controls include: enhanced cleaning measures, including more frequent cleaning of rooms and shared areas that are used by different groups; cleaning frequently touched surfaces; and using standard cleaning products, such as regular detergents and bleach.

7th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether the Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (No. 2) (England) Regulations 2020 restricts children from gathering in groups of more than six for home-schooling; and if he will publish guidance on gatherings for home-schooling.

Guidance on protective measures for holiday and after-school clubs, and other out-of-school settings, during the COVID-19 outbreak was updated on 28 September 2020. This guidance also applies to home education and can be viewed here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/protective-measures-for-holiday-or-after-school-clubs-and-other-out-of-school-settings-for-children-during-the-coronavirus-covid-19-outbreak/protective-measures-for-out-of-school-settings-during-the-coronavirus-covid-19-outbreak.

Parents, including guardians and foster carers, who have chosen to home educate their own child may wish to have their children attend group activities either in out-of-school settings or in the homes of others who have chosen to home educate. They will though need to take account of the Department’s, ‘Elective home education; guidance for parents’, which is published here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/elective-home-education.

Where a child who is home educated takes part in a group activity at the home of others who have chosen to home educate, the host should, as far as possible, follow the published guidance and also the guidance on working safely during coronavirus in other people’s homes which can be viewed here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19/homes.

This applies only to group activities which have the principal purpose of education and should not be used to justify purely social activities beyond those recommended under the government’s general guidance on social distancing.

Multiple groups of 15 plus staff can use the same shared space, if that is necessary, with distancing between the groups. Where this is the case the other protective measures, within the guidance for providers, will be even more important to minimise the risk of infection and transmission of the virus. Where possible, those attending out-of-school settings should also practice social distancing in line with the government’s current staying alert and safe (social distancing) guidance: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/staying-alert-and-safe-social-distancing/staying-alert-and-safe-social-distancing.

The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (No. 2) (England) Regulations 2020, permits gatherings that are reasonably necessary for purposes of education or training.

14th Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether EU nationals who hold (a) settled and (b) pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme and start a foundation diploma in academic year 2020-21 will remain eligible for (i) the home rate of tuition fees and (ii) access to student finance when they progress to a higher education course in academic year 2021-22.

We have agreed with the EU that current EU principles of equal treatment will continue to apply for those covered by the citizens’ rights provisions in the Withdrawal Agreement. This means that EU nationals resident in the UK before the end of the transition period on 31 December 2020 will be eligible for support on a similar basis to domestic students.

Those EU nationals with settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme and who meet the relevant eligibility requirements in force at the time of course commencement will have access to home fee status and student financial support.

Michelle Donelan
Minister of State (Department for Education) (Higher and Further Education)
5th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps he plans to take to ensure the continued viability of subject-specialist universities after the covid-19 outbreak.

The government recognises that the COVID-19 outbreak is bringing significant financial challenges to the higher education (HE) sector and we have been working closely with the sector, including specialist providers, to monitor its likely impacts.

On 4 May 2020, my right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education, announced a package of measures to ensure sustainability in HE at a time of unprecedented uncertainty.

We will stabilise the admissions system and pull forward tuition fee payments, expected to be worth £2.6 billion, for HE providers so that they receive more cash in the first term of the 2020/21 academic year. This will have no impact on students but will allow providers to better manage financial risks over the autumn. This will be available to all providers across the UK.

In reprofiling these payments, we are clear in our expectation that providers should use the cashflow benefits appropriately, taking significant steps to improve efficiencies and manage their finances in order to avoid cashflow problems in the future. Reprofiling in this way is a one-off intervention for the autumn term only, to help providers take all necessary steps now to prepare for the future.

On Friday 5 June, the department announced Sir Steve Smith as the International Education Champion, a key deliverable of the 2019 International Education Strategy. Sir Steve will assist with opening up export growth opportunities for the whole UK education sector, tackling international challenges such as those posed to attracting international students and forging lasting global connections.

In England, we will also bring forward £100 million of quality-related research funding for providers to the current academic year to help to address some of the immediate pressures faced by university research activities.

The department will consider purchasing land and buildings where they can be used for new or expanding schools and colleges in England. This will take place as part of existing programmes and using established procedures. This financial year (across purchases from all suitable vendors and including but not limited to HE providers), we have budgeted up to £100 million to acquire sites for planned projects in England. Details are available on GOV.UK at: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/government-support-package-for-universities-and-students.

The government has also confirmed that providers are eligible to apply for its support packages, including business loan support schemes. The Office for Students (OfS), the regulator in England, estimates that this could be worth at least £700 million to the sector. We will only intervene further where we believe there is a case to do so and where we believe that intervention is possible and appropriate and as a last resort.

In such instances, we will work with providers to review their circumstances and to assess the need for restructuring and any attached conditions. The department will be working with HM Treasury and other government departments and with the devolved administrations to develop this restructuring regime.

Michelle Donelan
Minister of State (Department for Education) (Higher and Further Education)
5th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what plans he has to support universities with international students who may be subject to quarantine policy due to the covid-19 outbreak.

We are in discussions with Universities UK and other sector representatives on a regular basis to ensure that international higher education students are welcomed to the UK and we expect international students to be supported on arrival by their chosen university during these unprecedented times.

On 3 June, the department published guidance to support providers in making decisions on re-opening campuses and buildings to students and staff ahead of the academic year 2020/21. Further information on this guidance can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/higher-education-reopening-buildings-and-campuses/higher-education-reopening-buildings-and-campuses.

We also welcome the actions of Universities UK, who have set out principles for the sector to consider as it prepares for the autumn term, including encouraging higher education providers to think about how to support students during the self-isolation period.

On Friday 5 June, the department announced Sir Steve Smith as the International Education Champion, a key deliverable of the 2019 International Education Strategy. Sir Steve will assist with opening up export growth opportunities for the whole UK education sector, tackling international challenges such as those posed to attracting international students and forging lasting global connections.

Michelle Donelan
Minister of State (Department for Education) (Higher and Further Education)
1st May 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what plans he has to support nursery schools which are experiencing a reduction in their dedicated schools grant money as a result of the covid-19 outbreak.

The government has announced unprecedented support for businesses, including the early years sector, to protect against the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

On 21 April the Department for Education announced that local authorities could use their Dedicated Schools Grant (DSG) for the free early education entitlement funding differently and redistribute it in exceptional cases. This is only as a last resort and should be in a focussed and targeted way in order to secure childcare for children of critical workers and for vulnerable children, where their usual arrangements are no longer possible. Guidance on using DSG funding during coronavirus (COVID-19) be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/use-of-free-early-education-entitlements-funding-during-the-coronavirus-outbreak/use-of-free-early-education-entitlements-funding-during-coronavirus-covid-19.

If a provider sees their early years DSG income reduced by their local authority in order to fund childcare places elsewhere, they may be able to increase the proportion of their salary bill eligible for Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme in the next furlough period.

Guidance for the early years sector on the interaction between early years entitlements funding and the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-financial-support-for-education-early-years-and-childrens-social-care/coronavirus-covid-19-financial-support-for-education-early-years-and-childrens-social-care#sector-specific-guidance.

Further guidance on the support available for early years providers is available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-early-years-and-childcare-closures.

Vicky Ford
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
7th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of increasing the minimum fine for unlawfully depositing waste.

There is currently no minimum fine set out in law for unlawfully depositing waste under Section 33 of the Environmental Protection Act.

Sentencing in individual cases is a matter for the independent courts. When deciding what sentence to impose for unlawfully depositing waste, the court will take into account the circumstances of the offence and any aggravating and mitigating factors in line with the Environmental Offences Definitive Guideline issued by the independent Sentencing Council for England and Wales. Where a court decides that a fine is the right sentence, the level of fine must reflect the seriousness of the offence and take into account the financial circumstances of the offender.

Instead of prosecuting, councils may choose to issue a fixed penalty notice (FPN). The value of an FPN needs to be high enough to act as a deterrent, but not too high so that offenders cannot, or choose not to, pay the penalty. Defra issued a call for evidence in 2015 prior to introducing a FPN for fly-tipping offences. The responses to the call for evidence, and further analysis, led to a default value of £200, a maximum value of £400, and a discounted minimum of £120. Similarly, in 2018 Defra consulted on introducing a FPN for householders who fail in their duty of care by passing their waste to an unlicensed waste carrier and which is then found fly-tipped. Almost three-quarters of respondents to the consultation felt that the proposed value of the FPN (discounted minimum value of £120, default value of £200 and maximum value of £400) was correct.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
23rd Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether he has held discussions with Transport for London representatives on flexible season tickets for London Travelcards zones 1-8.

Transport in London is devolved and is the responsibility of the Mayor of London and Transport for London, including for fare-setting. Flexible season tickets are a rail-only product that are being introduced across England.

Rachel Maclean
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what criteria his Department plans to use to define model networks in the National Bus Strategy.

The National Bus Strategy, published on 15 March, sets out the Government’s ambitious vision for bus networks across the country, making services more frequent, more reliable, easier to understand and use, better co-ordinated and cheaper.

By the end of October 2021, Local Transport Authorities (LTAs) are expected to publish Bus Service Improvement Plans, setting out how they will achieve the Strategy’s ambitious vision for travel by bus in their area. The Department will shortly publish detailed guidance to assist LTAs on preparing their plans.

Rachel Maclean
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, with reference to the National Bus Strategy, what cost-benefit analysis his Department has undertaken on the value of (a) bus franchising and (b) enhanced partnerships.

The cost and benefits of franchising and enhanced partnerships vary by authority. The Bus Services Act 2017 Impact Assessment details cost benefit analysis of illustrative scenarios.

It is for Mayoral Combined Authorities and other local transport authorities on a case-by-case basis to decide whether to pursue franchising or an enhanced partnership.

The franchising legislation specifically requires a franchising assessment business case, which considers the costs and benefits of franchising, to be prepared by the authority.

Rachel Maclean
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when he plans to publish the outcomes of the Williams Rail Review.

The government intends on publishing a White Paper with details of its plans for rail reform soon.

Chris Heaton-Harris
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
12th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether he has plans to bring forward legislative proposals to amend the provisions of the Bus Services Act 2017.

The Bus Services Act 2017 prevents further local authority-owned bus companies being set up from scratch, and the National Bus Strategy commits that we will review whether that remains right.

If the review concludes it should be changed, a legislative proposal will be brought forward in due course. We will also update our existing guidance on using the Enhanced Partnership and franchising powers in the Act, to make it easier for operators and local transport authorities to focus on what they want to achieve.

Rachel Maclean
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what plans he has to make funding for buses available beyond the £3 billion worth of funding set out in the National Bus Strategy.

The National Bus Strategy announced £3 billion of transformational and long-term funding for buses.

In addition, the Government currently provides up to £27 million a week to support bus services through the COVID-19 Bus Services Support Grant scheme and the ongoing Bus Service Operator Grant which is worth approximately £260 million each year. The Government also supports council spending of around £1 billion a year on concessionary travel.

Rachel Maclean
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether the funding identified in the National Bus Strategy is dependant on a local transport authority committing to either a franchise or an enhanced partnership arrangement for the provision of their bus services.

The National Bus Strategy, published on 15 March, sets an expectation that by 30 June, Local Transport Authorities (LTAs) and their local bus operators have committed to establishing an Enhanced Partnership or the LTA has started the statutory process of franchising bus services.

From 1 July 2021, only LTAs and operators who meet these requirements will continue to receive the Covid-19 Bus Services Support Grant or any new sources of bus funding. From April 2022, LTAs will need to have an Enhanced Partnership in place, or be following the statutory process to decide whether to implement a franchising scheme, in order to receive the new discretionary schemes of bus funding.

Rachel Maclean
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether it is mandatory for every combined authority and local transport authority to commit to a franchise or an enhanced partnership arrangement for the provision of their bus services by the end of June 2021.

The National Bus Strategy, published on 15 March, sets an expectation that by 30 June, Local Transport Authorities (LTAs) and their local bus operators have committed to establishing an Enhanced Partnership or the LTA has started the statutory process of franchising bus services.

From 1 July 2021, only LTAs and operators who meet these requirements will continue to receive the Covid-19 Bus Services Support Grant or any new sources of bus funding. From April 2022, LTAs will need to have an Enhanced Partnership in place, or be following the statutory process to decide whether to implement a franchising scheme, in order to receive the new discretionary schemes of bus funding.

Rachel Maclean
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment his Department has made of the change in bus patronage as a result of bus franchising and enhanced partnerships compared to operation of the deregulated bus market.

Bus passenger journey statistics are collected and published by the Department quarterly.

The Bus Services Act 2017 Impact Assessment estimates the impact of franchising and enhanced partnerships on patronage. Under franchising, we estimated that there will be a significant increase in patronage as a result of fare simplification as Local Transport Authorities take control of bus fare revenue. Under enhanced partnerships, we estimated that patronage will increase as a result of journey quality improvements.

Rachel Maclean
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will provide a progress report to Parliament on the work of his Department’s Transport Acceleration Unit.

Since commencing operation in October 2020, the Acceleration Unit has been involved in accelerating projects through the Northern Transport Acceleration Council, the Restoring Your Railways programme and the National Bus Strategy. Among the projects the Acceleration Unit has successfully supported accelerating there is, notably, ensuring the delivery of the first Beeching reversal, the Dartmoor Line into Okehampton, will open later this year 20 months early. It has supported accelerating delivery, unblocking barriers, and driving down cost on this project. Among the many projects the unit is supporting are the new A19 Tees Crossing, improvements to the A59 at Kex Gill, and ensuring the National Bus Strategy was published in March.

Andrew Stephenson
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
12th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what proposals his Department’s Transport Acceleration Unit has put forward to accelerate the delivery of transport infrastructure projects.

The Acceleration Unit continues to provide the Secretary of State with regular updates and proposals for future projects and is due to discuss its delivery plan for the coming 12 months. The Unit is continuing its work following the publication of the National Bus Strategy. Through the Northern Transport Acceleration Council, 112 projects have been identified with northern leaders, including the Tees Valley hydrogen hub, dualling the A66, Northumberland Line and Hope Valley Line projects. The Unit is also engaged on progressing the Restoring Your Railway programme to delivery and is reviewing individual schemes for acceleration. It has also been commissioned to challenge the Cambridge South rail enhancement project.

Andrew Stephenson
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
12th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether he has plans to bring forward legislative proposals to provide statutory backing to the policy proposals in the National Bus Strategy.

The National Bus Strategy sets out the Government’s vision for bus services, and how it will be delivered through local transport authorities (LTAs) using existing powers in the Bus Services Act 2017 to form Enhanced Partnership and franchising arrangements; those powers provide the statutory backing for delivery. The strategy sets out what LTAs and bus operators must do, and from when, in order to access discretionary sources of bus funding, including the £3 billion for buses announced in February 2020.

Rachel Maclean
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what the definition is of socially necessary networks in the National Bus Strategy.

Local Transport Authorities (LTAs) have the ability to subsidise bus services that are not commercially viable and which they determine necessary for their local area. As outlined in the Strategy, we expect LTAs in collaboration with bus operators to deliver more comprehensive, socially necessary services, including services to smaller and isolated places and more services in the evenings and at weekends.

We will issue further guidance on the meaning and role of socially necessary services in due course.

Rachel Maclean
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
21st Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will publish the non-Government specialists working for the Transport Acceleration Unit.

The Acceleration Unit will be assisted in its work by an expert panel with industry experience including Highways England’s Director of Complex Infrastructure projects, Chris Taylor and Mark Reynolds Chief Executive of Mace.

Andrew Stephenson
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
20th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what the (a) mission statement and (b) objectives are of his Department's Acceleration Unit; and for what reasons that Unit was established.

The Acceleration Unit was established with the overall objective of accelerating key transport projects and programmes. The work of the Acceleration Unit is driven by the need to build back better, to level up the country and to decarbonise transport.

Andrew Stephenson
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
20th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether the post of Director of his Department's Acceleration Unit was advertised; and what the remuneration is for that post.

The Director of the Acceleration Unit has been appointed on a fixed term basis in line with Civil Service Recruitment Principles. The remuneration for the post is in line with Senior Civil Service Pay Scales.

Andrew Stephenson
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
20th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether the role of member of his Department's Acceleration Unit was advertised; what the required skills are for that post; and what the remuneration for that post is.

While the unit is established current appointments have been made on a temporary basis. Role profiles setting out the skills and experience needed within the unit were developed. Potential candidates were assessed against these criteria, this included an internal expression of interest, identified named individuals and applications from wider transport organisations who would join the department on secondment. Where fair and open competition has not been used, all appointments have been in line with the agreed Exceptions to the Civil Service Recruitment Principles. Remuneration for posts is in line with DfT Pay Scales.

Andrew Stephenson
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
20th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps he has taken to help ensure the accountability of his Department's Acceleration Unit.

The Acceleration Unit will be directly accountable to the Secretary of State and is expected to engage with key stakeholders and colleagues across the department, government, and industry on a range of projects and programmes at varying stages of their lifecycle to deliver the best possible outcome from accelerating their delivery. The Acceleration Unit Director, Darren Shirley, will assess the effectiveness of its activities and report weekly to the Secretary of State.

Andrew Stephenson
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
8th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether representatives of the business travel sector will be included in his Department's aviation restart and recovery unit.

The business travel sector is represented on the Restart and Recovery Unit’s Expert Steering Group by the British Business and General Aviation Association (BBGA). In addition, I most recently met with the BBGA on a bilateral basis on 11 June.

5th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many rail delays were caused by (a) track failure, (b) signalling failure, (c) other infrastructure failure, (d) staff shortages, (e) train failures and (f) other train operating company failures in each year since 2015.

The number of delay minutes affecting passenger operators since 2015 is as shown in the attached document. Delay minutes are the total number of minutes caused by a failure; this includes both the primary cause of delay and any knock on delays as a result of this failure. This data is not available broken down by the categories requested.

Chris Heaton-Harris
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
4th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment his Department has made of the role of (a) Navblue, (b) Lufthansa Systems, (c) Jeppessen and (d) other coding houses in airspace modernisation.

Coding houses are contracted by airlines to provide coding for their Flight Management Systems. The Department does not provide oversight of this commercial relationship or the work of coding houses. As part of the Aviation Strategy the Department has sought views on how to hold coding houses to account for their work if it results in aircraft deviating from approved flightpaths.

The Department has not conducted an assessment of the role of coding houses in airspace modernisation. A key component of airspace modernisation is the introduction of performance-based navigation (PBN) standards which will enable aircraft to more accurately follow approved flightpaths.

4th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what oversight his Department has of the work of (a) Navblue, (b) Lufthansa Systems, (c) Jeppessen and (d) other coding houses in (i) setting and (ii) maintaining flight routes.

Coding houses are contracted by airlines to provide coding for their Flight Management Systems. The Department does not provide oversight of this commercial relationship or the work of coding houses. As part of the Aviation Strategy the Department has sought views on how to hold coding houses to account for their work if it results in aircraft deviating from approved flightpaths.

The Department has not conducted an assessment of the role of coding houses in airspace modernisation. A key component of airspace modernisation is the introduction of performance-based navigation (PBN) standards which will enable aircraft to more accurately follow approved flightpaths.

3rd Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what oversight his Department has of the work of the Civil Aviation Authority in (a) setting and (b) maintaining flight routes.

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) is responsible for deciding whether to approve changes to the UK’s airspace design, including changes to specific flightpaths.

In carrying out the activities associated with its airspace role, the CAA has to follow the Department’s Air Navigation Directions and the Air Navigation Guidance. Both of these documents are kept under review and amended as considered necessary.

21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how much funding was allocated to Network Rail for Control Period 6.

£47.9bn of funding was allocated to Network Rail for Control Period 6 in the Government’s Statement of Funds Available for England and Wales, of which £34.7bn is supported by Government Grant. £4.85bn of funding was allocated to Network Rail for Control Period 6 in the Statement of Funds Available for Scotland, of which £2.2bn is supported by Grant.

Chris Heaton-Harris
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how much of the funding allocated to Network Rail for Control Period 6 is allocated to (a) maintenance of existing infrastructure, (b) renewal of existing infrastructure and (c) enhancements and new projects.

In Control Period 6, Network Rail plans to spend:

  1. £9bn on maintenance of existing infrastructure

  2. £18.5bn on renewals of existing infrastructure

  3. £11.4bn on enhancements and new projects

In addition to these areas of expenditure, funding is also allocated to the day to day operation of the network, business rates, industry costs and other business support costs.

Chris Heaton-Harris
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how much of the funding allocated to Network Rail for Control Period 6 has been spent.

As of 1st February 2020, Network Rail has spent £7.2bn in Control Period 6.

Chris Heaton-Harris
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how much of the funding allocated to Network Rail for Control Period 5 was spent on (a) maintenance of existing infrastructure, (b) renewals of existing infrastructure and (c) enhancements and new projects.

In Control Period 5, Network Rail spent:

  1. £6.658bn on maintenance of existing infrastructure

  2. £14.295bn on renewals of existing infrastructure

  3. £16.025bn on enhancements and new projects

In Control Period 5, Network Rail’s spending was funded through a combination of government loans and grants; charges paid by train operators; and income from other sources such as property. It is not possible to separately identify how much of each funding source was spent across Network Rail’s specific activities.

Chris Heaton-Harris
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how much of the funding allocated to Network Rail for Control Period 5 was unspent.

In Control Period 5, Network Rail received funding from Government through a combination of loans and grants. All of this funding was spent.

Chris Heaton-Harris
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what discussions (a) Ministers and (b) officials of his Department have had with the Office of Rail and Road on the market study into the supply of signalling systems.

The Office of Rail and Road has made the Department aware of the market study, but there have been no substantive discussions with DfT Ministers or officials.

Grant Shapps
Secretary of State for Transport
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate he has made of the length of leases of rolling stock operating on the rail network; and what the end dates are of those rolling stock leases.

The length of rolling stock leases is a commercial matter for the train operating companies to negotiate with rolling stock owners to meet their particular business needs. The Department makes available public register versions of franchise agreements, which set out the lease periods in the relevant schedules. They can be seen at www.gov.uk/government/collections/public-register-of-rail-passenger-franchise-agreements.

Grant Shapps
Secretary of State for Transport
13th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, with reference to the Airport Commission's final report on airport capacity, published in 2015, what recent estimate he has made of demand for airport capacity.

The Department published detailed forecasts of aviation demand in 2017, which is available at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/uk-aviation-forecasts-2017 and carried out further analysis of aviation demand in 2018 https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/714069/making-best-use-of-existing-runways.pdf

In addition, the Department has been carrying out further analysis to support ongoing policy development, which will be published in due course.

13th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will bring forward legislative proposals to require airlines to display the level of CO2 and other greenhouse gas emissions a flight generates alongside price and ticket information.

The Government recognises that the fight against climate change is the greatest and most pressing challenge facing the modern world. We are planning to shortly update the Government’s position on aviation and climate change for consultation.

The Government launched its call for evidence on carbon offsetting in transport on 18th July 2019, which closed on 26th September. The call for evidence covered how to help consumers better understand the emissions from their journeys and their options for offsetting those emissions. This included looking at whether travel providers/companies should be required to offer offsets to their customers. We are analysing the responses and they will be published in due course.

13th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what recent estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of the surface land transport upgrades which are necessary to facilitate a new runway at Heathrow Airport.

The Airports National Policy Statement sets out that it is for an applicant to demonstrate how it will improve surface access and mitigate the impacts of expansion at Heathrow. The expansion of Heathrow Airport will be fully funded and delivered by the private sector.

Where there are significant non-airport public user benefits from changes and enhancements to surface transport infrastructure and services, the Government has made clear it would consider making a funding contribution to reflect these.

13th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what his policy is on the Crossrail 2 project; and what the status of that project is.

The Government recognises that Crossrail 2 could provide a crucial solution to address capacity issues on London’s rail and tube networks, while also improving connectivity across London and the South East.

I am keen to see a realistic and achievable 50% funding proposal from London regarding Crossrail 2. Officials continue to work with TfL on this funding proposal and the next steps for the project.

10th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the implications for his policies of the Health and Safety Executive’s updated guidance for manufacturers and suppliers on surface disinfectant; and whether his Department plans to include similar recommendations in its healthcare guidance for the 2020 festive period.

While there has been no specific assessment, Public Health England has published guidance on how to disinfect and sanitise non-healthcare settings, including offices and public spaces, which is available at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-decontamination-in-non-healthcare-settings/covid-19-decontamination-in-non-healthcare-settings

The Department has published guidance to support the ‘Hands. Face. Space’ public information campaign for winter 2020. This guidance is available at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/new-campaign-to-prevent-spread-of-coronavirus-indoors-this-winter

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
16th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if his Department will publish guidance for support groups operating under Paragraph 11(6) of the Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England) (No. 4) Regulations 2020, to ensure the consistency of advice from local authorities to those groups.

Guidance on the current restrictions is available on GOV.UK at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/new-national-restrictions-from-5-november#where-and-when-you-can-meet-in-larger-groups

The Department is not planning to provide specific advice on support groups to local authorities.

Nadine Dorries
Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
9th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps the Government is taking to ensure that disinfectant products on sale to the general public for use on reducing the risk of transmission of covid-19 meet the required high clinical standards and are effective against covid-19.

I have been asked to reply.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has advised that consumer law requires traders to provide consumers with information on the main characteristics of goods. This information must be accurate and not misleading. Consumers may also request information from the retailer when making a purchase and the retailer would be required to provide this accurately under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
16th Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what plans he has to publish guidance on allowing partners to attend antenatal appointments and scans during the covid-19 outbreak.

The National Health Service is making arrangements to ensure that women are supported and cared for safely through pregnancy, birth and the period afterwards during this pandemic.

Decisions on partners attending scans and appointments is subject to local discretion by trusts and other NHS bodies. Local maternity teams will be able to advise women on their policy on partners attending antenatal appointments including scans.

Guidance produced by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists is clear that women should be encouraged to have one birth partner, who has no symptoms of COVID-19, present with them during any type of labour and birth, unless the birth occurs under general anaesthetic.

Nadine Dorries
Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
3rd Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to encourage older people to attend primary care services to receive vaccinations.

Throughout the COVID-19 response, general practices (GPs) have been encouraged to continue to deliver as much routine and preventative work as can be provided safely, including vaccinations and screening appointments, as well as supporting their more high-risk patients with ongoing care needs. GPs re-opened fully from 1 July to patients who should now be able to access services by phone, online or in person.

GPs are expected to actively offer patients aged 70 years and over the shingles vaccine. There is also a catch-up programme available for individuals aged 78 or 79 years and the programme has been extended to include individuals who may have turned 80 years during lockdown. Where feasible and where vaccine stock is available, GPs were also advised to seek to identify and offer Pneumococcal Polysaccharide Vaccine (PPV23) to those eligible.

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
9th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether the Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England) Regulations 2020 provide for (a) family members and (b) friends to provide free childcare in their homes for parents who have to work.

Where parents or someone with parental responsibility do not live in the same household, children under 18 can be moved between their parents’ homes to continue existing arrangements for access and contact.

From 13 June, a lone parent you can form a support bubble with another household which would allow arrangements to provide informal (i.e. unpaid) childcare. This household can be family members or friends. The Government will continue to work with the childcare sector to ensure that sufficient, safe, appropriate and affordable childcare is available for those returning to work, and for all families who need it in the longer term.

Helen Whately
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
10th Mar 2020
What recent funding he has allocated to Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust.

Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust will benefit from £500million capital investment for a new major hospital, providing adult emergency and women and children’s services in one place. A consultation on the detail of the Trust’s proposals is currently underway and closes on 1 April.

The package of capital funding is part of the Government’s £2.7billion Health Infrastructure Plan (HIP) for six new hospital projects to be delivered in our first phase of major hospital rebuilds (HIP1) as part of our broader commitment to build 40 new hospitals.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
1st Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what bilateral discussions he has with individual EU member states to negotiate an extension to the 180 day limit on visa-free access to the EU for UK visitors.

The Government discussed arrangements with the EU for British Citizens travelling to the Schengen Area. Regrettably, the EU consistently maintained that British Citizens will be treated as Third Country Nationals under the Schengen Borders Code from 1 January 2021. This means that British Citizens are able to travel visa-free for short stays for up to 90 days in a rolling 180-day period. This is the standard length of stay that the EU offers to nationals of eligible third countries that offer visa-free travel for EU citizens, in line with existing EU legislation. British Citizens planning to stay longer will need permission from the relevant Member State. This may require applying for a visa and/or permit.

The UK's Trade and Cooperation Agreement with the EU confirms that both the UK and EU currently provide for visa-free travel for short-term visits for each other's nationals in accordance with their respective laws. The detail of those arrangements is set by domestic law.  The Government does not typically enter into bilateral agreements on visa-free travel.

Wendy Morton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
19th Jan 2021
What diplomatic steps he is taking to strengthen UK relations with ASEAN countries.

A strong UK-ASEAN relationship is a critical part of our Indo-Pacific Tilt.

The UK has applied to become a Dialogue Partner of ASEAN. The Foreign Secretary attended the first UK-ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting in September to deepen cooperation on Covid-19, building a sustainable economic recovery, climate change and maritime security. The Foreign Secretary and I have engaged counterparts from Myanmar, Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, Cambodia, Singapore and Vietnam in recent months.

Nigel Adams
Minister of State (Cabinet Office) (Minister without Portfolio)
24th Nov 2020
What diplomatic steps he is taking to support peace between Israel and the Palestinian people.

We have actively encouraged the parties back to dialogue. The Foreign Secretary visited Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories in August and urged Palestinian President Abbas and Israeli PM Netanyahu to renew cooperation, and work towards further confidence-building measures and dialogue. The Foreign Secretary welcomed the recent decision by the Palestinian Authority & the Government of Israel to restore cooperation. We encourage the parties to build on this momentum through further dialogue and compromise to move towards a lasting solution to the conflict. We also welcomed the announcement, on 13 August, of the suspension of annexation plans. Annexation would have been contrary to international law, counterproductive to peace and a severe blow to prospects for a two-state solution. We hope both of these developments can be used as a step towards direct talks between the two sides. The UK stands ready to support.

James Cleverly
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
9th Nov 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether he plans to extend the deferral of VAT payments due to the implementation of a further period of covid-19 lockdown restrictions.

The VAT payments deferral scheme ended on 30 June 2020 as planned.

As part of the Winter Economy Plan, the Government announced that businesses which deferred VAT due from 20 March to 30 June 2020 will now have the option to pay in smaller payments over a longer period up to March 2022. They will need to opt-in to the scheme, and for those that do, this means that their deferred VAT liabilities do not need to be paid by the end of March 2021.

Businesses that need extra help can contact HMRC and agree a Time to Pay arrangement.

9th Nov 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of allowing people who receive less than 50 per cent of their income from self-employment to claim support from the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme Grant Extension.

The self-employed are very diverse and have a wide mix of turnover and profits, with monthly and annual variations even in normal times, and in some cases with substantial alternative forms of income too. The design of the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS), including the eligibility requirement that an individual’s trading profits must be at least equal to their non-trading income, means it is targeted at those who need it most, and who are most reliant on their self-employment income.

Those ineligible for the SEISS may still be eligible for other elements of the package of financial support available. The Government has temporarily increased the Universal Credit standard allowance for 2020-21 and relaxed the Minimum Income Floor for the duration of the crisis meaning that where self-employed claimants' earnings have significantly fallen, their Universal Credit award will have increased to reflect their lower earnings. In addition to this they may also have access to other elements of the package, including Bounce Back loans, tax deferrals, rental support, mortgage holidays, self-isolation support payments and other business support grants.

3rd Nov 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of allowing self-employed limited company directors to claim for support from the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme Grant Extension.

The practical issues that prevented the inclusion of Company Owner-Managers in the original Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS), namely not being able to verify the source of their dividend income without introducing unacceptable fraud risk, still remain.

As with the previous SEISS grants, it is not possible for HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) to distinguish between dividends derived from an individual’s own company and dividends from other sources, and between dividends in lieu of employment income and as returns from other corporate activity.

This means, unlike the SEISS grants that use information HMRC already holds, targeting additional support would require owner-managers to make a claim and submit information that HMRC could not efficiently verify to ensure payments were made to eligible companies for eligible activity. This is about managing and securing the SEISS Grant Extension against fraud risk and misuse.

These eligibility criteria strike the right balance between ensuring support is granted to those who need it, whilst protecting value for the taxpayer.

Those ineligible for the SEISS Grant Extension may still be eligible for other elements of the unprecedented financial support available. This includes Bounce Back loans, tax deferrals, rental support, mortgage holidays, self-isolation support payments and other business support grants.

3rd Nov 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of allowing people who have become self-employed since April 2019 to claim for support from the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme Grant Extension.

The practical issues that prevented us from being able to include the newly self-employed in 2019-20 in the original Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS), namely that HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) will not have access to their self-assessment returns to be able to verify their eligibility, still remain. The latest year for which HMRC has tax returns for all self-employed individuals is 2018/19. 2019/20 returns are not due until the end of January 2021.

Unlike for employees, self-employed income is not reported monthly, but at the end of each tax year on the individual’s Income Tax Self Assessment return. This means that the most reliable and up-to-date record of self-employed income is from the 2018-19 tax returns.

The SEISS continues to be just one element of a comprehensive package of support for individuals and businesses. This package includes Bounce Back loans, tax deferrals, rental support,?increased levels of Universal Credit, mortgage holidays, and other business support grants.

18th May 2020
What plans he has to extend the (a) Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund and (b) business rates holiday to businesses involved in the retail, hospitality and leisure supply chain during the covid-19 outbreak.

The COVID-19 crisis has led to a steep decline in customer footfall on our high streets.

That is why the Government has provided funding for over £5 billion of grants for small retail, hospitality and leisure businesses, and over £9.5 billion of funding to provide a 12 month business rates holiday for all retail, hospitality and leisure businesses.

This business rates holiday along with the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grants Fund, are designed to support businesses which have been particularly hard hit by the crisis.

Kemi Badenoch
Minister for Equalities
15th May 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will (a) expand the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme to include or (b) provide a bespoke support scheme for people who began self-employment in the 2019-20 tax year.

It has not been possible to include those who began trading after the 2018-19 tax year in the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS). This was a very difficult decision and it was taken for practical reasons.

The Government recognises that those who started trading more recently will not have submitted a tax return for the 2018-19 tax year, and it considered alternative approaches. HMRC would not be able to distinguish genuine self-employed individuals who started trading in 2019-20 from fake applications by fraudulent operators and organised criminal gangs seeking to exploit the SEISS.

However, the self-employed can also benefit from the Government’s relaxation of the earnings rules (known as the Minimum Income Floor) in Universal Credit. They may also have access to a range of grants and loans depending on their circumstances. These include the Bounce Back Loan Scheme for small businesses, the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, and the deferral of tax payments. More information about the full range of business support measures is available at https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/financial-support-for-businesses-during-coronavirus-covid-19.

11th May 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to page 4 of the Independent Loan Charge Review: report on the policy and its implementation which states that the law on loan arrangements became clear in 2010, for what reasons the Finance Act 2017 included legislation on those arrangements.

Disguised remuneration (DR) schemes have been used since the 1990s.

The Government announced targeted anti-avoidance legislation to tackle DR schemes in a written ministerial statement in 2010, and introduced it in 2011. This aimed to put beyond doubt that DR schemes are ineffective and to discourage their use.

Despite the Government’s attempts to eliminate the use of these schemes it was clear by Budget 2016 that DR schemes continued to proliferate. That is why the Government announced a package of measures to ensure DR scheme users pay their fair share of tax. These measures, including the Loan Charge, strengthened existing rules and aimed to draw a line under the use of DR tax avoidance schemes. This was legislated for in the Finance (No.2) Act 2017.

HMT officials work closely with colleagues on all tax policy, including on the Government’s response to the use of DR tax avoidance schemes and on the introduction of the Loan Charge in Finance (No.2) Act 2017.

11th May 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps HMRC has taken to hold to account (a) lawyers, (b) accountants and (c) other licensed professionals who provided advice on avoidance schemes covered by the 2019 Loan Charge provisions of the Finance Act 2017.

HMRC vigorously pursue those who promote or enable tax avoidance schemes.

HMRC recently published on GOV.UK a summary of the evidence they provided to Sir Amyas Morse’s Independent Review of the Loan Charge. This includes information on the measures introduced and action taken to tackle promoters and enablers of disguised remuneration and other tax avoidance schemes: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/independent-loan-charge-review-summary-of-evidence/section-8-powers-to-tackle-tax-avoidance

In addition, HMRC published a policy paper in March 2020 laying out their approach to tackling promoters of mass-marketed tax avoidance schemes, and those who facilitate the use of these schemes. This can be found at the link below: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/tackling-promoters-of-mass-marketed-tax-avoidance-schemes/tackling-promoters-of-mass-marketed-tax-avoidance-schemes

The Government also announced at Budget 2020 two calls for evidence to assist with future initiatives; a forthcoming call for evidence on tackling future use of disguised remuneration, and a call for evidence on raising standards in the tax advice market: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/call-for-evidence-raising-standards-in-the-tax-advice-market.

11th May 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to Sir Amyas Morse's Loan Charge review published in December 2019, what discussions his Department had with HMRC on changing loan charge arrangements prior to the introduction of the 2017 Finance Bill.

Disguised remuneration (DR) schemes have been used since the 1990s.

The Government announced targeted anti-avoidance legislation to tackle DR schemes in a written ministerial statement in 2010, and introduced it in 2011. This aimed to put beyond doubt that DR schemes are ineffective and to discourage their use.

Despite the Government’s attempts to eliminate the use of these schemes it was clear by Budget 2016 that DR schemes continued to proliferate. That is why the Government announced a package of measures to ensure DR scheme users pay their fair share of tax. These measures, including the Loan Charge, strengthened existing rules and aimed to draw a line under the use of DR tax avoidance schemes. This was legislated for in the Finance (No.2) Act 2017.

HMT officials work closely with colleagues on all tax policy, including on the Government’s response to the use of DR tax avoidance schemes and on the introduction of the Loan Charge in Finance (No.2) Act 2017.

5th May 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will provide specific guidance on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme for umbrella employers and employees; and whether employees of umbrella companies can be furloughed.

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is open to any employer providing they have: created and started a PAYE payroll scheme on or before 19 March 2020; enrolled for PAYE online; a UK bank account. Employers can claim for employees on any type of employment contract, providing they were employed on 19 March 2020 and were on the employer’s PAYE payroll on or before 19 March 2020. As well as employees, the grant can be claimed for other groups, such as agency workers employed by umbrella companies, where the workers are paid through PAYE. Full guidance can be found at www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-for-wage-costs-through-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme.

Those not eligible for this scheme may have access to other support Government is providing, including a package of temporary welfare measures and up to three-month mortgage payment holidays for those in difficulty with mortgage payments.

1st May 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of extending the eligibility cut-off date for the (a) Small Business Grants Fund and (b) Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund to 19 March 2020 to align with the cut-off date for the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

The two business grants schemes were announced on 11 March and 17 March respectively. 11 March was chosen as the cut-off date to avoid creating an incentive for businesses to be created and registered simply for the purposes of being eligible for grants.

In cases where it was factually clear to the Local Authority on 11 March 2020 that the rating list was inaccurate on that date, Local Authorities may withhold or award the grant based on eligibility had the list been accurate. This discretion is only intended to prevent clear errors. Any decisions made after 11 March should not affect eligibility.

Kemi Badenoch
Minister for Equalities
29th Apr 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to provide support for people who are self-employed and who are paid primarily through dividends.

Those who pay themselves a salary through their own company may be eligible to claim for 80% of usual monthly wages, up to £2,500 a month, through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS). The CJRS is available to employers, including personal service companies, and individuals paying themselves a salary through a PAYE scheme are eligible.

The Government’s priority has been to support as many people as it possibly can, and as quickly as possible. Under current reporting mechanisms it is not possible for HM Revenue and Customs to distinguish between dividends derived from an individual’s own company and dividends from other sources, and between dividends in lieu of employment income and as returns from other corporate activity. Expanding the scope would require HMRC to collect and verify new information and any such proposal would need to be considered against the other schemes which the Government is committed to delivering as quickly as possible.

Those who are not eligible for the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme may be able to access other support Government is providing, including the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, the Bounce Back Loans Scheme for small businesses, and the deferral of tax payments. More information about the full range of business support measures is available at?www.businesssupport.gov.uk/coronavirus-business-support/

29th Apr 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to introduce a London weighting to increase the £50,000 trading profit cap on eligibility for the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme.

The new Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) will help those adversely affected by COVID-19. Some 95% of people who are mainly self-employed could benefit from this scheme, based on 2017-18 data.

The design of the SEISS, including the £50,000 threshold, means it is targeted at those who need it the most, and who are most reliant on their self-employment income. Those who had more than £50,000 from self-employment profits in 2017-18 had an average total income of more than £200,000.

Those with average trading profits above £50,000 could still benefit from other support. Individuals may have access to a range of grants and loans depending on their circumstances, including the Bounce Back Loans Scheme for small businesses, the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, and the deferral of tax payments.

21st Feb 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the number of first time buyers that have used a (a) Help to Buy ISA and (b) Lifetime ISA to fund the purchase of a home.

370,768 first-time buyers have made use of a Help to Buy: ISA up to September 2019. This information is available in the Help to Buy: ISA Scheme Quarterly Statistics report, which was released on 27 February 2020 and is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/help-to-buy-isa-scheme-quarterly-statistics-december-2015-to-30-september-2019

An estimate of the number of first-time buyers who have used a Lifetime ISA to fund the purchase of a home is not currently available.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
13th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what estimate she has made of the average length of time taken to issue biometric residence permit cards to Turkish citizens living in the UK.

Data is not available broken down by nationality in relation to Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) production and delivery times.

Data is published relating to performance against decision making service standards for each application route and can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/visas-and-citizenship-data-q1-2021

UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) advise applicants they can expect delivery of their Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) within 10 working days of receiving their decision notification.

BRPs are produced on behalf of UKVI by the Driver and Vehicle Licencing Agency (DVLA). DVLA have a service level agreement to complete 90% of production requests within one working day and the remaining 10% within two working days. For quarter one of financial year 2021/22 they achieved 85.1% (218,527) within 24 hours and 100% (256,730) within 48 hours. 2.1% (19,250) took longer than 48 hours.

FedEx took over the BRP delivery contract from DX in February 2020, after a bedding in period formal reporting started in July 2020. Between 1 July 2020 and 31 March 2021 FedEx attempted to deliver 99.2% of BRPs within 48 hours of collection from DVLA, against a target to attempt delivery within 48 hours of collection for 99% of BRP packages.

Kevin Foster
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Jul 2021
What estimate she has made of the total number of police officers (a) recruited by the Metropolitan Police in 2020 and (b) due to be recruited by that force in 2021.

We are increasing the number of police officers across England and Wales by 20,000 by March 2023.

In the calendar year 2020, the Metropolitan police recruited 3,121 police officers. This figure includes officers recruited as part of the Government’s national uplift programme as well as those recruited to backfill leavers. From January to March 2021 the force recruited 598 officers.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice) (jointly with Home Office)
8th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether representatives of the business travel sector will be included in her Department's industry working group on helping to implement the 14 day quarantine for air passengers entering the UK during the covid-19 pandemic.

The Home Secretary hosted an industry roundtable with the Aviation, Maritime and Security Minister on 4 June to discuss the health measures at the Border. This meeting was attended by representatives from all international travel modes.

The Department is now working with colleagues across HM Government on behalf of the Secretary of State to convene a second round table to further discuss the measures and our plans for reviewing these. Arrangements for this meeting, including attendees, have not yet been determined, but will be identified in due course.

Kevin Foster
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
13th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, when the wave 2 police officer recruitment targets for each police force area in England and Wales for 2021-22 will be published.

The Government is delivering on the people’s priorities by recruiting 20,000 police officers over the next three years. The allocation of the first 6,000 additional officers to be recruited across England and Wales by the end of March 2021 was announced in October 2019.

Allocations for years two and three of the uplift will be considered in the context of the Spending Review.

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/home-office-announces-first-wave-of-20000-police-officer-uplift

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice) (jointly with Home Office)
19th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what assessment he has made of how funding for remediation of building safety works will be sourced if it cannot be recovered from (a) the original developer of a building or (b) any existing warranties or insurances.

Our £5.1 billion investment in grant funding for cladding remediation on residential buildings of 18 metres and taller in England will protect hundreds of thousands of leaseholders from the cost of remediating unsafe cladding on their homes.

We are also stepping in to provide a generous finance scheme for the remediation of combustible cladding on medium-rise residential buildings, where the risk is lower. Under this scheme leaseholders in residential buildings between 11-18 metres will pay no more than £50 per month towards the cost of combustible cladding remediation.

Government funding does not absolve building owners of their responsibility to ensure that their buildings are safe. They should consider all routes to meet costs, protecting leaseholders where they can - for example through warranties and recovering costs from contractors for incorrect or poor work.

Under the Defective Premises Act, compensation can be claimed from anyone responsible for the defective work, such as developers, builders and other contractors, architects and designers.

We have seen many responsible developers and building owners stepping up to take responsibility for correcting these defects - for example, in more than half of the high-rise private sector buildings with ACM.     

Christopher Pincher
Minister of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
5th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, when his Department plans to publish the full bidding prospectus for the Community Ownership Fund.

My Department will be publishing shortly the prospectus for the Community Ownership Fund. In most cases, community groups will be able to make the case for up to £250,000, matching funds which communities have raised.  The prospectus will set out detailed advice on how to structure a bid, what activity to undertake to support this, what information to include, and the criteria by which bids will be assessed.   

I will update the House when the bidding prospectus is published to ensure that your constituents are fully informed of how this Government are supporting local people to protect and sustain important local assets by bringing them into community ownership.

Eddie Hughes
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
5th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, when he plans to announce full details of the long-term, low interest, government-backed financing arrangement for cladding removal in buildings between 11 and 18 metres, announced in February 2021.

On 10 February, we announced a generous finance scheme, which will provide leaseholders in residential buildings of 11-18 metres with access to finance for remediation of dangerous cladding, and a commitment that their monthly repayment costs through the scheme will not exceed £50 a month. We will publish more information on the scheme as soon as we are in a position to do so.

Christopher Pincher
Minister of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
22nd Feb 2021
What steps he is taking to support leaseholders in buildings under 18 metres in height that require fire safety remediation works.

The Government has announced a generous financing scheme which will mean that buildings of 11-18 metres in height will be able to access finance for the remediation of unsafe cladding, with a commitment that leaseholders will not need to pay more than £50 a month towards this. By providing this financing scheme we are ensuring that money is available for remediation, accelerating the process and making homes safer as quickly as possible.

Christopher Pincher
Minister of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
10th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, whether he plans to further extend planning permission beyond 1 May 2021 for those permissions which lapsed between 23 March and 31 December 2020 during the covid-19 outbreak.

The Business and Planning Act 2020 introduced measures to enable certain planning permissions and listed building consents in England which had lapsed or were due to lapse during 2020 to be extended to 1 May 2021. These measures provide for the power to extend the eligibility date for permissions and the time period for implementation. This is being kept under review at this time.

Christopher Pincher
Minister of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what estimate he has made of the number of first time buyers that have purchased a property through a shared ownership scheme in each year since 2015.

The Department does not collect this information.

The total number of new shared ownership properties completed since 2015-16 can be found in Live Table 1007bC here https://www.gov.uk/government/statistical-data-sets/live-tables-on-affordable-housing-supply.

Christopher Pincher
Minister of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what assessment he has made of the contribution of Local Economic Partnerships (LEPs) to increasing levels of (a) economic growth, (b) new local infrastructure and (c) skills among the workforce in each LEP area.

Local Economic Partnerships (LEPs) play a vital role in providing a business voice to inform investment decisions and drive economic growth across the country. LEP performance is monitored through an annual assurance process and regular reporting, such as quarterly data returns.

There are over 1,200 Growth Deal projects in progress with almost 700 projects having been completed by September 2019, covering themes including transport, skills, digital infrastructure, housing and business support.

LEPs are also required to publish Delivery Plans and End of Year Reports, which set out details of the contributions they are making to promote economic growth in their areas.

Simon Clarke
Chief Secretary to the Treasury
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what estimate he has made of the amount of public sector land not in use that could be used for housing.

The Public Land for Housing programme (2015-2020) aims to identify and release surplus central government land with capacity for at least 160,000 homes in England by end March 2020. Since the start of the programme to end June 2019, departments had sold 508 sites with capacity for c48,000 homes. We confirmed to the Public Accounts Committee in 2019 that land for 160,000 homes will be released to a longer time frame due to the complexities of disposal and the evolving demands placed on departments’ estates.

We are currently considering options for a next programme, reflecting on lessons learnt. Decisions on a future programme, including estimating the amount of centrally owned public sector land that could be used for housing, will be made at Spending Review.

In addition, at Budget 2016, an announcement was made that councils would collaborate with central government on a local authority land ambition, working with their partners to release surplus local authority-owned land with the capacity for at least 160,000 homes by the end of March 2020. As of August 2019, two-thirds of local authorities in England were forecasting the release of land for approximately 128,000 homes by the end of March 2020. We will report on the final local authority land ambition numbers in Summer 2020 once the final set of data has been collected. We are considering options for the future of the local authority land ambition after March 2020, including estimating the amount of surplus local authority land that could be used for housing.

Information on land held by individual sectors is continually refined.

Christopher Pincher
Minister of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what estimate he has made of the size of the land bank that could be used for housing held by the (a) the public sector as a whole, (b) the NHS, (c) Network Rail, (d) local authorities and (e) the armed forces.

The Public Land for Housing programme (2015-2020) aims to identify and release surplus central government land with capacity for at least 160,000 homes in England by end March 2020. Since the start of the programme to end June 2019, departments had sold 508 sites with capacity for c48,000 homes. We confirmed to the Public Accounts Committee in 2019 that land for 160,000 homes will be released to a longer time frame due to the complexities of disposal and the evolving demands placed on departments’ estates.

We are currently considering options for a next programme, reflecting on lessons learnt. Decisions on a future programme, including estimating the amount of centrally owned public sector land that could be used for housing, will be made at Spending Review.

In addition, at Budget 2016, an announcement was made that councils would collaborate with central government on a local authority land ambition, working with their partners to release surplus local authority-owned land with the capacity for at least 160,000 homes by the end of March 2020. As of August 2019, two-thirds of local authorities in England were forecasting the release of land for approximately 128,000 homes by the end of March 2020. We will report on the final local authority land ambition numbers in Summer 2020 once the final set of data has been collected. We are considering options for the future of the local authority land ambition after March 2020, including estimating the amount of surplus local authority land that could be used for housing.

Information on land held by individual sectors is continually refined.

Christopher Pincher
Minister of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what estimate he has made of the number of first time buyers that have purchased a property through the Help to Buy scheme in each year since its inception.

The number of first time buyers that have purchased a property through the Help to Buy : Equity Loan scheme in each year since its inception in 2013 can be seen in the table below. Data for 2019 is not included as it is not complete:

YEAR

TOTAL

2013

12,467

2014

22,618

2015

25,069

2016

30,672

2017

37,476

2018

42,785

Christopher Pincher
Minister of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what estimate he has made of the number of homes delivered through the Homes England strategic partnership model with Housing Associations.

The Government is committed to increasing the supply of social housing and has made £9 billion available through the Affordable Homes Programme to March 2022 to deliver approximately 250,000 new affordable homes.

We have secured 23 strategic partnerships between Homes England and housing associations, to deliver an additional 39,431 affordable housing starts by March 2022. To date, allocations for over 40,000 new homes have been made through these partnerships. Further information may be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/shared-ownership-and-affordable-homes-programme-2016-to-2021-guidance.

Christopher Pincher
Minister of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, how many homes he estimates will be sold under shared ownership schemes in (a) 2020, (b) 2021, (c) 2022 and (d) 2023.

The Government is committed to increasing the supply of affordable homes in a wide range of tenures, including shared ownership, and has made £9bn available through the Affordable Homes Programme to March 2022 to deliver approximately 250,000 new affordable homes. We have committed to renewing the Affordable Homes Programme and to reforming shared ownership to make it fairer and more transparent.

We do not hold estimates for the number of shared ownership homes that will be sold in future years.

Christopher Pincher
Minister of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, whether he has plans to provide a government guarantee for the debt funding of housing associations.

On 4 November 2019 the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government published an Invitation to Tender asking for bids to operate a new £3 billion Affordable Homes Guarantee Scheme. The Invitation to Tender closed on 3 February and the Department is currently reviewing bids. The scheme would be open to Private Registered Providers of affordable housing and provide guaranteed debt finance to support the delivery of new, additional affordable homes, including for rent and ownership.

Christopher Pincher
Minister of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)