§ Mr. Denham
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what information his Department holds on the incidence of subsidence of domestic dwellings, by area; in what form the information is held; and if this information can be related to post code areas. 
§ Sir Paul Beresford
The Building Research Establishment maintains a subsidence database, containing statistical data on subsidence damage to houses, for use in the engineering assessment of causes and remedies but this does not contain information by area. However, there is no central record of incidents of subsidence damage to houses by area. The prime holder of such information would be the member companies of the Association of British Insurers and access to their data may be limited by commercial considerations.
My Department's research has produced small-scale maps and databases on a national grid reference and administrative area basis, which can be interpreted to assess the susceptibility to subsidence from mining, natural underground cavities and shrinkable clay formations and to landsliding. In addition, the British Geological Survey operates a ground hazard assessment service (G-HASP) which contains an assessment of the susceptibility to subsidence from various causes on a national grid reference and post code basis.