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Great British Pub Awards - nominations wanted for Best Smoking Area

Join our search for the nation's best smoking areas.

Last year, in association with JTI, the Save Our Pubs & Clubs campaign supported the Best Creative Outdoor Area award at the Morning Advertiser's Great British Pub Awards.

Presented by Lenny Henry, the event took place at The Hilton, Park Lane, London. We invited a couple of MPs – Brian Binley and Philip Davies – to join us and Brian (interviewed here) presented the Best Creative Outdoor Area award.

I am delighted to report that Save Our Pubs & Clubs has again joined forces with JTI for the Great British Pub Awards 2011 but this time we are supporting a new award for Best Smoking Area.

The Morning Advertiser has the details here but I want to address supporters of the Save Our Pubs & Clubs campaign direct because we need YOUR help.

We want YOU to nominate a smoker-friendly pub that you think deserves to be recognised. All you have to do is send us the name of the pub plus a very brief description of the smoking area. We will then contact the landlord and ask if they would like to be nominated for the award.

Closing date for entries is May 20, 2011.

We need to hear from you as soon as possible so we can contact your nominated pubs in good time. What we are looking for are pubs that have clearly made an effort to accommodate smokers in as much comfort as possible.

Financial investment in a comfortable smoking area will be taken into consideration but money will not be the decisive factor. After all, many publicans can't afford to invest in a purpose built smoking area but using their initiative they may have come up with something equally worthy of recognition.

Likewise size will be a factor but, again, many pubs don't have the space to provide a substantial smoking area so it's the attractiveness, not the size, that really counts.

The Great British Pub Awards are organised in eight regions that include Wales but not Scotland (which has its own pub awards). The other areas are Yorkshire/North East, North West, Midlands, East Anglia, West Country, South East, and London.

Regional finalists will be announced in the summer. After that the national finalists will be notified and invited to attend the Great British Pub Awards in London.

I am sure there will be some who think that by supporting an award like this we are effectively condoning or accepting the idea that smokers have to light up outside. I assure you that is not the case.

Our substantial investment in this award provides an invaluable opportunity to raise awareness of the campaign to amend the smoking ban. It will also help maintain and develop our profile within the licensing trade, as well as highlighting the importance of smokers to the trade.

So please support this initiative and nominate those pubs you believe to have the most comfortable/attractive smoking area.

Subject: Great British Pub Awards nomination

PS. Coming shortly - details of an important Save Our Pubs & Clubs event in London. Watch this space.

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Reader Comments (14)

The Kent in Ealing has an excellent smoking area. Raised platform with decking and foliage up the sides and top, so it's quite comfy even in winter.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011 at 14:34 | Unregistered CommenterMike Paterson

The Jolly Brewer, Lincoln, because it honours us with a great patio area and a festival in our name every year!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011 at 14:50 | Unregistered CommenterPat Nurse

Mike Paterson: The Kent has always had a large outside area anyway. I've not been there for a while preferring the Drayton and Castlebar but If that is the side area (high level access direct from the pub) then I would support the suggestion

Tuesday, May 3, 2011 at 16:36 | Unregistered CommenterFrank

The best smoking areas are where anyone chooses to smoke. Pubs are perfect smoking environments as well as for drinking, as that is what they were designed for. The evil twats who banned smoking in pubs did so because they want to destroy pubs, and British culture in general. No more pub closures, no more pc twat politicians , no more pubs turned into fucking mosques. Thiis is Britain, and British culture rules in Britain.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011 at 17:11 | Unregistered CommenterEolfric

@Frank Yep that's the one. Kind of my point, although they do have a massive garden as you say, they still bothered their arse to make a nice smokers' patio for inclement conditions. And a bit of ambience.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011 at 17:25 | Unregistered CommenterMike Paterson

The whole point of a shelter is to protect people from the bad weather. The weather in the UK is that bad normally, for ten months of the year that it is not pleasant to sit or stand outside and this is what smokers have to do when they go to the pub. So for ten months of the year I drink at home. I don't use smoking shelters because if its cold or raining I'm not that stupid to visit a pub where I'm banished to the outside, when its like this . A smoking shelter is sure to have some uses I guess; for those smokers stupid enough to give pubs their money that don't mind standing outside in the wind and rain. Now that smokers have to stand outside, anyone with any sense would choose to drink at home where they can be comfortable, rather than use a smoking shelter.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011 at 21:03 | Unregistered Commentermark

@mark. Well, you see, there's the thing. I don't drink at home, don't see the point. So now I go to the pub mainly twice a month to catch up with friends. The ban, as far as I'm concerned, has made me close to teetotal, and in fact, I now probably smoke more than ever. So I'm really resentful of the bastards and their fellow travellers who foisted this on us. Most of them are not even pub goers themselves, I'm convinced of it.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011 at 21:32 | Unregistered CommenterMike Paterson

I would nominate:-
Donald Street
Roath Park

The area is immediately outside the bar, well sheltered from the elements and includes tables, chairs and a hdtv. Easily the best I have seen.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011 at 21:54 | Unregistered CommenterClive Almond

I don't need the pub to catch up with friends. I used to go three times a week before the smoking ban, but now I don't even go once a month its not usually the same pub and I don't stay for very long. Pubs have not shown me any loyalty by allowing this law in, you can forget pub smoking shelters. Standing around in a fifty percent enclosed shelter in the pouring rain is not my scene.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011 at 22:54 | Unregistered Commentermark

What a stupid competition.
There are NO 'good' smoking areas as they are all OUTSIDE the pub.
Pigs are afforded by Law 95% enclosure while smokers must have less than 50% !!
ANY smoking 'shelter' in this country is a disgrace and an insult.
How can people even consider voting which disgusting outdoor area is the BEST ????

Tuesday, May 3, 2011 at 23:47 | Unregistered CommenterSandra

Anywhere outside could be a 'smoking area', that is unless you are seeking to endorse smoking restrictions outside! I put it to you that what you mean is a 'smoking shelter'. I too feel greatly insulted that you are discussing these areas, smokers should not be treated as a lepers
to stand outside in all weather they are human beings needing comfortable warm indoor, fully enclosed surroundings. Why is it, that pigs are afforded better conditions ?

Wednesday, May 4, 2011 at 2:19 | Unregistered CommenterMark


I sincerely do understand the point you are making, implied acceptance. However the way that the Dutch and in the USA that bans have be fought and won is with the enthusiastic involvement of the bars and the hospitality industry. Alienating the pub trade will do us no good and engaging them might motivate them to be more active in loosening the ban's more pernicious terms.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011 at 10:19 | Unregistered CommenterDave Atherton

I would nominate two in the Derbyshire market town of Wirksworth. The Malt Shovel that is really trying hard to do their best for smokers and the The Royal Oak that has an advantage in that the structure creates two very pleasant smoking areas.

It is also worth mentioning that the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway running between Duffield and Wirksworth has no silly restrictions on their platforms and smokers are welcome!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011 at 16:43 | Unregistered CommenterMartin Miller

I do understand the need to win over the pub trade and that we have to be involved with them to accomplish this. Lets be honest though there really is no such thing as a smoker friendly pub in this country anymore. Smokers were banished from pubs in 2007 in England or smoking was banned, its the same thing.

Smokers are provided with an acceptable level of comfort outside pubs for two months our British summer. When its not freezing cold or raining. This cannot be described as a smoker friendly pub.

Apart from those breaking the law with illegal smoking shelters and lock ins there really is no such thing..

Wednesday, May 4, 2011 at 20:21 | Unregistered Commentermark

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