HAMPSHIRE will not go smoke free until after 2050, new research has found.

A study by Frontier Economics and commissioned by Philip Morris Limited found the area is one of nine local authorities that is predicted to still be smoking in 32 years’ time.

Southampton as a local authority also fared poorly and isn’t due to go smoke free until 2049.

One in seven people in Hampshire smoked in 2017, the most recent year for which data is available.

The research also highlights a variety of measures that could accelerate the decline in cigarette smokers. These include increasing the number of smokers using NHS Stop Smoking services and getting more switching to better alternatives like e-cigarettes and heated tobacco.

Other areas expected to take until 2050 to kick the habit include Bath & North East Somerset, North Yorkshire and Derby.