No Smoking Signs Too ‘Unfriendly’?

Signs created by Blackpool Council and NHS Blackpool have been redesigned, after a number of residents complained the original designs were not especially ‘friendly.’

The original no smoking signs, used to discourage people from smoking in local parks and outdoor recreational areas, stated: “To protect children, this is a designated smoke-free site.” The design was dark, bland and prescriptive in tone.

The new signs are colourful and cartoon-like. They depict children playing with a kite and football on a patch of green. Blackpool Tower and roller coasters can be seen in the background. The message is more advisory, stating: “Let’s protect our children.”

Under UK law, people can smoke in any public place that is not enclosed. Blackpool Council’s attempt to make its parkland a no-smoking zone is admirable, but the original signs provoked anger among smokers.

Councillor Ivan Roberts explained: “We received a lot of comments about the signs proposed for the park entrances… we’ve taken on board these suggestions and made a number of changes to the design and size.

“No one disputes that people shouldn’t be smoking in playgrounds where children are playing.”

Here at The Sussex Sign Company, we support Blackpool Council’s efforts to protect children in open spaces. The new signs send a clear message to parents and park users.