MORE than a quarter of Thurrock’s ten-year-olds are obese, shock new figures have revealed.

Thurrock council’s annual health report also told how more than 25 percent of adults are in the same category.

And it revealed how one in five children live in poverty - and one in eight women smoke during pregnancy.

Labour’s Barbara Rice, the councillor responsible for health, said: “The obesity rate is appalling and when children live in poverty, there is more obesity and we have a lot of our kids living in poverty.

“We can see from this picture that we have a long way to go to reduce health inequalities and improve the health and wellbeing of our communities.”

The report, presented at the latest full council meeting, also showed men living in the Orsett ward are likely to live EIGHT years longer than someone living in one of Thurrock’s most deprived wards, such as Tilbury St Chads.

Compared to similar sized boroughs across Britain, Thurrock has one of the highest rates of premature deaths from cancer, heart disease, strokes and lung disease.

Shane Hebb, the Conservative’s spokesman on health, couldn’t believe the difference in life expectancy between Thurrock’s most and least deprived wards.

He said: “What a tragedy.

“The dreadful difference between life expectancy in our least and most deprived areas rears its ugly head again at 8.3 years!

“This report tells us the facts, now we must do something about it.”

Responding to the shocking statistics on Twitter, resident Jacqui Faras said: “That’s so shocking and sad.”

Another Elizabeth Stevens said: “My heart is breaking. This is our borough, our towns, our kids and our future.”

The council has now outlined 12 priorities to tackle Thurrock’s health woes, which include working more closely with schools and developing a “healthy weight and tobacco control strategies” next year.

Grim facts:

*25.1 per cent of the borough’s ten to 11-year-olds are obese - compared to 19 per cent nationally

*28 per cent of adults living in Thurrock are obese - nationally it’s 24 per cent.

*12 per cent of women in Thurrock continue to smoke while pregnant - nationally: 13.7 per cent.

*21.9 per cent of children living in poverty - the national figure is the same.