Smokers who go outside to light up in order to avoid contravening the smoking ban could still find themselves falling foul of the law if they fail to dispose of their cigarette butts properly.
Kylie Henson, from Nottingham, has been fined more than £500 for dropping a cigarette end in the city.
The incident occurred before the smoking ban in England was introduced on 1 July 2007. Ms Henson dropped the cigarette butt in the city’s Old Market Square, in January 2007, and was issued with a £75 fixed penalty notice. She didn’t pay it and this led to a hearing in court at which she failed to appear. The court increased the fine to £350 and made a costs order, meaning the amount she owes now stands at £522.66.
Failing to pay fixed penalty fines can prove expensive. There are indications that councils throughout the UK are taking an increasingly strong line on littering and other seemingly minor offences.