Let’s crackdown on cheap fags, says Islington Council - and smokers

Cllr Janet Burgess: 'real concerns'

Cllr Janet Burgess: 'real concerns' - Credit: Archant

Smokers themselves are calling for action against the widespread availability of cheap illegal tobacco, a study has found.

It comes after high profile raids of black market cigarettes in Islington at the end of last year.

The study, commissioned by Public Health England and seven London boroughs including Isligton, found 60 pc of the 1,200 smokers surveyed said something should be done about the sale of cheap illegal tobacco.

In addition, 56 pc said cheaper tobacco made it easier for children to start smoking, while 52 pc agreed it made it harder to quit the habit.

Cllr Janet Burgess, Islington’s executive member for health and wellbeing, said: “This report shows there are real concerns that cheap, illegal, easily available tobacco not only hampers smokers’ efforts to quit, but increases the risk of children starting.

“Islington Council is committed to helping our residents lead healthy lives.

“As part of our ‘new year, new you’ campaign, we’re encouraging smokers who want to quit to seek expert help and face-to-face support from their local stop smoking advisor.”