A PRIMARY school in Dudley is the first to adopt a smoking ban at its school gates, in a bid to improve the health of its pupils.

Kates Hill Primary is the first in the borough to take on the Dudley Council campaign, which aims to cut down on the effects of second-hand smoke on children by asking people to refrain from lighting up outside school grounds.

All schools across the borough already adopt a smoke free policy within school grounds but this latest move will put a stop to people smoking on school perimeters, such as when standing outside the school gates.

Primary school headteachers across the borough are being encouraged to support the campaign.

Councillor Cathy Bayton, cabinet member for health and adult social care, said: "Smoking is the biggest preventable cause of death in the UK, with more than 78,000 deaths a year. This is astonishing but smoking is a choice and one, which some people choose to make but it isn’t a choice our children choose to make.

"I hope that this campaign will be supported by our schools and by parents and carers, to reduce the amount of second hand smoke our children are exposed to.”

According to council figures, 34% of Dudley's 2,204 year six pupils has a parent or carer who smokes.

The council will be sending out a toolkit to all primary schools in the borough to help implement the campaign.