HL Deb 17 September 2003 vol 652 cc175-6WA
Lord Lester of Herne Hill

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether they impose restrictions on the publication for reward of the diaries or memoirs of serving or former Ministers of the Crown, civil servants or special advisers; and, if so, what are those restrictions. [HL4284]

Lord Williams of Mostyn

The rules on the publication by Ministers and former Ministers of memoirs are set out in the ministerial code. Paragraph 107 states:

"Ministers may not, while in office, write and publish a book on their Ministerial experience. Nor, while serving as a Minister, may they enter into any agreement to publish their memoirs on leaving their Ministerial position, without the agreement of the Prime Minister. Former Ministers are required to submit their manuscript to the Secretary of the Cabinet and to conform to the principles set out in the Radcliffe report of 1976 (Cmnd 6386)"

Serving and former civil servants, including special advisers, are bound by the requirements of the Civil Service code and the Civil Service management code. Section 13 of the Civil Service code states:

"Civil servants should continue to observe their duties of confidentiality after they have left Crown employment".

Section 4.2 of the Civil Service Management Code states:

"Civil servants must not publish or broadcast personal memoirs reflecting their experience in government, or enter into commitments to do so, whilst in Crown employment. The permission of their Head of Department and the Head of the Home Civil Service must be sought before entering into commitments to publish such memoirs after leaving the service".