A train journey to and from Oxford today saw me visit Paddington where you used to be able to have a quiet smoke in the slipway leading down from the street onto the concourse. That is to say on either side of the slipway. But I see that, at great expense, one side of the (open air) slipway now has now been marked off with enormous “No smoking” signs while on the other side a short stretch of (open) road is a designated smoking zone.
We pariahs are encouraged to use the few ashtrays provided in our “zone” although they were overflowing at 11 AM when I arrived.
As the snow blew into our faces ( the no smoking side was sheltered) a large group huddled together, crammed into one tiny space where we are allowed to pursued our addiction. Since it is all in the open air what health benefit is achieved? At what cost? And to what purpose?