VISITORS have been warned of a 'triple death risk' at a notorious quarry which has already claimed young lives.

As warmer weather arrives, managers at the Malvern Hills Trust are warning that Gullet Quarry is more dangerous than ever - with the risk of drowning, spreading Covid-19 at mass gatherings and rock slides adding to the peril.

The notorious beauty spot claimed the lives of Justas Juzenas, aged 22, of Ross-on-Wye and Russell O'Neill, aged 17, of Worcester who both drowned there in July 2013 within a week of each other.

The risk of cold water shock and drowning, hidden currents and unseen objects such as broken glass have been well-publicised by the Malvern Hills Trust, West Mercia Police, the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) and the Royal Life Saving Society UK.

However, Duncan Bridges, chief executive of the Malvern Hills Trust, has warned of added risks this year. He said: "Gullet Quarry remains closed - the by-laws still apply there. People should not enter the fenced area and should not be swimming in the area."

He said both wardens and police were performing regular checks and turning people away. He added: "We have had quite a large rock fall in January."

He described the 'triple risk' - drowning, rock falls and Covid-19 if people congregated at the site. Mr Bridges said: "If alcohol is involved the risks are increased again. It is young males drinking who are in the highest risk category."

There are 'multiple signs' warning people not to enter the quarry. However, he said in recent years the numbers misusing the quarry had been reducing.

With people off work or furloughed because of the coronavirus pandemic, his concern is that 'the risks of people misusing and abusing the site are increasing'.

The Malvern Hills Trust reopened their car parks and commons from Wednesday, May 13 following the release of updated Government advice which said people could travel anywhere within the country to exercise.

Visitors have been advised to 'explore the lesser known paths and avoid more popular areas to minimise contact with others' while on the Hills and to stay at least two metres away from other people.