The smoking ban is UK-wide and in England, is enforced via a suite of regulations known as the Smoke-free legislation.
The legislation is designed to protect workers and members of the public from being exposed to tobacco smoke in places of work and premises open to the public.
Inspecting officers have the power to enter all 'no-smoking premises' also known as 'smoke-free premises', in order to establish that the smoke-free legislation is being enforced in accordance with the law. Inspecting officers also have the power to issue fixed penalty notices to people whom they believe are committing, or have committed, an offence.
If you are in charge of a smoke-free premises then you have a legal responsibility to prevent people smoking within the premises. We strongly recommend that you establish and implement a written policy and procedures to demonstrate your compliance with the law. Guidance on how to develop a smoke-free policy for the work place is available via the Smokefree England website, see link below.
If you are a business owner, you do not have to provide facilities to staff who smoke, therefore there is no legal requirement to provide a smoking shelter. If, however, you decide to provide a smoking shelter, you must ensure that it complies with The Smoke-free (Premises and Enforcement) Regulations 2006, which requires that the shelter is neither 'wholly' or 'substantially enclosed'. Please refer to the Smoking Shelter Guidance below.
Smoking shelter guidance
- Planning permission
In most cases any permanent structure that is built for smoking will need planning permission. Contact our planning department for further information on this, or visit the 'Do I need Planning Permission?' page.
- Building Regulations
You should check to see if the shelter will need building regulation approval. In most cases if the shelter is detached and of modest size, no building regulation approval will be needed. If the floor area of the shelter is greater than 15m2, there may be restrictions if the shelter is within one meter of a boundary. Any shelter over 30m2 will need Building Regulation approval. Also contact building control if your intended structure is to be attached to another building.
- Make sure it is legal
Your shelter must not be more than 50% enclosed. If it has a ceiling/roof and has walls and sides that enclose more than 50% of it. This is termed the 50% rule.
When considering the location of your shelter you should take into account:
- the noise that will be created
- any extra lighting that might potentially cause a nuisance to the neighbours
- whether the shelter is safely accessible
- proximity to other buildings and the potential of smoke drift entering neighbouring properties via vents, windows or doors
- Parasols, Jumbrellas, Gazebos
If you are considering using the above you should consider:
- Is the material fire retardant?
- Is it strong enough to resist windy spells?
- Does it meet the 50% rule?
|Offence || Who is liable ||Fixed penalty notice (if paid in 15 days) ||Fixed penalty notice (if paid in 29 days) ||Court awarded fine |
| Smoking in a smokefree place || Anyone who smokes in a smokefree place || £30 || £50 ||Up to £200 |
| Failing to display no smoking signs || Anyone who manages or occupies the smokefree premises or vehicle || £150 || £200 ||Up to £1000 |
| Failing to prevent smoking in a smokefree place || Anyone who manages or controls the smokefree premises or vehicle || N/A || N/A ||Up to £2000 |
Anyone who receives a fixed penalty notice can choose to have the matter dealt with in court. If a fixed penalty notice is not paid the matter may also be dealt with by a court.
Environmental health officers at the Council have delegated powers for the enforcement of the Smoke-free legislation. During routine food and health and safety inspections and in response to complaints, officers regularly make spot checks and enforce the Smoke-free legislation.
All smokefree public spaces, work places and vehicles must display no smoking signage to indicate that they are smokefree and to demonstrate that you are taking the right steps to meet the requirements of the law. The signage must comply with 'The Smoke-free (Signs) Regulations 2012'.
If you have management responsibilities for a smoke-free vehicle, then you must ensure that at least one legible no-smoking sign is displayed in the vehicle.
If you have management responsibilities or you occupy a smoke-free premises, then you must ensure that at least one legible no-smoking sign is displayed within the premises.
There are no other requirements as to the size, shape, content or location of no-smoking signs in smoke-free premises or vehicles.
Smokefree England (external link)