YOUNG people are being warned about the dangers of drugs ahead of the summer music festival season in North Wales.

North Wales Police and the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board are warning them to take "extra care," if offered substances, including controlled drugs and alcohol.

Anglesey’s Chief Inspector Mark Armstrong of North Wales Police will be overseeing the Gottwood Festival Electronic Music and Arts event, near Holyhead, which starts today, Thursday, June 7 and ends on Sunday, June10.

He said: "In recent weeks, we have sadly seen across the UK the terrible consequences that can occur when young people take substances and alcohol at music festivals.

"We’ve also witnessed locally the devastating effect the loss, and very near loss of young lives, can have on families and whole communities.

"Where supply of controlled drugs offences are identified, we will take a robust stance against those involved and, as seen by recent convictions in Caernarfon, offenders will go to prison.

"However, more important, is the need to warn young people of the inherent dangers of taking controlled drugs. I would strongly urge those who supply or use any illegal substance to think hard about what they are doing and the awful potential consequences and to stop immediately.

"The last thing medical staff or police officers want to do is to pass onto family members the terrible and devastating news of a young person’s death.

"We all want to enjoy the summer but the emphasis must to on doing so safely so we can do so again. We will continue to work with our partners to highlight the dangers of drug abuse and under Operation Scorpion we actively target those concerned in the supply of controlled drugs."

Dr Rob Perry, an emergency department consultant at Ysbyty Gwynedd in Bangor said: “Over the last few years we’ve seen an increase in the number of people ending up in our care after becoming seriously ill as a result of taking psychoactive substances.

"You cannot know what these substances contain and they can be deadly. If you saw the impact they can have you’d think twice. It is simply not worth the risk.”

Ch Insp Armstrong added: “We are fully committed to providing a Safer North Wales and delivering a quality of service our communities deserve but we can’t do this alone and key to all our work, and that of our partners, is intelligence and I cannot emphasise enough the importance of the community sharing their concerns with us."

Information can be passed to Police via the web live chat or phoning 101. If you’d rather pass information anonymously then phone Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”

For confidential advice and support on drugs go to FRANK