Britain will legalise cannabis within 15 years, MPs say after Canada trip
By Benjamin Cooper, PA
A group of cross-party MPs who have completed a research trip to Canada have predicted the UK will completely legalise cannabis use within 15 years.
Conservative Jonathan Djanogly, Sir Norman Lamb of the Liberal Democrats and Labour's David Lammy travelled to Canada on a trip organised by UK harm reduction group Volte Face, with part sponsorship by cannabis company MPX. Sir Norman and Mr Lammy funded their own flights and accommodation.
The politicians differed in their estimations of the length of time it would take for the UK to allow recreational use of cannabis, which Canada became the first G7 country to do last year.
"I think we have got a lot to learn before the legalisation of recreational cannabis, which I think will happen at some point," Mr Djanogly told BBC's Newsbeat, adding he thought legalisation would occur between 10 and 15 years in the future.
Mr Lammy and Sir Norman both said they believed the drug would be legalised in about five years.
Mr Lammy shifted his stance on the drug, moving away from his party's official position to backing legalisation.
"I want the market legalised, regulated and taken away from crime gangs," the Tottenham MP said.
"I want to see the strength of the stuff reduced, labelled and properly organised in this country."
Sir Norman had previously led his party's decision to back the legalisation of cannabis.
He became possibly the first serving British MP to openly take a cannabis product on camera after sampling the drug's oil, which unlike its form in the UK included THC.
THC is a compound within cannabis which gets users high.
Cannabis is illegal for recreational use in the UK, although it can be prescribed for medicinal purposes.