§ Mr. McAllion
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many letters, petitions and postcards he or his Department or Grampian health board have received relating to the proposal to put out to tender the provision of hospital services at Stonehaven; and how many of these were(a) in favour and (b) opposed to the proposal. 
§ Lord James Douglas-Hamilton
My right hon. Friend and I have received 29 letters about the proposals. No petitions have been received. A total of 575 pre-printed postcards have been sent by individuals to my right hon. Friend or his predecessor. The letters reflect a range of views with most accepting that a new hospital should be built in Stonehaven. The postcards recognise the need to develop new health services in Stonehaven but express opposition to open competitive tendering for services. I suggest that the hon. Member approaches Grampian health board for information on representations made to the board. He will be aware that the board carried out 131W wide local consultation in preparing its specification for a new hospital and services. This provided the opportunity for expression of a wide variety of views.