THE council has welcomed the launch of a public consultation over government proposals to ban smoking in cars in front of children.

It follows a successful scheme in the town in 2013 when more than 1,200 people pledged to stop smoking in their cars and homes.

A recent survey by research group YouGov showed that 80 per cent of the public were in favour of banning smoking in cars when children were present.

Councillor Andy Bowden cabinet member for public health said: “This is great news for children and another step closer to protecting them from second-hand smoke.

“Many people in St Helens have shown their support for smoke free cars through the St Helens Smokefree homes and cars scheme. Now they can have their say on a national scheme through this consultation on the draft regulations.”

The consultation period ends on Wednesday, August 27.