Cannabis in police van Image Bedfordshire Police

One location contained close to 600 plants

As part of a new operation community officers from Bedfordshire Police will be looking to proactively close down cannabis factories operating in Bedford, as well as improving the intelligence picture of the problem.

Over the past week, the crackdown by Bedford’s community policing team identified and dismantled two cannabis factories. One location identified contained close to 600 plants.

Sergeant Madelyn Doggrell, from the Bedford community policing team, said:

“These cannabis factories are a scourge on our communities.

“They can be the driver for things like gangs, violence, and anti-social behaviour, causing a real nuisance for people in the area.

“These factories also fund wider organised crime, which costs the UK at least £37 billion every year, and routinely exploits children and vulnerable adults.

“We will be going after these factories, seizing their products and closing them down, taking them off the streets and getting rid of this bane from Bedford.”

Signs of a possible cannabis factory

There are some key signs to look out for which may help spot a cannabis factory, including:

  • Windows always closed in summer and curtains are permanently drawn
  • Excessive condensation at windows
  • Pungent or chemical smells
  • Large amounts of compost, plant pots, chemicals or fertiliser (or empty containers) stored
  • Neighbours reporting many frequent different visitors to the property OR no apparent movement of tenants at all
  • Excessive security measures added to property such as bars at the windows or reinforced doors
  • Lookouts – usually young/teenagers hanging about outside to warn the users of potential trouble

Anyone with any concerns about a cannabis factory can report it to police on 101 or via the force’s online reporting centre.

People can also contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.