UK: Web: More Cannabis Cafes To Open

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The Legalise Cannabis Alliance (
Pubdate: Fri, 31 May 2002
Source: BBC News (UK Web)
Copyright: 2002 BBC


A Dutch-style cannabis cafe is to open in Leicester with plans for another 13 nationwide.

Customers will be allowed to openly smoke the drug, but police have stressed they do not endorse the cafe and will work to bring anyone involved in the misuse of drugs before the courts.

Chris Peabody, 31, is behind the plans for the members only club whose location is being kept secret.

No drugs or alcohol will be sold at the cafe - due to open in July - but Mr Peabody has said he will let cannabis users take the drug onto the premises.
He said: "People can come in and drink tea and coffee and play Scrabble.

"If they choose to smoke it is up to them.

"I am a private person who really does believe that what I am doing is right.
Police raids
"If everybody stood quietly and just accepted all the rules women would not be allowed to vote today."

Mr Peabody claims to have started taking cannabis at the age of 17 following an injury at work, and it stopped the pain.

He said: "I am extremely anti-drugs which is why I believe cannabis should be legalised.

"No-one has ever died from a cannabis overdose and the only way it could lead to harder drugs is if you buy it on the streets from dealers who sell other stuff.

"If you could buy it in a shop that would immediately break the chain."

The pressure group the Legalise Cannabis Alliance is supporting the plans, which will see the third cafe open in less than a year in Britain.

Previous ventures in Stockport and Bournemouth have been subject to police raids and arrests, but neither has been closed down.

Drugs Act

Other coffee shops are set to follow in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Cumbria, Liverpool, Rhyl, Anglesey, Milton Keynes, Braintree, Brighton, Taunton, Worthing, and Lambeth and Hoxton in London.

A spokeswoman for Leicestershire Police said: "Leicestershire Constabulary enforces the law as it stands, it does not make the law.

"We would remind anyone thinking of setting up such a venue that they may be committing offences under the Misuse of Drugs Act."

A Home Office spokeswoman said enforcement of the law was an operational matter for police, but added that allowing drugs to be smoked on the premises of a cannabis cafe was illegal.