A smoking ban in beer gardens and al-fresco dining areas has been blocked by the Government after ministers warned they would infringe on people's freedom and lead to pub closures.
The proposals to extend the ban to outdoor areas were have been included in a list of demands by councils and health authorities in London which has been supported by Sadiq Khan, the Labour Mayor of London.
However the Government has rejected the plans and condemned "labour's municipal killjoys" for making the proposal.
Marcus Jones, a minister for local government, said: “We already knew that Labour councils charge higher council taxes and levy more red tape.
"Now Labour’s municipal killjoys have been caught with a smoking gun, trying to ban adults enjoying their local pub garden. If implemented, these ill-founded proposals would lead to massive pub closures.
"Conservatives in Government will be vetoing these Labour Party plans. Ahead of May’s local elections, local voters have a right to know the bad and mad ideas that are being peddled by Labour councillors."
The call for an outdoor ban was originally made by Haringey council in North London, which highlighted the fact it has already been introduced in Canada and South Australia.
The council suggested that the move would build on the success of the existing indoor smoking ban, which polls suggest has the support of eight in 10 people.
The idea has previously been backed by leading medical experts. The Royal Society for Public Health has called for "exclusion zones" around pubs, in parks and at the entrances to schools.
It said that reducing the "convenience" of smoking will prompt more people to give up. It suggested that they should be encouraged to switch to safer sources of nicotine such as e-cigarettes.
In 2015 Lord Darzi, a leading surgeon and former Labour health minister, argued that a ban would help deter people from smoking.
In a joint article in the BMJ medical journal he said it would be a "logical progression” from the prohibition of smoking in pubs, restaurants and other enclosed public spaces in 2007.
He said: “If we are to celebrate the cultural and community assets that parks and community spaces represent and to protect children and young people from the normalising effect of observed smoking behaviours, then extending the smoking ban to other public spaces will have a positive effect.
“Expanding smoking prohibition to broader public spaces will undoubtedly have a positive effect on our population’s health." However Boris Johnson, the then Mayor of London, rejected the idea as "bossy and nannying".
A Labour spokesman said: "This is not Labour Party policy. It's not something we are considering, nor is it something we will be considering."
A spokesman for Mr Khan said: "There is currently no signed and agreed deal on health devolution, and any decision on extending smoke-free areas would be for individual local authorities to take.”