The council plans to re-introduce a stop smoking service following a visit from health bosses.

Duncan Selbie, chief executive of Public Health England, advised Harrow Council to implement some version of the programme to help highlight the dangers of smoking.

Carole Furlong, director of public health at Harrow Council, and council leader Cllr Graham Henson agreed that it would be a worthwhile venture.

But they warned the council is hampered financially and, as a result, would have to think carefully about how best to move forward.

Ms Furlong said: “We’re looking at which model we’d like to follow and how much this will cost.

“We haven’t got unlimited funds to have an all-singing, all-dancing smoking cessation programme.

“We are signing up to the London-wide portal, which now offers a telephone service, and we’ll look at what we can offer locally – but no decisions have been made yet.”

She explained that doctors will continue to support the use of e-cigarettes, which are “showing signs of effectiveness” when it comes to stopping smoking, though they will not prescribe them yet.

Dr Muhammad Shahzad, of Harrow Clinical Commissioning Group, urged those responsible for the programme to fully commit to it.

He said: “People who want to stop smoking are not always given the right support or medication.

“This is the backbone of several issues like heart attacks and strokes and it is something that should be looked at seriously.”

Cllr Henson noted that tackling smoking is “important to the health service and important to the council”.

But, he added, it will “need to work out what it can do with the funding available”.