§ Mr. Arthur Lewis
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment why, in view of the Government's 10 per cent. guideline, he has agreed to the 100 per cent. increases in the admission charges to Hampton Court and the Tower of London in a period when inflation is falling.
§ Mr. Marks
The present charges were fixed two years ago and have had to be raised because of the increased costs of upkeep since then over the monuments as a whole.
At Hampton Court the separate charge of 15p for the Mantegna Gallery will be abolished so that the increase is from 35p to 50p in winter and from 65p to £1 in summer; here also additional galleries will be opened during 1978 without extra charge.
At the Tower the present charges are 80p during eight months and 20p during four months of the year; the new charges —£1.50 during two months, £1 during six months and 50p during four months—are related to the anticipated flow of visitors. They ensure that for half the year the increase is only 25 per cent.; and they take into account the opening of a new gallery for which no additional charge will be made.