§ Mr. Evans
To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what(a) discussions and (b) correspondence he has had with the non-executive directors of the Guild Community Trust, Preston; 
(2) what discussions he has had with (a) the authors of and (b) others about the Galbraith/Campbell report relating to the Guild Community Trust, Preston; 
(3) what steps he is taking to ensure that more (a) openness and (b) accountability is introduced into the governance of NHS trusts; 
(4) what steps he is taking to encourage non-executive directors of NHS trusts to bring to his attention any mismanagement within the trust; 
(5) when he expects to appoint a permanent Chairman of the Guild Community Trust, Preston; 
(6) what (a) discussions and (b) correspondence he has had concerning the appointments of the non-executive directors of the Guild Community Trust, Preston; 
(7) when he read the Galbraith/Campbell report relating to the Guild Community Trust, Preston; and what assessment he has made of its findings; 
(8) what (a) discussions he has had and (b) advice he has received from the North West Regional Office concerning the appointments of the current non-executive directors of the Guild Community Trust, Preston. 
§ Mr. Dobson
[holding answer 18 May 1999]: After considering the independent reports into the management of the Guild Community National Health Service Trust and discussions with National Health Service Executive 113W Regional Office officials, I concluded that relations between non-executive directors of the Trust had reached a state of irretrievable breakdown and that it would not be in the best interests of the NHS or the Trust and, most of all, the community it is supposed to serve, for them to continue in office. I therefore asked all five remaining non-executive directors to resign. Two agreed to do so and I exercised my powers under Regulation 9(3) of the National Health Service Trust (Membership and Procedure) Regulations 1990 to terminate the membership of the remaining three who refused to resign.
I have appointed Mrs. Christine Kirk to chair the trust until 30 November 1999. Mrs. Kirk was appointed by the previous Government to chair the Calderstones NHS Trust. I have appointed five new non-executive directors for a four year period. They are:Mr. P. FarrerMrs. A. KnowlesMrs. G. PashleyMr. P. PassiMrs. H. Anslow.
None of these have any declared party political affiliations. The selection panels which chose them had some members with declared party political activity. Of these all were Conservative. These appointments were carried out in accordance with the guidelines of the Commissioner for Public Appointments and she has been kept informed at all stages of the problems at the Guild Community NHS Trust, the resignations, dismissals and appointments.
The openness and accountability of NHS trusts has been extended by the present Government, for example by requiring the trust boards to meet in public.