The father of a teenage girl who died at a music festival has made a passionate plea to other young people and their parents about the dangers of drugs.
Megan Bell, 17, a former St Anthony's pupil from Seaham, died at T in the Park last year. An inquest yesterday heard she had a “highly concentrated” amount of ecstasy in her system.
Speaking after the inquest, Chris Bell, the teenager's father, pleaded with other young people and their parents not to let the same thing happen to them.
“To kids, I know drugs are readily available, in every town, every city, not just at festivals, please don’t do it, don’t take the drugs, you’ll have a better time without them.
“Just look at our Megan, remember her face and her name, don’t take drugs, that’s all I can say, they do kill you.”
Mr Bell added that parents should always make sure where their children are and what they are doing, even if it meant snooping on their phones.
He said: “I think parents, like I was and Lisa was, are unaware. We’ve never been to a festival, we’re not into the festival scene. Megan went the year before and came back fine."
The grieving father said whether it was going to festivals, going out locally, or stopping at friends' houses, parents must always try to find out what their children are doing.
He said: “I know it’s hard, we didn’t know, but this has happened to us. Parents, I can’t stress enough, snoop their phones if you’ve got to.
“If they want to stop at their friend’s house, query it, ask why, say I’ll come and pick you up.
Following the inquest hearing yesterday, the vehicle transporter driver, also said: “It’s very sad that we have to be here, we’ve lost our daughter who we miss every second of every day.
“We’re just glad it’s almost over, it’s lifted a burden from the family’s shoulders and we want to remember Megan for how she was, a beautiful, funny girl.”