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Sound Off: Smoking at WHL 8

Posted on 14 August 2001  - 12:00

Tottenham Hotspur (Spurs) Football Club is located in North London. The club is also known as Spurs. Tottenham's home ground is White Hart Lane. The club motto is Audere est Facere (To dare is to do).

Mazwoo: Firstly, I am capable of making my own choices as and adult, and as an occasional smoker. I feel slightly patronised and angered by the views of some of the non-smokers. People are quite right to be upset that they are verbally abused requesting somebody to put their cigarette out but these are obviously arrogant individuals in the first place, smokers or not…However, I personally - and feel this goes for a lot of other smokers - would not light up or carry on smoking if it was obviously causing a nuisance to others - out of common courtesy not because somebody has told me to. SMOKERS HAVE MANNERS TOO!!! Smokers do not wish to force their smoke on others despite what some may think. The simple answer is COMPROMISE. Although I smoke, I cannot stand the smell of pipe smoke, I enjoy my football too much to let it bother me, if it did I would alert a steward to the fact as the signs around the ground clearly state that smoking is permitted providing you are not causing a nuisance.

Rod Morgan: I live in Australia and smoking is banned in our Australian Rules Football venues and people don't object to it. It makes a pleasant day at the football for all.

Jerry Smith: I believe smoking should be banned completely at WHL. Smokers currently have the right to exercise their freedom of choice, but where does that leave the rest of us? Failing a complete ban, at least confine smoking to one end/side of the ground.

Donagh McDonagh: Although I am a smoker, I would not be too put out if smoking was banned from the seating area of the stadium, as long as there was still an area to smoke during half-time and before and after kick-off, similar to the ban enforced on bringing alcohol into the seats. As a supporter travelling from Ireland to a number of games each season, I have to leave my house at 6:30 on a match morning, drive to the airport, catch a (no-smoking)plane to Stansted, a (no-smoking)train to the Lane, arriving about 1pm and have to refrain from smoking all that time. I do get to smoke in some of the local pubs before kick-off, but to be honest, I don't like smoking in the seats of the stand (even when the match is a nail-biting one), because unlike one of the previous contributors had stated, I am trying to be considerate of others.

However, if smoking was completely banned, it would not be fair to smokers, at least there should be an allocated area provided where people could smoke freely, without getting dirty looks from non-smokers or being made to feel guilty for lighting up. However, I don't think a smoking section of the stand is a good idea, cramming that many smokers into a small area for the duration of the match would be pretty unbearable, even for regular smokers.

Steve Dabbs: I feel very strongly that smoking should be banned in all parts of every ground football ground in the UK. We now live in a society where you cannot smoke on trains, aeroplanes, offices etc, and the time has come where the non-smoker should be entitled to decide whether they should be subjected to breathing in other peoples "fumes" or not. There is nothing more irritating than sitting anywhere near fans who smoke. You go home smelling like an ashtray and feeling like you have smoked every cigarette that the supporters near you have smoked. Come on - at least you smokers have a choice whether you smoke or not. Us non-smokers do not. The Government should ban smoking in every public place including restaurants, pubs and anywhere they serve food. I'll get off my soapbox now.

David Watkins: I think smoking should be banned from the seating area, just like alcohol, but I do not have a problem with those that wish to smoke, doing it in the bar area. Just like those who wish to drink alcohol being allowed to do so, and those that wish to gamble also being accommodated.

Jon Robinson: Have you lot got nothing better to moan about. You won't be happy till we all conform and are all robots! DO I complain about fat blokes squashing me in my seat? Or kids standing on seats? No I don't. It’s an open air stadium so get real. Ban smoking and I will want my Season Ticket refunded and will never renew again.

Geo Zark: I used to smoke during games, now I'll have one only at half time, and then I make sure its away from youngsters. I don’t think it should be banned altogether, but the idea of banning it "during play" would be ok with me.

Brian Lee: I would like to see smoking banned from all seating areas. There is nothing worse than having smoke blown into your face when you are trying to watch the game. It hurts your eyes & mouth; heaven knows what it is doing to your insides. Let people smoke downstairs in special smoking rooms in the lobby areas but all smoking must stop upstairs in the seating areas. Could this also be extended to having special smoking lounges for the hospitality supporters?

Paul Newman: Smoking should be banned. Not only do people smoke around me all game and cause me to cough a lot. But I had to buy two new spurs shirts last season, because people smoking behind me burnt them by accident.

Scott Carter: Up to recently my Dad and I were season ticket holders in the North stand. Unfortunately we were seated next to a smoker of strong "roll up" cigarettes. I suffer from Asthma-like breathing difficulties and found it unpleasant to sit so close to someone smoking continuously during a game.

We got on well with the guy next to us so didn't want to mention it, and I agree that he had a right to smoke if he wanted to. However, like most public places, Spurs should now take this decision out of the hands of the individual and declare a blanket ban during the game. Smoking at half time under the stand could still be allowed and most smokers would not be seriously inconvenienced by this as limited smoking periods are pretty much the norm in most public places. Unfortunately, the smoking was a contributory factor in us not renewing our season tickets.

Charles Crawley: I am a smoker. I also live in the countryside. I think people will find that the amount of noxious fumes and other pollutants that they breathe every second whilst in London, or any other large city *far* outweigh the small amount from us poor beleaguered smokers. I come home from London and for the next few hours am blowing out black snot. I apologise for being a little unsavoury, but I find that a lot more disturbing. Do none of you notice that? Perhaps it's easier to bash smokers than manufacturing and power companies, car and lorry drivers, etc who are doing the real damage to you. Without wanting to make a song and dance, I believe smoking is legal, so I have a *right* to be able to smoke. I would add that if someone asks me not to, I always respect that request and stop.

Adrian Walton: Smoking should be banned in all areas of the ground to avoid any confusion. If certain areas were selected, there would be scope for people to flout the rules, knowing there would be very little chance of admonishment.

Leigh Barnett: I'm not being funny but I think we should be able to smoke, maybe in designated areas would be the best for anti's and asthma sufferers. If we have a season at home like we did last year then I will not need a fag but if we produce last seasons away form at home I'll need bundles!! So designated areas would be a great idea. See you anti fag / fag fans this season where I hope the only things on fire will be our team.

Ian Clark: I'm an ex smoker, I haven’t smoked for over 3 years - I understand the smoker's desires and the non smokers distaste. I'd support non-smoking during play, or in the seats - i.e. move away if you really are that desperate for a smoke during play. But I must add that the words on polution by the non-smoking lobby are pious twoddle - anybody that moves more than 100 feet in a car pollutes more than any smoker does in a week. Now, as a non-smoker I can understand how distasteful the smell is. Please just stick to that argument and don't make up tosh about who is polluting the world.