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Results 261–280 of 1000 for (in the 'Commons debates' OR in the 'Westminster Hall debates' OR in the 'Lords debates' OR in the 'Northern Ireland Assembly debates') speaker:Paul Clark

Oral Answers to Questions — Transport: Public Bus Services (25 Nov 2008)

Paul Clark: I thank my hon. Friend for her comments about the concessionary fares that were introduced from April of this year. She is absolutely right: more than 11 million benefit from that concession for the over-60s and for those with disabilities. I know that my hon. Friend and the work of the Youth Parliament very much push for young people to have access to free transport. I recognise the...

Oral Answers to Questions — Transport: Public Bus Services (25 Nov 2008)

Paul Clark: I am delighted that the right hon. Gentleman welcomes the Government's decision to introduce nationwide concessionary free travel for 11 million people. I recognise the issues that he raises. However, we spend approximately £1 billion on concessionary fares, mainly through the rate support grant mechanism, provided through local authorities. When we introduced the new nationwide scheme in...

Oral Answers to Questions — Transport: Public Bus Services (25 Nov 2008)

Paul Clark: My hon. Friend raises some important points. Although the increase is principally due to success in London and the concessionary fare scheme, there have been other clear increases. Indeed, hon. Members have already referred to some in their constituencies: in Brighton, Nottingham, Oxford and York, for example, bus patronage has increased. I sincerely believe that the Local Transport Bill,...

Oral Answers to Questions — Transport: Public Bus Services (25 Nov 2008)

Paul Clark: Let me make it clear that the additional funding that was made available as of April was distributed on the basis of the discussions that were held with, and the representations that were received from, more than 200 local authorities. Destinations, major shopping areas and areas with a high number of retired people were taken into account in the allocations. Indeed, we looked at the budgets...

Oral Answers to Questions — Transport: Public Bus Services (25 Nov 2008)

Paul Clark: My hon. Friend will know that the current scheme covers all those people over 60 years old, and approximately eight groups of people with disabilities. I recently attended a lobby by Sense on the issues of mental health and companions for people with disabilities. There are no current plans to extend those concessions, but, like all these things, we keep the matter under review.

Oral Answers to Questions — Transport: Cycling (25 Nov 2008)

Paul Clark: Cycling has an important role to play in people's transport choices. The Government have been supporting local authorities financially, by issuing guidance and advice, and by providing ideas and inspiration. All that work is supported by a £140 million programme developed by our advisers, Cycling England.

Oral Answers to Questions — Transport: Cycling (25 Nov 2008)

Paul Clark: I thank my hon. Friend for that. It is well known that she is a keen cyclist who is often seen ready for the off, in her gear, at the last vote. Her question is spot on about the need for us to take as many steps as possible to encourage young people and adults to cycle. We have various plans, such as our work with Cycling England to train 500,000 young people between now and 2012 to attain...

Oral Answers to Questions — Transport: Cycling (25 Nov 2008)

Paul Clark: I am delighted to inform the right hon. Gentleman that both my parliamentary colleagues sitting on the Front Bench today cycle, and I am sure that that is more than enough.

Oral Answers to Questions — Transport: Cycling (25 Nov 2008)

Paul Clark: I would always take the opportunity to encourage anyone making decisions about transport, including colleagues in Scotland, to develop all possible modes. However, I might add that if my hon. Friend the Member for Dover (Gwyn Prosser), the chairman of the all-party cycling group, has his way, he will have me on a bicycle very shortly.

Oral Answers to Questions — Transport: Cycling (25 Nov 2008)

Paul Clark: I would support any development of cycling and giving people those choices, but I am equally aware that there has been some adjustment in the budget for cycle lanes and so on. However, it is obviously for the Mayor to make those choices under the devolved powers. Equally, I am aware that having the confidence to cycle, whether to school or for leisure, is a particular concern for parents and...

Oral Answers to Questions — Transport: Topical Questions (25 Nov 2008)

Paul Clark: We have taken several steps, such as the introduction of the Local Transport Bill. Buses are the backbone of our public transport system, providing more than 5 billion journeys every year. We want to ensure that quality services are available across the length and breadth of the country. The Bill is important for local authorities making decisions about what best meets their needs. My right...

Oral Answers to Questions — Transport: Topical Questions (25 Nov 2008)

Paul Clark: My hon. Friend highlights exactly the powers that are available to local authorities to add to the minimum concessionary schemes that have generously been introduced by the Government. By doing that in Barnsley, councillors have decided what their priorities are, and I welcome that. All hon. Members should urge their local authorities to consider the options for improving transport in their...

Continental Rail Links (19 Nov 2008)

Paul Clark: This wide-ranging debate has been excellently led by my hon. Friend the Member for Stafford (Mr. Kidney), and I congratulate him on securing it. It might be helpful if I set out the background to some of the changes that we have made, which were not recognised by the hon. Member for Wimbledon (Stephen Hammond). It has been said that we are not committed to high-speed rail, but we have seen...

Continental Rail Links (19 Nov 2008)

Paul Clark: Nonsense.

Lockerbie Rail Services (11 Nov 2008)

Paul Clark: I congratulate the hon. Member for Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale and Tweeddale (David Mundell) on securing this debate and providing an opportunity to debate rail services at Lockerbie. I genuinely understand his comments on behalf of his constituents, yet in many of those comments are implied the competing demands of meeting the needs of the travelling public from all parts of the United...

Lockerbie Rail Services (11 Nov 2008)

Paul Clark: I thank my hon. Friend for his intervention. I know that he campaigns hard on behalf of his constituents. I say, as I said to the hon. Member for Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale and Tweeddale, that this is about managing the timetable to get the best possible fit for connections and for the delivery of fast services, which is one of the things that is highlighted by the travelling public in...

A5-M1 Link (3 Nov 2008)

Paul Clark: I congratulate the hon. Member for South-West Bedfordshire (Andrew Selous) on securing this debate and providing a further opportunity for us to discuss what I accept is a very important issue—not only for the hon. Gentleman's constituents in respect of the A5-M1 link road, but for the wider area. I thank the hon. Gentleman for contacting my officials to run through some of the issues that...

A5-M1 Link (3 Nov 2008)

Paul Clark: I have said that our officials are having dialogues with relevant personnel, including opposite numbers in the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, and I take on board the hon. Gentleman's comments on European members. I believe discussions on the air quality issue are moving forward quickly, however, and that it can be resolved. The hon. Gentleman raised the timetable for...

Rail Links (Halifax-London) (29 Oct 2008)

Paul Clark: I congratulate my hon. Friend the Member for Halifax (Mrs. Riordan) on securing the debate and providing the House with an opportunity to discuss rail services on the east coast main line. I recognise the fervour with which my hon. Friend put the case for Halifax. She is absolutely right to say that we want the best use of the infrastructure. We want to give people the choice of getting off...

Orders of the Day: New Clause 10 — Provision that may be made in an order under section 73 (27 Oct 2008)

Paul Clark: No, I do not accept that because of the safeguards in the Bill that I hope we will pass today, and in the 1989 Act. I do not believe that the proposals would do as the hon. Gentleman describes. My hon. Friend the Member for Sheffield, Attercliffe talked about reflecting population differences in the numbers that could come from each participating authority. That is a possibility, and the...


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