[Big Issue North] Testing times

People out clubbing are being helped to keep safe with a groundbreaking drug testing service

At first glance, it looks like a scene out of The Big Bang Theory. Surrounded by £60,000 worth of scientific equipment, Professor Fiona Measham and her squad of analytical chemists are forensically testing and cataloguing various unidentified substances, aided by FTIR spectroscopy sensitive enough to identify any drugs in 60 seconds. What’s perhaps unusual is that this isn’t happening within the clinical confines of a laboratory, but at the back of one of Britain’s most popular club nights on a busy Friday.

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