Environment Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 10th February 2010.

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Photo of David Drew David Drew Labour, Stroud

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many hotel room nights were booked by officials in (a) his Department and (b) its agencies in each year since 2007; and how much (i) his Department and (ii) its agencies spent on the fees of third party agents in booking hotel accommodation in each of those years.

Photo of Dan Norris Dan Norris Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

A centralised booking service contract was introduced in late 2006-07, from which the information stated has been taken and therefore only covers the period January to March 2007 of 2006-07.

The number of hotel room nights booked over this period by officials in the core-Department, and the agencies for which such information is held, are in the table.

The significant number of nights in 2007-08 for Animal Health relates to the Foot and Mouth Disease outbreaks.

2006-07 2007-08 2008-09 2009-10( 1)
Core-DEFRA 971 3,840 6,108 4,343
Animal Health Agency 623 20,515 682 2
Rural Payments Agency - 5,510 13,149 9,887
Veterinary Laboratories Agency 23 301 390 259
(1) April to November.

Bookings made by officials outside the centralised booking service could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Fees were not paid to third party agents for the bookings.

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