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More than 10,000 quitters make 'Stoptober' a North East success story, says Fresh

Over 10, 000 smokers in the North East are living healthier lives after signing up to take part in Stoptober, the UK’s first ever 28-day mass quit attempt.


Figures released by the Department of Health to mark the end of Stoptober showed Stoptober helped 10,129 smokers in the region make a quit attempt, along with quarter of a million people nationwide during the month of October.


Ailsa Rutter, director of Fresh, said: "The North East has seen the biggest fall in smoking in the last few years and we have had a fantastic response to Stoptober in the region.


"People who quit for 28 days are five times more likely to stop for good and people who quit should be feeling pretty proud right now. The message is to just keep going."


She added: "Stoptober has been unique in that thousands of people who smoke have not only decided that it’s time to stop once and for all, but have been joined by thousands of others from across the country to join in sharing their experiences and motivating others to take part.


"Quitting smoking not only brings immediate benefits to your pocket and the way you feel - but also brings lasting health benefits."


Some of the personal messages written by North East smokers pledging to quit at the Stoptober roadshow events, included:


  • 'I will stop smoking for my daughter’
  • ‘I’m stopping for my kids and to save money’
  • 'I’ve smoked all my life and need to quit for my health’


Stoptober was launched as a 28-day Department of Health initiative on October 1 where people could take advantage of lots of free support, including a Stoptober quitting kit, a daily messaging service and quitting app for PCs and smartphones with tips, a money saving calculator and motivational messages.


Research shows those who stop smoking for 28 days are five times more likely to stay quit.


 Health Minister Anna Soubry said:“Stoptober may have been a great success, but half of all smokers will die because of their habit. We know that most smokers want to give up, which is why we must keep encouraging them to make that step.


 “I congratulate everyone in the North East who gave up for Stoptober - it’s a fantastic achievement. They are five times more likely to give up for good after 28 days and I hope they will.


“For those who didn’t manage to stop for Stoptober, I would urge them to keep at it. People can start their own 28 day quit challenge at any time. 


Stoptober by numbers:


10,129 Stoptoberpacks requested in the North East


592 engagements with Stoptober representatives at the roadshows in the North East


268,083 registrations across England


484,043 support items ordered, broken down as 199,135 packs ordered, 205,885 registrations for the app, and 72,347 text service registrations


Over 1,200,000 visits to the Smokefree website


150,000 Stoptober tweets


Over 50,000 fans joined the Facebook page in the campaign period.


To find out more about Stoptober visit or for help to quit smoking visit your local stop smoking service or call NHS Smokefree on 0800 022 4 332.


To follow FRESH on facebook and Twitter - look for FreshSmokeFree.