A NEW cannabis club has been raising eyebrows after using police and council logos to attract attention.

Stickers bearing the name Durham City Cannabis Club (DCCC) – but featuring the logos of Durham Police and Durham County Council - have been plastered on lampposts and parking meters around the city.

The club, which was founded around two months ago, is campaigning for the legalisation of cannabis and is trying to recruit new members.

One of the organisers, who uses the alias Winston Smith, said: “We’ve been giving out stickers to everyone we can. We used them (the logos) for the first 100 stickers we produced to try and play on people’s minds.

“They’ve been seeing these logos for years and they know them so hopefully it will make people go ‘okay’ and will get in their minds.

“The next set of stickers are going to have our own logo. We don’t want to cause a ruckus with the police because we want to work with them on this issue.”

A police spokesman said local officers were removing stickers when they found them.

He said: "We have referred the misuse of the force crest to our legal services team for their consideration. Local officers are also aware of the stickers and will remove any they come across during their duties."

It is understood Durham County Council officers are also removing the stickers as they find them.

Oliver Sherratt, corporate director of neighbourhood services, said: “Durham Constabulary are now handling this matter and as such we are unable to comment any further at this time.”

The Durham City group is one of five across the county, which campaign on the issue.

Mr Smith, from Durham, added: “Our mission statement is that everyone over the age of 18 has the basic human right to consume and grow cannabis for personal and social use without fear of discrimination, persecution and oppression at the hands of their government.”

He added they were planning a day on Saturday, September 3, to discuss the issue and hoped to organise a pro-legalisation festival in Durham, similar to one which takes place in Redcar, on Teesside.

He said: “The Durham cannabis collective are putting on a day and we’re inviting anyone who wants to come and discuss it because we want to show its not antisocial behaviour. People can smoke cannabis without it being dangerous or a detriment to society.”

Durham Police and Crime Commissioner Ron Hogg said: “I think any group that wants to promote a political cause is perfectly fine and dandy.

“What I want to make clear is I don’t support the legalisation of cannabis. My position is I want to decriminalise drug addiction which is totally different.

“I’ve been chastised in the past for talking to such people but I’m happy to talk to them and to listen to their views.”

He added: “I would advise against the public consumption of cannabis because that’s unlawful. If they want to have a festival and come together that’s fine but if they choose to smoke cannabis that’s an operational matter for the police.”