Anyone remember Baroness 'Trixie' Gardner of Parkes? I'll give you a clue, she has appeared here before.
Well, she's back on her authoritarian hobby horse.
Smoking in cars is an important issue, but I think that smoking is a real hazard in a lot more places than cars. I tabled an amendment to the Localism Bill to give local authorities the power to state that a certain area, even outside, should be smoke free. I raised that because a woman I know who lives above a group of garages said that she was unable to open her windows because all the local workmen came to sit outside the garages to smoke and the level of smoke going up to her window was such that she could not even open it.Since when did responsible government involve old ladies demanding laws passed because their coffee morning friends have been inconvenienced? I'll leave aside the irony of moaning about tobacco smoke near, err, garages for now. You know, those used by carbon monoxide belching cars.
I have also heard from various local councillors that they have found the concentration of smoke outside some pubs and cafes, particularly in the summer when everyone is outside, can be so bad that it is hard to believe.Hey, Trixie, there's a solution to that problem. Allow rooms inside in which people can smoke and, bingo!
When we first brought in outdoor-only smoking here, you could barely enter the ladies loo on the ground floor, because the smoking area designated for the House was the little area immediately outside its window? It was incredible.Smoking room, dear, smoking room.
I noticed that in Australia, they have now banned smoking in some streets. It varies from place to place, but in some areas, they will not have smoking even in streets; it is only in private that you can smoke.Baroness Gardner, for the record, is a freedom-loving Conservative.