Retailers in Nottinghamshire are being reminded that new legislation which bans the display of cigarettes and other tobacco products comes into force in just three months time.
The ban will initially begin at larger shops (with a floor area of more than 280 square metres) on 6th April this year. All other retailers, including pubs and clubs, must comply by 6th April 2015.
The new legislation requires the removal of all tobacco products from where they could be seen by under-18s.
Retailers must challenge anyone that they think could be under-18 before even showing the customer the product.
And there are restrictions on the use and size of price lists promoting tobacco products.
Trading Standards Officers from Nottinghamshire County Council will enforce the ban, which is being introduced under the Tobacco Advertising and Promotion Act.
Any breach of the new law is a criminal offence. Any person, including shop managers and shop assistants found guilty of an offence could face:
A fine in the Magistrates Court of up to £5,000 or six months in prison or;
A maximum of two years imprisonment, a fine or both in the Crown Court.
Councillor Mick Murphy, Cabinet Member for Community Safety at Nottinghamshire County Council said, “From 6 April Trading Standards will be actively enforcing the new legislation so I would urge larger shops in particular to make sure they are ready to go live. The penalties for those flouting the law can be severe.”
A copy of the guidance notes for the new legislation is available at:www.businesslink.gov.uk/Horizontal_Services_files/DisplayGuidanceFINAL.pdf
Businesses in Nottinghamshire requiring further information can also contact Nottinghamshire County Council Trading Standards on 01623 452076.
After 6th April, anyone who believes a large retailer is breaching the new legislation should call Consumer Direct on 08454 04 05 06.