§ Mr. Martlew
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security how many pensioners in the Carlisle constituency received Winter Fuel Payments in(a) 1998–99 and (b) 1999–2000; and how much was paid in total in each of those years. 
§ Angela Eagle
The administration of Winter Fuel Payments is a matter for Alexis Cleveland, the Chief Executive of the Benefits Agency. She will write to my hon. Friend.
Letter from Alexis Cleveland to Mr. Eric Martlew, dated 20 July 2000:The Secretary of State has asked me to reply to your recent Parliamentary Question asking how many pensioners in the Carlisle constituency received Winter Fuel Payments (WFPs) in (a) 1998–99 and (b) 1999–2000; and how much was paid in total in each of those years.In 1998/99, there were 13,157 WFPs made in the Carlisle constituency totalling £283,210. In 1999–00, there were 14,938 payments totalling £1,138,350.I hope this is helpful.
§ Helen Jones
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what is the total amount spent on Cold Weather Payments and Winter Fuel Payments to pensioners in Warrington, North constituency for each year since 1979. 
§ Angela Eagle
[holding answer 26 June 2000]: The administration of Cold Weather and Winter Fuel Payments is a matter for Alexis Cleveland, the Chief Executive of the Benefits Agency. She will write to my hon. Friend.
Letter from Alexis Cleveland to Helen Jones, dated 20 July 2000:271WThe Secretary of State has asked me to reply to your recent Parliamentary Question asking for the total amount spent on Cold Weather Payments (CWPs) and Winter Fuel Payments (WFPs) to pensioners in the Warrington North constituency for each year since 1979.The information requested on CWPs is not available. CWP information is collected on the estimated number of qualifying customers, which include non-pensioners, and by weather station area rather than by Benefits Agency district or MP constituency areas. There are no details held of CWPs before 1995/96. The information that is available is provided in the attached table.The Warrington North constituency was served by the Manchester Airport (Ringway) weather station until the winter of 1995/96 and by Crosby weather station since 1996. These weather stations also cover postcodes outside of the Warrington North constituency.WFPs were introduced in the winter of 1997/98. In 1997/98, WFP expenditure for Warrington North constituency was £258,170; in 1998/99 it was £239,780; and in 1999/00 it was £963,700.I hope this is helpful.
Estimated qualifiers and total expenditure on Cold Weather Payments since the winter of 1995–96 at the weather stations linked to Warrington, North constituency Estimated number of qualifiers Total expenditure (£) Weather station 1995–96 1996–97 1995–96 1996–97 Ringway 244,000 — 16,213,000 — Crosby — 232,000 — 21,971,000 1 Three periods of cold weather were triggered at Ringway weather station in 1995–96 2 One period of cold weather triggered at Crosby weather station in 1996–97
1. The figures provided are rounded to the nearest £1,000
2. No data are held for periods prior to 1995–96
3. Figures for estimated qualifiers include non-pensioners.
4. An estimate of the number of pensioners among the estimated qualifiers is not available.
5. No periods of cold weather have triggered at either station since 1996–97.
6. All Postcode areas served by the weather stations are detailed in Schedule 1 of the Social Fund Cold Weather payments (General) Regulations.
§ Mr. Clifton-Brown
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security how many valid Winter Fuel Payment claims for the years(a) 1997, (b) 1998 and (c) 1999 are outstanding; and when he expects all these payments to be completed. 
§ Angela Eagle
Under the original Winter Fuel Payment scheme, before changes in light of the European Court of Justice ruling on 'Taylor', Winter Fuel Payments were made automatically to those entitled. Claims were not required. All payments for last winter were made before Christmas 1999.
However, in light of the changes, those who are now eligible to Winter Fuel Payments must make a claim for payments for any of the past winters if they think they are eligible (1997–98, 1998–99 and 1999–2000).
We are currently processing these claims and payments for past winters are being made just as soon as the claims are determined. The first payments were issued in the week commencing 26 June 2000 and our current plan is that all payments should be issued by the end of September.
§ Mr. Clifton-Brown
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security, pursuant to his answer of 25 May 2000,Official Report, column 618W, how many people were denied Winter Fuel Payments because they were in temporary respite care from 20 to 26 September 1999; what the cost would be of paying them Winter Fuel Payments; and for what reason the revisions to regulations were not applied in respect of such people. 
§ Angela Eagle
The information is not available in the format requested. Under the original Winter Fuel Payment scheme people living in residential care or nursing homes who received Income Support or income-based Jobseeker's Allowance were not eligible for a Winter Fuel Payment (unless they were a member of a couple admitted temporarily while their partner remained in the family home). This provision was made on the basis that people in such situations were already receiving public assistance with their care costs—which includes heating.272W
However, in the light of representations highlighting some difficult cases, we changed the eligibility conditions of the scheme. The new provision means that people getting Income Support or income-based Jobseeker's Allowance and living in residential care or nursing homes for a temporary period1 are eligible for a Winter Fuel Payment based on their usual household circumstances.
The Social Fund legislation was amended in time to take effect for this coming winter's payments. We have no power to make regulations retrospectively therefore the changes cannot apply to previous winters.
1 'temporary' for the purposes of the Winter Fuel Payment scheme is less than 13 weeks by the end of the qualifying week.