PEOPLE wanting to stop smoking can take advantage of a number of initiatives in Hambleton and Richmondshire to mark National No Smoking Day.

The Primary Care Trust which covers the two districts has arranged a series of workshops to help smokers quit the habit.

Tests to analyse health, as well as advice sessions, will be held at the Co-op in Richmond's Friary Gardens between 12.30pm and 2pm on Tuesday; at Tesco, in Thirsk, between 12.30pm and 2pm, Boots, in Catterick Garrison and Gales Chemists, Colburn, between 10am and noon on Wednesday.

A Stop Smoking Group will also start at the Friarage Hospital, Northallerton, at 4pm on Wednesday, March 26.

"A lot of people who suddenly try to quit on No Smoking Day without any preparation or support can find it very tough," said advisor Pat Marshall.

"Only two or three per cent succeed in these circumstances. Our new Stop Smoking group is there to try to give support and encouragement to such people so they stand a greater chance of success."

More information is available from GPs' surgeries across the area, the North Yorkshire Stop Smoking Service on (01904) 663310, the NHS Free Smoking Helpline on 0800 1690169 or from Pat Marshall, on (01845) 573800.