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Younger people turning down booze as almost half say they go for low or no-alcohol drinks | UK News

Almost half of Britain’s youngest drinkers are turning down booze for low or no-alcohol alternatives, a survey has found.

The study, for industry body the Portman Group and carried out by YouGov, found 44% of 18 to 24-year-olds consider themselves to be either occasional or regular drinkers of alcohol alternatives, up from 31% in 2022.

Polling also found the age group were the most sober overall, with 39% not drinking alcohol at all, and showed that some who tried the substitutes said it helped them cut down on their drinking.

Some 23% said their intake decreased while opting for low or no-alcohol drinks, up slightly from 2022’s 21%.

Portman Group chief executive Matt Lambert said: “It is welcome to see a further rise in the popularity of low and no-alcohol alternatives as well as further evidence of how they are an important tool to help UK drinkers, particularly younger adults, to drink responsibly.

“The availability of alcohol alternatives has never been more abundant and we eagerly await the outcome of the recent UK government consultation on low-alcohol descriptors, which we hope will further facilitate the growth of the UK low and no-alcohol market.”

It comes after one in 10 UK drinkers shared they think they have an unhealthy relationship with alcohol, according to an annual survey released in November.

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File photo dated 01/12/06 of a man drinking a pint of beer

The figures were released as part of Drinkaware’s Annual Monitor, which also found that many more people believe their country has a drinking problem – 56% in England, 66% in Scotland, 63% in Northern Ireland and 38% in Wales.

Fewer drinkers think they are the ones with the issue, with 36% of respondents most likely to be concerned for a friend’s drinking habits.

Jeremy Hunt’s younger brother dies from cancer aged 53 | Politics News

Jeremy Hunt’s younger brother has died from an ‘aggressive’ form of cancer aged 53.

Charlie Hunt, a father-of-three, died peacefully on August 2, his family said in a statement to the Daily Telegraph.

The chancellor spoke last month about how the disease had hit his family, with his sibling having been diagnosed with sarcoma in 2020.

The former health secretary and his younger brother ran the London Marathon in October last year to raise money for Sarcoma UK and the Royal Surrey Cancer and Surgical Innovation Centre, a new facility being built in Guildford.

Mr Hunt, whose parents also died of the disease, said he was diagnosed with cancer himself but it was caught early after he discovered a mole on his head.

He said cancer had been “lifechanging” for his family, telling the Daily Mail: “I had superb treatment from the NHS to remove it, but I am very aware of members of my own family who have had much tougher battles against cancer, and I know that’s what families are going through up and down the country.”

Sarcoma is a rare type of cancer that typically begins in the bones or soft tissue.

Charlie Hunt revealed on his JustGiving page in October he had been diagnosed with the “particularly aggressive cancer” in 2020 and the disease had left him needing surgery on his right leg.

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He said he did not know if he would ever run or walk again and “since then the battle has continued with surgery on both of my lungs”.

He wrote on the fundraising page: “I have been in and out of hospital pretty constantly but have received excellent treatment from the NHS and am still fighting on nearly three years later.

“It does, however, remain a huge battle for me and my family. I asked Jeremy to run the marathon for the first time with me – an offer that was nervously accepted.”

The Hunts raised more than £22,000 for Sarcoma UK and the Royal Surrey Cancer and Surgical Innovation Centre running the marathon together.

Mr Hunt’s father, Sir Nicholas Hunt, died in 2013 aged 82, while his mother Lady Meriel Hunt died aged 84 last year – both due to cancer.