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Laughing gas canisters discovered in Woodlands Park, Gravesend

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Laughing gas canisters are being uncovered in a Gravesend park on a daily basis, shocked parents have revealed.

According to people living near Woodlands Park, 60 canisters were collected today after another 40 were discovered yesterday.

They are used to ingest nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas or hippie crack, inhaled by users through a balloon.

Users of nitrous oxide inhale the gas through a balloon
Users of nitrous oxide inhale the gas through a balloon

Use of the legal high is on the rise despite the health risks.

On Sunday, Bexley teenager Ally Calvert collapsed and died after apparently inhaling laughing gas during a party.

But relatives insist the cause of the 18-year-old's death was an undiagnosed heart condition and not related to the substance.

Mum-of-three Emma Beadle said she was worried by the discovery.

She said: "I've been told by a man that he collected 60 today and 40 the other day. He said he even picked them up while council workers were in the van.

Empty canisters have been discovered in Woodlands Park
Empty canisters have been discovered in Woodlands Park

"At the moment he is going out daily to collect these.

"I'm really shocked by this. When we are talking about that many I think it's quite possible someone could die."

The 30-year-old founded the Revamp Woodlands Park group, which aims to raise £10,000 to breathe new life into the park.

Melanie Norris, Director of Communities at Gravesham council, said: "Unfortunately, at present, it is very difficult for the police and local authorities to prevent the use of legal highs such as nitrous oxide.

"The council are working in partnership with the police to monitor the situation and carry out patrols in the areas of concern and are currently investigating new powers which include public space protection orders.

"The staff and youth workers at the Gr@nd, healthy living centre, are providing information to young people about the dangers involved with legal highs and are working with the KCA to make sure that information is readily available to those that require help or advice.

"As far as we are aware there has only been one report of the discarded canisters being found at Woodlands park.

"The cleansing staff and horticultural teams inform the community safety unit of the areas that they find the nitrous oxide canisters and those areas are being monitored."

If you want to talk about drugs, you can call FRANK free, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year on 0800 77 66 00.

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