A WOMAN believed to be the first in the UK to receive a private prescription for medicinal cannabis will be the focus of a new documentary.

But Carly Barton says she has now had to grow and buy the drug illegally after being unable to afford the cost of ongoing treatment.

Ms Barton was in her early 20s when she had a stroke which left her in continuous pain.

She began to consume cannabis from the black market and found it helped the pain, and this led to her receiving a a private prescription for the drug.

But she says the prescription cost her around £1,300 a month, wiping out her savings.

So she was forced to obtain the drug in other ways.

In April she said: "I am going to openly break the law until I can access my medicine or they give me some kind of exemption.

"I do not see myself as a criminal. There are two doctors who have prescribed it to me and now there is a vague law which does not seem to see it as a potential medicine."

She added that "it looks like you can't legally get cannabis on the NHS because the evidence does not exist as yet (to say it is safe) because it has been illegal for so long."

At the time a Department of Health and Social Care spokesman said: "The Government has delivered on its promise and specialist doctors can now prescribe cannabis-based medical products where there is clinical evidence of benefit.

"To support doctors prescribing these products, we have asked the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (Nice) to develop additional clinical guidelines and are working with Health Education England to provide additional training.

"We are also promoting more research through the National Institute for Health Research to further improve the evidence base."

Now Ms Barton's story will be told in a documentary called "Cannabis – Miracle Medicine or Dangerous Drug?".

This will be aired tonight at 9pm on BBC Two.