Drugs warning to festival goers

By James HoreMUSIC lovers heading to the V festival in Chelmsford have been warned by police about using drugs at the site.Essex Police have issued a statement reminding people cannabis, popular among festival goers, has not been declassified to a class C drug, despite proposals to go before Parliament.

By James Hore

MUSIC lovers heading to the V festival in Chelmsford have been warned by police about using drugs at the site.

Essex Police have issued a statement reminding people cannabis, popular among festival goers, has not been declassified to a class C drug, despite proposals to go before Parliament.

Cannabis remains a class B drug and anyone caught in possession with an intent to supply to others still could face up to 14 years' imprisonment.

The two-day festival, which has been held at Hylands Park since 1996, has one of its largest line-ups of artists this year and is expected to attract up to 150,000 fans.

Bands playing there this weekend include American rockers the Red Hot Chilli Peppers and the Foo Fighters, as well as Britain's chart toppers, Coldplay.

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Sgt Chris White, policing co-ordinator for the event, said: “We want to make this annual weekend crime-free, thereby allowing everybody to have a good time.

“There will be frequent police patrols in the car parks, but people should use common sense and leave valuables at home.

“The festival has always been a fantastic occasion for both the police and the public, so criminals are warned that the extensive array of closed circuit television cameras will combat their actions with robust action being taken against offenders.”

More than 650 officers will be working at the event during the weekend with special measures brought in for motorists.

There will be a temporary 30mph limit along sections of the A414 from Friday afternoon through to Monday morning and motorists not heading to the event have been advised to avoid the area.

Parking restrictions will be in place in the surrounding areas, including the villages of Writtle and Widford, and police have warned vehicles parked illegally could be towed away.

But people heading to the festival can avoid congestion on the roads by using additional trains being put on and the free buses heading to and from the site.

james.hore@eadt.co.uk

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