Tried It Didn’t Like It

Posted 29th July 2020 by Dave Cross
The New Nicotine Alliance (NNA), Britain’s consumer charity for nicotine users, has hosted another in its current series of hugely successful webcasts. “Tried it, didn’t like it” featured Louise Ross, Hazel Chinnery and Liz Barber discussing why many smokers do not get on with alternative nicotine products.

The NNA took to hosting webcasts during the COVID outbreak and the positive response has been overwhelming. Previously, Clive Bates and Dr Farsalinos have given riveting presentations and more webcasts are planned for the future

Tried it, didn’t like it

The NNA says: “E-cigarettes have been around for over a decade now and it is difficult to find a smoker who isn’t aware of them. 3.6 million people vape and over half of those exclusively do so after formerly being smokers themselves. However, there are still millions more smokers who have tried safer alternatives but still choose to smoke cigarettes.

What is it about reduced risk nicotine delivery products that just will not currently work for them? Is it the scare stories surrounding vaping or the lack of publicity of less harmful options due to over-cautious regulation? Is it that the technology does not quite emulate the smoking experience yet? Or maybe it is simply that, for many, there will never be anything better than ‘the real thing’?”

Liz Barber spoke about how she started smoking at 18 at a time when cigarettes were reasonably priced and everyone else was doing it. Quitting never worked, but in 2007 the smoking ban was introduced, and this combined with the advent of electronic cigarettes pushed Liz to try vaping – but nothing compared to Dunhill and she has always experienced messy leaks with starter devices.


They don’t get around the main drawback, because unless you keep them upright, they leak. It’s a nuisance.”

Hazel Chinnery thought that more pubs allowing vaping wouldn’t make her stop, “but it would make me try harder with the vaping products or Iqos.”

I started smoking at 22, and basically smoked from then on. I was an early adopter of the vaping idea when they first brought out the vaping stuff,” but her local pub refused to let her use it inside. This coupled with a dry throat made continuing difficult – and regular trips to anti-vape Australia proved to be impossible. Cigarettes are widely available, “and I enjoy smoking.”

Louise Ross used to lead Leicester’s smoking cessation service and now works as a freelance clinical consultant for the National Centre for Smoking Cessation and Training. “We see a lot of people who have decided because of a health issue … that they now want to stop. It’s prompted a lightbulb moment.”

Louise was interested in how the barriers Hazel and Liz faced to vaping indoors resulted in them saying “it’s not worth it”. Louise praised the establishments that are open-minded about tobacco harm reduction.


The full webcast is available above.

The NNA is independent and staffed by volunteers. The charity is solely funded by private donations.


  • Text NNA 10 to 70085 to donate £10 to New Nicotine Alliance
  • NNA Website – [link]
  • Donate to NNA – [link]
  • NNA YouTube channel – [link]

 Dave Cross
Article by Dave Cross
Freelance writer, physicist, karateka, dog walker
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