THE smoking ban has changed smoking.

Now, smokers stand outside without the glass of beer or cup of tea that used to accompany a cigarette.

Watch them pulling on their fags and you will see how without the cup that cheers, or the beer, the cigarette is all there is. It's cold outside, and the smoker puffs at his smoke the quicker to be done and back into the warmth and his pals.

Loading article content

Smoking is therefore more intense, more smoke is inhaled, more pulls are made on each cigarette and smokers are harmed more than they were.

They do it voluntarily, though they are addicted. Nevertheless, they inevitably take in more smoke per cigarette than was usual before they were excluded from tap rooms and cafes.

To bring this back to previous levels of inhalation, cigarettes could and should be shorter; contain less and cost less.

A shorter cigarette would bring smoke inhalation per cigarette back to pre-ban levels.

With less tobacco in each smoke, less tax would need to be levied, the NHS would be less inundated with smokers suffering smoking-related complaints, smokers would have cut down almost without knowing it, there would be less smoke wafting about to be passively inhaled by the rest of us, and the environment would benefit.

Governments have the power and the ability to enforce such changes.

They should be forced to do so by all of us – smokers and non-smokers alike.

Robert L Fielding,

3 Balta Crescent,