Health bosses at Cambridgeshire County Council (CCC) have welcomed the commitment set out in His Majesty The King's speech for consultation towards establishing a "smokefree generation".

In his speech to Parliament, the King said the Government would "introduce legislation to create a smokefree generation by restricting the sale of tobacco … and restricting the sale and marketing of e-cigarettes to children".

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The King's speech also promised a "further crackdown on youth vaping", with a consultation currently ongoing on how to protect children while encouraging adult smokers to use vapes to quit.

Cllr Richard Howitt, chair of the adults and health committee at CCC, said: "Our ambitions as a council include reducing health inequalities and protecting the health of children, and I am delighted that there is cross-party support for a new bill which, if approved, will help us with our strategy with targets to cut smoking, protect children and young people from vapes and improve health.

Ely Standard: Cllr Richard HowittCllr Richard Howitt (Image: Archant)

"In June, the Adults and Health Committee agreed a new set of actions, working with our health partners, to help decrease the number of people in Cambridgeshire who smoke. Particularly in Fenland, where rates are increasing.

"As a council, we have already recognised the need to tighten the regulation of the sale of illegal tobacco, alongside illegal sales of vapes to young people."


There are an estimated 62,500 smokers in Cambridgeshire, which equates to 13.2 per cent of the population, and CCC's newly adopted smoking strategy is aiming to cut the figure down significantly.

Jyoti Atri, director of Public Health for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, said: "We welcomed the announcement yesterday [November 7] and, as a county council, we will be responding to the consultation.

Ely Standard: Jyoti Atri is also the director of public health at Peterborough City Council.Jyoti Atri is also the director of public health at Peterborough City Council. (Image: Jyoti Atri)

"Smoking is still the worst thing you can do for your health. This is a step towards protecting future generations from the harms of smoking and vaping."

The announcement also comes at a time when the council's Trading Standards team has noticed a rise in illegal vapes; in two months, they seized more than 5,000.