HC Deb 15 September 2004 vol 424 cc1255-6
3. Mrs. Betty Williams (Conwy) (Lab)

What discussions he has had with his National Assembly colleagues concerning the impact of the spending review on capital funding projects in education in Wales. [187921]

The Secretary of State for Wales (Mr. Peter Hain)

Under our Labour Government's spending review, Wales has had a generational step change in funding, and a huge investment in our future. The Assembly's budget will rise to almost £13.5 billion a year by 2007–08, and its capital budget will rise to almost £1.2 billion, massively enhancing the Assembly's ability to fund educational capital projects.

Mrs. Williams

I welcome my right hon. Friend's reply, but does he agree that such investment needs to be sustained, so that the children of Wales can be taught in an environment that they and their teachers should expect in the 21st century?

Mr. Hain

Yes, I agree with my hon. Friend. That is why, under the Chancellor's spending plans, which were announced only recently, we will see education capital budgets in Wales rising from around £100 million a year to £139 million a year over the next few years. That sustained investment will continue under Labour but would be at risk under the Tories. Indeed, in her constituency of Conwy, the replacement of three secondary schools, Ysgol John Bright in Llandudno, Ysgol Aberconwy and Ysgol Dyffryn Conwy, has recently been completed, and primary schools have all been modernised. That is an example of success in her constituency under Labour.

Mr. John Smith (Vale of Glamorgan) (Lab)

When the Secretary of State next meets his colleagues in the Assembly, will he also discuss the spending review in relation to any decisions that may be taken by the Ministry of Defence, and the impact that that will have on the red dragon project and the economy of Wales?


Order. That is not within the terms of the question.