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Campaigners lobby MPs to change smoking ban

Published:  24 May, 2011

The smoking ban has had a devastating impact on community pubs throughout Britain, according to campaigners who claim Scotland has lost 7.1% of its pub estate (467 pubs), Wales 7.3% (274), and England 7.6% (4,148).

That's according to the Save Our Pubs & Clubs campaign, which has been set up by MPs from the three main political parties in an effort to change the smoking ban.

Greg Knight, Conservative MP for East Yorkshire, Roger Godsiff, Labour MP for Birmingham Hall Green, and John Hemming, Liberal Democrat MP for Birmingham Yardley, will host a reception for the Save Our Pubs &
Clubs campaign at the House of Commons on June 29.

The event, which marks the fourth anniversary of the smoking ban in England, will kick start the organisers' plans to lobby MPs for a review of the ban and an amendment to the legislation.

Knight said: "This is a unique opportunity for people to show how strongly they feel on this important issue. A modest change in the law, not a repeal of the smoking ban, is all we seek."

Simon Clark, director of the Save Our Pubs & Clubs campaign, added: "Looking at the dramatic increase in pub closures since the introduction of smoking bans in Scotland, Wales and England, it is clear that the ban has been a big factor in the closure of many pubs and clubs throughout Britain.

"The government must review the ban and consider a change in the law that would allow separate smoking rooms in pubs and clubs."

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