During these health-conscious times, smoking has been permitted in designated areas within Buckingham Palace. Now, however, a no-smoking policy has been implemented at all royal palaces. It will take effect next year. These include Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle, St James’s Palace, Kensington Palace and the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh.
Up until a few weeks ago, these designated areas in Buckingham Palace included an open-air yard area near the Buckingham Palace Road entrance. This is where staff take deliveries. The area is also bordered by royal offices, and the smoking could become bothersome to their occupants.
Royal staff have been consulted. The Master of the Household’s department has decided to band smoking altogether. It’s unclear how many staff members are affected by this new rule; they aren’t expected to quit cold turkey, though.
E-cigarettes will be permitted in special areas for six months until May 2017, as a ‘transitional measure’. On 22nd of May, the Royal Household sites will be entirely smoke-free.
Clarence House isn’t on this list because this royal residence has been a smoke-free zone for years. The Prince of Wales despises the ‘filthy’ habit.
Staff to the royals aren’t the only ones affected by this new rule. Prince Harry has been a smoker since his days at Eton, and the Duchess of Cornwall use to smoke, as well. The late Princess Margaret and her father, King George VI were avid smokers despite suffering ill health. Princess Margaret managed to quit, but the late King continued to smoke even with a malignant tumour in his left lung.
It hasn’t been revealed what has brought on this new, healthier policy. Perhaps there were complaints internally? With the lapse of time for putting the policy in place, this gives all those impacted time to kick the habit entirely without dealing with the side effects.