Gateshead Council plans no smoking code for play parks

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Parents will be asked to back a voluntary code to discourage smoking in children's play parks.

Gateshead Council wants to stop adults from lighting up in its parks in an attempt to prevent youngsters taking up the habit.

Councillor Mary Foy, cabinet member for health, said the plan did not amount to a smoking ban.

She said: "We want to limit the opportunities for children to watch adults smoking.

"If we can discourage smoking in these areas, we can help to discourage children from becoming smokers in later lives and help extend their lives."

The council's cabinet is expected to approve the code on Tuesday.

Mrs Foy said rates of smoking among Gateshead children were higher than the national average.

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