HC Deb 22 July 2002 vol 389 cc847-8W
Mr. Randall

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to the answer of 9 July 2002,Official Report, column 896W, if he will list the services accessed by the public for which 0870 numbers are used; and what factors are considered in reaching a decision. [71130]

Hilary Benn

The Home Office and its agencies use a total of 11 0870 numbers:

  • Immigration and Nationality Directorate: 0870 606 7766
  • United Kingdom Passport Service (Main): 0870 521 0410
  • United Kingdom Passport Service (Textphone): 0870 240 8090
  • United Kingdom Passport Service (High Street Partners): 0870 243 4477
  • United Kingdom Passport Service (Complaints): 0870 241 1902
  • Criminal Records Bureau (Main): 0870 909 0811
  • Criminal Records Bureau (Registration line): 0870 909 0822
  • Criminal Records Bureau (Disclosure application line): 0870 909 0844
  • Criminal Records Bureau (Minicom line): 0870 909 0344
  • Prison Service: 0870 000 1397
  • Main Home Office public inquiry line: 0870 000 1585.
Decisions in all cases were taken on the basis of estimates of the cost to the Department, the cost to the customer, the likely volume of calls that might be generated if 0800, 0845 or 0870 numbers were used, and the impact that volume of calls might have on the levels of service provided.

Additionally, for the Immigration and Nationality Enquiry Bureau number, the use of an 0870 number was agreed on the grounds that the Immigration and Nationality Directorate (IND) would reinvest any money earned back into improving the telephone bureau operation and thereby customer service. This has been done and £0.75 million was invested this spring in the purchase of a new switchboard with increased functionality.