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There are very limited exemptions from the smokefree law, as set out in the Smoke-free (Exemptions and Vehicles) Regulations. These regulations include exemptions for bedrooms in hotels, and for care homes, hospices and prisons. In most cases, exemptions do not apply to the entirety of premises, but to “designated rooms”, that must meet requirements specified in the regulations. The law also includes a limited exemption for performers, which applies to the performer only during the performance, where the artistic integrity of a performance makes it appropriate for a person who is taking part to smoke.
Can designate in writing bedrooms in which customers can smoke. The rooms must be signed from the outside that they are smoking, and no-smoking signs must be displayed in the communal corridor. You cannot designate any communal areas such as lounges, bar areas or dining rooms. The rooms must be fitted with a self-closing device, the doors must be well sealed when closed and the room must be well ventilated.
Can designate smoking rooms. These can be residents bedrooms, or a communal lounge. You cannot designate corridors or staff areas as smoking areas. The rooms must be fitted with a self-closing device, the doors must be well sealed when closed and the room must be well ventilated.
Can designate a sample room for the purpose of sampling pipe tobacco or cigars. The sample room must be fitted with a self-closing device, the doors must be well sealed when closed and the room must be well ventilated. Normal Off-licences and tobacconists do not have an exemption.
Private dwellings are exempt from the smoke free legislation, except if there is a room used as place of work, by more than one person (e.g. the home owners employee). Then that work room only, must be smokefree.
Where the artistic integrity of a performance makes it appropriate for a person who is taking part in that performance to smoke, the part of the premises in which that person performs is not smoke-free in relation to that person during his performance. E.g. an actor playing Winston Churchill can smoke a cigar.
In the case of premises that have exemptions, it is not permitted for staff to smoke in the designated rooms.
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