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14th Mar 2022

Under-25s set to be banned from buying cigarettes in England

Kieran Galpin

There are 6.9 million smokers in the UK.

People under the age of 25 are set to be banned from purchasing cigarettes in England under new government plans hoping to achieve a “smoke free” country.

Commissioned by Health Secretary Sajid Javid, an upcoming independent review led by former Barnardo’s CEO Javed Khan OBE is expected to launch England into its “smoke free” future – ideally by 2030.


Speaking to The Times, Khan said: “We are thinking seriously about the age of sale” while drawing inspiration from the Covid effort. He explained: “Just look at the Covid experience, mass marketing has a big effect, it really works.

“The government went hell for leather, it made an enormous difference in vaccination rates.”

Such sentiments were echoed by Javid via the UK government’s website, where he wrote: “The pandemic has shown the resilience of the British public and brought communities together to look after each other in the most challenging times.

“But it has also exposed chasms in our society – particularly in health.”

Taking to Twitter last month, Khan called out for first-hand experience with smoking. He wrote: “I want to hear your views and what we can do to support current smokers to quit, and to stop people taking up smoking.

“How do we stop people, especially children and young people, from starting smoking in the first place?

“Have you quit smoking for good? What worked? What do you think could work better?

“Have you ever used a Stop Smoking Service to quit smoking?

“Or spoken to your GP about it? What was your experience?”

Khan is expected to report his findings next month.

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