The North East was reported to have the highest level of drinking and smoking over the past three years. With 20 per cent of the 11 – 15 years olds surveyed in the North West admitting to taking drugs in the past year. This is compared with only 15 per cent in the South West.
A quarter of those surveyed in the North East had drunk alcohol during the past week and this was closely followed by Yorkshire and Humber. This is compared with 12 per cent in London.
The quantities which the teenagers drunk in different areas showed quite a variance, with Londoners drinking the equivalent of a bottle and Northerners drinking double that amount.
Generally these figures have started to fall with only 18 per cent admitting to drinking in the past week in 2008 compared with 21 per cent back in 2006.
Figures also continue to fall with regards to smoking with fewer youngsters wanting to even try cigarettes. Numbers of young people smoking more than one cigarette a week has fallen from 9 per cent in 2006 to 6 per cent between 2007 and 2008.
The reasons for the huge variations between North and South were not the focus of the report and are yet to be explored, but regional variation is said to be down to factors such as poor public transport or lack of venues.