A MUM from Charfield made a startling discovery while on the school run yesterday after finding around 30 apparent cannabis plants dumped on the side of the road.

Joanne Hart, 39, had been taking her son to St Andrews Primary School in Cromhall yesterday morning when she saw a pile of plants abandoned in a layby on the B4058.

Thinking nothing of it, other than it being irresponsible fly-tipping, she continued her journey, dropping off her son at school and daughter at nursery.

But then after passing the pile again later that evening, while taking her son to a Beavers meeting in Yate, she saw the pile again and decided to investigate using the headlights of her car, and was shocked to see what it was.

“I wanted to check was it actually was because I am nosey,” she joked.

“When I looked close up, I thought to myself ‘Wow those are cannabis plants’ and there were probably about 30 or 40 of them!”

Joanne proceeded to phone the police and reported the find. They told her that the local beat team would be going to investigate.

This morning, however, once again on the school run, Joanne was driving past the layby, only to see the pile was still there.

Not only that as she continued along the road, she glanced over to the layby near Woodend Road to see even more plants abandoned.

“I went back to take some photos and to my disbelief, I saw over the road that two cars had pulled up and people were opening their boots and helping themselves!

“The general public seemed to be helping themselves to these plants, and that surely isn’t right.

“These could be growing in somebody’s attic and then there would be more drugs in the area, or they could just take root and people could be picking them like they do their strawberries in the summer.”

An Avon and Somerset Police spokeswoman reassured the public that the abandoned plants were of no value in terms of an active drug ingredient as cannabis plants are annuals, and so cannot be regrown from the root ball.

A South Gloucestershire Council spokeswoman added the plants, as well as some tyres and a sofa, which had also been abandonded, were being arranged to be collected.