§ Mr. Cousins
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what proportion of claim forms issued to men aged over 60 years who were potentially eligible for winter fuel payments were returned by 30 March; how many of those claims proved well founded; and what extra steps he is taking to advise men aged over 60 years of potential eligibility in winter 2002. 
§ Mr. McCartney
The information is not held in the format requested, However in the 2001–02 winter, the total number of claim forms issued was 285,431. The number of claim forms returned, by 30 March, was 223,927. Of these, 172,281 were successful. A significant number of people who requested claim forms could have become entitled to the winter fuel payment without the need for them to submit a claim and would have been paid automatically.
This year, as in previous years, we will run an information campaign to inform everyone aged 60 and over about winter fuel payments. The campaign for winter 2002 will run until the end of March 2003.