All 3 entries tagged Smoking Ban

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March 22, 2007

Warnings before the smoking ban

It’s nearly a year since smoking was banned in Scottish pubs, and warnings from the landlords should be listened to south of the border.

The Scottish Licensed Trade Association said pubs had suffered “collateral damage” from the smoking ban, and had been forgotten in the wrangling between tobacco companies and the Executive.

Drink sales had fallen 11% and food sales – expected to rise by some – had also fallen, by 3%. Only around 530 pubs responded to the survey by the SLTA, but the lack of help made available to small businesses rings true with the situation in Wales and England, where smoking will be banned in April and July respectively.

In Wales, small businesses have been screaming for help, but the only visible signs have been leaflets informing landlords and business owners of their duties once the ban comes in. The Scottish experience seems to suggest that local councils haven’t been sympathetic to planning applications for outside amenities for smokers.

Some good news comes from the survey though. Services which help people quit smoking had seen a big increase in the number of calls from the public, suggesting the ban might trigger some people to quit.

December 01, 2006

Friday a good day for daft ideas?

The government’s been working like a smoothly-run machine this week (makes a change) and have announced several controversial things all at once. This morning we have:

  • Rod Eddington’s transport report which suggests road charging rather than high-speed rail links
  • England’s smoking ban will start on July 1st 2007
  • Sex-offenders will face compulsory lie-detector tests
  • Trials are to being of genetically-modified potatoes in Britain

and yesterday they proposed sending Britons to the moon, keeping life peers, building more City Academies, and Wales’ First Minister Rhodri Morgan stuck the boot in by declaring the end of New Labour.

Given the above, I think this may be wishful thinking on Rhodri’s part.

November 23, 2006

The smoking ban is going to put thousands out of business

Cardiff Central MarketThe smoking ban comes into effect on April 2nd in Wales, and small businesses are saying they’re not ready for it.

While larger hotels and restaurants are backing the ban, and expect to do quite well from it, places which have traditionally attracted smokers could lose a substantial number of their customers.

In Cardiff’s Central Market, the Bull Terrier cafe is one such business. Around four in every five customers go there specifically to smoke, but from April, they will have to go elsewhere.

I spoke to the cafe’s manager Sam Maher and asked her about the future of her business once the smoking ban comes in:

The Welsh Assembly aren’t willing to offer financial assistance. In Sam’s words “they don’t care, they’re not bothered at all”. So while many food outlets will see their custom increase thanks to the smoking ban, places such as this which have for decades attracted people because of smoking, look to have a fairly bleak future.

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