HC Deb 19 December 2003 vol 416 cc100-1W
Dr. Kumar

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) how much money has been invested, and how many retailers have benefited,(a) in Middlesbrough, South and Cleveland, East (b) in the north-east and (c) in total from the Capital Modernisation Fund to assist small retailers in deprived areas; [144746]

(2) what plans there are to develop the Capital Modernisation Fund to assist small retailers in deprived areas; and if he will make a statement. [144747]

Ms Blears

Over the three years of the Small Retailers in Deprived Areas Initiative (2001–04) £120,000 has been provided to Middlesbrough Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnership to improve the security and immediate environment of approximately 19 individual shops and essential businesses. £76,000 has been allocated to the Redcar and Cleveland Partnership helping 23 businesses. These two partnerships cover the Middlesbrough, South and Cleveland, East constituency.

A total of £1,241,018 has been provided to the North East region benefiting at least 1,319 shops.

This project has enabled £14.5 million to be allocated to projects in England and Wales, providing assistance to over 12,500 shops. Many more will have benefited indirectly from this funding. A small amount of the fund (£0.5 million) has been used for evaluation and running costs.

As part of the small retailers" scheme we are providing a national security training package for small businesses in crime prevention and reduction. The Association of Convenience Stores have been selected to run the scheme on behalf of the Home Office from December 2003 to March 2004. The training will target nearly 600 key people in local businesses nation-wide through 28 seminars. Seminars will be held in Middlesbrough on 20 January 2003 and in Redcar and Cleveland on 21 January 2003.

The SRDA initiative is a three year initiative which concludes at the end of March 2004. Financial provision for similar interventions to continue, if Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnerships wish, is made in the Building Safer Communities fund.

We will ensure that the successes of this initiative are disseminated widely and point to effective interventions which have been shown to have a beneficial impact on crime.