Additional May MQT answers

Policing at West Ham matches 1

Question No: 2018/1183

Andrew Dismore

Who is paying for the extra stewarding and policing at West Ham home games?


Written response from the Mayor


West Ham are paying for Special Policing Services for two extra Police Support Units (and extra stewards).  The cost recovery for the fixtures was £15,133.90 per game

Customs Union

Question No: 2018/1179

Andrew Dismore

Following the Government’s recent reiteration that they do not intend to remain in the Customs Union, how are you keeping pressure on the Government to persuade them that remaining in the Customs Union will be beneficial for London’s economy?

Written response from the Mayor

I continue to press Government to reconsider its unwise outright rejection of the UK remaining in the EU Customs Union. Staying in the Customs Union is an essential element of guaranteeing frictionless trade between the UK and the EU after Brexit. Any new tariff or non-tariff barriers placed in the way of UK/EU trade in goods will have a significant impact on London businesses, and their supply chains.

Remaining in the Single Market is equally important, if not more so; to ensure London’s enormous trade in services with Europe can continue unhindered.


Financial inclusion (5)

Question No: 2018/1189

Andrew Dismore

Further to your response to the Economy Committee’s report ‘Short changed- the financial health of Londoners’, what discussions have you had with the LEAP to explore both the need and potential for asking the Government to extend the operating hours of National Business Support Helpline?

Written response from the Mayor

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) is currently consulting LEPs on the service specification for the National Business Support Helpline, ahead of re procuring for the service later in the year.

The London Growth Hub has provided us with an hour by hour breakdown of all contacts received by the helpline for the London LEAP area for 2017/18, which is included below. This does not capture missed calls when the service is closed but does show some demand via email during the evening. The Growth Hub team will be happy to discuss any evidence you have on the Helpline needs to be opened for extended hours, and if this evidence is compelling, I will ask that the LEAP includes this in their response.


Time Calls Email Social Engagement Social Media Questions Webchat
00 4
01 3
03 2
04 3
05 2
06 1
07 1
08 1 4
09 254 13 1 16 51
10 424 21 1 87
11 495 19 4 8 113
12 498 22 2 4 92
13 487 19 3 91
14 497 12 1 5 118
15 468 18 3 7 104
16 471 17 3 5 85
17 219 20 46
18 14 8 4
19 14
20 14
21 12
22 7
23 2


Financial inclusion (6)

Question No: 2018/1190

Andrew Dismore

Further to your response to the Economy Committee’s report ‘Short changed- the financial health of Londoners’, what discussions have you had with credit unions in London to promote the awareness and take-up of affordable credit products and debt advice services in London?

Written response from the Mayor

I am a long-time supporter of the credit union movement, I believe that they offer an important finance alternative, and have demonstrated how important their services can be for people on low incomes, or who struggle to manage their financial health. It is for these reasons I have made clear that my Good Work Standard will promote credit unions to the employees of the businesses who sign up. My officers have met with representatives of credit unions to inform the development of the Standard.


Financial inclusion (8)

Question No: 2018/1192

Andrew Dismore

Further to your response to the Economy Committee’s report ‘Short changed- the financial health of Londoners’, what discussions have you had with leading cash machine networks to encourage them to share their data and assist in mapping of their provision in London?

Written response from the Mayor

I recently wrote to the Chair of LINK encouraging him to consider this proposal. My officers have since had a meeting with a representative of LINK to discuss this further, as well as how City Hall might assist LINK in measuring how effectively the current provision of ATMs supports target communities in the capital. Discussions are ongoing.


Financial inclusion (9)

Question No: 2018/1193

Andrew Dismore

Further to your response to the Economy Committee’s report ‘Short changed- the financial health of Londoners’ what action are you taking as Mayor of London to collect the data on the number of vulnerable Londoners, for example victims of domestic abuse or people with disabilities, who might not have access to a bank account?

Written response from the Mayor

In addition to the survey I have conducted of young Londoners’ financial capability and education, I will be suggesting to the Government that they conduct a localised, representative survey of households on their activities and interactions with financial providers to help determine the scope and scale of financial exclusion in London, and inform the policies of City Hall and others.


Northern Line noise (1)

Question No: 2018/1164

Andrew Dismore

I am getting increasing numbers of complaints from residents about noise from the Northern Line due to the relaid track and wear on the rails caused by automation. TfL are taking far too long to respond to these complaints, and even worse are telling residents that there is nothing that can be done and in effect the residents have to put up with it. Do you think this is fair; and if not will you get a grip on this problem and sort it out?

Written response from the Mayor

Transport for London (TfL) engineers aim to get back to residents within a week to arrange a site visit.

Tube noise is something I and TfL take very seriously and I know that TfL is doing as much as it can to reduce noise levels on a site by site basis. Since the introduction of Night Tube, TfL has installed over 11,000 resilient track fastenings at the worst affected sites and re-railed multiple sites to reduce the noise experienced by residents living close to London Underground lines.

There are many sites across the network where due to the age of the track infrastructure and current technology it is not always possible to reduce the noise levels to the standards that residents would like. There are sites where there is currently no technology to effectively reduce the noise levels. I have asked TfL to continue to work with suppliers and academics to address this.


Northern Line noise (2)

Question No: 2018/1165

Andrew Dismore

It is becoming apparent that the installation of noise damping pads on Northern Line track is not working. Homes near Mornington Crescent, for example, have seen noise levels increase to even more unacceptable levels. What will you do about it?

Written response from the Mayor

Noise readings taken at homes show that at most sites where TfL has installed resilient track fastenings, noise has reduced by over 10dB. TfL will continue to review individual cases but evidence of using resilient track fastenings shows that they are effective at reducing ground borne noise.


Northern Line noise (3)

Question No: 2018/1166

Andrew Dismore

Track corrugation in Northern Line tunnels is getting worse due to automated train operation causing braking at exactly the same points near stations, increasing noise nuisance. What will you do about it?

Written response from the Mayor

Automation exacerbates rail corrugation at certain sites but it is not the sole cause of it. Transport for London (TfL) is working with suppliers on developing a long-term, cost-effective solution to manage rail corrugation. I have asked TfL to provide you with an update.


Legal aid and advice organisations

Question No: 2018/1172

Andrew Dismore

Workers in legal aid and advice organisations are at breaking point according to a survey undertaken by their union at over 30 Advice Centres, Law Centres and Citizens Advice Bureaux, which found that over three quarters (77 per cent) of staff reported an increase in their workload because of increased demand and cuts in staff. 35 per cent of organisations’ volunteers are increasingly required to undertake work previously performed by paid staff. What do you think needs to be done to help London’s advice services?

Written response from the Mayor

Advice centres, law centres and pro-bono units provide an invaluable service to some of London’s most vulnerable citizens.

As the Government’s austerity policy continues to restrict and reduce the resources available, it is crucial that advice agencies are able to secure the limited funding that is still available. To assist them my team are hosting data surgeries to share skills on recording and measuring impact – a key part of applying for and retaining funding. I have also met with civil society groups to understand how the GLA can make their funding opportunities more visible and accessible to the sector.

I have committed to launch an online portal to provide advice and guidance to European Londoners on obtaining settled status post Brexit. I am keen to extend this approach to other areas where Londoners can be helped to understand their rights and take action to exercise them.


ESOL in London

Question No: 2018/1174

Andrew Dismore

What progress has been made addressing the barriers to ESOL training since your report ‘Mapping ESOL Provision in Greater London’?

Written response from the Mayor

Since last year’s report I have launched my strategy for social integration, highlighting my commitment to removing barriers for those who want to improve their English language proficiency. As a first step to this, I have launched ESOL Plus investing in a series of pilots in partnership with community groups, charities and employers to improve the suitability and availability of ESOL. The first of these pilots will seek to address barriers for learners with childcare responsibilities.

I will also seek to address practical barriers to ESOL learning through devolution of the Adult Education Budget by identifying new and more diverse sources of investment and innovative approaches to strategic planning and commissioning of ESOL. More information will be included in my Skills for Londoners Strategy launching this June.



Question No: 2018/1177

Andrew Dismore

The Government’s approach to apprenticeships does not appear to be working in London as many businesses are not making full use of the Apprenticeship Levy or are using the funding for apprenticeships in sectors that offer little progression and low-pay. What action needs to be taken to improve apprenticeships policy to ensure London has the skills that it requires?

Written response from the Mayor

In principle, the apprenticeship levy provides an opportunity to increase investment in skills and improve social mobility in London. However, apprenticeship starts have gone down in the capital since its introduction last April.

I continue to call for the ringfencing and devolution of apprenticeship levy funds to ensure London’s levy contributions are spent on meeting the city’s complex skills needs. In the meantime, I am working with businesses and Londoners to increase the number of quality apprenticeship opportunities in the capital. This includes the development of pilot programmes to promote apprenticeships to businesses in London’s key sectors.


Tate Collective

Question No: 2018/1178

Andrew Dismore

Do you welcome the Tate’s new scheme to reduce the price of exhibition tickets for young people aged between 16 and 25, and what discussions is your Deputy Mayor for Culture having with other London institutions to facilitate visits from young adults?

Written response from the Mayor

In my draft Culture Strategy Culture for all Londoners, I set out my vision for more young people to experience and create culture in their city. I welcome Tate’s new initiative to reduce the price of tickets for young Londoners; my Culture Team are already working with the Tate Collective to champion young female talent as part of my campaign Behind Every Great City.

My London Borough of Culture programme is investing £4.54million to support eight boroughs across London, which will provide free and accessible events for all Londoners including young people. A wide range of London’s leading cultural institutions will help the winning boroughs to realise their vision, including the Barbican, the Museum of London and the Roundhouse.

My Deputy Mayor for Culture and Creative Industries and my Culture Team are also in discussions with key arts organisations to pilot a scheme later this year to provide cultural discounts for young people.


Employment in the culture sector

Question No: 2018/1180

Andrew Dismore

Low pay and poor working conditions are common in the cultural industry. How will the Mayor ensure that the organisations he works with through his Culture Strategy comply with the aspirations set out in the Good Work Standard, for example by paying the London Living Wage?

Written response from the Mayor

In my draft Culture Strategy Culture for all Londoners, I set out my vision to ensure every Londoner can engage with the city’s vibrant cultural offer and take up a creative career if they so choose. Jobs in the creative economy are growing four times faster than the economy average and whilst there are many fulfilling jobs, there can be barriers to accessing the industry; including low pay at entry level.

My Good Work Standard will aim to tackle inequality and unfairness in London. There are already many creative organisations like the Museum of London and Burberry who pay the Living Wage. I will champion and promote the Good Work Standard, including paying the London Living Wage, across all organisations that help me deliver my vision for culture in the capital.




Fire deaths

Question No: 2018/1181

Andrew Dismore

How many deaths from fire in London have there been this calendar year so far; and how many were there in the similar period last year?

Written response from the Mayor

There have been 23 fatalities in fires in London in the four months January and April 2018. While these are recorded as fire deaths according to LFB’s evidence, it is important to note that some inquests are still pending and it is for the Coroner to determine whether or not fire was the cause of death.

There had been 14 fatalities in fires in London in the same period in 2017. Fire death numbers fluctuate on a year by year, month by month, basis. London Fire Brigade uses a ten-year rolling figure to show the underlying trend in fire deaths numbers over the years, and sets targets based on this ten-year trend.

Fatalities by month for these periods is as follows:


Jan Feb Mar Apr Total
2017 5 5 1 3 14
2018 4 8 6 5 23


Financial inclusion (7)

Question No: 2018/1191

Andrew Dismore

Further to your response to the Economy Committee’s report ‘Short changed- the financial health of Londoners’, what work is your Chief Digital Officer and your Smart London Board undertaking to improve digital connectivity in London?

Written response from the Mayor

The GLA’s Connected London programme has a comprehensive work programme to guide collaboration between City and boroughs, coordinating investment and establishing common practice for the first time for full fibre and mobile connectivity, the latter preparing the ground for the adoption of 5G.

The programme is delivered by the Mayor’s Connected London team which reports to the Chief Digital Officer.

Further detail will be provided in the upcoming Smart London plan.