Two shops in Swindon sold e-cigarettes to an underage child, an undercover Trading Standards operation has revealed.

The shops, which have not been named due to ongoing investigations, were just two of five that had previously raised concern with Swindon Borough Council and prompted the investigation.

Shop workers were happy to sell the e-cigarettes, which are only legal for those over 18, to an underage child who visited the stores as part of the investigation.

Now Swindon Borough Council say they are looking to take legal enforcement action.

“We are becoming increasingly concerned about disposable vapes and their popularity amongst school-aged children who should not have access to them,” said Councillor Jim Grant, cabinet member for communities and joint working.

“Nicotine is highly addictive, and children should not be exposed to, or be experimenting with its use.

“It is also a criminal offence to sell e-cigarette devices to under-18s and to buy them on behalf of those not old enough."

Acting Inspector for Wiltshire Police, Tristan Winter, added:

“The selling of e-cigarettes to those underage impacts their health and wellbeing, and we will continue to take action against anyone who puts young people at risk.”

Members of the public who see shops selling an age-restricted product to an underage child are now being encouraged by Swindon Borough Council and the police to “act as the eyes and ears of Trading Standards in the community”.