Nick Hogan, a staunch enemy of the smoking ban, who has been bankrupted by this pernicious piece of legislation, has been jailed for six months for his stance against a law that is unprecedented in it’s ferocity against the hospitality industry.
Nick Hogan, 43, was sentenced to six months in prison for refusing to pay a fine imposed for flouting the legislation.
Two years ago Hogan, who ran two pubs in Bolton, became the first landlord convicted of breaking the law for allowing his customers to routinely light up in his bars.
Hamish Howitt Tony BlowsNick is not the only landlord who, from long before this act of terrorism against hard working landlords/ladies, has fought the ban. Hamish Howitt and Tony Blows have both been bankrupted for their opposition to this vile law that puts the onus on them to police the smoking ban experiment under the threat of a £2,500 fine if they fail to do so.
Last night his wife, Denise, 53, who is also a publican, said she was disgusted that her husband would be in prison alongside murderers and rapists.That is what this country has come to Denise, hard working people are criminalised at the stroke of a pen to salve the bitterness of the righteous.
'Criminals and bad people go to prison not law-abiding businessmen like my husband who are trying to earn an honest living,' she said. 'Nick doesn't deserve to go to jail, all he has done is speak his mind and people simply don't like it.
'Ninety per cent of people who come into my pub want to smoke, even the non-smokers think there should be a choice. These laws are ridiculous.'
At the hearing, in January 2008, magistrates were told Hogan held a 'mass light-up' in his two pubs, the Swan Hotel and Barristers' Bar, in Bolton, on the day the smoking ban came into force in July 2007.Nick, along with Hamish and Tony Blows were firm believers in the organisation called Freedom2Choose and it’s ethos, frequently writing on their forum. If only we could have done more to help hero’s like them. Although the good members of F2C frequently put their hands in their pockets to try and offset any fines these guys received from the heavy mob ‘enforcers’ of the state it was nothing but a drop in a very large ocean where these fines are concerned.
He was visited by inspectors from the local authority, who found letters taped to pub tables advising customers they had the 'freedom to choose whether or not to smoke'.
And, of course, there are no shortage of ‘righteous’ organisations waiting in the wings to gloat:
Deborah Arnott, chief executive of the anti-smoking group ASH, insisted it was a myth that the anti-smoking legislation had forced pubs out of business.What a load of shite from the leader of a fucking FAKE CHARITY! We, the smoking public, know differently Arnott!
She said: 'Many pubs have shifted their focus to serving food, so they have changed their nature.'
She added: 'Mr Hogan is the exception, not the norm, because compliance rates for the ban are way above 90 per cent.'
I have met Nick and Hamish many times, (Tony Blows only once,) as both came to meetings I held in a pub outside Leeds, (the landlord there also fights the smoking ban.) Below is a video I took at one of those meetings that Nick addressed.
Please note that Freedom2Choose, the organisation, did not sponsor nor sanction this video or any content within.
As you can see Nick Hogan speaks passionately about the trade he loves, the trade that has now turned it’s back on him, the trade that has seen him martyred for them. When will the hospitality trade fight for it’s brethren???