Boddington v. British Transport Police

A smoker was convicted of the offense of smoking a cigarette in a railway carriage where smoking was prohibited under a British Railway Board bylaw, made operational by an administrative decision of the railway company.  The smoker appealed the conviction and, among other things, challenged the legality of the bylaw and the administrative decision bringing the bylaw into operation, arguing that they fell outside the scope of the originating law conferring powers to the British Railway Board. The Divisional Court dismissed the smoker's appeal, but allowed him to appeal to the House of Lords. Contrary to the Divisional Court's ruling, the House of Lords held that the smoker was entitled to challenge the bylaw and administrative decision, but upheld the Divisional Court's dismissal of the appeal, concluding that both the bylaw and administrative decision were lawful.


Boddington v. British Transport Police, UKHL 13, United Kingdom House of Lords (1998).

  • United Kingdom
  • Apr 2, 1998
  • United Kingdom House of Lords


Plaintiff Peter James Boddington

Defendant British Transport Police

Legislation Cited

British Railways Board's Byelaws 1965, Byelaw 20

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