Written questions and answers

Written questions allow Members of Parliament to ask government ministers for information on the work, policy and activities of government departments.

Historical written answers can be found in Hansard.

Find the latest written questions and answers for the 2015-16 session below. We welcome your feedback on this service.

Show
by:
Find by:
Close

UIN

Unique Identifying Number – Every written question in the House of Commons has a UIN per Parliament. In the House of Lords each written questions has a UIN per parliamentary session.
Showing 1-20 out of 40337
Results per page
Results per page 20 | 50 | 100
Expand all answers
Print selected
Q
(Cambridge)
Asked on: 13 November 2015
Department for Culture, Media and Sport
VisitEngland
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what recent discussions he has had with VisitEngland on fiscal support for the Great Places Fund; and what the outcome of those discussions was.
A
Answered by: David Evennett
Answered on: 24 March 2016

The British Tourist Authority received a very positive Spending Review settlement, with a stable budget over the next four years for both Britain and England activity, an increase in overall GREAT funding and the new £40million Discover England Fund. The Fund will be administered by VisitEngland and will benefit both domestic and international tourism, making it easier for all visitors to book, access and enjoy our tourism offer.

Following the floods caused by storms Desmond and Eva,, £1million has also been provided for a promotional campaign to encourage British families to take holidays in the North of England.

Grouped Questions: 16197
Q
(Cambridge)
Asked on: 13 November 2015
Department for Culture, Media and Sport
Tourism: Marketing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what plans he has to (a) maintain and (b) increase real terms funding for marketing of domestic tourism after 2015.
A
Answered by: David Evennett
Answered on: 24 March 2016

The British Tourist Authority received a very positive Spending Review settlement, with a stable budget over the next four years for both Britain and England activity, an increase in overall GREAT funding and the new £40million Discover England Fund. The Fund will be administered by VisitEngland and will benefit both domestic and international tourism, making it easier for all visitors to book, access and enjoy our tourism offer.

Following the floods caused by storms Desmond and Eva,, £1million has also been provided for a promotional campaign to encourage British families to take holidays in the North of England.

Grouped Questions: 16193
Q
(Romford)
Asked on: 09 March 2016
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
UK Membership of EU
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, with reference to the report, The process for withdrawing from the EU Cm9216, published on 29 February 2016, if he will take steps to ensure that, in the event of the UK leaving the EU, the principles enshrined within Protocol 3 of the 1972 Accession Treaty are retained following the negotiation of the UK's relationship with the EU.
A
Answered by: Mr David Lidington
Answered on: 24 March 2016

The Channel Islands and the Isle of Man have a special relationship with the EU, provided under Protocol 3 to the UK’s Treaty of Accession to the European Community. The procedure governing a country’s departure from the EU is set out in Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union. This provides for a period of two years for the negotiation of exit terms. After two years, the departing Member State is deemed to have left the EU, meaning that both the rights and the obligations that derive from membership would lapse. This two year deadline can be extended, but only by unanimous agreement of all EU Member States.

At the February European Council, the Government negotiated a new settlement, giving the United Kingdom a special status in a reformed European Union. The Government's position, as set out by the Prime Minister, my Rt Hon. Friend the Member for Witney (Mr Cameron), to the House on 22 February, is that the UK will be stronger, safer and better off remaining in a reformed EU.

Q
Asked by Lord Berkeley
Asked on: 11 March 2016
Department for Transport
M4
Lords
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the total overall cost of the planned M4 relief road south of Newport, and what funding they will provide, if any, for that project.
Answered on: 24 March 2016

The Department for Transport (DfT) is in regular contact with the devolved governments in both Scotland and Wales to discuss strategic matters and to co-operate on cross border roads. In this case, the M4 relief road south of Newport is entirely a matter for the Welsh Assembly and DfT have made no assessment of the scheme.

Asked on: 11 March 2016
Department for Culture, Media and Sport
BBC: Royal Charters
Lords
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of whether the BBC's Royal Charter should be for at least 10 years.
A
Answered by: Baroness Neville-Rolfe
Answered on: 24 March 2016

These issues are being considered as part of Charter Review. The Government will set out its proposals in the forthcoming White Paper.

Grouped Questions: HL6940 | HL6941 | HL6943
Asked on: 11 March 2016
Department for Culture, Media and Sport
BBC: Public Appointments
Lords
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of whether the BBC new board members should (1) be appointed without ministerial influence, and (2) include audience and staff representatives.
A
Answered by: Baroness Neville-Rolfe
Answered on: 24 March 2016

These issues are being considered as part of Charter Review. The Government will set out its proposals in the forthcoming White Paper.

Grouped Questions: HL6939 | HL6941 | HL6943
Asked on: 11 March 2016
Department for Culture, Media and Sport
BBC
Lords
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the case for the BBC's service licences being reviewed and strengthened by an independent regulator at an early date.
A
Answered by: Baroness Neville-Rolfe
Answered on: 24 March 2016

These issues are being considered as part of Charter Review. The Government will set out its proposals in the forthcoming White Paper.

Grouped Questions: HL6939 | HL6940 | HL6943
Asked on: 11 March 2016
Department for Culture, Media and Sport
Television: Licensing
Lords
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the appropriate level for the BBC licence fee and of the case for that level being recommended by an independent regulator.
A
Answered by: Baroness Neville-Rolfe
Answered on: 24 March 2016

The BBC Charter Review Consultation Paper, published in July 2015, set out the issues for consideration in Charter Review, including questions about how the BBC is funded. The Government will set out its proposals in the forthcoming White Paper, but remains clear that the licence fee is a tax and therefore should ultimately be decided by Ministers. The level of the licence fee will be agreed once questions on the BBC's scope and purposes, have been agreed.

Asked on: 11 March 2016
Department for Culture, Media and Sport
BBC
Lords
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the case for maintaining the scale and scope of the BBC's coverage on all platforms.
A
Answered by: Baroness Neville-Rolfe
Answered on: 24 March 2016

These issues are being considered as part of Charter Review. The Government will set out its proposals in the forthcoming White Paper.

Grouped Questions: HL6939 | HL6940 | HL6941
Q
(Belfast East)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 14 March 2016
Northern Ireland Office
Immunity Certificates: Northern Ireland
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, how many public interest immunity applications her Department has (a) received and (b) approved in the last five years.
A
Answered by: Mrs Theresa Villiers
Answered on: 24 March 2016
Holding answer received on 17 March 2016

Records indicate that my Department has received and approved a total of 31 applications for public interest immunity in the last five years.

Q
Asked by Julian Knight
(Solihull)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 14 March 2016
Department for Transport
Roads: Solihull
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what funding his Department has allocated to Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council for local road maintenance in the latest period for which figures are available.
A
Answered by: Andrew Jones
Answered on: 24 March 2016

Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council is part of the West Midlands Integrated Transport Authority which will receive £85.1 million in capital funding from the Department for Transport for local highways maintenance from 2015/16 to 2020/21. This funding is for all authorities within the West Midlands Integrated Transport Authority except Birmingham which has an operational highway maintenance project funded through the Private Finance Initiative. The Department does not hold information on the highway maintenance funding Solihull receives from the West Midlands Integrated Transport Authority.

Asked on: 14 March 2016
Department of Health
Human Embryo Experiments
Lords
To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Prior of Brampton on 14 February (HL6504), who made the decision; whether it was approved by members of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) by a vote; and when the last lay summary for an embryo research licence application was on the "awaiting approval" section of the HFEA website.
A
Answered by: Lord Prior of Brampton
Answered on: 24 March 2016

The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) has advised that it cannot confirm who decided the change in practice. This was an operational decision and not subject to a vote of Authority members. The last lay summary of an embryo research licence application on the HFEA website was research licence 0188 which was approved in May 2012.

Q
Asked by Lord Berkeley
Asked on: 14 March 2016
Department for Energy and Climate Change
Electricity Generation
Lords
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of (1) the completion date, and (2) the impact on electricity sale prices, of (a) the Swansea Lagoon project, and (b) the Hinkley Point nuclear power station.
Answered on: 24 March 2016

EDF have said that they expect Hinkley Point C to start generating electricity in 2025. Hinkley Point C is a good deal for everyone including consumers – Hinkley would provide reliable energy at an affordable cost, powering nearly six million homes for around 60 years and creating more than 25,000 jobs.

The negotiations regarding a Contract for Difference for the proposed Swansea Bay lagoon remain ongoing.

On 10 February, the Government announced an independent review to consider alternatives approaches to financing tidal lagoons, providing an evidence base to ensuring decisions are taken in the best interest of bill-payers.

Asked on: 15 March 2016
Department of Health
Stem Cells
Lords
To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answers by Lord Darzi of Denham on 13 October 2008 (WA 35), by Lord Drayson on 5 May 2009 (WA 95–6), by Earl Howe on 31 March 2011 (WA 298–9) and by Lord Prior of Brampton on 3 March (HL6226), whether it is still a condition of any licence granted by the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) that a sample of the stem cell lines derived must be deposited in the UK Stem Cell Bank; if so, whether a sample of any stem cell lines derived following either nuclear transfer or pronuclear transfer have ever been so deposited; and if not, why the HFEA has continued to permit the use of nuclear transfer under licence R0152 when the stated objectives of "therapeutic cloning" remain unmet almost twelve years after the relevant licence was initially granted.
A
Answered by: Lord Prior of Brampton
Answered on: 24 March 2016

The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) has advised that it is a condition of all research licences that a sample of the cell line is deposited in the UK Stem Cell Bank (UKSCB), in accordance with Research Licence Condition R30. Stem cells are not accepted by UKSCB until they are fully characterised and cultured to ensure uniform characteristics.

As detailed in the HFEA’s May 2014 inspection report for research project R0152, Towards improving assisted reproductive technologies for the treatment of infertility and prevention of disease, the HFEA has also advised that a number of research grade embryonic stem cell (ESC) lines have been generated through that research and in line with the licence. These have been deposited at the UKSCB. One ESC line in compliance with the current standards for clinical grade ESC lines has also been produced; this is currently undergoing a due diligence process in preparation for depositing with the UKSCB. A copy of the report is attached.

HFEA Newcastle Inspection Report (PDF Document, 718.55 KB)
Q
Asked on: 15 March 2016
Scotland Office
Sunday Trading: Scotland
Lords
To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they have received any clarification from the Scottish Government as to how the relaxation of Sunday trading laws in England and Wales would negatively affect Scotland, and if not, when they expect to receive that clarification.
A
Answered by: Lord Dunlop
Answered on: 24 March 2016

In view of the will of the House of Commons, we are no longer proposing to give local authorities the ability to extend the Sunday trading hours of large shops.

Q
Asked by Louise Haigh
(Sheffield, Heeley)
Asked on: 16 March 2016
Cabinet Office
Electoral Register: Credit Reference Agencies
Commons
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will make an assessment of the effect on electoral registration rates of introduction of a requirement to pass on electoral roll data to credit reference firms.
A
Answered by: John Penrose
Answered on: 24 March 2016

Copies of the electoral register have been made available for sale in one form or another since at least 1832. Credit reference agencies purchase the electoral register because it provides proof to lenders that applicants for credit do in fact live at the address given and that they are not attempting to obtain credit fraudulently using a false name and address. Given the importance of credit in a modern economy, the then Government concluded in 2002 that this was in the public interest. The credit reference agencies are precluded by law from doing anything else with the electoral data, unless the data is also included in the edited register, from which individuals can opt out.

Q
Asked by Maria Eagle
(Garston and Halewood)
Asked on: 16 March 2016
Department for Culture, Media and Sport
Football: Sportsgrounds
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what his Department's expenditure was on artificial football pitches in (a) 2010-11, (b) 2011-12, (c) 2012-13, (d) 2013-14, (e) 2014-15 and (f) 2015-16 to date.
A
Answered by: David Evennett
Answered on: 24 March 2016

Since 2010/11, the Government has invested over £125 million with the specific purpose of creating and maintaining new artificial grass pitches (AGPs) delivered by the Football Foundation, Sport England (whose investment includes AGPs for football, and multi-sport projects/facilities) and Parklife football hubs programme. This investment came to £8,925,413 in 2010/11; £11,958,279 in 2011/12; £18,107,308 in 2012/13; £26,996,902 in 2013/14; £31,751,581 in 2014/15; and £27,407,989 in 2015/16 to date.

Government funding in the Football Foundation has been matched by the Premier League and the Football Association.

Q
Asked by Mrs Anne Main
(St Albans)
Asked on: 16 March 2016
Department of Health
Trauma
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps his Department is taking to implement the recommendations for trauma-focussed care outlined in the report Future in Mind.
A
Answered by: Alistair Burt
Answered on: 24 March 2016

It is important that awareness of trauma (from abuse or neglect) and the impact it can have on children and young people’s mental health is raised across the workforce and that there is clarity on roles and responsibilities. The Department has asked that Health Education England (HEE) and NHS England work together to consider the training required for the health and wider children’s workforce to become more trauma aware, building this into HEE’s work programme.

Routine Enquiry (asking about experience of trauma at every appropriate health appointment for over 16 year olds) and sensitive enquiry in all children and young people’s services (which was proposed in Future in Mind) will be tested in key services shortly. However, there is still work to do to make sure we reach out to all parts of the workforce who may see the presentation of trauma in the children that they work with. Routine and sensitive enquiry by frontline health professionals such as general practitioners and mental health professionals is an important starting point, but it will be just as important to use those working in schools and the community to raise awareness more broadly and initiate learning about trauma and its impact on mental health.

Q
Asked by Lord Laird
Asked on: 16 March 2016
Northern Ireland Office
Belfast Agreement
Lords
To ask Her Majesty’s Government how they define "parity of esteem" as specified in the Belfast Agreement 1998, and which is applicable to all who live in the UK.
A
Answered by: Lord Dunlop
Answered on: 24 March 2016

This Government sees parity of esteem as treating everybody in Northern Ireland fairly, with equal respect. For a One Nation Government that means governing in the interests of the whole community. As our Northern Ireland manifesto at the General Election stated: “We want to see a peaceful, stable and prosperous Northern Ireland where everybody can get on to the best of their ability – irrespective of their community background”. It went on to say that “Our aspiration is to build one, united Northern Ireland in which everybody has a stake in the future”.

Q
Asked by Lord Mawson
Asked on: 16 March 2016
Department for Transport
M11: Litter
Lords
To ask Her Majesty’s Government when litter was last removed from the southern end of the M11 in East London, how often such litter is removed, and by whom.
A
Answered on: 24 March 2016

The last time that litter was removed from the southern end of the M11 in East London was 17 March 2016.

Highways England clears litter from the M11 on a daily basis, on the sections where it safe to do so, without using traffic lanes, such as the verges with hard shoulders. The M11 slip roads and verges with no hard shoulder are litter picked on a six weekly cycle with lanes closed to protect the work force.

Expand all answers
Print selected
Showing 1-20 out of 40337
Results per page
Results per page 20 | 50 | 100