Festival to celebrate Co Tyrone boy saved by cannabis oil

Charlotte and Billy Caldwell with the historic prescription outside Castlederg Group Surgery
Charlotte and Billy Caldwell with the historic prescription outside Castlederg Group Surgery

An event this Saturday is to celebrate the remarkable recovery of an 11-year-old Co Tyrone boy who had been sent home to die in 2006.

Billy Caldwell’s recovery has been attributed to cannabis oil, with Billy the first person to have been prescribed it.

At the event on Saturday Billy’s own brand of CBD oil – similar to that used in his treatment – will be on sale. Other CBD oils and balms will also be on sale at the fun day at the Caldwell family home which also includes children’s activities, entertainment and a campsite.

Billy’s mother Charlotte said: “We’ve nearly 600 bookings in at the moment for camping alone and then there’ll be people who will just drive down during the day time as well.

“It’s all a bit crazy. We weren’t expecting the response we’ve got.”

Cannabis Collective UK, Legalise Cannabis NI and Belfast Cannabis have sponsored and helped organise the event.

Billy’s mother Charlotte said only legal cannabis-based products would be available at Billy’s Bud Festival.

While cannabis remains illegal due to the presence of psychoactive component tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), products containing cannabidiol (CBD) – and no THC – can be legally sold throughout the UK.

CBD oil is sold legally as a food supplement though Billy is understood to be the first person to have it prescribed to him by his doctor.

Charlotte said: “I found the biggest misconception about treating a child like Billy is a lot of people think I’m getting my son high. Most people think he is stoned.

“CBD is a cannabis compound that has significant therapeutic benefits, but does not make people feel stoned and can actually counteract the psychoactivity of THC.”