Statement from Karl hailing the closure of ‘legal high’ shop, Marley’s in Lincoln

“I was delighted to learn that, earlier this week, the owner of Marley’s Head Shop in Lincoln - a shop that sells new psychoactive substances (NPS) also known as “Legal Highs” - closed the premises on a permanent basis. My understanding is that the owner has assured Lincolnshire Police that he will not be re-opening anywhere else and he has ceased selling the products.


“I would hope that this closure is due, at least in part, to the pressure Marley’s has felt from all the agencies who have been seeking to take action against them.


“For almost two years, I have been liaising with Lincolnshire Employment Accommodation Project (LEAP), a charity in Lincoln just a few hundred yards from Marley’s that provides housing and support services to vulnerable young people at risk, and other constituents who have been concerned about this premises and the effects the substances they sell have on the health and the behaviour of its customers. I made Ministers at the Home Office and the Department of Health aware of our concerns and have sought updates from local partners such as Lincolnshire Police and the City of Lincoln Council who I know have done their utmost to address the problem as best they can working within the law.


“I also helped to facilitate a meeting that took place on Friday 8 November 2013 between a number of interested parties in Lincoln, including Area Commander Chief Superintendent Paul Gibson of Lincolnshire Police. Unfortunately I was unable to attend but I am assured this was an excellent meeting where attendees were able to share their experiences of the considerable challenges these new psychoactive substances are having on young people in Lincoln and the considerable impact on services such as the NHS and others.


“New psychoactive substances are drugs which mimic, or claim to mimic, the effects of illegal drugs. There is a common, but mistaken, perception that because such drugs are not legally controlled or banned, they are safe. Just because a substance is termed “legal” this does not make it safe, nor may it be legal.


“The permanent closure of Marley’s is brilliant news. We must continue to keep the pressure up on the pushers and sellers of these so-called “legal highs” which can actually kill, especially young people.”


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For further information, please contact Karl McCartney MP at / 020 7219 7221.