HC Deb 28 January 1981 vol 997 cc457-8W
Mr. Cryer

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will list the facility trips provided to journalists by his Department during 1980, the destination and purpose of such trips, the papers, radio channels, magazines or television channels benefiting, and the cost of such facilities.

Mr. Heseltine

The Property Services Agency, for which I am responsible, provided the following facilities for journalists during 1980:

Between January and March: Facility visits were arranged for representatives of the South London News Group; BBC Radio London; The Times; and a freelance film director to visit deep tube shelters in London. These were individual visits at the request of the correspondents and no costs were incurred except staff costs involved in making the arrangements.

May: A facility visit was arranged to the New Crown Buildings at Cathays Park, Cardiff, for representatives of architectural, construction and technical publications, and of the Western Mail, South Wales Echo, Cardiff Broadcasting, HTV, BBC TV Wales, and BBC radio. No travelling costs were met, but coffee and a buffet lunch were provided at a total cost of £45.00.

Spetember: A facility was arranged for correspondents to be taken to the top of the Clock Tower to see the cleaning of the Parliament clock. It was attended by correspondents of all national daily newspapers, the London Evening Standard; BBC TV, BBC radio, LBC, Press Association, United Newspapers, Universal Pictures, Time Magazine, the British Safety Council and Rex Features. No costs were incurred other than staff costs involved in making the arrangements.

September: A correspondent of the Architects' Journal visited Wellington Barracks, at no cost other than staff costs involved. This was at the correspondent's request.

November: A freelance journalist visited Hertford House and the Department of Health and Social Security at Elephant and Castle. No costs were incurred other than staff costs. This was at the correspondent's request.

December: A facility was arranged to see the Syncrolift Ship Refining Complex, Her Majesty's Dockyard Rosyth, and invitations were issued to representatives of the architectural, construction, and technical press, to English national newspapers and to The Scotsman. Glasgow Herald, Glasgow Evening Times, Dundee Courier and Advertiser, Dunfermline Press, and Edinburgh Evening News. No costs were incurred by the Department apart from staff costs.