MetroPolis presents: The Challenge of… Drugs

18:00 – 20:00, Thursday 15 November 2018

Manchester Metropolitan University

The Challenge of Drugs is a MetroPolis event, designed to look in detail at the difficulties of formulating a coherent policy on drugs. Is it a public health issue, a crime fighting problem, does Britain even have a drugs policy?

Speakers include:

Jeff Smith Manchester Withington MP and co-Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Drug Policy Reform and is attempting to open up a mature debate on an issue that gives off much heat, but little light.

Dr Rebecca Askew a social science researcher with a broad interest in drug use, policy and markets. She has ten years’ experience conducting research, which has included evaluations of drug treatment programmes, projects looking at the nature and extent of novel psychoactive drug use (aka legal highs) and drug takers views on policy and the law.

Peter Walsh was a journalist for fifteen years, latterly for the BBC. His books have sold over 500,000 copies and include the best-sellers Gang War and Cocky: The Rise and Fall of Curtis Warren, both shortlisted for the Crime Writers’ Association Gold Dagger. He lives in Lancashire.

His new book is the gripping story of the men who drugged Britain, and of the elite agents who tried to stop them. It tells how the secretive Investigation Division of HM Customs fought a fifty-year battle to stem the tide of cannabis, cocaine and heroin arriving by land, air and sea, and of the smuggling gangs, both organised and chaotic, who turned an amateur pastime into a multi-billion-pound trade. The product of more than 100 unique interviews, many with insiders who have never spoken publicly, is a ground-breaking account of one of the most fascinating subjects of our times.

To register, please visit:

We look forward to welcoming you to the University.

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