§ Mr. Jenkin
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many Challenger 2 tanks are operated by each armoured regiment; and what reserve is held(a) centrally and (b) by regiments. 
§ Mr. Ingram
Each armoured regiment is organised around an establishment of 58 Challenger II Main Battle Tanks. Each regiment, however, normally holds 44 tanks. This allows the balance of the fleet to be distributed for other tasks such as: individual training, collective training, repair programmes, trials work, etc. Nonetheless, regiments committed to operations or undertaking training may be augmented up to the full establishment of 58 tanks, dependent on the situation, or the nature of the training/operation being undertaken.
In addition, some tanks are held at the Defence Supply and Distribution Agency depot at Ashchurch. The number held there on any one day will depend on ho many are required by the armoured regiments and training establishments, or are in the repair pool. On 4 July 2003, there were 17 tanks held at Ashchurch.