When was smoking banned
A smoking ban in England, making it illegal to smoke in all enclosed work places in . Similar bans had already been introduced by the rest of the United Kingdom before this — on 2 April 2007 and Northern Ireland on 30 April 2007.
Before the smoking ban
Before the ban many businesses voluntarily introduced bans on smoking mainly as a result of public feedback. The pub chain Wetherspoons was the first major chain to introduce a complete ban on indoor smoking.
Tobacco advertising had been banned in England gradually starting with a ban on Television Advertising of cigarettes in 1965 to a complete ban on all Tobacco Advertising in 2005.
Passage of the law
On 16 November 2004 a Public Health white paper proposed a smoking ban in almost all public places in England and Wales. Smoking restrictions would be phased in, with a ban on smoking in NHS and government buildings by 2006, in enclosed public places by 2007, and pubs, bars and restaurants (except pubs not serving food) by the end of 2008.
On 26 October 2005, after external challenge and debates within the Cabinet, the government announced that it would continue with its plans. All workplaces, including restaurants and pubs selling food, would have to comply by summer 2007 However, there was widespread criticism from all sides of the argument on this, with a number of MPs threatening to try to overturn the bill. Many representatives of the licensed trade told the Government that only a total ban would work, and over 90 MPs signed a motion demanding this, with over 100 signing a petition for a free vote on the issue. It was reported on 24 November that Chief Medical Officer Liam Donaldson nearly quit over the partial ban, but decided to stay to champion a total ban. On the same day, the government released the results of the public consultation, after Cancer Research UK demanded them under the Freedom of Information Act, which revealed that nearly 9 out of 10 respondents wanted a total ban.
On 11 January 2006, the government further announced that it would give MPs a free vote on an amendment to the Health Bill, submitted by the Health select committee, to instigate a comprehensive smoke-free workplace regulations. Health Secretary Patricia Hewitt voted in favour of the amendment and, in so doing, voted against her own Department's then publicly stated policy (i.e. the proposed partial regulations). All other parties had offered free votes on the issue which was debated on 14 February, with three options: the present compromise, a total ban, or an exemption for members' clubs only.
On 14 February 2006, the House of Commons first voted on the amendment to the original compromise plan, to extend the ban to all enclosed public places except private members' clubs. The amendment was carried with a large majority. MPs then voted on a further amendment to ban smoking in all enclosed public places including private members' clubs. Again this amendment gained significant support and was carried with a large majority. This therefore replaced the earlier successful amendment which would have allowed smoking only in private members' clubs. The legislation was passed by the House of Lords, allowing a total smoking ban in enclosed public places to come into force in England.
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