Boomtown Fair news: Boomtown on Drugs: A Harm Reduction Story…

Latest update from Boomtown Fair

Boomtown on Drugs: A Harm Reduction Story…

Boomtown has created a short 15 minute documentary candidly discussing the dangers of drugs and openly addressing the issues drugs can cause at the festival, as well as in wider society.  In addition to enforcing legislation, this year Boomtown ‘put their head above the parapet’ and led a major drug awareness and safety drive, implementing a variety of harm reduction, education and awareness measures to inform and safeguard those in attendance.

“It feels like a huge evolution in the festival world, all of a sudden things are stepping up and we’re progressing… We’d like to use the festival platform to introduce these new harm reduction services and ways of bringing public safety and education towards drugs (to the forefront).” Lak Mitchell, Co-founder and Creative Director, Boomtown

Along with representatives from Boomtown, the documentary features a wide range of opinions and experiences from experts and influencers, including; Professor Fiona Measham, Director of harm reduction drug testing service The Loop, Director of Chill Welfare Katy Mcloud, Ed Morrow from Royal Society of Public Health England, as well as musician and key spokesman for Boomtown’s harm reduction campaign, Beans on Toast.

“In the UK drug related deaths are at at their highest rates on record, ever. This isn’t just a problem for Boomtown or just for festivals, this is  the situation right across the country.” – Fiona Measham, The Loop

However, the most powerful and poignant voices in this open and, on occasion, painfully honest film are that of Ellie Rowe’s family. Ellie Rowe, 18,  died at the festival in 2013 after mixing a small amount of alcohol with a small amount of high purity Ketamine. Ellie’s mum, Wendy Teasdill, along with her sisters, Iona and Belinda Rowe and Ellie’s Godmother, Saskia Kent, all returned to give a talk in the festival’s Speakers’ Corner tent for the second year running.   They expressed their support for the services and measures implemented at Boomtown, significantly The Loop’s drug testing and harm reduction intervention service:

‘We don’t know what we don’t know; Ellie didn’t know how strong that ketamine was, she didn’t know that the ketamine and the alcohol was a possible lethal combination…’ Wendy Teasdill

Along with the services provided by The Loop, which saw 1,132 service users get their drugs tested for safety, and over 2,000 individuals engaging with the harm reduction intervention, Boomtown also implemented a series of other drug awareness and harm reduction measures, on top of their extensive medical and welfare provisions. These included;

  • Pre-event awareness and education campaign along with drugs safety fact sheet on the festival website:

  • Trained drug workers and welfare staff roaming campsites offering advice.

  • Amnesty areas at the entrance

  • Thorough security searches

  • Support services on site

“People accept that rates of drug use are going up and the approach that we’ve had; that’s for years centred around prohibition, centred around enforcement, is not working in terms of reducing harm.”Ed Morrow, Royal Society of Public Health England.

The wide-ranging measures put in place to keep drugs out of the festival as well as to keep people safe and aware, had many positive effects to the festival environment; following the harm reduction intervention from The Loop, 44% of customers said they would reduce their dose or discard their drugs and the festival as a whole saw a 25% reduction in drug related medical incidents.

Boomtown are committed to spreading awareness and education on the dangers that drug experimentation can pose. This short film sums up all the effort that goes into to keeping people safe and providing them with the tools to make informed and educated decisions.

Boomtown Fair


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4 days ago

Boomtown Fair

Our sound systems and random pop up parties are a major part of what makes us Boomtown... Some of our most loved sound systems come from our ever growing Scottish family! Big love to ReCompose for this mini edit of ultimate Scottish vibes!

Special shout out to our mega scottish family member who today has set off for pastures new after 8 years of helping to make our city shine! We love you. xxxxx

Orignal post & video from

*caution - bit silly*

When we heard our pals at some of the best soundsystems in Scotland were heading to provide some additional bassweight for Boomtown Fair this year, we had to do something to mark the occasion.. 🎥🥂

..this wasn't quite what we had planned. But it sure was a lot of fun to produce 😀 Thanks to Electrikal Sound System, Mungo's Hi Fi and Strawberry Jam Sound System for putting up with us testing out our new equipment on them! And of course massive thanks to the Samedia Shebeen family for having us on board!! 😎

Big love to all the Boomtown citizens - 60,000 people all dancing to the same rythym in a magical popup city is a beautiful thing to be part of 🌇 <3

This video briefly(and quite ridulously) details the build and some highlight moments from some of the epic street parties and venues powered by PURE SCOTTISH BASS 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿🔈🔥

Not sure if sound will help many more of less sense of it all.. But it's definitely part of the 'experience' 😀
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Comment on Facebook

Brandon Laver Blu Hillier

Big love and huge respect to all the Boomtown Fair posse. We would walk 500 miles and 500 more to have the chance to dance with you again <3 🔈🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿💃 Thankfully, it's only a 400mile drive. Well worth it!

Liam Lecoughski Little saw this thought of you!

Joshua Crane

Wesley Petch this is what I was on about

Joe Christian

I was expecting to see some close up shots of Andrew getting messy at the front of Mungo’s Dave Kathryn Thea-Alice

UNITED Kingdom of Boomtown. UKB

Ollie Bradley


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1 week ago

Boomtown Fair

There was something fishy going on in Old Town in chapter 10...

Did anyone witness any peculiar protests or meet any curious characters down the streets of our oldest district this year?
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There was something fishy going on in Old Town in chapter 10... 

Did anyone witness any peculiar protests or meet any curious characters down the streets of our oldest district this year?


Comment on Facebook

All glory to the hypnofish

Make boomtown flat again 🤣

Sylvestor the Molester Jake Macdonald Luca-stocks Scoglio

Shannon Olivia Amanda Bienkowski lulululululululululu

Some fella sweeping mud. It's too dirty in old town the fish all left

Mima Owen the fish 😂😂

Dick do you remember this? It's when they were letting of the coloured gas that smelled terrible

Montana Louise Ross Lauren Barnett Ayliffe Cumming

Jack Ormrod

Molly Watkiss that fkn Chinese dragon

Hayden Jones Craig Longjohn Johnson Craig Kieran Brooks something fishy going on? Kipperrr

Hahaha yesss

Rory Myers-Cann was the smell of ur toes

Becca Wilson Oi Oi

Marko Marincic do you remember this

Amy Brewer-Smith Rob Williams

so many - so so many curious characters, ridiculous stories, marching bands, and fishy protesters

I did wonder what all the fish references were

Jazz Roosevelt

Sammi Gower

Tara Ní Chléirigh I'd say you will never be able to get this out of your mind

Tilly H Cooper u fishy gal

Ubah Mohamed Ephrozyna Ephy Klymchuk still confused

Dem weird fish people are up to something boys Faris Khalil Harry Whitlock

Andrew Horn the fish parade!!!!

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