Since it was introduced in 2007 the smoking ban has had an undeniable impact on English pubs. To many people they are now a far more pleasant place to spend time and to work in, away from the stink of second-hand smoke. But at the same time, the British pub trade has had a difficult time, with the ban often blamed for many of the hundreds of closures which take place every year. Now, a leading public health charity has re-ignited the debate, with a new report calling on the ban to be rolled out even further.
The Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH) said the ban had “de-normalised” smoking, and creating further exclusion zones would make the habit more inconvenient for smokers. It wants to see smoking banned in all public spaces, including school gates, parks and pub beer gardens. Its chief executive Shirley Cramer said: “Over 100,000 people die from smoking-related disease every year in the UK. “While we have made good progress to reduce smoking rates, one in five of us still does.”
The proposal seems to have high levels of support, with a Populus survey finding 50 per cent of adults would be more likely to use outside areas in pubs if the ban was extended, while a third of smokers said they would instead consider switching to e-cigarettes. However, many Cambridge landlords were sceptical about the proposal. The Fort St George, has a large garden, which proves popular with smokers and non-smokers alike during the summer months. It’s general manager John Cecchini thinks banning smoking in the garden could be the thin end of a very wide wedge. He said: “I think it could have a negative impact.
“As part of the licence trade we have suffered more and more, from cheap beer in supermarkets to the original smoking ban, and to do this would mean a negative situation for the licensed industry. There seems to be less smokers than there used to be and there are an awful lot of people using these e-cigarettes as well. We don’t allow them to use them internally, as that’s still classified as a cigarette, but I think if people are going outside to have their cigarette that limits the damage it does massively.” He added: “What’s next, are we going to make it illegal to have BO? There are lots of bad smells in the world, where does this PC thing stop?”. Read full article
Adam Care (15 August 2015) Is it time to stub out smoking in beer gardens? Cambridge landlords have their say [editorial]. Retrieved from http://ow.ly/QVX7w