RESIDENTS living near one of Herefordshire beauty spots have been left feeling "highly distressed" after finding evidence of drug use among the litter left behind by daytrippers.

Locals in Symonds Yat West and Whitchurch, near Ross-on-Wye, felt uncomfortable after they found laughing gas canisters, a soiled swimming costume and dozens of disposable barbecues left next to the river Wye.

One local woman said more than 140 canisters were found on Sunday after six bin liners were filled with the litter left behind over the weekend.

In 2016, legislation banned the sale of laughing gas, for psychoactive purposes, but the supply of laughing gas is difficult to control as legal uses include it being used to produce whipped cream.

Christine Cattanach, from Whitchurch, said 24 disposable barbecues, around 120 cans and bottles, 14 pairs of underwear and a soiled swimming costume were also among the rubbish left behind.

"An absolute disgrace to see in what is basically my back garden," she said.

"An insult to myself, my family and the whole local area. Many other residents are horrified by the mess and the universal comment is, what's wrong with people?

"We are happy for people to enjoy the place we are fortunate enough to call home, but please take your rubbish with you."

She added: "Since the lockdown has eased a previously quiet but beautiful spot near The Paddocks Hotel adjacent to the river in Symonds Yat West has become uncharacteristically popular with many people flouting the rules gathering in large groups to perhaps gain Some semblance of normality.

"What is not normal and is highly distressing to those of us who live here is the amount of rubbish left behind.

"One community-minded local resident Katy Jones has taken it upon herself to clear up."