About Forest

Messages of support

Forest has enjoyed the support of artists, musicians, politicians and businessmen. Here are some of their messages of support:

“I’m pro-choice on smoking not just because I want to smoke but because I’m concerned about certain worrying political and cultural trends.”
Joe Jackson, musician and writer

“Why should the anti-smoking lobby dictate our lifestyle at the expense of our well-known culture of tolerance?”
Antony Worrall Thompson, TV chef and restaurater

“I am totally against a ban on smoking in all public places. Pubs are not health clubs. People want to go into a pub and have a drink and a smoke. Saying they can’t means they can’t have a social life.”
David Hockney, artist

“As a smoker I believe that smokers should have some rights, including the ability to smoke in some privately-run clubs, bars and restaurants.”
Ranald Macdonald, owner of Boisdale Restaurant

“Tobacco is not an illegal substance yet the government is persecuting a minority. I think that’s a disgrace in a social democracy.”
Ronald Harwood, Oscar and Bafta award-winning screenwriter

“I wholeheartedly support the campaign against a ban on smoking in public places. Just because I gave up at 59, other people may choose not to. There must be freedom of choice, something that is fast disappearing in this so-called free country.”
Maggie Hambling, artist

“I don’t smoke, and nor do I intend to, but I’m uneasy about a blanket ban [on smoking] because it sets a dangerous precedent about the reach of the state.”
Lembit Opik, former Liberal Democrat MP

“This is not an issue about smoking. It’s about freedom. I do not smoke and I do not like going into smoky places, and so I don’t. That is my choice. There is no need for more nanny-state government interference.”
Philip Davies, Conservative MP

“I accept the fact that 75 percent of the public do not smoke and do not want smoke around them, but I am also concerned about the 25 percent who do smoke. I do not want to see those people marginalised.”
Bill Etherington, former Labour MP

“Whatever happened to freedom of choice? If smoking is legal, licensees should be allowed to choose whether or not they want to allow smoking on their premises.”
Richard Shepherd, London restaurateur

“Forest is fighting for the rights not only for smokers, but of non-smokers, too, when it challenges petty-minded bureaucrats, arrogant ministers and hoardes of unelected ‘specialists’.”

Simon Clark

Mission & Vision



Forest’s mission is to protect the interests of adults who choose to smoke or consume tobacco.


Our key aims and objectives are to:

  • counteract the “denormalisation” of smoking, and smokers
  • prevent further restrictions on the purchase and consumption of tobacco
  • establish closer links with other tobacco-friendly groups at home and abroad
  • build support among consumers of tobacco and other similarly threatened groups
  • highlight the increasingly intrusive nature of Big Government in the lives of private individuals