Smokefree South West - the anti-smoking action group - is to close at the end of June after cuts to public health funding.Read the full story ›
In the West Country alone 103,000 people are living with chronic lung disease and the main cause is smoking.Read the full story ›
A film made to try and stop people from taking drugs will be shown in local cinemas in Swindon.Read the full story ›
Over a quarter of all cigarettes smoked in the South West are either illegal or purchased outside of the UK, a survey has found.
More than 12,000 packs from streets and bins across the country were tested.
The results show that our region is above the national average.
Cheap illegal cigarettes are often sold on street corners. Criminal gangs are known to routinely target children.
Latest research conducted by Smokefree South West shows:
29% of people had stopped encouraging loved ones to quit because they were scared of starting an argument.
84% of parents said they encourage their child to stop as they don't like to see them harm themselves
67% of people, whose parents smoke, try to encourage them to stop because they're scared of losing them early.
Campaigners from smokers' group Forest have criticised the ban as an example of "creeping prohibition".
Smoking is banned in all enclosed public places. Now campaigners want to ban it outside. This is creeping prohibition. Extending public smoking bans to outdoor areas is illiberal and unwarranted. Smoking in the open air harms no-one apart, perhaps, from the consumer - and that's their choice.
Cities including New York, Toronto and Hong Kong have already banned smoking in key outdoor locations but Bristol is the UK's first to pilot smoke free zones.
Millennium and Anchor Squares are home to the At-Bristol science museum, shops and restaurants, and are well-used play spaces for children.
Kisrty Vaas from Torquay was diagnosed with COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) just over a year a go after one of her lungs collapsed.
She is now constantly short of breath, unable to travel and is supported by her younger daughter.
Kirsty knows this is a result of her smoking habit, but she wants others to learn from her mistakes.
My smoking illness has caused my whole world to come crashing down. If young people see you smoking then they think it's alright, but they don't understand what it can do to you, so making smoking less visible in public places can only be a good thing.
Kirsty has thrown her support behind 'Smokefree South West' which have succeeded in making parts of Bristol smoke free from today.
At the opening there will be a 'take a straw challenge' where people try and breathe through a straw to simulate what it feels like to have a collapsed lung.
It's the same technique Kirsty used to explain her condition to her daughter.
Two squares in Bristol will become the first major public outdoor spaces in UK to go smoke-free.
From today a voluntary smoking ban will be in place in Millennium Square and Anchor Square. The area is home to the At-Bristol science museum and often hosts festivals and other family friendly events.
The project is part of the Smokefree South West campaign.
A mother from Torquay has made an impassioned plea for people to stop smoking.
A new campaign by Smoke-free South West is calling on people to consider the impact on their relatives. 33-year-old Kirsty Vass has been diagnosed with a chronic lung disease and emphysema as a result of smoking.
Please give up smoking, because it really is not worth it. Don't end up being like this, it is a prison sentence. Get out there, enjoy it with your family, with your children.
Smokers and morbidly obese people in Devon will be denied routine surgery unless they quit smoking or lose weight.
Patients with a BMI of 35 or above will have to shed 5% of their weight - while smokers will have to quit eight weeks before surgery.
The NHS in Devon says the cuts are needed to help meet waiting list targets.