§ Mr. Mullin
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions when he expects to give formal approval for the extension of the Tyneside metro to Sunderland; and if he will make a statement. 
§ Ms Glenda Jackson
The application for an Order under the Transport and Works Act 1992 to authorise the Sunderland extension was considered at a public inquiry at the beginning of this year. The Inspector's Report of the inquiry is being considered in the Department and the Secretary of State hopes to announce his decision, on whether the Order should be granted, shortly. Tyne and Wear PTA's application for financial support for the extension is also under active consideration by my Department.