‘Vape capital’ of Wales revealed with one shop per 10,000 people

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Online vape store Go Smoke Free used data from Companies House to find registered businesses across the UK.

These tallies were then combined with each town or city’s population to arrive at a vape shops per 100,000 residents figure.

Blackburn, the UK’s “vaping capital”, topped the list with 27 registered retailers – a shocking 22.56 vape shops per 100,000 residents.

South Wales Argus: The online vape store Go Smoke Free looked at data from Companies HouseThe online vape store Go Smoke Free looked at data from Companies House

Runner-up Bolton, also in the north west of England, has 20.26 shops per 100,000 residents, while Manchester’s 19.84 is enough to finish third.

Coming in at eighth place, Newport is the first city outside the north of England in the list which also makes it the de facto vaping capital of Wales.

According to Go Smoke Free analysis, Newport has 13 registered vape shops for a ratio of 9.75 per 100,000 residents.

It means Newport has a slightly higher concentration of vape shops than Peterborough (9.68) and Nottingham (9.62).

The Welsh Government is planning to ban disposable vapes and support UK legislation to restrict their sale.

The prime minister Rishi Sunak also wants to increase the smoking age in a bid to create a “smoke free generation” and tackle addiction among younger people.

A spokesperson for the online store said the disposable products have gained popularity due to their “convenience, portability and low cost”.

READ MORE: Authorities seize more than 20,000 illegal cigarettes and thousands of illegal vapes

“The new disposable vape ban should help to discourage children from taking up vaping, while encouraging adults to shift to more sustainable alternatives, such as refillable vapes,” they added.

“These cities could see a significant shift in their vaping culture, with the ban impacting consumer behaviour, and existing vape retailers adapting their offerings to cater to the new legislation.”

Last month, the Argus reported that organised crime groups were taking advantage of the “potentially lucrative” sector by selling unlicensed products to unsuspecting customers.

Council officers have seized more than 2,000 disposable vapes and recorded a successful prosecution in the past three years.

In the same time period, 13 sales were made from 39 attempted test purchases of vapes representing a failure rate of one-in-three.

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