Warning signs still being ignored at Bawsey Pits, near King’s Lynn
PUBLISHED: 09:25 16 July 2015 | UPDATED: 09:25 16 July 2015
People are still ignoring safety signs and swimming at a west Norfolk beauty spot, despite two drownings there two years ago, it was claimed today.
Staff working for minerals firm Sibelco, which owns the former quarry site at Bawsey Pits, near King’s Lynn, found that visitors had also dug a cave system in an unstable sand cliff there. It has been destroyed to prevent anyone being buried alive should the roof or walls collapse.
Sibelco’s Lynn site manager Simon Mace said efforts to keep people out of the water, including patrols by safety advisors, were having little effect. Children had been seen in the water with adults seemingly unconcerned for their welfare, he said.
Plans are progressing to sell the site and develop a safer country park in line with the findings of a public consultation following the drownings, but Mr Mace warned: “To be blunt we fear that someone else is going to die.
“We don’t know what more we can do. We have worked with the emergency services to increase the number and quality of safety signs and employed staff to patrol the site offering advice. Last summer we had people on duty 24 hours a day, seven days a week. But their advice is being ignored.
“And as for the sand caverns we discovered, they were terrifying, unspeakably dangerous.
“The police have advised us that unless an offence is being committed there’s nothing they can do. The behaviour of some people at Bawsey Pits is not only irresponsible but also very selfish.”
Public access to Bawsey Pits on foot is unrestricted as it is a country park, but the informal car parking area remains closed. Swimming is banned there because of dangerous weeds growing below the surface.
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