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Cannabis Festival

international news _ Jonty Skrufff _ 7th March 2005

London's Cannabis Festival Cancelled

Conservative politicians in South London this week cancelled Brockwell Park's annual Cannabis Festival in a move the event's organisers claimed was politically motivated.

"Councillor Whelan is a Tory and that's why she doesn't want it to go ahead," festival organiser Shane Collins told the South London Press this week.

"On the one hand the council bleats on about a sense of community and says it is really important to provide events for the people of Lambeth, but then they stop us doing just that," he continued.

"Thousands of people look forward to this free festival every year and to pull it with no explanation is a disgrace. It's a safe event which is all about people having fun. By stopping it they have made themselves look extremely stupid yet again."

In previous years multiple stages and sound systems drew tens of thousands to the South London park, though the festival started to face increasing pressures from authorities last year, ironically as the UK government marginally relaxed sanctions against pot. Speaking to Skrufff last year, Mr Collins also blamed political manoeuvring, as the main reason authorities don't legalise it.

"From the Government perspective, on the one hand there's a degree of puritanism involved, that fear that people are having a better time than they are," he told Skrufff.

"Then on the other hand, they're trying to appeal to those puritans, those Daily Mail and Daily Express middle England readers, people who have climbed the career ladder, maybe had kids, and retreated into a segregated family life and become quite conservative," he said. (Jonty Skrufff / Skrufff.com)

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