Wales is banning smoking near schools and playgrounds

"Not in front of the kids, Clint"

Wales is banning smoking outside hospitals and schools near playgrounds from next summer, in an attempt to 'de-normalise smoking for young people' and protect non-smokers from second-hand smoke.

What it means: The number of people smoking in the UK peaked in 1974, and has been in decline ever since – but the industry remains huge and makes billions of pounds every year.

About 15 percent of people still smoke in the UK – that's 7.6 million, smoking 11 a day on average. 500,000 are admitted to hospital every year for smoking-related issues, costing the NHS about £302 million.

Smoking bans already exist in individual hospitals but they struggle to enforce them – having government backing will help. Generally speaking, the public supports regulations around smoking, from standardising packets to preventing smoking in cars with kids. So unlike some other regulations, aside from a few lobbying groups who'll probably be annoyed (our favourite name: Freedom Organisation for the Right to Enjoy Smoking Tobacco, or FOREST) this is probably one they'll be able to implement without much opposition.

Recent articles

Reader Comments