Two missing young sweethearts were found "cradling each other" when police found their bodies in secluded woodland two years ago.

Twenty-year-old Zaiga Gravenieks had her arm around Charlie Eccleston's shoulder when police officers found them on the outskirts of Shenley on November 5 2017.

On the trunk of a tree, the couple had used black spray paint to write the words "towards eternity" and "4 Ever" next to a heart symbol.

At an inquest today at Hatfield Coroners Court, Detective Constable Ian Waldock said: "Both were found hanging from the same branch. Zaiga also had her arm around Charlie’s shoulder as if cradling him."

The pair were last seen on Halloween in 2017 and two days later, their worried families reported the disappearance of guitarist and singer Charlie, 19, from Borehamwood, and music student Zaiga, from Harpenden, to police.

The inquest heard that they had been in a “loving relationship” but had ended a couple of weeks earlier.

On that Halloween, they had got into a taxi in Borehamwood and they were dropped off in Black Lion Hill, Shenley.

DC Waldock told the inquest when the pair were reported missing, they visited Charlie's address and they found his favourite jacket with a note that it should go to his best friend.

The officer then told the court how, at 9.35am on November 5, a police officer who was part of a search team found the couple in a "very secluded" area of Combe Woods, which would have been out of view from anyone.

Coroner Geoffrey Sullivan was told how, on the ground below them, was a bottle of alcohol.

DC Waldock said a note found in Zaiga’s pocket contained the words “Life starts now, the next chapter is here.”

The couple were pronounced dead at the scene.

The inquest was told that post mortems were carried out which revealed both Charlie and Zaiga had died from asphyxiation and there was also evidence that both had taken cocaine and cannabis prior to their deaths.

The inquest was adjourned awaiting a report by a safeguarding board.