Smokers across the Bradford District are being urged to ‘split up’ from cigarettes and end their relationship with smoking as Stoptober returns in October.

With support from family and friends it is hoped that smokers within the district will find that Stoptober is the right time to call it quits and re-evaluate their relationship with smoking.

Research has shown that while two thirds of smokers want to quit, they don’t make a quit attempt or have a fear of failure.

Smokers can get free local support through Bradford Council’s Living Well website and by signing up to the Stoptober campaign. By signing up, smokers have access to the Stoptober app, Facebook messenger bot, daily emails, a Personal Quit Plan and Stoptober online communities.

The Living Well Service can also help people to quit from shisha and the use of chewing tobacco like Paan, Naswar and Ghutka.

Not smoking is now the norm in England – 4 out of 5 people in the Bradford District don’t smoke. Despite smoking rates being lower than ever before, there were still over 73,000 smokers with over 2,000 still dying from smoking related illness in the district in 2018.

Stoptober is back for its eighth year and since launching in 2012, the campaign has driven over 1.9 million quit attempts and is the biggest mass participation quit attempt in the country.

Latest figures from the University College London Smoking Toolkit Study suggest that smoking rates in England are dropping at the fastest rate in over a decade, with around 200 fewer smokers every hour.

Councillor Sarah Ferriby, Bradford Council’s Executive Member for Healthy People and Places said:“We know quitting smoking is not easy but Stoptober is the right time to try with the amount of support available through the Living Well Service, the Stoptober campaign and with the help of your family and friends. You can contact the Living Well Stop Smoking Service on 01274 437700 for free support across the district.

Our aim is to create a smoke free generation and this starts with existing smokers improving their long term health and their family’s health by quitting this October. It’s not too late to make a change in lifestyle. Even though smoking rates are at the lowest ever, there are still too many people across the district dying from smoking related illnesses and living with long term health issues because of smoking.”

Yvonne Doyle, Director for Health Protection and Medical Director at Public Health England, said: “It’s really encouraging to see these early signs of such a fast drop in smokers but we’ve still got a way to go to achieve our ambition of a smokefree society. That’s why Stoptober is back and we are encouraging all smokers to take part.

“Giving up smoking is the best thing a smoker can do for their health and it can also help save money – in just 28 days smokers will start to notice so many benefits.”

Public Health Minister Jo Churchill said: “Thanks to our tough action on tobacco, smoking rates are falling faster than in years – presenting us with the real opportunity for a smoke-free society by 2030.

“Despite this progress, smoking persists in some areas, often those with other challenges, and unfortunately remains the single biggest preventable cause of premature death. This inequality cannot continue. I want all smokers to quit, so please, take advantage of the support available this Stoptober and enjoy all the health, social and financial benefits this will bring when you succeed.”