HEALTH bosses estimate just one in ten people will be smokers by 2023.
The estimate comes as data shows more than a million have quit since 2014.
A Public Health England report states the prevalence of smoking in adults has fallen from 19.9 per cent to 14.9 per cent in the past seven years — the equivalent of 400,000 smokers — one every 80 seconds — successfully quitting every year.
If the trend continues, it will fall to between 8.5 per cent and 11.7 per cent within five years, experts say.
The prediction comes as the health body launches its annual Stoptober campaign today, urging smokers not to ‘go cold turkey’ as the method may hamper their chances of quitting.
The best way to stop is with help from local stop smoking services and the use of nicotine replacement therapies and e-cigarettes, said PHE’s deputy medical director Dr Jenny Harries.
‘The important thing is not to be put off trying to quit even if you have not managed to in the past,’ she added.
This year, PHE is offering an online Personal Quit Plan, via the NHS website, to help smokers find the right support.
The health body also reported six in ten of the 6.1million smokers in England, want to quit to ‘benefit their health’.