Since 15th October the Government Car Service fleet has increased by 10 to a total of 381 vehicles, of which five are due for disposal. The number of staff has increased by 15 to 369. The annual cost is now £442,000 compared with £406,000. Of this about £10,000 of the increase is due to higher wages fixed by trade union agreements.
I should say it is, but this is a trend which has been going on all the time. I could easily cite the figures for 13 years and show how they have gone up all the time. For instance, I notice that there were 18—[HON. MEMBERS: "Answer the question."] I answer a question under the guidance of Mr. Speaker, not that of hon. Members opposite. This is not a matter on which hon. Members opposite should make implied charges that we are not so fastidious as were our predecessors. In 1952 18 cars were allocated, in 1959 28 were allocated. The present figure shows a trend.
I cannot say whether there are any, but hon. Members who go abroad will see how much better members of other legislatures are treated compared with those in this country. There was a famous occasion when the right hon. Member for Hampstead (Mr. Brooke) led a delegation of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association and had to borrow a car locally.