Criminal law – Discrimination – Peaceful enjoyment of possessions – Pubs and bars - Smoking
R (on the application of Howitt) v Preston Magistrates’ Court: DC (Lord Justice Richards, Mr Justice Tugendhat): 19 March 2009
The claimant public house manager (H) applied for permission to seek judicial review of a decision of the defendant magistrates’ court to convict him for offences under the Health Act 2006 and breaches of conditional discharges imposed in respect of previous offences by H under the act. All the offences under the act had related to failures by H to stop persons smoking in the public house that he managed. H contended that the act was incompatible with the European Convention on Human Rights 1950. In particular H contended that the act violated his rights under articles 1, 3, 8, 9, 10, 11 and 14 of protocol 1 of the convention. H further contended that it was not open to the magistrates’ court to find that the public house was a public place.
Held: It could not be said that the act was as a whole incompatible with the convention as a whole or with regard to the particular articles relied on by H, R (on the application of G) v Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust  EWHC 1096 (Admin),  HRLR 42 considered. Neither could it be said that it was not open to the magistrates’ court to find that for the purposes of the act the public house was a public place.
In person for the claimant; no appearance or representation for the defendant.