Kelso outlines zero-tolerance policy after Sunday drug discoveries
The news ten people have been charged following the discovery of 11 packages of cocaine at Kelso's meeting on Sunday should deter drug use at the venue, the track's managing director Jonathan Garratt outlined on Wednesday.
Nearly 5,000 people packed into the Scottish circuit for its Bank Holiday Sunday fixture when searches revealed the cocaine finds, which are believed to have a street value of £700.
Men and women between the ages of 18 and 51 were among those arrested, but Garratt stressed the day went by without any incidents of trouble or violence, which marred recent meetings at Goodwood and Ascot.
"Partly due to the headlines we've seen this summer, this is us co-operating with police to ensure the racecourse is a safe and fun environment for everybody," he said.
"We wanted to work with the police to make the point that the racecourse is not a place we will tolerate drug use.
"We didn't see any trouble at Kelso, but we were very pleased to have on site the sniffer dogs, who vetted almost every racegoer as they went in."
Garratt, who said Kelso pays for extra policing on certain days, which can be augmented if authorities feel it necessary, added: "I can't emphasise how calm and friendly the crowd was. The police presence didn't actually cause any trouble and there were a number of people who were searched who had nothing on them and they didn't object at all.
"Some may have been involved in game shooting and the dogs pick up gunpowder from cartridges – that's our local crowd – so there were a few false-positives.
"What we found was low-level, but we want to send out a message that we have a zero-tolerance policy on drugs."
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