Manchester City Council is set to prosecute the owners of a Rusholme shisha café following their repeated flouting of smoking laws.
Following an investigation carried out by Manchester City Council’s Licensing and Out of Hours Team and Greater Manchester Police, 95 shisha pipes have been seized from a premises in Wilmslow Road.
The owners, who have been warned on several occasions not to allow smoking indoors, as it contravenes the Health Act 2006, could now be fined up to £2,500 if successfully prosecuted in magistrates’ court.
If there is a conviction under the Health Act 2006 an application will be made for a Forfeiture Order for the seized shisha pipes.
During a previous visit the owners of the café had four pipes confiscated and were warned further action would be taken if they continued breaking the law.
Two fixed penalty notices for £50 were issued during the seizure for smoking in a smoke free place. One of the individuals fined was subsequently arrested by Greater Manchester Police in connection to a separate offence.
Over the years Manchester City Council has worked to inform the public and café owners of the law surrounding the smoking of shisha indoors, and the negative impact on health it can have.
In February a multi-agency team, led by the council, worked to educate the public on the dangers of smoking shisha. Contrary to popular belief smoking shisha is not safer than conventional smoking.
In fact smoking shisha for one hour is as damaging to a person’s health as smoking 100 cigarettes. Tobacco smoke is also harmful to people exposed to second hand smoke.
A leaflet campaign was run in Rusholme, with further information being displayed in GP surgeries and online on social media.
However, in spite of pro-active work carried out in the city individuals continue to flout laws enacted to protect the health of the public.
Councillor Rabnawaz Akbar, Executive Member for Licensing, said: “More than 10 years have passed since the smoking ban was brought into effect in the UK yet still we see people flouting laws meant to keep the public safe. As we see here the council is willing to crack down on illegal practices in our city.”