HC Deb 01 February 1999 vol 324 cc457-8W
Mr. Hawkins

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, pursuant to his answer of 14 December 1998,Official Report, columns 350–51, how many times his expert group on tobacco sponsorship and alternative sponsorship has met; who its members are; how many times he expects it to meet in 1999; when he expects to receive its conclusions; and when he expects to report his response to its conclusions to the House. [R] [67138]

Mr. Banks

[holding answer 25 January 1999]: The group of experts met twice last year and members are now holding individual meetings with the seven sports which have sought our assistance to find alternative sponsors. To date these meetings have been very constructive. The meetings will be completed by the end of this month, after which the group will meet again to receive a report and to consider the nature and timing of help needed to replace existing contracts, many of which have several years to run. We will also consider the frequency of further meetings this year. I will keep the House advised of all significant developments.

The terms of reference of the Task Force are: to assist sports currently in receipt of tobacco sponsorship to find replacement sponsors by: assessing the needs of each sport; offering advice on best practice in establishing commercial relationships with sponsors; and, assisting the sports in making links with potential new sponsors.

Membership is:

  1. Tony Banks (Chairman)—Minister for Sport
  2. Gordon McCallum—Virgin Group
  3. Jon Smith—First Artist Corporation
  4. Maurice Lindsay—Central Council for Physical Recreation
  5. Mike Reynolds—Institute of Sports Sponsorship
  6. Derek Etherington—DCMS Sports Sponsorship Consultant