Five more UK councils to ban smoking outside restaurants and pubs

3 June 2021, 08:20 | Updated: 3 June 2021, 08:22

More counties are set to ban smoking
More counties are set to ban smoking. Picture: PA Images/Getty Images
Naomi Bartram

By Naomi Bartram

More councils in the UK have banned smoking at pavement tables.

Five councils in England have banned smoking at pavement tables and on pavements outside restaurants, bars and pubs.

It was recently reported that Oxfordshire is set to ban smoking for all outdoor hospitality.

And now more local authorities are planning to include the rules in their licensing agreements for hospitality venues which are applying to place tables and chairs outside.

Pubs in Newcastle will be forced to ban smoking on pavement areas
Pubs in Newcastle will be forced to ban smoking on pavement areas. Picture: Getty Images

The counties which have already started laying out plans for smoke-free pavement drinking and dining include:

  • North Tyneside
  • Durham
  • Newcastle
  • Northumberland
  • Manchester City

This comes after Oxfordshire reportedly laid out plans to become the first 'smoke-free' county in England by 2025.

Smoke-free status is recognised by the Government when five per cent or less of an area's population are smokers.

According to the Mail Online, employers will be encouraged to stop workers from smoking outside offices, and smoke-free areas will be created in outside areas of pubs and restaurants.

Pubs in Manchester will have to ban smoking in outside areas
Pubs in Manchester will have to ban smoking in outside areas. Picture: PA Images

An Oxfordshire County Council spokeswoman said: "Oxfordshire has set itself an ambitious aim to be smoke-free by 2025.

"Creating healthy, smoke-free environments - including considering proposals for hospitality outdoor seating to be 100% smoke-free - is just one small part of a wider range of county-wide plans.

"At present there are no timeframes for smoke-free pavement licensing proposals and nothing has yet been agreed.

"Any decision on this would be ultimately the responsibility of our individual district councils in Oxfordshire.

"Our tobacco control strategy further outlines our smoke-free 2025 plans, which includes creating healthy and family-friendly smoke-free spaces, helping people stop smoking in the first place, and supporting those who wish to quit."

Five more counties are set to ban smoking outside
Five more counties are set to ban smoking outside. Picture: Getty Images

Dr Adam Briggs, the public health official leading the strategy, added: "We have got a condition that is entirely a commercially driven cause of death and disease.

"It is impossible to be on the wrong side of history with tobacco consumption."

But a pro-smoking campaign group named The Freedom Organisation for the Right to Enjoy Smoking Tobacco (Forest) has since criticised the plans.

Simon Clark, director of the group, said: "It's no business of local councils if adults choose to smoke, and if they smoke outside during working hours that's a matter for them and their employer not the council."