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Leeds Festival has been forced to scrap plans for on-site drug testing

An agreement with Leeds City Council could not be made

  • Dave Turner
  • 9 August 2017
Leeds Festival has been forced to scrap plans for on-site drug testing

Plans to have on-site drug testing facilities at Leeds Festival on the August bank holiday weekend have been cancelled.

The event, alongside many others in the UK, was due to welcome police-supported drug safety organisation The Loop, but it decided not to go ahead with it after conversations with Leeds City Council.

Melvin Benn of Festival Republic claims "sufficient support from Leeds City Council" had not been received, but added something may be able to be done in the future.

Speaking to the Gazette, he said: “They felt the testing wasn’t up to the standard that they wanted it to be. They are not closed to the idea and we’ll revisit with them in the future and I hope that I’ll be able to bring it forward but I’m not ready to bring it forward yet.”

A spokesman for Leeds City Council said Festival Republic made a decision to not submit a formal application form for drug testing after a discussion between the two bodies.

“This is not a decision making body, and Festival Republic said they would take into account what had been said before deciding on whether to submit a formal application.

“A decision was subsequently taken by Festival Republic to not move ahead with the plan.”

B.Traits, an advocate of drug safety, has taken to Twitter to express her disappointment with the decision. She tweeted: "Leeds City Council are BLOCKING harm reduction drug testing at Leeds Festival."

The Loop, run by Fiona Measham, has previously been on-site at Secret Garden Party. There could be up to 10 festivals using the service this year.

Read our piece on safer ecstasy use here.

[Photo: Tom Martin]

Dave Turner is Mixmag's Digital News Editor, follow him on Twitter

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