The introduction of the ban on smoking in public places has killed off one of my hobbies. For 10 years I have been competing in the British Pipe Smoking Championships. In 2003 I won the event.

Now this annual event has been discontinued because it is held in a club house i.e. designated public place even though it was hired exclusively for the tournament. So sad, because it was a very convivial gathering,40 – 50 contestants plus their families, friends and those who booked in just to enjoy the social side. Pipe clubs throughout the UK have suffered a similar fate simply because their regular meetings are held in a room at a pub.

Consequently I am trying to form a pipe club with its HQ at my own home, quite legal in private premises and nothing to do with anybody else.

From 1996 – 2007 I competed in the annual British Pipe Smoking Championships. In 2003 I won with a time of 1hr 38mins, 38 seconds for a 3gm pipe of tobaco smoked throughout without re-lighting.

It was one of the most friendly gatherings which I have ever attended. Competitors came from all parts of the UK and it was the only occasion when we saw one another.

Now these friendships have been cruelly destroyed. On July 1, 2007 a law was introduced banning smoking in public places in England. As our venue, although hired exclusively for the event, is deemed to be a public place then the Championships could no longer be held there. Alternative premises, pubs and clubs, were no longer legal either.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

4 × 5 =