Mark’s story – Make Smoking History

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Mark’s story

The app is great. It’s like Candy Crush, but being good at this saves your life.
Middle-aged man holding his phone smiling

When a close friend died from lung cancer, forty-four year old Mark, a project manager from Tameside knew he needed to quit so he downloaded the Smoke Free App, stuck on a patch and hasn’t looked back.

“I’m 50 days smokefree and I’m feeling good, my smokers cough has gone, I’m sleeping better and I’ve noticed my sense of smell and taste has really improved.

“The app is great. The twice daily check-ins, the missions, the badges, being able to see the health improvements, how much time spent not smoking, how much life regained – it’s like Candy Crush, but being good at this saves your life.”

Mark, who lives with his wife and three children, had his first cigarette when he was 14 and had been smoking for 30 yeas when he decided to quit.

He said: “A close friend was diagnosed with stage 3 lung cancer and passed away from complications about a month later. That was the shock I needed. They were only 15 years older than me, and I know no one lives forever, but I certainly want a bit longer on this planet.”

Mark had always enjoyed smoking and felt daunted by the thought of stopping: “What would I do in a morning, after a meeting or while I waited for a cab? But you’ve just got to replace it with something else like eating an apple or doing the hoovering.

“There have been times when I was tempted to start again – the first social occasion was tough. I’d cancelled an earlier one so as not to be tempted to smoke, but it was fine. The advisors are there in the app to talk anything through with you and that really helps. My next big challenge will be when I go on holiday, I’ve a couple of months yet to prepare, and I know the advisors are there to support, should I need them.”

Although Mark always went outside to smoke, he’s noticed that his clothes no longer smell. His family and friends are pleased for him, in fact, one friend was so inspired it has spurred him into quitting too.

Mark would urge anyone who’s thinking of quitting to download the app and give it a go, he added: “It might sound like a cliché, but I really did love smoking so if I can quit anyone can.”

If you live in Greater Manchester, you can get six months access to all features on the app for free.  Find out more at: 


*Not Mark’s real photo