Around 2,000 cannabis plants believed to be worth up to £2m have been removed from an old storage building after police dealing with a crash outside spotted suspicious electrical wires. 

The large-scale farm which ran over three floors of the building in The Maltings, was discovered by police late last Friday.

Since then officers have been working to make the property safe and collate evidence, before overseeing the removal of the large number of plants so they could be securely transported to an incinerator.

Wiltshire Police estimates the street value of the plants could be up to £2m.

An investigation has been launched by CID to identify those involved in the significant criminal operation of growing such a large amount of cannabis plants.

Det Sgt Andy Morley said: “Since the discovery of the plants over the weekend, our team of detectives have been working hard to understand more about this operation and the people who have been seen entering the building over recent weeks and months.

“Obviously, due to the scale of the operation, we have had to work carefully to manage the site and we have now been able to remove all the plants and ensure they are incinerated.

“We have been conducting house-to-house enquiries over recent days and speaking with people living nearby to find out about more information.”

At this stage no arrests have been made.

Police officers were alerted to the property last Friday after the fire service and an electricity company were called out to an incident where a vehicle had collided with an electricity pylon, causing a fire.

Although the vehicle had left the scene before emergency services arrived, they noticed that two cables were running into the nearby building and called the police.

Insp Al Lumley said that these types of cannabis operations were usually linked to organised crime.

He said: “We know that some people within our communities view cannabis production and supply as a less serious crime, but we need people to understand that it is often linked to very serious crime organisations.

“An operation of this scale can often be linked to exploitation and trafficking, and should not be considered a 'victimless' crime.

“We very often rely on community intelligence to uncover these types of cannabis factories and there are signs that people can look out for if they have suspicions about activity at a property near them.

“If you have any concerns about drug activity in your community, please inform the police. You information can be dealt with sensitively and confidentially, and we will take appropriate action to respond to the information given to us.”

The police is urging anyone with information about this specific incident to call CID on 101. Alternatively you can call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.