Pub chain JD Wetherspoon has announced that it is to create more than a thousand new jobs when it opens 30 new pubs next year.
Around 1,200 jobs will be created when the expansion takes place, with new outlets set to open in Sheffield, Bishop Auckland and Hertford among other locations.
Most of the new jobs will be at the new pub sites, according to the Associated Press, with 20 full-time staff and ten part-time workers likely to be employed at each venue.
The expansion of the chain comes despite the smoking ban which will come into force in England from July 1st 2007 and in Wales and Northern Ireland from April 2nd 2007, which, it was feared, would have a negative impact on the pub industry.
Wetherspoon chief executive John Hutson said: "Our non-smoking pubs have proven very popular and this has given us the impetus to open more pubs in 2007."
He added that while the smoking ban may affect sales in all pubs when it is introduced, the firm was confident that in the long-term it would result in more people visiting pubs and be a positive move.