Smoke-free Britain is a great success government claims

The introduction of smoke-free workplaces and public places across Britain has run smoothly, the government has said.


In October, three months after the ban in England came into force, people were enjoying a healthier atmosphere in all workplaces including pubs and clubs, the Department of Health said.


Its research also found high levels of support for smoke-free environments among both the general public and businesses.


Three-quarters of adults supported the law, and 79% believed it would have a positive effect on public health, with even a greater proportion of smokers supporting it (47%) than opposing it (37%).


Of more than 275,000 businesses inspected between 1 July and the end of September, 98% were found to be compliant with the new legislation, with 84% displaying the correct signage.


But some employers are still protesting. In November, a pub landlord became the first in England to be convicted of breaching the ban.


Hamish Howitt, owner of Happy Scots Bar in Blackpool, was fined £500 and ordered to pay £2,000 in costs at Blackpool Magistrates Court.


He had completely ignored the ban by allowing smokers to light up indoors and, despite the fine, said he would continue his fight for smokers’ rights.

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