A major cigarette company is taking on the government in its bid to ban cigarette vending machines.
Imperial Tobacco Group has announced that its subsidiary cigarette vending machine company Sinclair Collis is seeking a judicial review of the Health Act, which has said the machines will be banned from all locations, including pubs, by October next year.
Chief executive Gareth Davis said: "Legal action is always a last resort but the government's decision to ban cigarette vending machines is so disproportionate and unnecessary that it must be challenged.
"We do not want children to smoke and supported the government's proposal to stop underage access through the introduction of electronic ID cards, token mechanisms and remote control technology.
"These are effective solutions which have been implemented in a number of other countries and it is a matter of great regret that the UK government ultimately chose to disregard all of these options in favour of a ban that will result in significant job losses in the vending industry."
Imperial Tobacco owns brands including John Player Special, Rizla and Golden Virginia.