Barking MP Margaret Hodge warns young people on dangers of smoking

11:59 28 March 2012

MP for Barking Margaret Hodge

MP for Barking Margaret Hodge

Archant

Barking MP Margaret Hodge has warned young people not to take up smoking, and says she regrets ever starting.

Mrs Hodge took up the habit when she was 18, and finally quit when she was 31.

She said: “I was daft to smoke as a kid. I really regret it. I wish I’d never started.”

The MP is backing London24 publisher Archant London, which has teamed up with the Deborah Hutton Campaign to address the dangers of young people smoking.

Deborah Hutton was a highly acclaimed journalist who died from lung cancer in 2005, aged 49, after smoking in her teenage years.

Mrs Hodge has lost a friend to lung cancer, a woman who took up smoking at about the same time as the MP.

Giving up smoking is up to an individual, but Mrs Hodge believes it is better not to start in the first place.

She said: “I stopped and started again and again and I finally really stopped when I was 26.

“I had two children and then took up smoking again, and stopped for the final time at 31.

“Once you’re an addict, you’re always an addict.

“When my dad was dying he asked me to light him a cigarette and I could feel the urge then after smelling it.

“It’s such an easy thing to control. It’s in you. If you give up, it could extend your life.”

The Deborah Hutton campaign runs the Cut Films national short-film competition, for which young people are invited to research smoking, make a two-minute film about it for their friends, upload it to a special website and share it on social media.

The aim is for talented teenagers from the borough to send a very clear message to their peers – that smoking kills in later life.

As well as the overall prize, there is a special Archant London award for the best film from the capital city.

Winning entrants could scoop Kindles, iPods and festival tickets, among other prizes, plus recognition for having made a highly skilful and acclaimed piece of film.

The competition closes for entries on Friday, April 20, and voting for the films closes on Monday, April 30.

Related articles

Latest Stories

Yesterday, 12:50
The man fell from the top floor penthouse above Barclays Bank in West Hampstead (Picture via Google StreetView)

A man who reportedly fell to his death from a penthouse in Hampstead while naked has been indentified as a Harley Street doctor who ran a Botox clinic.

Read more
Yesterday, 18:10
Police are advising members of the public not to approach John McClintock and contact officers immediately if they see him (Picture: Metropolitan Police)

Police are appealing for the public’s help in tracing a 26-year-old man who absconded from a bail hostel in Richmond yesterday.

Read more
Yesterday, 17:17
The Isufi family, from left back, mum Meri, daughter Ramela, dad Erion, son Richard and youngest son Clive (front)

A vast gathering of friends and neighbours stood outside the Barking home of a family torn apart by a car crash to pay their tributes to them today.

Read more

Top Stories

Promotions

Renault-Zoe

The Renault ZOE follows on from the introduction of the electric Fluence ZE and Twizy, but unlike the former, the Zoe was designed from the ground up as an electric vehicle.

When no simple way to find Real Ale was at hand, 4 Ale enthusiasts got together to allow anyone with a smart phone to find Real Ale no matter where they happened to be, this was the birth of the Perfect Pint app.

London24 have partnered up with The Week magazine to offer you a complimentary issue – delivered free to your door.

Quizzes

But which London?! [Photo courtesy of Basher Eyre]

You might know London like the back of your hand, but how well do you know the other Londons - and London landmarks - across the world?

Read more
The prize is glory (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

It used to be Manhattan that was famous for its majestic skyline, but now our fair city is catching up. Do you know your Shard from your Heron Tower?

Read more
Test your London musical knowledge with our album quiz (Images via Getty)

Does your music knowledge stretch from The Rolling Stones to Rudimental, Spandau Ballet to Siouxsie and the Banshees? If so then test it out with our London bands quiz:

Read more