Archaeology — Question

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 2:52 pm on 9th March 2009.

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Photo of Lord Davies of Oldham Lord Davies of Oldham Deputy Chief Whip (House of Lords), HM Household, Captain of the Queen's Bodyguard of the Yeomen of the Guard (HM Household) (Deputy Chief Whip, House of Lords) 2:52 pm, 9th March 2009

My Lords, the noble Earl emphasised an important factor in his penultimate point—that we need to protect the skills base of this highly skilled sector during the downturn. He will know how that is closely related to the construction industry's problems; its reduction in activity means that work for architects is greatly reduced. We are concerned to preserve, as far as possible, the levels of this country's skills base through this difficult time. It means that architecture and many other skills will need government investment and support. He is right that the public sector can play its part. Certainly, local authorities have a role with regard to the employment of people with these specific skills. However, he will also be aware of the pressures on the wider economy which are giving rise to concern.