Smokers are being encouraged to kick the habit during Stoptober.

The Essex Lifestyle Service is offering a range of services to help people ditch the cigarettes this month.

Commissioned by Essex County Council the teams are using vape shops to offer advice, while smokers can also get support via text, email or an app.

The new initiatives are expected to boost the success of the service in the county with more than 7,000 people having already quit in the last two years.

Ellen Van Gemmet, who leads the Essex Lifestyle Service said: “We know that many smokers want to stop smoking with the use of an e-cigarette. Although they are not yet licensed as medications, Public Health England say they are at least 95 per cent less harmful than smoking tobacco.

“Quitting smoking is better for you and your family and by working with e-cigarette stores and training their staff, we can ensure people choosing an e-cigarette, can access proven behaviour change support with a Stop Smoking adviser.

“An advisor will be able to offer you a tailor-made support package. You will be given advice and support on managing stress, eating well so that you don’t put on weight, as well as how to overcome other triggers that may increase your urge to light up.”

Visit for information on participating stores and further details about the app.

Alternatively call 0300 303 9988 or email