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					SMOKE FREE
A new government law requires all workplaces, public
premises, public transport and work vehicles in England to
be smoke free from the 1st July 2007. This includes every
pub, club, café, restaurant, shop, office, and work and
public transport. It means that you, your staff, customers
and visitors will not be allowed to smoke within your
organisation‟s premises if they are wholly or substantially
enclosed. Smoking rooms will no longer be allowed. You
will need to take steps to ensure that employees,
customers, members and visitors obey the new law.

What is meant by smoking?
The law prohibits smoking any substance, including tobacco, such as:

       manufactured cigarettes
       hand-rolled cigarettes
       pipes and cigars
       herbs
       water/shisha pipes

This includes being in possession of lit tobacco or any other lit substance in a form in which it could
be smoked.

1.2 Where people can and can't smoke

Where people can and can‟t smoke

The law prohibits smoking in any public place that is “enclosed or
substantially enclosed”. This means an area with a ceiling or roof
– except for doors, windows and passageways – that is either
enclosed (permanently or temporarily); or has an opening less
than half of the area of its walls (see opposite). This is commonly
referred to as the 50% rule. This means that previously
designated „smoking rooms‟ will no longer be allowed. A roof
includes any fixed or movable structure, such as canvas awnings.
Tents and marquees etc will also be classified as enclosed
premises if they fall within the above definition.

Vehicles
Vehicles used for business purposes will also be affected by the
new law. These include light and heavy goods vehicles and public
transport such as taxis, buses and trains. Vehicles used by more
than one person for work – including voluntary work and even if
used by different people at different times – must be smoke free.
However, if you use your own private car for work it will not be
required to be smoke free.

1.3 Am I exempt?

The government has proposed a number of exemptions
from smoke free legislation including: private
accommodation – except communal areas such as
staircases and lifts – accommodation for hotel guests,
other residential accommodation in care homes, hospices,
mental health units and prisons for adults, performers,
specialist tobacconists, research and testing facilities and


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offshore platforms.


Private accommodation
If you work from home – and employ someone to work in your home office – this must also be smoke
free. Anyone visiting your home office to provide services or goods must also comply. The regulations
will not restrict people from smoking in any part of a home used for work if the work is to provide
personal care for somebody living there, assist with domestic work or undertake work to improve the
home for the benefit of the people living there. Private homes include self- contained residential
accommodation for temporary or holiday use, eg holiday cottage or caravan.

Hotels, guesthouses, inns, hostels and members clubs
All of the above are considered as an extension of a person‟s home and as such, are exempt. There
are conditions that must be met for designated accommodation in hotels, guesthouses, inns, hostels,
or members clubs. This applies only to guest accommodation and not to rooms in general. Smoking
rooms must be designated in writing by the person in charge of the premises, they must be fully
enclosed (except doors and windows) and must not have a ventilation system that ventilates into any
other part of the premises, except another smoking room. Smoking rooms must be clearly marked as
a room where smoking is permitted and all doors to smoking rooms must be self-closing. However,
unless your premises falls into any of the above categories, it is unlikely that you will be exempt from
the law. You must comply fully with the law or risk financial penalty. If you are unsure about whether
your premises are exempt, contact us.

1.4 Who will enforce the law?

The government requires the council to carry out any
necessary enforcement. Westminster‟s environmental
health team already works closely with businesses in food
safety, licensing and health and safety compliance. A
similar approach will be used to implement the new
smoking law – providing advice and support to businesses
wherever possible and enforcing only where necessary to
protect the public.

Authorised enforcement officers will have the power to
enter premises to determine whether the law is being
upheld. They‟ll also assess whether or not those in control of the premises have taken all reasonable
precautions to prevent people smoking. Inspections carried out by enforcement officers will either be
proactive: advising businesses and ensuring compliance with the law – or reactive: in response to a
complaint. Inspections may also be incorporated within other visits, eg health and safety, food
hygiene and licensing inspections.

On occasion it may be necessary to carry out covert inspections or more covert surveillance. Officers
will assess the situation by observation, then identify themselves following the period of surveillance.
At all times our staff will want to adopt a helpful and non-confrontational approach.

1.5 What would be the penalties for not complying?

Individuals
There are very few exemptions to the smoking ban. The
new law will affect most public premises, including
workplaces and work vehicles. Failure to comply with the
law will be a criminal offence. Individuals can be fined a
fixed penalty of £50 for smoking in a smoke free premises
(or £30 if paid within 15 days). They could also be
prosecuted and face a fine of up to £200.

Management
The management or person in control of a no smoking


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premises could be fined a fixed penalty of £200 (or £150 if paid within 15 days) for failing to display
warning notices in no smoking premises. They could also be prosecuted and face a fine of up to
£1,000. If the management or person in control of any no smoking premises fails to prevent smoking,
they could be prosecuted and face a fine up to £2,500.

2. Smoke free: how to comply

From 1st July 2007 every business must ensure that their
staff, customers and visitors are aware of the new law. In
preparation you should:

1. Display no smoking signs: the law requires premises
to display appropriate signage at each entrance. These
„No Smoking‟ signs should make staff, customers and
visitors aware that they must comply with the new
smoking law. Sign template.

2. Remove ashtrays: or any other ash collection device
from inside your premises.

3. Adopt a smoke free approach: you should make all your staff aware of the requirements to be
smoke free and ensure that infringements by employees, customers, members etc are dealt with
under agreed procedures. If you have any doubts that you will satisfactorily achieve this, you may
want to adopt a more formal policy. Download a sample policy.

4. Get approval for outside shelters/dining: remember that permanent structures will need
planning permission. In the case of licensed premises, if these outside areas are not already included
on your licence it may involve a variation application. You must talk to the council‟s planning and
licensing departments if you are considering any of these. Sample smoking shelters.

We also advise that you prepare in advance to deal with the impact of your smoking customers and
staff moving onto the street. This will give rise to a number of associated issues which, although are
not directly related to the smoke free legislation, will need to be addressed by you. The council can
help you put in place measures to minimise noise and litter etc. For more information.

2.1 No smoking signage – requirements

The law requires smoke free premises and vehicles to display
prominent no smoking signs at each of their entrances. No smoking
signs must:

       Be A5 size: the size of a standard A4 piece of paper folded
        in half from top to bottom.

       Feature the international no smoking symbol: at least
        70mm in diameter.

       Read: “No smoking. It is against the law to smoke in
        these premises” in easy to read characters. Substitute
        words can be used for “these premises” as long as they
        refer to your particular premises, eg “this hotel”.

A no smoking sign with only the international no smoking symbol
(min. 70mm diameter in red) may be displayed at an entrance not
in public use – ie staff entrances – if at least one standard A5 no
smoking sign is already being displayed on the premises.




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Any signage attached to the exterior of the building may require advertisment consent or listed
building consent if the premises are listed.

2.2 What to do if someone breaks the law

There are five steps you should take to ensure your
business does not break the law. If a customer or member
of staff smokes on your premises:

1. Inform: draw the person‟s attention to the no smoking
signs and advise that they are committing an offence.
Advise the smoker that it is also an offence for the
occupier, manager and any other person for the time
being in charge of the premises to permit anyone to
smoke in contravention of the law.

2. Warn: advise the smoker that your business is smoke free to ensure a safe working environment
for staff and customers and that staff are obliged to refuse service to customers who persist in
smoking.

3. Ask them to leave: if they continue to smoke, request that they leave the premises.

4. Take action: if the person refuses, use normal procedure for antisocial/ illegal behaviour. Maintain
a record of all incidents and notify all staff of action taken.

5. Get help: in all cases where physical violence is threatened or encountered, call the police.

2.3 Adopting a smoke free policy

To ensure that you and your staff are aware of the new law we recommend that you adopt a written
smoke free policy. The policy should:

       Be concise and simple to understand
       Identify management and staff who have responsibility for its implementation
       State the procedures to be followed in the event of non-compliance
       Acknowledge the right of employees to work in a smoke free environment
       Provide information on how to get help to quit smoking
       Communicate the policy to all staff – in particular to new and part-time staff, before they start.

3. Moving smokers outside

Moving smokers outside will create a healthier indoor
environment for your staff, visitors and customers.

Managing noise and litter
You are responsible for managing noise and behaviour
outside your premises. You must also manage the litter
outside your premises or you could face a fine. You
should take steps to minimise noise and litter before the
legislation comes into force and ensure that you are
prepared. How the council can help you comply.

Smoking shelters
If you want to adapt your building or set up smoking shelters, canopies and/or put tables and chairs
on the pavement, you are likely to require planning permission.
Before starting any work speak to our planning department. More information on planning.




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Where smokers should stand
There is currently no guidance on where people can stand outside premises to smoke.
When considering where your smoking customers and staff should stand you should consider
premises next door and above, as well as your non-smoking customers.

3.1 Planning permission

All planning decisions are based on our planning policies,
which are set out in the Westminster Unitary Development
Plan 2007. You can find this on our website:
www.westminster.gov.uk/udp. The following section
provides advice on external smoking areas and
associated issues that you will need to manage.

Listed buildings
If your building is listed you are likely to need listed
building consent to make any physical alterations.
Examples include fixing space heaters to walls, opening
up rear walls by altering any windows or doors and attaching retractable blinds to the building. The
content of this section is only intended as a rough guide.
You should always send your proposals to the council‟s planning department. See back cover for
contacts and seek written confirmation before proceeding with any work. It is also important to
remember that other parts of the law are not covered here – such as Building Regulations – or any
requirement or restriction that is relevant to your lease or property.




External smoking shelters
There is no requirement to provide smoking shelters and it is common practice not to encourage
dedicated places for smokers to congregate. If you do have an outside smoking shelter or area, you
will need to be sure that it is not “enclosed” or “substantially enclosed”. Over 50% of the perimeter
under a roof or ceiling must be space to be considered not substantially enclosed.




Shelters/canopies/blinds and space heaters
Some businesses may use portable free-standing canopies and space heaters. These do not
normally need planning permission but you should check with the council before installing them.
Unless you have a private forecourt, however, you will need a licence from the council to install space
heaters. More information on outside dining.

Structures, shelters, blinds or space heaters fixed to the wall will normally need planning permission.
Our policies seek to ensure that any shelter does not result in a nuisance to adjoining occupiers
because of the potential intensification of activity. We‟ll also seek to ensure the design of the shelter
or space heaters is sympathetic to their surroundings and fit in with the character and appearance of
the area, especially if they are within a conservation area. Other alterations, such as new patio doors,
will require planning permission.




Decking
Timber decking may need planning permission depending on the location and nature of the work.
Decking at the front of properties that are highly visible from public views are not likely to be
accepted.




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Signage
Ideally any smoking signage should be located within the entrance foyer of a building or inside a shop
door or window. However, some businesses may wish to advertise on the exterior that they have
outdoor smoking shelters to the rear. For further information see our guide entitled Advertisement
design guidelines.

3.2 Smokers‟ litter: your responsibilities

In Westminster we already sweep-up over 12 million
cigarette butts each year from our city‟s streets. They are
an avoidable mess that spoils the appearance of an area.
A clear message needs to be communicated to staff and
customers that the pavement is not an ashtray and
cigarette butts belong in the litter bin.

Fines
Smokers caught littering can be issued with an £80 on-
the-spot fine (or £50 if paid within 10 days). Failure to pay
the fine can lead to prosecution and a fine of up to £2,500.
If litter becomes a regular problem outside your premises, your business may be served with a street
litter control notice obliging you to keep the area clear.




How we can help: avoiding a litter problem
Westminster council‟s cleansing service has helped a number of local businesses deal with litter
problems around their premises. We recommend that you:

       educate your staff and customers about the consequences of discarding cigarette litter
       encourage the use of litter bins available on-street and/or personal ashtrays
       install your own bins wherever feasible.

Below are details of suppliers of a variety of free-standing and wall-mounted smoking-litter bins.




www.nobutts.co.uk
www.glasdon.com
www.theashtree.co.uk
www.ciggybins.co.uk
www.wybone.co.uk
www.unicorn-containers.com
www.plantscapeuk.com
www.themebins.co.uk




Bins fixed to the ground: are an option if you have a private forecourt, yard or other area off the
pavement.
Free-standing bins: may be suitable for outside your premises during operating hours.
Wallmounted bins: are likely to be a more practical option in the majority of cases.

We recommend: black, metal wall-mounted bins with tops that slope downwards away from the wall.

We don't recommend: flat topped bins and those with tops that slope towards the wall. These are
not acceptable as they attract rubbish and soon become unsightly.




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Bins for listed buildings
If your building is listed it would be a criminal offence to fix bins or ashtrays to walls without planning
permission and even on application consent may not be granted. Free-standing bins can be placed
outside at the start and close of business provided they are suitable and do not cause an obstruction
on the pavement. See back cover for planning contacts. You may wish to consider encouraging your
staff and customers to use products such as small fireproof pouches or containers.

'Stubbi' suppliers:
www.stubbi.net
www.cleanercities.co.uk
www.buttsandgum.com


3.3 Noise: your responsibilities

One person‟s night out is another person‟s sleepless night
You should consider how noise affects local residents and put
measures in place to avoid it. Licensed premises in particular
should start thinking now about how noise will be effectively
managed.

You are obliged – under the Licensing Act 2003 – to prevent
public nuisance. You should consider how noise from
customers smoking outside will impact on the surrounding
neighbourhood and you should take measures to control it. An
increase in noise complaints about your premises could result
in your premises licence being reviewed.

Some licensed premises may have conditions on their licence
where re-entry after a certain hour is prohibited – this will apply
to people leaving to have a cigarette.

How we can help: avoiding a noise problem
We recommend that, as a minimum, you put in place the
following measures:

1. Remind people to keep the noise down: display keep
quiet signs on the inside of your doors. Train staff to regularly
remind customers who move outside to keep noise to a minimum.

2. Remove noisy customers: customers who fail to keep the noise down should be asked to move
inside or leave the premises. Noise disturbance should be dealt with like any other anti-social
behaviour.

3. Keep people away from residential areas: if you are able to, direct customers or staff to a
particular area away from residential accommodation.

Sample noise sign 1

Sample noise sign 2

3.4 Outside dining

The trend for outside dining has increased in recent years
and moving smokers outside is likely to see the demand
for outside space increase further. Remember, if you want



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to put tables and chairs on the pavement you need a licence and planning permission from the
council.

Our policies will take into account a number of things:

       pavement obstruction
       pedestrian safety
       nuisance to nearby residents
       protecting the character and appearance of an area
       historic buildings
       refuse
       cleansing arrangements
       potential intensification of use.

How we can help: outside dining
Full details of our outside dining policy are set out in Guidelines for placing tables and chairs on the
highway.

Using existing gardens/yards
Planning permission is not normally required to use connecting private gardens and yards if they are
lawfully part of the existing business and are not previously used or shared by other
businesses/users. Unless specifically conditioned when permission was originally given, pubs can
permit customers to use existing beer gardens and yards to smoke without the need for planning
permission. If you want to use outside space that is currently used for other purposes, you are likely
to need planning permission for the change of use of the land.

Space heaters
Unless you have a private forecourt, you will need a licence to put out external heaters. If you receive
a licence to locate heaters – or intend to put them in a private area – you will need to undertake a risk
assessment to ensure that any hazards associated with their use are controlled. Wallmounted space
heaters are likely to need planning permission.

5. Support in giving up

Free help is available if you and your staff want to give up
or are interested in finding out about giving up smoking.
Westminster Primary Care Trust‟s stop smoking service
holds workplace group support sessions.

Specialist advisors run the sessions, which:

       last for six weeks
       include time to prepare for a quit date
       give information and advice on choosing a
        medication to help with quitting.

One-to-one support is also available. Westminster can supply posters and leaflets advertising their
service if you‟d like to add them to your staff room.

Why Westminster PCT?
Research has shown that you‟re up to four times more likely to give up smoking with the support of
your local NHS Stop Smoking Service and nicotine replacement products than with willpower alone.
Westminster PCT‟s Stop Smoking Service is one of the most successful NHS services in London,
having helped more than 3,500 people quit in the past three years. These are just some of the
organisations they have worked with, helping their staff give up smoking:

Department of Transport
Saatchi and Saatchi


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English National Ballet
The Savoy Hotel
Channel 4

For more information about how Westminster PCT can help:
email: stopsmokingservice@westminster-pct.nhs.uk
tel: (Freephone) 0800 328 8537
visit: www.westminster-pct.nhs.uk/services/stopsmoking

You can also get one-to-one support and advice on medication at most Westminster pharmacies and
from your local GP.

Find your nearest pharmacy: www.westminster-pct.nhs.uk/services/stopsmoking

7. Frequently asked questions

Q1: When is the law coming in?
1st July 2007. Detailed guidance is expected from the
government in Spring 2007.

Q2: What will businesses be required to do?
It will be the business owner‟s responsibility to ensure a
smoke free environment for both their staff and
customers. Environmental health officers will enforce the
law. Any business in breach of the law will face a fine.
More information

Q3: What can I do to prepare?
You should be preparing now. More information

Q4: Where can people smoke?
Smoking indoors in a workplace environment will be illegal. Staff and customers who smoke will be
asked to step outside the premises. Clarification is due to come from the government on whether a
minimum distance will be specified by law, but it is expected that smoking in doorways will also be
prohibited and shelters restricted. More information

Q5: Can I put tables and chairs on the pavement?
Unless you have access to a private forecourt you will need a licence and planning permission from
the council to put out tables and chairs. If you do not have a licence you will face a fine. The West
End in particular is already overcrowded so we are encouraging businesses such as cafés and bars
to plan ahead. If you would like to apply for an outside dining licence contact us on 020 7641 8549.
More information

Q6: What will I do if someone smokes on my premises?
If a customer or member of staff smokes on your premises it is your responsibility to ask them to stop.
Breaking the law could result in you being fined. More information

Q7: What can I do about noise created by people outside?
You are responsible for managing the noise and behaviour outside your premises. You must also
manage the litter outside your premises or you could face a fine and if you are a licensed premises it
could result in a review. More information

Q8: What can I do to prevent smokers‟ litter?
We recommend that you educate your staff about the consequences for themselves (and the
business) of discarding cigarette litter, encourage the use of litter bins available on-street and/or
personal ashtrays, and especially that you install dedicated bins wherever feasible. More information




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Q9: Can I put „mushroom‟ space heaters outside?
Unless you have access to a private forecourt you will need a licence and planning permission from
the council to put out tables and chairs and heaters. You will also need to undertake a risk
assessment. If your building is listed there will be restrictions on fixing space heaters and bins to the
wall. If you would like to apply for listed building consent contact us on 020 7641 2513. How to apply
for a licence.

Q10: Can I install a shelter for my staff or customers?
Before installing any type of shelter you should speak to our planning department on 020 7641 2513.
Most shelters would require planning permission and not all shelters would comply with the law. More
information

Q11: Is shisha exempt?
No. Smoking shisha or water pipes indoors will be illegal.

Q12: Are members clubs exempt?
There are conditions that must be met for designated accommodation in members clubs. More
information




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