Smoking ban: traditional inner city pubs have suffered most

By Adam Pescod

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: United kingdom, Scotland, Wales

Traditional inner city pubs have been the hardest hit
Traditional inner city pubs have been the hardest hit
Traditional inner city pubs have suffered the most since the introduction of smoking bans in Scotland, England and Wales, says a new report from the...

Traditional inner city pubs have suffered the most since the introduction of smoking bans in Scotland, England and Wales, says a new report from the Save Our Pubs and Clubs campaign.

The research conducted by CR Consulting, using data from CGA Strategy, revealed that the greatest levels of pub closures have been in Labour-held constituencies with an average of almost eleven pubs per constituency, compared to 9.9 pubs per Liberal Democrat constituency and 7.6 pubs per Conservative constituency.

Whilst the hardest-hit constituency (Cities of London and Westminster) was Conservative, seven of the other nine were Labour held, with two Liberal Democrat.

All bar one of these constituencies (Argyll and Bute) are in inner cities with one each in London, Birmingham, Glasgow, Manchester, Liverpool, Bristol, Leeds, Edinburgh and Nottingham.

In Wales every constituency lost at least one pub. In Scotland only one constituency escaped without a single pub closure.

Simon Clark, director of the Save Our Pubs and Clubs campaign, said: "Labour was the principal architect of the smoking ban. It is ironic therefore that pubs in Labour-held constituencies have suffered the most.

"The smoking ban is an issue that MPs must address because local communities cannot afford to go on losing pubs at the present rate. The Coalition Government must review the smoking ban and consider options that bring us into line with most other countries in Europe where smoking is permitted in separate smoking rooms or designated smoking bars.

"This is the only option we have at the moment because it is the only one that MPs will listen to, even if it will affect those pubs which don't have them (smoking rooms).There is a danger that we may give up an important part of British culture and history."

John Madden, executive officer of the Guild of Master Victuallers, said: "The smoking ban has put a huge strain on the traditional urban pub. Many regular customers decided to smoke and drink at home and very few non-smokers came in to replace them.

"The result has been the closure of thousands of pubs. Licensees have lost their livelihoods, bar staff have lost their jobs, and many communities have lost their social centre."

The group is holding a reception at the House of Commons to support the campaign to change the smoking ban.

Related topics: Legislation

Follow us

Pub Trade Guides

View more