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 2019 session below. We welcome your feedback on this service.

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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.
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Q
Asked by Tracy Brabin
(Batley and Spen)
[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: 12 February 2020
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Commons
To ask the Minister of State, Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how much funding her Department has allocated to to UK Anti-Doping in each of the last three years.
A
Answered by: Nigel Huddleston
Answered on: 24 February 2020

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport has provided the following Grant-in-Aid funding to UK Anti-Doping over the past three years:

FY2016/17: £6.096m

FY2017/18: £5.996m

FY2018/19: £7.998m

Q
Asked by Tracy Brabin
(Batley and Spen)
[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: 12 February 2020
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Commons
To ask the Minister of State, Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of UK anti-doping procedures in preventing athletes who have failed drug tests from partaking in combat sports.
A
Answered by: Nigel Huddleston
Answered on: 24 February 2020

The UK’s national anti-doping organisation, UK Anti-Doping (UKAD), an arm’s length body of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, acts according to the remit laid out in the UK’s National Anti-Doping Policy, and implements the UK’s National Anti-Doping Rules: https://www.ukad.org.uk/anti-doping-rules.

These Rules ensure the requirements of the World Anti-Doping Code are met in the UK. The Rules make no distinction between individual sports in terms of sanctions.

Decisions around any athlete ban from sport (if contested) are made by the independent National Anti-Doping Panel (NADP). This is independent of UKAD and is run on behalf of DCMS. The NADP’s procedural rules are available on their website: https://www.sportresolutions.co.uk/images/uploads/files/D_1_-_2019_NADP_Rules.pdf

Q
Asked by Tracy Brabin
(Batley and Spen)
[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 February 2020
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
World Book Day
Commons
To ask the Minister of State, Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps his Department is taking to support World Book Day 2020.
A
Answered by: Helen Whately
Answered on: 13 February 2020

DCMS has no Departmental plans to celebrate World Book Day in 2020 directly. However, over 90% of local authority public library services in England have expressed interest in participating in World Book Day activities. World Book Day has also put a message in the fifteen £1 books taking part in the World Book day campaign to encourage children and young people to join their local library.

Q
Asked by Tracy Brabin
(Batley and Spen)
[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 February 2020
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Museums and Galleries
Commons
To ask the Minister of State, Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how many free museum visits have there been in each region and constituent part of the UK in each of the last three years.
A
Answered by: Helen Whately
Answered on: 13 February 2020

The government is committed to maintaining free entry to the permanent collections of national museums, as outlined in the 2019 manifesto.

As culture is a devolved matter, information would not be held by my department on a UK basis. We do not hold complete information on all museums in England. However, we do hold this information for the fifteen DCMS sponsored museum groups, which encompass 40 museums and galleries. Six groups are either partly or wholly based outside of London (National Museums Liverpool, Royal Armouries, Natural History Museum, Tate, Science Museum Group, Imperial War Museums), encompassing half the total number of sponsored museum sites. Visitor numbers for these museum groups are published online: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/sponsored-museums-and-galleries-annual-performance-indicators-201819

As the national development agency for museums, Arts Council England collects some information about museums and their visitors. It directly funds a number of regional museums through the National Portfolio and publishes data about their visitors figures. National Portfolio museums (and, pre-2018, Major Partner Museums) have a mix of operating models with some free to enter, some charging, and some charging for special exhibitions. Many charging museums also offer free or concessionary entry to local residents. https://www.artscouncil.org.uk/our-investment/national-portfolio-2018-22

Furthermore, the government supports free entry to regional museums through tax incentives like the VAT 33A relief scheme, and is committed to expanding access to museums across England.

Q
Asked by Tracy Brabin
(Batley and Spen)
[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 February 2020
Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Arts: Copyright and Intellectual Property
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to protect copyright and intellectual property for the creative industries in future trade negotiations.
A
Answered by: Nadhim Zahawi
Answered on: 13 February 2020

The Government recognises the significant contribution that creative industries make to the UK economy and have consulted with industry stakeholders on intellectual property and trade.

Our intellectual property regime is consistently rated as one of the best in the world. Any future trade agreement must achieve a balanced outcome for creators, producers, performers, users, and consumers, in line with international standards.

Q
Asked by Tracy Brabin
(Batley and Spen)
[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 February 2020
Treasury
Electronic Publishing: VAT
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, for what reasons the rate of VAT on e-publications is different from the rate for hard copy publications; and if he will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Jesse Norman
Answered on: 13 February 2020

Under current legislation, the UK applies a zero rate of VAT to physical publications. The supply of e-publications is standard rated.

Changes were made to EU legislation in December 2018 which gave Member States the option to apply a zero rate to e-publications. This has not so far been taken up by the UK.

The Government keeps all taxes under review, including VAT. Any amendments to the VAT regime as it applies to physical publications and e-publications must be carefully assessed against policy, economic and fiscal considerations. Any representations on this will be considered as part of the fiscal event process.

Q
Asked by Tracy Brabin
(Batley and Spen)
[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 February 2020
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport: Equal Pay
Commons
To ask the Minister of State, Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps he is taking to close the gender pay gap in his Department.
A
Answered by: Nigel Adams
Answered on: 13 February 2020

The DCMS mean and median gender pay gaps have reduced since 2018. The mean gender pay gap is 5.6%, down from 7.5% and the median gender pay is 16.6%, down from 22.9%. We have introduced actions recommended by the Government Equalities Office to support further reductions including:

  1. Improving the diversity of our talent pools through analysing gendered language in our job descriptions and adverts to ensure no-one is deterred by masculine or feminine framing.

  2. Improving the transparency of pay, reward and promotion processes to empower individuals to manage their careers and achieve goals.

  3. Promoting the uptake of Shared Parental Leave, using our Senior Civil Servants as rode models and our Diversity and Inclusion Ambassadors as champions.

Q
Asked by Tracy Brabin
(Batley and Spen)
[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: 03 February 2020
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Publishing: Digital Technology
Commons
To ask the Minister of State, Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps she is taking to support digital innovation in the publishing sector.
A
Answered by: Nigel Adams
Answered on: 06 February 2020

The UK publishing sector is one of the UKs oldest, most respected and successful industries. We recognise the importance of the publishing sector, economically and culturally, as well as the need to support digital innovation as consumption trends broaden beyond physical products.

In particular, the Government is committed to supporting the sustainability of the news publishing industry as it transitions online. Last week we responded to the Cairncross Review into a sustainable future of journalism in the UK, by setting out support for the majority of its recommendations.

The Government has already started to take forward some of the interventions proposed in the Review. We have worked with Nesta to develop a £2million pilot innovation fund, which launched in October 2019, and seeks to invest in new technological prototypes, start-ups and innovative business models to explore new ways of sustaining the industry in this changing landscape. The government will evaluate this pilot to inform decisions on the full innovation fund ahead of the next Spending Review.

Q
Asked by Tracy Brabin
(Batley and Spen)
[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: 03 February 2020
Treasury
Electronic Publishing: VAT
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what recent assessment he has made of the potential merits of removing VAT from sales of eBooks.
A
Answered by: Jesse Norman
Answered on: 06 February 2020

The Government keeps all taxes under review, including VAT.

Any amendments to the VAT regime as it applies to physical publications and e-publications must be carefully assessed against policy, economic and fiscal considerations. Any representations on this issue will be considered as part of the fiscal event process.

Q
Asked by Tracy Brabin
(Batley and Spen)
[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: 31 January 2020
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Internet: Children
Commons
To ask the Minister of State, Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps he is taking to prevent underaged children accessing dating applications.
A
Answered by: Matt Warman
Answered on: 05 February 2020

The Online Harms White Paper sets out our plans for world-leading legislation to make the UK the safest place in the world to be online. We intend to establish in law a new duty of care on companies towards their users, overseen by an independent regulator. The duty of care will ensure companies have appropriate systems and processes in place to keep their users safe. Companies will be required to take robust action when there is evidence that children are accessing inappropriate content, which includes underage access to dating applications.

Q
Asked by Tracy Brabin
(Batley and Spen)
[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: 30 January 2020
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
People's Postcode Lottery
Commons
To ask the Minister of State, Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, for what reasons the People's Postcode Lottery is not subject to the same regulations as the National Lottery.
A
Answered by: Helen Whately
Answered on: 04 February 2020

The People’s Postcode Lottery is an ‘umbrella’ lottery scheme, under which draws held by different societies are promoted under a single brand.

Society lotteries pre date the National Lottery, which has its own founding legislation. They are permitted as fundraising tools for charities, community groups, sports clubs and other non-commercial organisations. Unlike the National Lottery they have limits on ticket sales and prizes, must return a minimum amount to good causes, and do not have to pay Lottery Duty. The distinction between society lotteries and the National Lottery ensures that the two are not in direct competition. This is an important principle to maintain, as direct competition between the two sectors risks reducing the level of sales overall, and therefore reducing the amount available for good causes.

Q
Asked by Tracy Brabin
(Batley and Spen)
[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: 29 January 2020
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport: Overseas Trade
Commons
To ask the Minister of State, Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, pursuant to the Answer of 27 January 2020 to Question 6790 on Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport: Overseas Trade, if she will publish the membership of each committee.
A
Answered by: Nigel Adams
Answered on: 03 February 2020

The government intends to publish the membership of each committee in due course.

Q
Asked by Tracy Brabin
(Batley and Spen)
[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: 27 January 2020
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
BBC: Information Services
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent assessment she has made of the potential effect of the closure of the BBC Red Button Teletext service on the public's access to information.
A
Answered by: Nigel Adams
Answered on: 30 January 2020

The BBC is operationally and editorially independent from the government; therefore, the government has no role in deciding whether BBC services, such as the BBC Red Button teletext service, should be continued.

It is the BBC’s responsibility to assess the potential effect of the closure of the BBC Red Button service on the public’s access to information. The Government welcomes the BBC's decision to pause the closure of the Red Button service, ahead of its review of the impact of the closure on the most vulnerable including the elderly, and deaf and blind licence fee payers.

Grouped Questions: 8340
Q
Asked by Tracy Brabin
(Batley and Spen)
[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: 27 January 2020
Treasury
Tax Avoidance
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many individuals (a) in total and (b) per parliamentary constituency will HMRC directly notify of the changes to the application of the loan charge.
A
Answered by: Jesse Norman
Answered on: 30 January 2020

On 20 December 2019, the Government published the Independent Review of the Loan Charge and the Government’s response to the Review. The Government accepted all but one of the Review’s recommendations.

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) are writing to around 50,000 individuals directly to notify them of the outcome of the review, setting out what it means for the individual and the next steps for them. Information is not currently available at constituency level for these individuals.

Q
Asked by Tracy Brabin
(Batley and Spen)
[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: 27 January 2020
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Sports: Females
Commons
To ask the Minister of State, Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, when her Department plans to respond to the consultation on including the women's equivalent to men's sporting events in Category A of the list of sporting and other events of national interest maintained under section 97(1) of the Broadcasting Act 1996.
A
Answered by: Nigel Adams
Answered on: 30 January 2020

In July 2019 the government consulted on whether to add women’s equivalents of men’s events currently on the list to both group A and group B categories. The consultation closed on 11 December 2019. The government is now carefully considering the responses in detail and we will respond in due course.

Q
Asked by Tracy Brabin
(Batley and Spen)
[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: 22 January 2020
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Rugby: Finance
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how much funding from the public purse has been allocated to grassroots rugby union in each of the last three years.
A
Answered by: Nigel Adams
Answered on: 27 January 2020

Through Sport England, government has invested the following in grassroots rugby union in each of the last three years:

  • 2016/17: £4.06m
  • 2017/18: £3.45m
  • 2018/19: £4.02m

These figures include investment in both the Rugby Football Union as the national governing body for the sport, together with investment in specific community rugby union projects.

Over this time period, Sport England has invested a further £12.61m in multi-sport projects where rugby union is one of the sports benefitting.

Q
Asked by Tracy Brabin
(Batley and Spen)
[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: 22 January 2020
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport: Overseas Trade
Commons
To ask the Minister of State, Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how many trade advisory committees his Department has established; and who the members of each committee are.
A
Answered by: Nigel Adams
Answered on: 27 January 2020

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) has established two trade advisory committees jointly with the Department for International Trade. The members of these groups are stakeholders from various DCMS sectors and have a breadth of knowledge and experience in trade matters.

Q
Asked by Tracy Brabin
(Batley and Spen)
[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: 22 January 2020
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Arts
Commons
To ask the Minister of State, Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment he has made of the efficacy of existing schemes to promote the creative industries in the regions and nations of the UK.
A
Answered by: Nigel Adams
Answered on: 27 January 2020

The Creative Industries Sector Deal was launched jointly between government and industry in 2018 in order to unlock growth for creative businesses across the regions and nations of the UK. The programmes are still underway and their evaluations are ongoing.

Among the Sector Deal programmes are Creative Scale-Up, which aims to increase the profitability, scalability and productivity of small creative industries businesses in three pilot regions – Greater Manchester, the West Midlands and the West of England.

Others include the Creative Clusters programme - which is developing nine world class-creative clusters across the UK, from Dundee to Bristol and Cardiff to York - and the Audiences of the Futures programme, which is working at the cutting edge of tech and creativity, with projects across the nation and with partners such as the RSC in Stratford and Aardman Animations in Bristol.

Q
Asked by Tracy Brabin
(Batley and Spen)
[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: 22 January 2020
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Arts
Commons
To ask the Minister of State, Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what (a) support and (b) guidance he has made available to creative businesses on preparing for the UK leaving the EU.
A
Answered by: Nigel Adams
Answered on: 27 January 2020

The UK’s creative industries are an exporting powerhouse, delivering around 12 per cent of the UK total for exports in services. The sector is one of our fastest growing, and continues to outpace wider economic growth by two to one and job creation by three to one.

We are working closely with industry and across government to ensure that our sectors are fully represented and supported in the UK’s future trade agreements, and we will continue to work with them during the transition period.

We want the creative industries to continue to flourish as part of a modern and ambitious global trading framework - from world-leading news coverage that reaches every corner of the globe, to life affirming arts and culture, and immersive technologies that bring people and communities together.

Q
Asked by Tracy Brabin
(Batley and Spen)
[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: 13 January 2020
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Arts Council: Location
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent assessment she has made of the potential merits of relocating the Arts Council outside of London.
A
Answered by: Helen Whately
Answered on: 16 January 2020

The Government has committed to ensure that the administration of government is less London-centric and to locate more Civil Service roles and public bodies out of London and into the regions and nations of the United Kingdom


The Arts Council’s Head Office is in Manchester, and the majority of its staff are based there.

The Arts Council also has a network of a further eight Area Offices across the country: with offices in Birmingham, Brighton, Bristol, Cambridge, Leeds, London, Newcastle and Nottingham. Senior staff with sector expertise are based in each local area, and work closely with local strategic partners.

The Cabinet Office Places for Growth team is working with departments and public bodies on any future relocation plans.

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