Boris Johnson has today announced a range of measures that will impact on everyday life here in Lytham St. Anne’s. In our local supermarkets and shops there will be no more “buy one, get one free” promotions on unhealthy products – and stores will instead be encouraged to offer bigger and better discounts on fruit and vegetables. There will be no more tempting impulse-buy sweets, chocolates and unhealthy snacks invitingly placed near store entrances and beside checkouts. These are now prohibited.

Junk food adverts on television and online before the evening 9.00 p.m. watershed will be banned in a bid to stop youngsters being persuaded and tempted that it is cool and smart to consume unhealthy foods and snacks. The government will also hold a consultation into whether the planned internet advertising restrictions could be wider reaching, with a total ban on advertising food high in fat, sugar or salt an option under consideration.

There will be new legislation forcing restaurants and takeaways with more than 250 employees to add calorie labels to their menus to assist diners in making more informed choices. And a consultation will follow before the end of the year to help decide whether the same type of calorie labelling on alcohol should be required.

To help people lose the pounds, NHS weight management services will be expanded, with more smartphone apps rolled out with the purpose of improving lifestyle and overall health. Our local GPs will be encouraged to prescribe exercise and other social activities to help people keep fit. In poorer areas cycling pilots will provide bikes to entice people into upping their activity levels. Doctors will also be offered financial incentives to ensure those who are obese are supported to lose weight, with prescriptions for exercise and bike rides.

A new campaign to help people lose weight, get active and eat better after Covid-19 is also being pushed out as a ‘wake-up call’ as presently the United Kingdom is the second fattest country in Europe with two-thirds of adults above a healthy weight and one in three children aged 10 to 11 are overweight or obese.