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1.6 million smokers gave up due to smoking ban

7th February 2008

New research from Benenden Healthcare, the mutual healthcare provider, has shown that more than 1.6m smokers quit the habit when the ban on smoking in public places was introduced last year.

Since last July around 14% of smokers nationwide (1.64m) have stubbed out for good and in some regions around the country the number of addicts giving up was significantly higher, with London and the South East seeing a particularly large proportion of smokers quitting:

   

Greater London

21%

South East / East Anglia

19%

Midlands

13%

North East / Yorkshire & Humberside

13%

Scotland

12%

North West

12%

Wales & West

8%

However, the research shows that good intentions weren’t always fulfilled. In total,21% of smokers said they promised to give up when the smoking ban came into force. Of those, 35% managed to stick to their plan, but the remaining 65% have carried on smoking.

The ban has clearly managed to dent levels of smoking, even if it hasn’t managed to make all smokers give up. A remarkable 42% of those who did not manage to give up, or did not intend to in the first place, said they have reduced their level of smoking since the ban was introduced.

Younger smokers were much better at giving up than older ones. Almost 25% of 16-24 year old smokers and 21% of 25-34 year olds managed to give up after the smoking ban, compared to just 4% of 45-54 year olds and 7% of 55-64 year olds.

Jill Gardiner of Benenden Healthcare said: “The rationale behind the smoking ban was that it would help drastically cut levels of smoking and save thousands of lives. With one in seven smokers giving up and many more cutting down, it seems from our research that this process is beginning and that it is going to be a real benefit to public health.”

 

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