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Smoking at lowest rate on record
The ten-year anniversary of the smoking ban this July saw the lowest numbers of smokers on record in England
Smoking was banned in public spaces, such as offices and restaurants, in England 10 years ago, following similar bans in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Followed by the introduction of plain packaging, the numbers of people smoking has fallen, especially among young people.
The UK has become a world leader in implementing the tobacco treaty, launched by the World Health Organisation. Smoking rates for adults in England are now at 15.5%, neck and neck with Australia which was the first country to introduce plain packaging.
The charity Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) published a new report marking the anniversary, which showed there has been growing support for the ban over the last decade – interestingly, among smokers themselves. Support for the ban, as well as future measures to reduce smoking further, has risen from 78% to 83%, mainly due to a change in attitude from smokers.
Our CEO Katharine Jenner says: “The fall in the numbers of people smoking, and the rise in support for the ban, is fantastic news as smoking raises blood pressure, leading to thousands of preventable deaths from heart disease and stroke. Stopping smoking, along with eating less salt, is one of the most important changes you can make to your lifestyle to lower your blood pressure. We fully support the ban and all efforts to reduce smoking rates further, and encourage anyone who’d like to quit smoking to get support to make it that bit easier.”
Many thanks to ASH for allowing us to use their photograph in our email newsletter Positive Pressure.
Get help with quitting smoking from Smokefree