An anti-smoking charity has called for Gorillaz frontman Damon Albarn to be prosecuted for smoking a cigarette on stage on the first night of a tour.

The former Blur singer was seen to light up a cigarette while performing at the Wedgewood Rooms in Portsmouth on Sunday night.

Bass guitarist Paul Simonon, formerly of The Clash, also smoked during the show in front of an "intimate" audience of about 500 fans.

Now the anti-smoking charity Action on Smoking and Health (Ash) has called for Albarn and Simonon to be prosecuted to make an example of them.

Spokeswoman Amanda Sandford said: "There can be no excuse for that as it is an indoor place and the law is very clear. We are not allowed to smoke on stage unless it's relevant to the act. They should be fined. It's not just the artist, it's the premises where the act is held. I would expect the local authority to take the appropriate action.

"It's not just illegal but more importantly it's about the message it sends out to fans. People in the public eye have a duty not to promote smoking. It's very irresponsible - I suppose they think it's rebellious and they may get some extra kudos from it and maybe some extra publicity."

Meanwhile a prisoner addicted to tobacco is seeking damages after he was banned from smoking for swearing at a prison officer.

Lawyers acting for Jack Richard Foster claim the staff at High Down prison, Surrey, submitted the inmate to "cruel and unusual punishment".

They argued that, as a tobacco addict and habitual smoker, he should have been given nicotine skin patches, chewing gum or some other means to satisfy his nicotine craving during the period the smoking ban was in force.

Philip Rule, appearing for Foster, said at the High Court in London the case also raised concern over the adequacy of the guidance given by Justice Secretary Jack Straw concerning the denial of nicotine to prisoners as a punishment for breaches of discipline. Mr Justice Collins adjourned the case so that more information could be gathered. He said it should come on for a full hearing in June-July this year.