You can’t get your drugs tested at Boomtown this year
The testing service have been forced to withdraw at the last minute
People going to Boomtown this weekend will not be able to get their drugs tested on site and find out what they're taking.
Drugs charity The Loop has offered on-site testing for festival-goers since 2017, but have been forced to withdraw because of "legal complexities".
The Loop tested over a thousand samples in their first year at Boomtown, and put out six alerts for high-strength pills going around.
"We were informed towards the end of last week, the provision of this service at this year’s festival may no longer be possible," Boomtown said in a statement.
"Since then, we have been working around the clock with all the key stakeholders to try to find a resolution, however, despite all of our efforts, the ongoing legal complexities has meant that The Loop are unable to provide the front of house drug safety testing element of their valuable and respected services at this year’s event."
In 2017, The Loop tested punters' MDMA, cocaine, and ketamine, detecting adulterants, dangerous chemicals, and super-strength pills.
People using the service get their drugs tested, but also talk to a volunteer about their drug use, in a bid to reduce the harm from taking drugs.
Boomtown credited the testing service with improving the situation at the festival. "The head of the paramedics and the head of welfare both said they had seen significantly lower drug-related problems coming to them this year, and were adamant this was because we were onsite," the charity's co-founder Fiona Measham told Vice in 2017.
Boomtown will still be doing back-of-house drug testing – where drugs going around the festival are tested, but individuals can't learn what's in their specific baggie.
"We will continue to provide our robust and extensive medical and welfare support onsite and The Loop will still be in attendance providing expert one-on-one counselling, drug awareness and safety advice for free at this year’s festival," they said in a statement.
"We will also work with our back-of-house drug testing service provider, TICTAC, to identify harmful substances circulating at the festival and keep those in attendance informed with as much factual information as possible throughout the weekend via our social channels, festival app and on the ground."