§ Mr. Alton
asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will state, in relation to catering equipment in the corridor kitchen of the Royal Victoria hospital, Belfast, (a) where the equipment, which was returned eventually, was used by the board and where it was stored before use, (b) which firm or firms supplied catering equipment to the Royal Group, (c) when the catering equipment was to be used for the supply of food to day centres in north and west Belfast removed from use, (d) what was the cost of the equipment, its age and when it was removed from use and (e) subsequent to the invitation of tenders on 17 May 1984, to whom they were circulated and in what papers.
§ Mr. Needham
[pursuant to his reply, 23 June 1986, c. 44]: These are matters which are within the day-to-day management responsibility of the Eastern Health and Social Services Board. However, I understand that the equipment was stored in the Royal Victoria hospital and then transferred to Musgrave park hospital and Belfast city hospital. Non-usable items were sold as part of a general consignment of scrap.
The following firms have supplied catering equipment to the Royal Group since 1978.
Berkel Ltd. Universal Business Machines J. N. Fulton A-Z Refrigeration Hobart Manufacturing Caterware J. Stotts Edmunds Catering Stamex Limited Millbrook Catering Hoylake A-Z Tec Refrigeration Gilmore Crypto Peerless Mulcahy Group HTI Services Stott Benham Catering Equipment Stephens Catering Engineers Calvert Electric No catering equipment in
the corridor kitchen was to be used exclusively for the supply of food to day centres in north and west Belfast.
The replaced equipment was in excess of 12 years old and its original cost is not readily available. The replacement cost was £55,741 (excluding VAT). It was removed from use in December 1984.
Invitations to tender were not issued on 17 May 1984. Tenders were invited from the following firms on 17 April 1984:
- Stephens Catering
- Mulcahy Group
- Grundy (Calvert Electric)
As these were the only firms in Northern Ireland capable of supplying the equipment concerned, invitations to tender were not advertised in the press.