EVIDENCE of hard drug use has been found in the stair well of a city centre car park. 

Needles, syringes, lighters and other drug paraphernalia associated with heroin use were found on Thursday in St Martin's Gate Car Park in City Walls Road. 

A concerned resident who found the needles after work said that it is becoming more and more common. 

They said: "Almost every day in the car park remnants of drug abuse can be found on the stairs. It is three to four times a week. These were pictures taken this morning although the needles were there last night when I had finished work, this seems to be happening on a more regular basis and I am having to walk past it more often than not now."

The car park belongs to Worcester City Council which said it has  'thoroughly cleaned the area.' and officers make regular patrols there.

"We will review the footage and work with West Mercia Police to identify those involved.
"City council staff have thoroughly cleaned the area.
“If you find a needle or syringe in a public place, please contact the city council as soon as possible by calling 01905 722233 or report it at https://www.worcester.gov.uk/report-hazardous-waste .
"The council’s policy is to remove drugs paraphernalia within 24 hours of notification.”

The nearest chemist offering a needle exchange to the spot where the paraphernalia was found is Lloyd's Pharmacy in Spring Gardens. 

Drug users can visit the pharmacy to collect clean needles and syringes for free, they are also given a sharps box to return the needles. 

According to NHS guidelines pharmacy staff should encourage a 1-for-1 exchange (i.e. supplies given out in exchange for a used bin being returned) however failure to return all used equipment should not result in a withdrawal of the service. 

Insistence on 1-1 exchange can be counterproductive, and consequently it is NOT necessary for a service user to return used equipment in order that they may receive sterile equipment.

A spokesman for local drug and alcohol support service Cranstoun said: "Addiction is a health issue and can often be driven by serious trauma and adverse childhood experiences. 

"We recognise that needle litter is a huge public concern, and we actively encourage anybody who uses drugs to dispose of their needles safely. 

"We provide opportunity to do this at our main service hub and at a number of pharmacies across Worcestershire."

Contact Cranstoun Worcestershire if you or anybody you know and love needs support on 0300 303 8200 or access our website for more details: www.cranstoun.org/services/substance-misuse/cranstoun-worcestershire.