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 2017-19 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 40
Results per page
Results per page 20 | 50 | 100
Expand all answers
Print selected
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[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: 10 October 2017
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Beavers
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, which Minister of his Department is responsible for taking decisions to approve or reject specific proposals for projects to reintroduce beavers into the UK.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 16 October 2017

Under section 78 of the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act, the Secretary of State has authorised Natural England to act on his behalf to determine applications for licences to release species, including the European beaver, subject to the controls in section 14 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 (as amended). The Secretary of State may, as he sees fit, instruct Natural England in respect to the discharge of this function and he may also choose to make the final determination of a licence himself.

There is a Forestry Commission proposal to release beavers into a fenced enclosure in the Forest of Dean near Lydbrook. This project would require a conditional licence allowing release into a secure enclosure. An application for a licence would need to be submitted to Natural England to determine, and the evidence required would include whether there are appropriate measures in place to keep the beavers securely and to recapture any animals that should escape.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[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: 10 October 2017
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Beavers: Forest of Dean
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what his Department's policy is on the proposal for the reintroduction of beavers to the Forest of Dean near Lydbrook; which Minister of his Department is responsible for making a decision on that project; when such a decision will be made; whether that project requires approval by the Forestry Commission; whether such approval has been given; and what precise scientific evidence his Department will use to reach a decision on that matter.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 16 October 2017

Under section 78 of the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act, the Secretary of State has authorised Natural England to act on his behalf to determine applications for licences to release species, including the European beaver, subject to the controls in section 14 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 (as amended). The Secretary of State may, as he sees fit, instruct Natural England in respect to the discharge of this function and he may also choose to make the final determination of a licence himself.

There is a Forestry Commission proposal to release beavers into a fenced enclosure in the Forest of Dean near Lydbrook. This project would require a conditional licence allowing release into a secure enclosure. An application for a licence would need to be submitted to Natural England to determine, and the evidence required would include whether there are appropriate measures in place to keep the beavers securely and to recapture any animals that should escape.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[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: 10 October 2017
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Beavers
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what his policy is on the reintroduction of beavers to the UK.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 16 October 2017

Under section 78 of the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act, the Secretary of State has authorised Natural England to act on his behalf to determine applications for licences to release species, including the European beaver, subject to the controls in section 14 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 (as amended). The Secretary of State may, as he sees fit, instruct Natural England in respect to the discharge of this function and he may also choose to make the final determination of a licence himself.

There is a Forestry Commission proposal to release beavers into a fenced enclosure in the Forest of Dean near Lydbrook. This project would require a conditional licence allowing release into a secure enclosure. An application for a licence would need to be submitted to Natural England to determine, and the evidence required would include whether there are appropriate measures in place to keep the beavers securely and to recapture any animals that should escape.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[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: 09 October 2017
Department of Health
Nabiximols
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what medical evidence his Department has recently taken into account in its decision not to license nabiximols for use on the NHS.
A
Answered by: Steve Brine
Answered on: 12 October 2017

Nabiximols (Sativex) is licensed in the United Kingdom for the treatment of moderate to severe spasticity in multiple sclerosis. The National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) did not recommended nabiximols in its 2014 clinical guidelines as it is not a cost-effective treatment.

NICE develops authoritative, evidence-based guidance on best practice for the National Health Service. NICE operates with a high degree of independence from the Government and is responsible for the recommendations that it makes to the NHS. Its guidance is based on a thorough assessment of the available evidence and is developed through engagement with stakeholders.

However, where there is an absence of final guidance recommendations from NICE, decisions on the funding of a licensed treatment on the NHS are taken by the relevant clinician and commissioner (such as NHS England or individual clinical commissioning groups) based on the individual needs of the patient.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[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: 09 October 2017
Department for Transport
Aviation: Noise
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what (a) remit and (b) powers he plans to give the Independent Commission on Civil Aviation Noise.
A
Answered by: Mr John Hayes
Answered on: 12 October 2017

The Government consulted on proposals for an Independent Commission on Civil Aviation Noise as part of its UK Airspace Policy consultation. We intend to respond to the consultation in the autumn, outlining the Commission’s remit and powers.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[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: 09 October 2017
Department for Transport
Aviation: Noise
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what process he plans to put in place to identify and recruit the lead commissioner for the Independent Commission on Civil Aviation Noise.
A
Answered by: Mr John Hayes
Answered on: 12 October 2017

The process to appoint the lead commissioner for the Independent Commission on Civil aviation noise will be in line with the Code of Practice issued by the Commissioner for Public Appointments.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[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: 09 October 2017
Department for Transport
Aviation: Noise
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when he plans to establish the proposed Independent Commission on Civil Aviation Noise.
A
Answered by: Mr John Hayes
Answered on: 12 October 2017

The Government consulted on proposals for an Independent Commission on Civil Aviation Noise as part of its UK Airspace Policy consultation. We intend to respond to the consultation in the autumn, outlining the timetable for the Commission’s establishment.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 14 September 2017
Department of Health
Lyme Disease: Health Education
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps he is taking to improve public awareness and education on Lyme disease and its prevention.
A
Answered by: Steve Brine
Answered on: 10 October 2017

The GOV.UK and NHS Choices websites have information for patients on the recognition of Lyme disease, tick awareness and the prevention of tick bites accessible at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/lyme-disease-guidance-data-and-analysis

and

http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/Lyme-disease/Pages/Introduction.aspx

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence Clinical Knowledge summaries have information for clinicians available at:

https://cks.nice.org.uk/lyme-disease#!topicsummary

Public Health England (PHE) hold regular training days for general practitioners (GPs), and the charity Lyme Disease Action has public information on its website and a training module for GPs.

PHE run a tick surveillance system to identify tick distribution and areas where ticks are problems across England. PHE have been encouraging local authorities and park authorities to develop local public health material regarding tick risks and dealing with bites, and this has been taken up by some in high risk areas.

Grouped Questions: 105280
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 14 September 2017
Department of Health
Lyme Disease
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps he is taking to work with local authorities in areas where the risk of Lyme disease is higher than average to reduce the incidence of the disease.
A
Answered by: Steve Brine
Answered on: 10 October 2017

The GOV.UK and NHS Choices websites have information for patients on the recognition of Lyme disease, tick awareness and the prevention of tick bites accessible at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/lyme-disease-guidance-data-and-analysis

and

http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/Lyme-disease/Pages/Introduction.aspx

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence Clinical Knowledge summaries have information for clinicians available at:

https://cks.nice.org.uk/lyme-disease#!topicsummary

Public Health England (PHE) hold regular training days for general practitioners (GPs), and the charity Lyme Disease Action has public information on its website and a training module for GPs.

PHE run a tick surveillance system to identify tick distribution and areas where ticks are problems across England. PHE have been encouraging local authorities and park authorities to develop local public health material regarding tick risks and dealing with bites, and this has been taken up by some in high risk areas.

Grouped Questions: 105279
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 14 September 2017
Department of Health
Lyme Disease: Vaccination
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps the Government is taking to support the development of a vaccine against Lyme disease.
A
Answered by: Steve Brine
Answered on: 10 October 2017

The Government is not currently supporting the development of a Lyme disease vaccine. The Department funds health and care research through the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). Any organisation that considers it can carry out high quality clinical, applied research can apply for funding from the NIHR.

The Department has commissioned an independent research team to undertake four systematic reviews to capture and synthesise United Kingdom and international evidence on Lyme disease in the following areas: epidemiology/routes of transmission of Lyme disease; diagnosis; treatment; and prevention. The reviews will be completed and published by the end of 2017.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 05 September 2017
Home Office
Police: Finance
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps she is taking to ensure that areas with historically low levels of crime continue to receive necessary levels of funding for local police.
A
Answered by: Mr Nick Hurd
Answered on: 20 September 2017

The 2015 Spending Review protected overall police spending in real terms. Since 2015/16 police forces have received broadly flat cash budgets and we are increasing investment in transformation, improved communications and technology capabilities

Decisions on the most effective use of the Metropolitan Police’s resources are for Chief Officers and the Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime (MOPAC) who are held to account by the communities they serve.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 06 September 2017
Department for Transport
Heathrow Airport
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate he has made of the total economic benefit to each region from expansion at Heathrow Airport.
A
Answered by: Mr John Hayes
Answered on: 14 September 2017

The Government’s latest estimate, published on 2 February, was that a new runway at Heathrow will deliver benefits to passengers and the wider UK economy of up to £61 billion.

Regions across the country should benefit from new destinations, extra seats and increased frequency of service created by increased capacity at Heathrow.

As part of the consultation on the draft Airports National Policy Statement (NPS) the government was clear that further work was underway to update the evidence base, including revised aviation demand forecasts. The Secretary of State for Transport announced on 7 September that there is a need to conduct a short period of further consultation to allow this updated evidence to be taken into account.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 06 September 2017
Department for Transport
Unmanned Air Vehicles
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps he is taking to prevent the deliberate use of drones to disrupt transport.
A
Answered by: Mr John Hayes
Answered on: 14 September 2017

The Government takes the safety risks of drones to transport very seriously. We have already taken action on the misuse of drones by improving enforcement of the law, resulting in several successful drone prosecutions. Following consultation, the Government announced in July that it will introduce a registration scheme to increase the accountability of users, explore the potential of raising penalties for current offences and review the powers available to law enforcement agencies to enforce the law.

In addition, the flying of drones near sensitive sites is already prohibited. Government has been undertaking a programme of work aimed at improving our defences against drones, with a focus on sensitive and important locations and events. This includes exploration of technological options to detect and counter drones, with trials and demonstrations taking place in order to examine the applicability of various technological options to do so.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 05 September 2017
Home Office
101 Calls
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what the average waiting time was by local authority area for calls to the 101 non-emergency crime reporting service in the most recent year for which figures are available.
A
Answered by: Mr Nick Hurd
Answered on: 13 September 2017

The handling of 101 calls is an operational matter for the police. The Home Office does not request 101 data from forces.

Grouped Questions: 8963
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 05 September 2017
Home Office
101 Calls
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps her Department is taking to ensure that operators on the 101 non-emergency crime reporting service have sufficient knowledge of the local areas for which they are responsible.
A
Answered by: Mr Nick Hurd
Answered on: 13 September 2017

The handling of 101 calls is an operational matter for the police. The Home Office does not request 101 data from forces.

Grouped Questions: 8983
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 05 September 2017
Department for Transport
Unmanned Air Vehicles
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when he plans to introduce proposals for (a) mandatory registration of drones and (b) safety courses for owners of drones.
A
Answered by: Mr John Hayes
Answered on: 13 September 2017

Following our public consultation on drones, we announced in July our intention to introduce a registration scheme and mandatory competency testing for all users of drones weighing 250g or more. In doing so, we will increase the accountability of these users and improve their awareness of the rules and regulations, helping to reduce the misuse of drones and protect public safety, security and privacy. Furthermore, anyone using a drone of 250g and above will receive, at minimum, online training on how to fly safely and then be required to pass a short knowledge test in order to prove they have understood the rules.

We are currently considering legislative vehicles to deliver these measures and what further steps may need to be taken.

We will be working with the Civil Aviation Authority and industry partners to develop the detailed standards and requirements for these two policies, to ensure effective and robust systems are put in place, and intend to provide an update soon.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 05 September 2017
Department for Transport
Unmanned Air Vehicles: Registration
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what plans he has to require the registration of drones.
A
Answered by: Mr John Hayes
Answered on: 13 September 2017

Following our public consultation on drones, we announced in July our intention to introduce a registration scheme and mandatory competency testing for all users of drones weighing 250g or more. In doing so, we will increase the accountability of these users and improve their awareness of the rules and regulations, helping to reduce the misuse of drones and protect public safety, security and privacy. Furthermore, anyone using a drone of 250g and above will receive, at minimum, online training on how to fly safely and then be required to pass a short knowledge test in order to prove they have understood the rules.

We are currently considering legislative vehicles to deliver these measures and what further steps may need to be taken.

We will be working with the Civil Aviation Authority and industry partners to develop the detailed standards and requirements for these two policies, to ensure effective and robust systems are put in place, and intend to provide an update soon.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 06 September 2017
Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Green Investment Bank
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what his policy is on circumstances in which the special share in the Green Investment Bank (GIB) held by the Green Purposes Company Ltd can be used to approve or reject changes to GIB's green purposes as set out in the objects of its Articles of Association.
A
Answered by: Claire Perry
Answered on: 13 September 2017

Following the sale of the Green Investment Bank (GIB), should the company wish to amend, remove or alter the green objective within the objects of its Articles of Association, it must seek written approval from the Green Purposes Company Limited (GPC), which holds a special share in GIB (now called the Green Investment Group (GIG)).

The five trustees of GPC, who are independent of Government and the GIG, will form a judgement on the proposed amendment, and will either approve or reject the change to ensure that the green mission of the GIG is not weakened.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 05 September 2017
Home Office
101 Calls
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what assessment she has made of the efficacy of the 101 service for reporting low level crime.
A
Answered by: Mr Nick Hurd
Answered on: 12 September 2017

The Ipsos Mori survey for HMIC “Public views of policing in England and Wales 2016/17” published on 20 July 2017 shows that: people are most likely to call 999 for crimes/incidents against the person; there is a balance between 999 and 101 for property-related incidents; while for online incidents, anti-social behaviour and updates on previous incidents, 101 is the most likely choice. The survey can be found at:

https://www.ipsos.com/sites/default/files/2017-07/public-views-of-policing-2017-hmic.pdf

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 05 September 2017
Home Office
101 Calls
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many calls to the 101 non-emergency crime reporting service were terminated by the caller while waiting for an operator in each local authority area in the most recent year for which figures are available.
A
Answered by: Mr Nick Hurd
Answered on: 12 September 2017

The handling of 101 calls is an operational matter for the police. The Home Office does not request 101 data from forces.

Expand all answers
Print selected
Showing 1-20 out of 40
Results per page
Results per page 20 | 50 | 100