Customers criticise Stevenage pub’s outdoor smoking ban

IMG-0340

- Credit: Archant

Customers have criticised a pub’s decision to implement a smoking ban in front of its premises.

The Standing Order, a JD Wetherspoon pub in Stevenage Old Town, brought in a smoking ban on its front terrace earlier this month.

Lynn Arthur, a regular visitor with her husband Ron, said: “It’s absolutely ridiculous. You used to be able to sit outside on a nice day with a cigarette but now, even when no-one else is around, they won’t allow it - even with smoke wafting over from the pub next door.

“They still allow us to smoke down the side of the pub but it gets like a wind tunnel down there and completely blocks out all the sunlight – I just can’t see the point.”

Steve Blackie, who regularly visits the pub with a group of eight friends, thinks the measure is unnecessary and inconsistent.


You may also want to watch:


He said: “I can understand why they might not want people to smoke out there - it gives non-smokers somewhere to sit outside on a nice evening.

“But my friends and I are always there during weekdays when hardly anyone else is around. A group of eight or nine of us are always in there and we have never had any trouble just popping out to the front for a quick cigarette before now. More than anything it’s just the way the situation has been handled by the management that’s upset us – we feel like we risk getting barred just for questioning the rules.

Most Read

“Even after the ban was introduced I have seen people smoking out the front and not a word being said about it – we feel like we’re being singled out or perhaps they just don’t want our clientele. I could understand if it was The Ritz but it’s not.”

Wetherspoon spokesman Eddie Gershon said: “The Standing Order has a small non-smoking area to the side of the pub. This allows customers and families that don’t smoke an external area for them to enjoy a meal smoke-free.

“The pub has not made the entire external area non-smoking. There are a total of 14 tables for our patrons to enjoy outside. We welcome everyone onto our pub premises and do not descriminate against either smokers or non-smokers.”

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter