10 years on from ban - number of East Devon smokers at record low

Legislation to ban smoking indoors in public places was introduced in 2007.

Legislation to ban smoking indoors in public places was introduced in 2007. - Credit: Getty Images/Wavebreak Media

A decade on from the smoking ban, the number of smokers in East Devon has fallen to record low – with one of the best rates in the country.

This week marks 10 years since the Government made it illegal for anyone to smoke in an enclosed public space or workplace.

The South West now has the lowest smoking rate in England – with 13.8 per cent of 18 to 64-year-olds smoking.

In East Devon, that figure is even better, with smoking prevalence in adults standing at 6.1 per cent, second only to the Cotswolds.

Russ Moody, the tobacco control lead for Public Health England South West, said the figures were a ‘huge step’ towards the first smoke-free generation.

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He added: “The indoor smoking ban in public places was one of the greatest reforms to public health in this country.

“The move, coupled with quit smoking initiatives such as Stoptober and the work of local authority public health teams, has helped to drastically cut the number of smokers by facilitating quit attempts and smoke-free lifestyles.

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“Not only has the health of smokers benefited but so too has the health of non-smokers who no longer have to breathe second-hand smoke in pubs, restaurants and bars.

“Recent figures on smoking rates revealed more good news with a steep decline in smoking among younger adults with smoking at an all-time low in those aged 18-24 years – this is a huge step toward establishing the first tobacco-free generation.

“I would urge any smoker who is thinking of quitting to make this 10th anniversary the day they plan to quit smoking too.

“Put simply, quitting really is the best thing any smoker can do for their health.”

What do you think? Email stephen.sumner@archant.co.uk.

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