Stoptober smoking campaign comes to Ilford town centre on Saturday

If there’s a nagging voice at the back of your mind telling you to quit smoking, it could be the effect of the Stoptober campaign.

Redbridge smokers are being encouraged to kick the habit throughout this month with the support of the North East London NHS Foundation Trust’s (NELFT) stop smoking team.

The team will be out offering help to smokers with a roadshow in Ilford Town Centre on Saturday.

The campaign provides a preparation pack, a 28-day quit calendar and a health and wealth wheel.

And smokers can also receive daily messages through apps, texts or Facebook to keep them going.

Michele De Sousa, the team leader at Hainault Health Centre in Manford Way, believes the national campaign, the first mass quit attempt launched by the Department for Health, could be getting through.

She said: “There’s so much campaigning around Stoptober so it stays in people’s minds and even if they haven’t thought about it before, they might think about quitting.“

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Along with pharmacists and GPs in Redbridge, the team offers stop smoking support at the health centre through weekly clinics.

Patients often use nicotine replacement therapies, such as patches or chewing gum, or medication such as Champix.

Ms De Sousa said: “With the patients we set a quit date and see how they’re getting on with the medication and the side effects of nicotine withdrawal.”

She added: “People smoke for different reasons, some it’s for pleasure, some for coping with different situations.

“It’s about changing their lifestyle slowly and getting used to being in social situations without smoking.

“The cigarettes do nothing – it’s a habit that’s learned.”

Nicola Hill, NELFT’s stop smoking service manager, said: “Stoptober is a great opportunity to make this the time to stop smoking.

“Stopping smoking is the single best thing you can do to improve your health and people don’t have to go it alone.”

For more information visit and call the team on 0800 032 0102.