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Essex councillors encourage a healthy start to 2017 by signing up for Dry January

29 Dec Essex councillors encourage a healthy start to 2017 by signing up for Dry January

As the festive season comes to a close Essex County Council is urging people to get their 2017 off to a positive and healthy start by signing up for Dry January.

Dry January is a national initiative run by charity Alcohol concern, which encourages people to sign up to go alcohol free for 31 days.

The plea comes following the findings of a new survey which shows nearly one in 10 of people believe it’s acceptable for a child aged 10 or under to drink alcohol at Christmas.

The survey, conducted by Alcohol Concern, also shows one in four adults have been drunk in front of a child at Christmas.

Cabinet Member for Health, Cllr Graham Butland said: “If you over indulge at Christmas, there may be a real impact on your health and family. Dry January is a great initiative to help you get your 2017 off to a healthier start, please take a look at their website and sign up today!”

Ben Hughes, Head of Commissioning for Public Health and Wellbeing, said: “For many, alcohol is a big part of the festivities, but often this can lead to excessive consumption and negative consequences.

“Having a break from alcohol gives people the opportunity to think about what they’re drinking, break those bad habits and in the long term cut down and improve their health.”

The survey also found that during the festive period, people are most likely to be drunk in front of our partners or work colleagues. Around two fifths of people have been drunk in front of a colleague and over a fifth in front of a boss.

To sign up for Dry January visit if you are concerned about your drinking, Essex County Council has also designed an online tool which can tell you if your drinking is risky. DBIU is an innovative alcohol screening, advice, intervention and referral website, leading the field of online alcohol interventions in the UK.

Visit for information and to take the alcohol test.