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An Oral or Creative Writing Task on a Drugs Story

Jack Todhunter | Friday August 07, 2009

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The following article from a newspaper is a fantastic resource for oral and/or written responses. Read it through first then go on to the assignments that are highlighted below it. You can use this as stimulus for improvised drama. Similarly, you can ask students to write down their responses to the tasks. These conversations can then be joined together to create a complete script.

Suspect whiff from flower border brings police and gang raids

Steven Morris
The Guardian
Saturday December 6 2008

An elderly couple who bought a pink-flowering perennial to brighten up their garden found their home and street targeted by the police and a gang of armed drug users after the innocent-looking plant began to give off a scent similar to cannabis. Ivor and Margaret Wiltshire, 77 and 79, bought a pot of moss phlox from a garden centre and were delighted when the plant began to spread vigorously through their front and back gardens.

But it also began to give off a curious aroma, which came to the attention of Avon and Somerset police. The force helicopter was used to try to find the suspected cannabis factory but infra-red cameras, used to trace heat sources associated with drug factories, detected nothing.

Still, after the Wiltshires went on holiday last month, officers swooped on their suburban house near Bristol. Mr Wiltshire said: “When we got home they had smashed in the front door and the porch door and the loft was left open. They knew everything about us but they still went ahead. A couple of pensioners hiding a cannabis factory - you couldn’t make it up.” The source of the aroma was finally sniffed out by a police officer who crawled around the garden on her hands and knees. Mr Wiltshire said he had been told by neighbours about the scent but because of an operation he could not smell it. “My wife doesn’t know what cannabis smells like.”

The couple have now ripped the plant out, which is good news for next-door neighbour David Difford.

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