The Daily Mail reports that some councils are planning to ban smoking in parks, public streets and cars with child passengers. This follows the smoking ban on indoor public places since 2007.

It says:

"Some councils, including Warrington in Cheshire and Stony Stratford, near Milton Keynes, are planning to outlaw smoking in cars carrying children.

Stony Stratford councillor Paul Bartlett said the campaign had the support of senior members of the town council, but would need the approval of Milton Keynes Council.

Mr Bartlett, 50, is also pushing for a new bylaw to outlaw smoking in any open place or public street in Stony Stratford."

The proposals have arisen after the ban in New York on smoking in parks and the greater powers councils will be given in the Localism Bill. Will this power also mean that councils will be able to lift the ban on smoking in pubs in their area?

My own view is that banning smoking in parks would be the most outrageous restriction on individual liberty. The (highly contentious) claim of passive smoking causing harm can not possibly apply in the open air.

Council Taxpayers pay for the parks. A third of them are smokers. Many of them enjoy sitting on a park bench and having a smoke. They should not be discriminated against. They have votes.

The smokers rights group Forest reports that Cllr Bartlett attack on freedom in Stony Stratford is meeting strong resistance.

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