Only a few days to go: We’re raising £25,000 to keep TheyWorkForYou running and make sure people across the UK can hold their elected representatives to account.

Donate to our crowdfunder

Sir Derek Rayner

Oral Answers to Questions — Civil Service – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 10th December 1980.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Mr Malcolm Thornton Mr Malcolm Thornton , Liverpool, Garston 12:00 am, 10th December 1980

asked the Minister for the Civil Service what liaison he has with Sir Derek Rayner about his work.

Photo of Mr Paul Channon Mr Paul Channon , Southend West

I keep in close touch with Sir Derek Rayner. My officials work with his and with officials in Departments in a concerted search for greater efficiency.

Photo of Mr Malcolm Thornton Mr Malcolm Thornton , Liverpool, Garston

Will my right hon. Friend give the House some details of the possible source of the savings that might be recommended by Sir Derek Rayner?

Photo of Mr Paul Channon Mr Paul Channon , Southend West

My hon. Friend may know that there have been a number of scrutinies in Departments, led by Sir Derek Rayner, using civil servants in those Departments. So far, decisions already taken will save about £25 million a year and more than £20 million once and for all. Savings are growing continually as further decisions are taken. A new round of scrutinies will begin shortly.

Photo of Mr Lewis Carter-Jones Mr Lewis Carter-Jones , Eccles

In discussions with Sir Derek Rayner and his associates, will the Minister raise the question of protecting the pension rights and job conditions of those affected by the hare-brained privatisation scheme for the Royal ordnance factories?

Photo of Mr Paul Channon Mr Paul Channon , Southend West

Any question of the change of status of Royal ordnance factories is a matter for my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Defence. I shall draw his attention to the hon. Gentleman's remarks.

Photo of Mr Nigel Forman Mr Nigel Forman , Sutton Carshalton

Will my right hon. Friend assure us that progress is being made towards reducing some of the top-heavy layers in the administrative grades of the Civil Service, notably at under-secretary level?

Photo of Mr Paul Channon Mr Paul Channon , Southend West

The top levels have taken a more than proportionate share of the reductions in the size of the Civil Service. It is our firm intention that there should be savings all along the line, including in the top sections.

Photo of Mr George Foulkes Mr George Foulkes , Ayrshire South

Is the Minister aware that there is a conflict between the assurance that Civil Service cuts would not involve closures in branches and out-stations and the decision of the Department of Industry to close the out-station of the Laboratory of the Government Chemist in Glasgow? Will he investigate the matter and ensure that that valuable facility in Scotland remains open?

Photo of Mr Paul Channon Mr Paul Channon , Southend West

I shall investigate anything that the hon. Gentleman asks me to investigate. That appears to be a question for my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Industry, but I shall certainly consider the hon. Gentleman's point.