There is little, if any, evidence that the smoking ban had led to pub closures, according to the government, writes Ewan Turney. Anne Milton, Health minister, reiterated in a letter to the Save the Pub Group that there would be no review of the legislation. "I should perhaps reiterate that there is little, if any, evidence that would link the closure of pubs and clubs to the introduction of this law," said Milton. "If anything the evidence points in the opposite direction. Some opponents of this law have suggested (both before and after the implementation of the smokefree law) that amongst other things the law would result in pub closures. "However, there has been a continuous decline in the number of traditional pubs and clubs for over a generation." Milton pointed to an increase in the number of premises licensed to sell alcohol as proof and the fact that a changing consumer needs had seen pubs turned into restaurants and a demand for more coffee shops. "Public tastes change and whilst regulation can sometimes be a factor much wider social changes often have a greater impact," she said.