HC Deb 10 November 2000 vol 356 cc421-2W
Mr. Ruane

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions how many rough sleepers there were in(a) England and (b) Wales in each of the last 15 years. [137730]

Ms Armstrong

Reliable figures are not available for the number of rough sleepers in England prior to 1998. In 1998 a methodology was developed based on a series of single night street counts and estimates by local authorities to enable this information to be collected. It was estimated that as of June 1998 there were 1,850 people sleeping rough in England in any one night. These figures are updated annually and subsequent figures showed that the number of people sleeping rough fell to 1,633 in June 1999 and 1,180 in June 2000.

Responsibility for rough sleeping in Wales is a devolved matter.