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1997 - PMQT Written Answers 4th February 1997

Below is the text of the written answers relating to Prime Minister's Question Time from 4th February 1997.


PRIME MINISTER:

Chequers

Mr. Flynn: To ask the Prime Minister what have been the running costs of Chequers for each of the past five years; and if he will make a statement.

The Prime Minister [holding answer 31 January 1997]: Chequers is established under the Chequers Estate Acts 1917 and 1958 and is administered by independent trustees who receive an annual grant from public funds towards its maintenance in accordance with the Acts. In the last five years the grant has been:

1992-93: £260,000      

1993-94: £266,000

1994-95: £226,000

1995-96: £233,000

1996-97: £226,000.

The Government also contribute to the cost of the household staff at Chequers. Over the same period expenditure--net of VAT refunds--has been:

 1992-93: £428,287

 1993-94: £251,460

 1994-95: £301,960

 1995-96: £221,280

 1996-97: £240,000 (estimate).

Mr. Flynn: To ask the Prime Minister how many days he has spent in residence at Chequers in each of the last five years; and if he will make a statement.

The Prime Minister [holding answer 31 January 1997]: In the last five years, my family and I have made regular use of Chequers for a variety of purposes, in accordance with the wishes of the donor, Lord Lee, and the Chequers Estate Acts.


Engagements

Mr. Harry Greenway: To ask the Prime Minister if he will list his official engagements for Tuesday 4 February.

Sir Peter Tapsell: To ask the Prime Minister if he will list his official engagements for Tuesday 4 February.

The Prime Minister: This morning, I had meetings with ministerial colleagues and others. In addition to my duties in the House, I shall be having further meetings later today.


Lockerbie

Mr. Dalyell: To ask the Prime Minister if he will make a statement on the impact on the Lockerbie case of the recent acquittal by the United States authorities of Mr. Juval Aviv on charges of deception.

The Prime Minister: I refer the hon. Member to the reply he received from the Minister of State, Scottish Office, my right hon. and learned Friend the Member for Edinburgh, West (Lord James Douglas-Hamilton), on 27 January, Official Report, columns 70-71.

The acquittal of Mr. Juval Aviv by a jury after trial in the New York southern district court on charges of deception has no bearing on the validity of the case against the two Libyans accused in respect of the Lockerbie bombing.