Licensees urged to take action on clean air

Related tags Kingston upon hull East riding of yorkshire

Licensees have been warned to take immediate action if they need to improve the atmosphere in their pubs.The warning came as a local Hull and East...

Licensees have been warned to take immediate action if they need to improve the atmosphere in their pubs.

The warning came as a local Hull and East Yorkshire Charter initiative was launched to promote compliance with the voluntary charter on smoking.

The charter recommends the use of ventilation, air-cleaners, signage and no-smoking areas to improve the atmosphere in pubs.

Speaking at the launch, Malcolm Mathias, chairman of the Humber Alliance on Tobacco (HALT), said that pubs risked litigation and enforcement under the new Approved Code of Practice recommended by the Health and Safety Commission (HSC) last month.

If approved by ministers, the code would bring in tougher restrictions on smoking in pubs, including a complete ban on smoking at the bar. The HSC has agreed in principle to charter-compliant pubs being exempt from the code for two years — but if licensees fail to act within that time, the government is likely to take a tougher stance.

The campaign in Hull and East Yorkshire, which has been developed jointly by the Atmosphere Improves Results (AIR) initiative and HALT, aims to bring together pub groups and local government to make as many venues as possible charter-compliant.

An AIR spokeswoman added: "At the moment it only takes a couple of minutes to comply because all you need to do is put a sign in the window telling customers what your policy is, and keep a record of it behind the bar.

"But in a couple of years' time we anticipate that this will change and there will be more pressure to install ventilation and no-smoke areas."

Call AIR on 020 7482 0620.

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