Smoke free

In December 2023, we renewed our commitment to the NHS smoke free pledge.

Smoking harms our physical and mental health. People with anxiety, depression or schizophrenia are more likely to smoke. They are more likely to smoke and to smoke more heavily than the general population.

As well as reducing their life expectancy, it also affects the way some medications work. This means smokers need a higher dose.

We have been operating smoke free sites for our staff since April 2017. We expanded this to patients and visitors in April 2018.

Want to quit now?

Call the stop smoking service now on 01872 324 200 or email the Smoke Free Team and find out how they can help.


The NHS Smokefree Pledge

As local health leaders we acknowledge that:

  • smoking is the leading cause of premature death, disease, and disability in our communities
  • smoking places a significant additional burden on health and social care services and undermines the future sustainability of the NHS
  • healthcare professionals have a key role to play in motivating smokers to try to quit and offering them further support to quit successfully
  • reducing smoking amongst the most disadvantaged in our communities is the single most important means of reducing health inequalities
  • smoking is an addiction starting in childhood with two thirds of smokers starting before the age of 18
  • smoking is an epidemic created and sustained by the tobacco industry, which promotes uptake of smoking to replace the tens of thousands of people its products kill in England every year

We welcome:

  • the Government’s ambition to make England smokefree by 2030 and tackle health inequalities in smoking prevalence
  • the NHS Long Term Plan’s commitment for all smokers in hospital, pregnant women, and long-term users of mental health services to be offered NHS funded tobacco dependence treatment by 2023-24
  • NICE public health guidance on tobacco

In support of a smokefree future, the Trust commits from December 2023 to:

  • treat tobacco dependency amongst patients and staff who smoke in line with commitments in the NHS Long Term Plan and Tobacco Control Plan for England
  • ensure that smokers within the NHS have access to the medication they need to quit in line with NICE guidance on smoking in secondary care
  • create environments that support quitting through implementing smokefree policies as recommended by NICE
  • deliver consistent messages about harms from smoking and the opportunities and support available to quit in line with NICE guidance
  • actively work with local authorities and other stakeholders to reduce smoking prevalence and health inequalities
  • protect tobacco control work from the commercial and vested interests of the tobacco industry
  • support government action at national level
  • publicise this commitment to reducing smoking in our communities and join the Smokefree Action Coalition, the alliance of organisations working to reduce the harm caused by tobacco

Signed by

  • Margaret Schwarz, Chair
  • Debbie Richards, Chief Executive
  • Adrian Flynn, Chief Medical Officer

Endorsed by

  • Amanda Pritchard, Chief Executive, NHS England
  • Prof Dame Helen Stokes-Lampard, Chair, Academy of Medical Royal Colleges
  • Prof Maggie Rae, President, Faculty of Public Health
  • Dr David Strain, Chair, BMA Board of Science
  • Gill Walton, Chief Executive, Royal College of Midwives
  • Prof Jim McManus, President, Association of Directors of Public Health