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Secret Garden Party became the first UK festival to test drugs at the weekend

The service was spearheaded by charity The Loop

  • Dave Turner
  • 25 July 2016

Cambridgeshire festival Secret Garden Party introduced on-site drug testing this weekend.

It's the first time such an initiative, headed by charity The Loop, has been used at a music event in the UK, with the backing of both the council and local police.

As well as the chance to test substances, the estimated 200 people that used the service were also provided with 10 minutes of health and safety advice regarding drug taking.

The Loop co-founder, Fiona Measham, believes the the introduction of such a service at the weekend is a huge positive.

She said: “For the first time we’ve been able to offer the testing service to individual users as part of a tailored advice and information package provided by a team of experienced drugs workers.

"This can help people make informed choices, raising awareness of particularly dangerous substances in circulation and reducing the chance of drug-related problems occurring.”

After tests, it was found that anti-malaria tablets had been sold as ketamine, while what was thought to be MDMA was ammonium sulphate.

Steve Rolles of the Transform Drug Policy Foundation hopes other festivals will follow suit, claiming it would be "negligent for them not to".

Of the approximate 200 people that had their drugs tested, Rolles said around a quarter disposed of substances "when they discovered that they had been mis-sold or were duds."

[Via: the Guardian]
[Photo: Jenna Foxton]

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

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