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« Tobacco: who's in control? | Main | David Nuttall: yesterday's debate »

MP's campaign for review of the smoking ban to continue

Brian Binley MP has vowed to continue his campaign for a review of the smoking ban following yesterday's 10-Minute Rule Motion in the House of Commons. Brian's office has just issued the following press release. It reads:

Brian Binley MP for Northampton South has once again called on the Government to review the smoking ban in pubs and working men’s clubs.

Brian was a sponsor of a Bill in the House of Commons yesterday which called for a review and which was narrowly defeated by 141 votes to 86, a margin of only 55 votes.

Brian said: “The Bill stood little chance of being approved by the House but a Ten Minute Rule Motion gives the tabling Members an opportunity to gauge what support there is for the issue within the House.”

“It is clear that there is a sizeable amount of support in the House for a review of the smoking ban in pubs and clubs. 86 Members voted in favour of a review and my EDM also has a large number of supporters.”

Brian has pledged to continue to push the Government for a review of the smoking ban claiming that:

“The former Health Minister, John Reid MP, promised that a review would be held three years after the implementation of the ban but the Government is now saying that it has no plans to do so. That denial is simply unacceptable.”

“Seven pubs a day are going out of business and 2000 clubs have gone to the wall and there is a drastic need of help. Smokers can be fully accommodated in pubs and clubs in segregated smoking areas or rooms if suitable, effective extraction systems are installed. In other words we can achieve the same result with a less draconian approach whilst not turning all smokers into second class citizens.”

“I also believe strongly that landlords should have the freedom to choose whether or not they want to accommodate smokers within their pubs and as a result this could really help the trade.”

Note: we have just uploaded a short interview that we conducted with Brian at the Great British Pub Awards last month. Click HERE or on the image above.

Reader Comments (54)

That's good news, and gives our Pubs & Clubs some hope.

October 14, 2010 at 14:01 | Unregistered Commenterlisa symmons

There should also be a demand for an INDEPENDENT Scientific review of ALL the evidence produced by the Anti-Smoking Organisations and their supporters that led to the ban in the first place.

For a start the SCOTH Committee members could hardly be said to have an unbiased view.

October 14, 2010 at 14:41 | Unregistered CommenterEddie Douthwaite

Keep it going not only for the Pubs and Clubs, but for the erosion of smokers rights.


October 14, 2010 at 14:41 | Unregistered CommenterTony

Well done, Brian Binley and proves support for freedom of choice is not completely dead after Labour's various attacks on the rights of individuls. It is disgraceful there are no plans by the Government to review the smoking ban and a review should be demanded by those MPs who stand for Conservative princilples of democracy and localism..

October 14, 2010 at 14:58 | Unregistered CommenterDavid Saunders

The second-hand smoke science is the same as the man made climate change science – full of lies and manipulated to make a pre-decided point. We are free men and we have the right to choose.

October 14, 2010 at 14:59 | Unregistered CommenterRusty

I have said before the anti-smoking campaigners do not seem to realise that smoking does not cause all cancers. I have terminal cancer and the consultant confirmed that it is nothing to do with smoking for the last 35/40 years, but unfortunatley this is never mentioned. Also what the basic rate of income tax or other taxes would increase if everyone stopped smoking, the revenue loss would be higher than the current deficit. More tax hikes then. It is also never said how much smokers contribute through taxes for any smoking related illness, but the amount smokers pay is about ten times the extra cost to the NHS. The NSH cost, is completed with the budget, not taxes directly from smokers. If the amount we pay in taxes should only cover what we cost the NHS can we have a refund for the billions we have over paid?

What has been the cost to the economy of the ban, all those who now do not have jobs as a direct result of the smoking ban? what is that costing the DWP, do the government take us all as fools??? no doubt there is a smoking room in the palace of westminster!

Lets get real and smell the coffee, this ban cannot be afforded in the current economic climate, lets get back to the situation where people make choices for themselves on things that directly affect them. Not Mr Nanny State, the state causes enough problems without the bankers as well.

October 14, 2010 at 15:06 | Unregistered CommenterMike

I wish you well in your pursuit of a common sense resolution of this stupid overall ban

October 14, 2010 at 15:21 | Unregistered Commenterm t best

Under the last Govt, the smoking ban "review" was only ever going one way - more restrictions outside in the home and in cars so it's just as well it isn't being reviewed at all until it can be looked at fairly without fear, prejudice or lies.

October 14, 2010 at 15:40 | Unregistered CommenterPat Nurse

Good man!

October 14, 2010 at 15:41 | Unregistered CommenterMaddog

This result was inevitable - the vast majority of groups consulting and lobbying parliament are funded by taxpayer sponsored TC and/or pharmaceutical companies. These people are paid to demonise tobacco, so it's hardly surprising that they are biased. Statements by MPs who oppose any amendment are read from scripts provided by the likes of ASH, backed up by an unhealthy dose of personal prejudice. How can this ring fence be breached without the public being made aware of the full facts? Defeats like this will give TC fresh impetus to push harder for a ban in cars and private houses.

October 14, 2010 at 15:45 | Unregistered CommenterP Doff

I was quite surprised to find Kevin Barron lowering himself to reply to a back-benchers proposal. Surely ASH et al could have told another of their MP minions to respond or could it be that they are rather fearful of the demise of their ban.

October 14, 2010 at 15:47 | Unregistered CommenterChrisB

There is another debate on this on ConservativeHome, which you can join in on, see it

October 14, 2010 at 15:53 | Unregistered CommenterPeter Thurgood

Prohibition in the States lasted a decade or so: it did far more damage to society than good. My drinking mates have all gone because the pubs and clubs are empty, and they were all over 70 and life-long smokers. We are now condemned to die by loneliness and boredom. ASH has made a HASH of our lives.

October 14, 2010 at 16:02 | Unregistered CommenterRoy Fox

Must agree with Eddie Douthwaite on this, it will be the sience that can win us this argument, if we can get enough people to realise what a sham the antis stats and statictics are the whole of their argument just falls apart, we must keep trying to get the message across to the general public at large that ASH are just a vested interest group not interested in public health but only in what they can troff, we are in danger of losing many more pubs and clubs, a major part of our heritage because of these neo - prohibitionists it is such a needless shame.

October 14, 2010 at 16:05 | Unregistered CommenterFrosty

If you are writing to your MP thanking or criticising them you may want to include this:

I saw on BBC Parliament Keith Barron's speech opposing David Nuttall's 10 Minute Rule Bill and quite frankly it was plainly obvious that you have been briefed by the Department of Health and/or ASH and may I say quite erroneously too. I

Dr. Gilmore's heart attack paper frankly is frankly publication bias. As you can see from the figures there is no statistically significant reduction in England on heart attacks. In fact the biggest reduction was 2005/6 when you could smoke in a pub.

Heart attacks Anna Gilmore

Emergency AMI admissions in English hospitals

2002/03: 61,498

2003/04: 60,680 (a fall of 1.33%)

2004/05: 58,803 (a fall of 3.1%)

2005/06: 55,752 (a fall of 5.19%)

2006/07: 53,964 (a fall of 3.21%)

2007/08: 51,664 (a fall of 4.26%)

My next piece of evidence is Dr. Michael Siegel who is an anti smoking Public Health professor, he commented and published this independent study in the USA.

"This study examined a total of 217,023 heart attack deaths and 2.0 million heart attack admissions in 468 counties in all 50 states over an eight-year period." Conclusions were:

"1. "In contrast with smaller regional studies, we find that workplace bans are not associated with statistically significant short-term declines in mortality or hospital admissions for myocardial infarction or other diseases."

2. "An analysis simulating smaller studies using subsamples reveals that large short-term increases in myocardial infarction incidence following a workplace ban are as common as the large decreases reported in the published literature."

"We find no evidence that legislated U.S. smoking bans were associated with short term reductions in hospital admissions for acute myocardial infarction or other diseases in the elderly, children or working age adults." ...

Professor Jill Pell's heart attack miricle was also publication bias too as she left out the winter months when heart attacks are at their highest, more details on request.

October 14, 2010 at 16:12 | Unregistered CommenterDave Atherton

I think people should be allowed to make up their own minds wether to smoke or not. I am personally fed up with the politicians telling everybody what is right or wrong. Ordinary people/voters are not generally stupid. Give people back their rights.

October 14, 2010 at 16:37 | Unregistered CommenterMerrin

Excellent news. Keep bashing them. They're easily rattled. The sooner they're shown as the mouth foaming loonies they are, the better. But as always when the left has had it's head, it takes a while to clear the serious damage they ALWAYS inflict.

In my opinion the 'review' was cancelled as they knew it would be difficult to push for more. After yesterday, now's the time to start pushing back.

October 14, 2010 at 16:37 | Unregistered CommenterFrank

I can find no report of yesterday's vote in any of today's papers, yet the issue has attracted hundreds of comments on various blogs.

October 14, 2010 at 17:14 | Unregistered Commenterjon

Thank you Mr. Binley and all those who supported his Bill.

The tide is turning. But it will take some more fundamental reforms to happen before a majority of MPs are confident enough to support overturning prohibition, not least reform of the BBC to ensure impartiality.

A little off-topic maybe and not altogether surprising, but I listened open-mouthed to R4's "Costing the Earth" prog earlier. An entirely one-sided piece of advocacy, as if Climategate and Splattergate never happened and as if Mann's Hockey Stick was a Biblical Truth instead of the big lie it is. "Deniers" were in the pay of Big Oil just as freedom-campaigners were in the pay of Big Tobacco and no dissenting opinion was heard, but there were emotional interviews with hurricane-survivors to underline the point that it's all supposed to be our fault because Al Gore and his private jet says so.

I'm tired of complaining to them. They are socialists so they don't hear. The only thing to do with socialists is to turn-off their money-tap.

October 14, 2010 at 18:16 | Unregistered CommenterRoger Dandy

I have suffered severe depression since the smoking ban and read coincidentally that the incidence of depression has risen starkly in the last 2 years. I am segregated and treated no better than a stray dog. My social life has been reduced to zero, I can't enjoy a party, a wedding or a meal out with my Husband who works tirelessly as an NHS Doctor (and smokes). The cost of treating depression is extensive, the tax on my cigarettes useful. My Mum is 82 and still enjoying her cigarettes although she is now confined to her home because she can't sit out in the cold. In fact she has not left her home since the ban. What a sorry end to a life of hard work and paying her contributions until she was 70 plus. Not one person smoker or not has said they agree with this ban to me.

October 14, 2010 at 21:06 | Unregistered CommenterL Button

Roy Fox, I have said many times that 'prohibition' lasted thirteen years - but - they did not have the internet - go figure

October 15, 2010 at 0:14 | Unregistered Commentertimbone

If you want to achieve an objective, timing is vital. If an army, however big it is, strikes too soon, their objective goes pear shaped. It can even backfire and cause total destruction, including themselves.

The anti smoking machine ran out of patience. To administer draconian denormalisation, the percentage of smokers needed to be down to less than 10% in my opinion. Their pre-emptive move has jammed it at above 20%.

I hope I live long enough to see the whole thing backfire, which I am sure that it will.

October 15, 2010 at 0:53 | Unregistered Commentertimbone

out tonight in our local we stood outside and a old women aged 86 god bless her was wheeled out for her ciggy in the dropping temperatures and said 'I love and fought for this country and so did my husband god bless him why cant we have smoking rooms back like the old days'
It is appalling to think that the draconian measures the state adopts to make smoking a criminal offence when in most toilets in this country are used as a trough for cocaine abuse.
My family and friends are not reactionarys against the system but when in other european countries that have relaxed the smoking ban we feel more at home than home , We feel criminised for something we enjoy a cig and a pint

October 15, 2010 at 1:14 | Unregistered Commenterchris

This legislation was supposed to bring us in line with Europe. (granted that it is based on lies & corruption) so why dont we have the same set up as Europe, ....they have smoking rooms & smoking pubs, why dont we?
I am a Labour supporter but voted against them because of the smoking ban,
this gov. is already on very thin ice, at least they would get some cross party support from their employers .......THE PEOPLE If they adopted what the people want, the much fairer continental approach. they must give the pubs a chance for survival,
I used the same pub for 20 years every Saturday night with six of my friends all smokers,( also other pubs in the week from time to time)
since the stupid ban non of us go out, i go to the pub about 3 times a year now
& dont enjoy it, how many millions of smokers & non smokers have had their social lives ruined by this nonsencical ban. After all when the pub closes no one can go can they.
As we know form other countrys with bans in pubs 25% close due directly from the ban so we can expect over 11000 pubs to close before it has run its course
the whole concept to me is at best ridiculous at worst evil
''only 25% of the population smoke these days.'' no its 25% of adults over............ 12 million people (voters)
you cannot fool all the people all of the time i can hear the chants now ''tories out!''
''tories out''.......... for goodness sake do something good & decent & reasonable before its too late.

October 15, 2010 at 7:23 | Unregistered Commenterjon kenney

Chris I think you should post that on conservative home

October 15, 2010 at 9:44 | Unregistered Commentersheila

Roger Dandy -

Not really 'off-topic' at all - in the context of BBC partiality in the reporting of contentious issues such as the Smoking Ban and 'Climate Change'.

As to the latter, whenever 'Costing The Earth' comes on these days, I promptly switch the radio off: otherwise, I use up my weekly ration of expletives in roughly five seconds of someone's using the word 'carbon'.

Must be bad for the blood pressure.............................

Mike -

Many thanks for a courageous and intellectually honest post. It (sadly) reminds me of one aspect of the Ban that REALLY chokes me: the decision by the 'managers' of various hospices to deny the comfort of a cigarette to the dying, even in the grounds. In my book, there's only one word to describe such behaviour. And that word is Cruelty.

At any rate, and for what it's worth, I'm sure we ALL wish you the very best..................

October 15, 2010 at 9:48 | Unregistered CommenterMartin V

Oh, and God bless Brian Binley (a PROPER Conservative) and friends, too !

October 15, 2010 at 9:54 | Unregistered CommenterMartin V

The purpose of the Bill was to amend the Smoking Ban in ENGLAND yet the following Scottish MPs voted. The " West Lothian Question" surfaces again.


Harris, Mr Tom LAB South Glasgow

Thurso, John LD Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross

NOES: 16
Begg, Miss Anne LAB Aberdeen South

Brown, Mr Russell LAB Dumfries and Galloway

Bruce, rh Malcolm LD Gordon

Clark, Katy LAB North Ayrshire and Arran

Clarke, rh Mr Tom LAB Coatbridge, Chryston and Bellshill

Connarty, Michael LAB Linlithgow and East Falkirk

Donohoe, Mr Brian H. LAB Central Ayrshire

Doyle, Gemma LAB West Dunbartonshire

Gilmore, Sheila LAB Edinburgh East

Lazarowicz, Mark LAB Edinburgh North and Leith

McCann, Mr Michael LAB East Kilbride.Strathaven and Lesmahagow

Morrice, Graeme LAB Livingston

Nash, Pamela LAB Airdrie and Shotts

Osborne, Sandra LAB Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock

Reid, Mr Alan LD Argyll and Bute

Roy, Lindsay LAB Glenrothes

Sheridan, Jim LAB Paisley and Renfrewshire North

October 15, 2010 at 13:10 | Unregistered CommenterEddie Douthwaite

I cannot understand why smoking is banned on outdoor train stations, we are living in a world gone nuts, what is the aspiration? where has our freedom gone? and really its another way to fine someone and make easy money when greed has become the new god, sorry to get all deep but really what a shambles our country is in, shame on them

October 15, 2010 at 14:39 | Unregistered CommenterMartin Pilkington

Eddie, It shows how much these Scotish M.Ps care about about there Pubs & Clubs and i've been reliably informed that the licenceing industry in scotland, is on its knees and then it affecks our pubs & clubs in England because of the way they voted. And our M.P s can't vote on Scotish issues! this is so wrong.

October 15, 2010 at 15:01 | Unregistered Commenterlisa symmons


I agree that it is undemocratic for Scottish MPs to vote on matters only affecting England.

Perhaps Simon cab raise this point with his Political contacts.

October 15, 2010 at 15:08 | Unregistered CommenterEddie Douthwaite

They ultimately work for the Yanks. Can't see anything changing. It isn't really about smoking it's all about control. Life has become more controlled by the State, I believe they will continue with this. Remember to them we are just plebs.

October 15, 2010 at 16:11 | Unregistered CommenterMathew

Martin P,
I could never understand why they got rid of the smoking carriage on trains let alone banning on the platforms! But seeing as the anti smoking lobby make no secret about wanting to restrict smoking to private outdoor places (at the very least) the outdoor smoking bans have to start somewhere! Although I believe smoking was banned on train platforms in the past, or at least restricted to smoking/waiting rooms on the platforms.

October 15, 2010 at 16:17 | Unregistered CommenterFredrik Eich

There is an article in The News and Star referring to Rory Stewart MP who voted Aye on David Nuttalls motion.

comments and also a poll; Should pubs be able to have a smoking room

October 15, 2010 at 16:48 | Unregistered Commentersheila

Martin P

As Kevin Barron said in his speech -

"This topic has been debated in the House throughout the decades during which I have been a Member, and I have frequently argued for legislation to de-normalise smoking."

"However, internationally, the term is also used to encompass efforts challenging notions that smoking ought to be regarded as routine or normal, particularly in public settings.

Hammond et al state that “social denormalisation” strategies seek “to change the broad social norms around using tobacco—to push tobacco use out of the charmed circle of normal, desirable practice to being an abnormal practice”.

Prepare to be ostracised, all you smokers of England
June 11, 2007
"The organisation Ash hopes that four million people, or almost 40 per cent of smokers, will stop because of the ban."

October 15, 2010 at 17:07 | Unregistered CommenterRose2

I just read a marvellous quote that sums up our nanny state politicians perfectly:

"Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it whether it exists or not, diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedy."

Earnest Benn. British publisher, writer and political publicist, the eldest son of the Liberal politician, John Benn and Lily Pickstone, a distant relative of Josiah Wedgwood, born in London in 1875.

October 15, 2010 at 17:07 | Unregistered CommenterPeter Thurgood

I'm curious as to why the official Conservative policy was to abstain from voting on David Nuttall's Bill. Perhaps Peter or Dave can enlighten me?

October 15, 2010 at 18:17 | Unregistered CommenterJoyce


I think it's called sitting on the fence - one cheek on either side but being " holely" supported.

October 15, 2010 at 18:37 | Unregistered CommenterEddie Douthwaite

TO ALL, If anyone has a moment check out Greece the Smoking Ban there, on Sunday all the ashtrays will be back out, they have had enough. Maybe in time our whole Licenceing industry may just have to protest and all stick together, people power is the best thing, just take a look at Greece. Regards Gary.

October 16, 2010 at 3:46 | Unregistered Commenterlisa symmons

Well, the Greeks (the Athenians, more specifically) WERE the inventors of People Power after all !

October 16, 2010 at 9:17 | Unregistered CommenterMartin V

Joyce - most MPs have been brainwashed by the likes of ASH. I believe that others are frightened of incurring the wrath of the health lobby. Government policy is rooted in ignorance, bullying, prejudice and political correctness, all served up with a generous dash of self righteousness.

October 16, 2010 at 12:48 | Unregistered CommenterP Doff

P Dof -

You're perfectly correct (IMHO), and you might have added
'intellectual laziness' to the mix.

Clearly, there has been what some would refer to as a 'paradigm shift' in the way we in the West are governed - from Democracy to Technocracy. Something H G Wells and his Socialist friends predicted (and found wholly desirable).

The problem for all Freedom-lovers is that whereas 'democratic' politicians have at least to display some willingness to engage in the PHILOSOPHY of political discourse, and in so doing take at least some account of the 'wishes of the People' (however interpreted), 'technocratic' politicians THEMSELVES decide the 'needs of the People', and then seek to implement the most 'efficient' way of delivering those needs. Thus, once it has been decided, for example, that a Smokefree World is a desirable end in itself, any and all means of achieving it – short of downright brutality – are acceptable. Even if it means telling the occasional little fib. Morality is NOT a necessary component of Efficiency, after all - when it's merely 'results' that matter.

Hence the rise and rise of The Expert. It is HIS opinions that are sought, and HIS goodwill that is nurtured. OUR views, and the subtle discourse that ‘democracy’ implies, are more or less irrelevant, and are seen as impeding the smooth running of government.

In short, senior government figures are no longer really 'politicians' in the traditional sense, but executives and - in the ghastly argot of the modern Business World -'facilitators'.

These days, they bear more resemblance to football managers than to the great statesmen of the past.

For such people, Ethics and Philosophy merely get in the way.

That, at any rate, is the way I see it...................................

October 16, 2010 at 13:48 | Unregistered CommenterMartin V

Martin V said,

"In short, senior government figures are no longer really 'politicians' in the traditional sense, but executives and - in the ghastly argot of the modern Business World -'facilitators'.

These days, they bear more resemblance to football managers than to the great statesmen of the past.

For such people, Ethics and Philosophy merely get in the way."

It's a pity they can't be sacked as easily as football managers.

October 16, 2010 at 14:39 | Unregistered CommenterEddie Douthwaite

It's not about smokers smoking wherever they like, nor about anti smokers having all places smoke free. It about an individuals right to buy and own property, and choose for his/her self what legal activities they choose to allow (or not allow) on their property.
Then the rest of us can choose for ourselves which venues to visit, provided we respect and abide by the owners wishes. Just like the old nightclub dresscodes back in the 80s. The owners rules (no jeans, ties must be worn, etc) are clearly sign posted at the door, and we customers either chose to dress accordingly, or didn't go in.

October 16, 2010 at 15:31 | Unregistered CommenterPhil Williams

From November 2005.

"Many pubs will simply stop serving food to keep their smoking customers, the British Beer and Pub Association warned."

With Trade Bodies like this no wonder there is a total ban.

October 16, 2010 at 16:00 | Unregistered CommenterEddie Douthwaite

Good point, Phil !

Property rights - subject, of course, to all the sensible caveats - are as integral to the dignity and freedom of the individual as Freedom of Speech.

I can see no essential distinction between the right of the Public House landlord and that of the Private Home-owner to determine whom he may entertain, and what rules of conduct are permissible.

Is the owner of the stately home to be debarred from allowing smoking on his premises, for example, in order to 'protect' his servants from cigarette smoke ?

When one also considers the numerous warrantless rights of entry on the part of officialdom, it is clear that - far from property itself being theft (in Proudhon's vacuous formulation) - it is the rights which property supposedly bestows that are gradually being stolen from us.

And the State is the Thief.

Which suits people of a certain political persuasion just fine.....................................

October 16, 2010 at 21:36 | Unregistered CommenterMartin V

Wake up for christs sake.

October 16, 2010 at 23:39 | Unregistered CommenterMathew

Thanks, Mathew !

If only more people watched AJ even one hour a week they'd soon become a lot wiser.

And a lot less wet about what is laughably presented as the 'news'........................

October 17, 2010 at 6:34 | Unregistered CommenterMartin V

Eddie Douthwaite: But that is true, Eddie, it's what a lot of us knew at the time and it still holds true. This was one of the main obstacles to a 'partial' ban, that over time most pubs would surrender food to allow smoking, virtually negating its aim. The only 'level playing field' was a total ban. The second Blair and his henchmen conceded a 'partial' ban, it was the only logical outcome.

Its still the case, which is why the antis will fight tooth and nail against the slightest relaxation. The moment any form of 'choice' is allowed the ban will collapse. Its a total ban or nothing and they know it. They are frigid, tense and extremely frightened. They will do or say anything to keep it and this is where we should have them by the nuts.

October 17, 2010 at 9:08 | Unregistered CommenterFrank

Disquieting link, Mathew.

Celente talking about the banks reminded me that I see other private companies increasingly behaving like them, for example, fuel companies which put their prices up without telling their customers (and how come WE never benefit from gas bought at low price?); inform us that the DD will be increased (so keen are they to get us on DD that they punish those who refuse to do so) and customers find themselves locked into that company because they're always in debt to it and can't pay off the debt in one lump sum and switch companies. And the OFT does nowt.

October 17, 2010 at 11:07 | Unregistered CommenterJoyce

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