Pubs attempt to take advantage of smoking ban

Pubs are looking to cash in on the Government’s smoking ban by offering advertisers space in outdoor areas being created for smokers.

A raft of planning applications is expected to be lodged with local authorities as pubs attempt to keep smokers happy by extending beer garden space, erecting shelters or moving tables and chairs outside.

But landlords are being warned about attempting to capitalise on the potentially lucrative new revenue stream. Planning laws, which are set to cover the issue of outdoor advertising, have yet to be finalised by the Government.

Advertising in outdoor smoking areas, which could include space on furniture, umbrellas and heaters, has already stirred controversy in Scotland, where a ban on smoking in public places comes into effect this month.

The Scottish Licensed Trade Association has slammed the situation as “chaos”. Several bars in Glasgow have been ordered to remove Scottish Executive anti-smoking ads from the side of outdoor ashtrays. The ashtrays are covered by planning laws, but the ads are not.

A spokesman for the British Beer & Pub Association refuses to comment.

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