Some local authorities in England have introduced measures that will prevent people from smoking outside hospitality venues.
Attention has been on smokers during the pandemic, as Chief Medical Officer Chris Witty suggested it might put people more at risk from coronavirus.
There was a failed attempt to push an amendment through the House of Lords last year to ban smoking on pavements outside pubs.
As lockdown apparently ‘drastically increased’ the number of cigarettes smoked last year, many are now wondering what the rules are for smoking outdoors.
What are the new rules for smoking outdoors?
In most places in the UK, the rules around smoking outdoors haven’t changed.
However, six local authorities in England have banned cigarettes outside pubs, bars, restaurants and cafes, citing health concerns.
The councils that have introduced the ban are:
- North Tyneside
- Northumberland county council
- City of Manchester
- Gateshead – although this isn’t an official policy, they state that all pavements must be smoke-free.
These councils have started including the rules in their licensing agreements whenever hospitality venues apply to place tables and chairs outside.
It means people living under the authorities can’t light up near outdoor seating areas — including in beer gardens.
The government plans to make the country entirely smoke-free, and Oxfordshire council have pledged to meet this goal by 2025.
It will also see spaces created where people feel ’empowered’ not to smoke.
The county council came up with its plot to rid its population of a smoking habit in February last year, before the pandemic started. The proposal aims to target people who smoke while pregnant, and work to discourage people from smoking at work.
If successful, Oxfordshire will be the first county in England where only 5% or less smoke cigarettes.
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