HC Deb 16 June 1998 vol 314 cc155-6W
Mr. Redwood

To ask the President of the Board of Trade (1) what budget has been given to the Design Council to select British designs for display in the Millennium Dome; [45724]

(2) what investigations she has made into allegations that the Zefyr 43, a Millennium product endorsed by the Design Council is not suitable for such recognition; [45722]

(3) how the new British designs, to be displayed in the Millennium Dome are selected; and how the quality of the design is assessed; [45727]

(4) how many new British designs have been approved for display in the Millennium Dome;[45726]

(5) what guidance she has given to the Design Council on selecting British designs for inclusion in the Millennium Dome; and what checks are being made to ensure the quality of the products; [45723]

(6) what testing has been conducted on products bearing the Millennium Mark; and what assessment she has made of the Government's legal liability if products are found to be faulty; [45738]

(7) if she will list the new British designs to be displayed in the Millennium Dome; [45728]

(8) if the yacht 'Zefyr 43', will be on display in the Millennium Dome. [45736]

Mrs. Beckett

[holding answer 15 June 1998]: The Millennium Products initiative is designed to identify and promote up to 2,000 examples of world class products and services created in Britain for the new Millennium. They will be forward thinking, challenging, creative, and innovative and will show that we can lead the world through pioneering products and services which celebrate and exemplify our known strengths in innovation, creativity and design. My department is funding the project, which is managed on its behalf under contract by the Design Council. Funding is a total of £3.8 million for the four year period 1997–98 to 2000–01.

Submissions to the Millennium Products project are assessed by the Design Council through evaluation by independent judging panels selected from industry, design and the media. My Department is not involved in the judging process and decisions rest with the Design Council.

The first Millennium Products accolade winners were announced on 2 April. The Walker Wingsail—not the Zefyr 43—was among those announced. It was selected because it is a new marine navigation system comprising a wing sail and associated computer controlled software. Matters of product liability fall to those making the Millennium Products submission. This is set out clearly in the Millennium Products submission form.

It is for my hon. Friend the Minister without Portfolio to decide on the contents of the Millennium Experience at Greenwich. However, I understand that the Design Council has had preliminary discussions with the Millennium Experience Company about the possibility of exhibiting some Millennium Products accolade winners at Greenwich but no decision has yet been reached on which Millennium Products might be exhibited.