An anti-smoking music video entitled 'You Can Leave Your Patch on' which channels The Full Monty, has become a viral sensation in Sheffield, attracting 65,000 views in just one week.
The video, which is a Sheffield City Council initiative, sees council workers in manual jobs giving a cheeky nod to “The Full Monty” by covering Tom Jones’ You Can Leave Your Hat On, with the lyrics rewritten to give a smoke-free message.
Councillor Mary Lea, cabinet member for culture, sport and leisure at Sheffield City Council, said: “I’m so glad that this video has been the runaway success we hoped it would be. It’s fun, it’s different, and it’s especially apt as we enter 2017, which is the 20th anniversary year of The Full Monty.
“I also hope that You Can Leave Your Patch on is successfully spreading the message that it’s best to quit – but, if you can’t quit, swap to an e-cig."
According to the local authority, smoking is still the biggest killer, the biggest burden to public health and the biggest cause of health inequalities between rich and poor.
The “You Can Leave Your Patch On” campaign aims to help raise awareness of the benefits of stopping smoking and of the availability of local stop smoking services.
The campaign’s target audience is routine and manual working men, after research showed that workers in these jobs are twice as likely to smoke as those in managerial and professional roles.
It is estimated that 27.7 per cent of routine and manual workers smoke in Sheffield - the same as the England average for this group - compared to 18 per cent of the general population.
This group has also seen the slowest decline in smoking rates.
Cllr Lea added: “Our research has shown us that routine and manual workers are as likely as other groups to want to stop smoking and try to quit – however they are not as successful as other groups in remaining smoke-free in the long term.
“We also know they are more likely to spend more money on smoking, and in some cases spend up to five times as much of their weekly household budget on smoking as richer smokers.
“So, in tackling these health inequalities in Sheffield, we thought the best thing to do was to get men from this group on board, and see if they could help us spread the word.”
While good progress is being made on tackling tobacco, there are still around 79,200 people who smoke in Sheffield – and tobacco kills approximately 16 people a week in the city.
Approximately one in five adults in Sheffield smoke, and those who smoke can expect to have shorter, less healthy lives.
Research proves that people are four times more likely to quit with help from their local stop smoking service.