All Together Smokefree ambition gains support at senior stakeholder event

Cheshire and Merseyside’s Directors of Public Health and Director of Population Health welcomed a range of senior stakeholders to a special event on Tuesday 23 April in Warrington to kick-start the subregion’s plan to become smokefree.

All Together Smokefree is Cheshire and Merseyside’s ambition to end smoking, everywhere, for everyone, while delivering a Smokefree 2030 that is fair and equitable for adults and creates a tobacco-free future for our children.

The event, which was chaired by Dr Ruth Hussey CB, OBE, DL, Non-Executive Member of the NHS Cheshire and Merseyside Integrated Care Board, aimed to raise awareness of this important ambition among stakeholders, introduce the draft framework for the All Together Smokefree Programme, and ask those in the room to pledge their support for this work.

Those speaking at the event included:

  • Councillor Louise Gittins, Leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council, Chair of the Cheshire and Merseyside Health and Care Partnership
  • Rebecca Lawrence, Head of Tobacco Policy, Office for Health Improvement and Disparities, Department of Health and Social Care
  • Ian Ashworth, Director of Population Health, NHS Cheshire and Merseyside
  • Sarah McNulty, Director of Public Health for Knowsley, Lead Director of Public Health for All Together Smokefree
  • Dr Sarah Jackson, Principal Research Fellow, Behavioural Science and Health Institute of Epidemiology & Health, University College London
  • Ailsa Rutter OBE, Director, Fresh and Balance
  • Deborah Arnott, Chief Executive, Action on Smoking and Health (ASH)
  • Raj Jain, Chair, NHS Cheshire and Merseyside

Feedback from attendees was overwhelmingly positive, comments included:

  • “All speakers were excellent and informative.”
  • “I will be working with colleagues to push forward this strategy and necessary changes.”
  • “Thank you for this work, it is so important and awareness raising is critical.”
  • “Thank you. It was a fabulous, thought-provoking event.”

As the event closed, attendees were asked to use one word or phrase to describe the All Together Smokefree ambition or describe how it makes them feel. The responses to this were also very positive:

Dr Sarah McNulty, Director of Public Health for Knowsley and Lead Director of Public Health for All Together Smokefree, said:


“This event with senior stakeholders was a vital stepping stone to forming our Programme and making sure we have the necessary support from across the health and care system, and beyond. I was blown away at the energy in the room and how much enthusiasm there is to join forces and collectively tackle this issue. Smoking is the largest preventable cause of death in England, estimated to account for 64,000 deaths annually, and two in three smokers will die because of long-term smoking. By doing everything we can to support our residents to give up this habit, we will save lives, help the NHS and support our social care colleagues.”


To download the presentation slides, please click here.

To watch a short highlights video of the event, please click here.

To watch all the presentations in full, please click here.

To see visual minutes from the event, please click here. Thank you to Cathy Walsh, Associate Director of Patient & Carer Experience at Cheshire and Wirral Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (CWP) for producing this.

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Please use Cancer Research UK’s ‘contact your MP tool’ to voice your support for the Tobacco and Vapes Bill. There is good support among Cheshire and Merseyside MPs, but we need to keep the momentum to ensure the bill is successful. Click here to find out more.

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