Live Music

Drug-testing charity The Loop expands work through EIF grant


The Loop, the charity that offers drug checking services at UK festivals, has been boosted by a grant from the Events Industry Forum (EIF).

The Loop said the Purple Guide Grant will enable the delivery of more training on harm reduction and drug awareness to people working in all areas of the outdoor events industry. It said that support from the EIF, which represents the UK outdoor events industry and publishes the Purple Guide reference source, means it can reach wider communities and more individuals, with the joint aim to provide safer events and environments for all.

The cash from the EIF has also allowed the group to appoint Adam Waugh as its first training coordinator, with eight new trainers already recruited and ready to assist with work across the UK.

Katy Porter, The Loop’s chief executive, said: “The Loop is delighted to have received this grant from EIF, and to have welcomed Adam to The Loop staff team. We recognise the importance of harm reduction related to potential risks associated with drug use, and are pleased that more people working in the industry will be equipped with understanding and tools to assist in keeping people safe at many different kinds of events throughout the UK.”

The grant comes just weeks after The Loop was told by Home Office officials that it could not offer drug testing services at this year’s Parklife festival without obtaining a special licence. On Monday, events groups called for a judicial review into the Home Office’s decision to ban on-site ‘pop-up’ labs.

The Loop is a charity with expertise in harm reduction, developed through its drug checking and testing services, and associated research and evidence building. The grant enables subsidy of the training costs, ensuring this is affordable to those organising and working within the events industry.

It added: “The Loop will continue to expand its offer to increase and improve harm reduction provision, including the development of drug checking services, training, and research in this area of expertise, and working closely with partners such as EIF.”