§ Chris Ruane
To ask the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs what the declared political allegiance of magistrate benches in Wales was in the last year for which figures are available. 
§ Mr. Leslie
Applicants to the magistracy are no longer asked to declare their political affiliation. The most recent figures, however, give the position in April 2003. These show that, of those who declared any affiliation, 526 declared for Labour, 473 for the Conservatives, 240 for the Liberal Democrats and 126 for Plaid Cymru.