LONDON, March 14 (Xinhua) -- Hastings, the southeast coastal town famed for the 1066 Battle of Hastings, emerged Wednesday as the smoking capital of England.
More than a quarter of people (25.7 percent) in Hastings smoke cigarettes, the highest percentage in England, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) reported Wednesday on No Smoking Day.
It's a stark comparison when put the figure together with a nationwide average of 15.5 percent.
Public Health England, which compiled today's figures with ONS, hopes that the people of Hastings will use No Smoking Day to conquer their smoking habit.
Blackpool, Bradford and Hull in the North of England also ranked near the top for both smoking and deprivation. In particular, Manchester and surrounding areas were home to a high percentage of smokers. As well as Manchester itself, at least one in five people smoked in Rossendale, Tameside, Knowsley and Salford.
At the opposite end of the smoking scale, just 4.9 percent of people smoked in Epsom and Ewell in Surrey, the lowest number in England.
Fewer than 1 in 10 people smoked in many of England's least deprived areas, including places like Wokingham in Berkshire, Chiltern in Buckinghamshire and Waverley in Surrey.
Around 6.3 million people aged 18 and over in England smoked cigarettes in 2016, said ONS.
Overall people living in the most deprived areas of Britain were four times more likely to smoke cigarettes than those living in the least deprived areas, said ONS.
"It's therefore no coincidence that many of the local authorities with the highest proportions of smokers in 2016 ranked among the most deprived in England," said ONS.
Meanwhile people employed in routine and manual jobs were three times more likely to smoke than those in managerial and professional jobs. A person was also more likely to smoke if they reported having no qualifications, receiving welfare benefits or having a health problem which severely limited their activity.
On a brighter note ONS said between 2012 and 2016 smoking declined at every level of area deprivation.
In 2016, 27.2 percent of adults living in England's most deprived areas were smokers, down from close to one-third in 2012.
Meanwhile, just 7.9 percent of adults in the least deprived neighborhoods smoked in 2016, compared with 10 percent in 2012.