Huge Sidmouth cliff fall sparks emergency action plea

11:27 03 December 2012

Cliff fall. shs cliff1

Cliff fall. shs cliff1


THIS is the dramatic moment that another massive chunk of Sidmouth’s soaked coastline thunders to the beach below – and prompts calls for emergency action to be taken.

Fears have been expressed that several substantial cliff falls in the space of a few stormy days have put the eastern town at higher risk from the sea.

Devon’s lead councillor for flooding says it is ‘only a matter of time’ before the last protective piece of Pennington Point is lost.

A shingle bank that had started to build up at the toe of the Triassic cliff was also swept away during unrelenting rain at the weekend - exposing a deep void.

Woolbrook Meadows resident John Austin, 70, spotted a crack along the stretch when out for a normal walk last Friday.

Camera in hand, the shocked pensioner snapped away as a huge amount of soil came plummeting down.

John, who often stops at the spot to take photos to document the changing face of the cliffs, said: “It’s the first time I’ve ever seen anything like that.”

Surface run-off from the fields above was attributed as a major contributing factor to the landslip.

And Councillor Stuart Hughes, the county’s lead member for flooding, said Pennington Point is also ‘exposed to attack’ from high tide twice a day.

“I am of the opinion that unless some form of emergency rock revetment work is carried out and put in place it will be only a matter of a short period of time before we lose the last section of cliff that is protecting both eastern town and Alma Bridge from south easterlies and, with it, the threat of tidal flooding.

“It certainly will not wait for the proposed Beach Management Plan to be drawn up and I believe it will qualify for Defra emergency funding.”

Cllr Hughes has also requested the county council seeks funding for a 3D laser scan survey of Pennington Point to be carried out.


Other News Stories

Sidmouth’s overwhelming opposition to proposals for relaxed street trading laws could see the town excluded from East Devon-wide changes.

Read more

A major cycle route through Exmouth is to be closed for more than four months due to work being carried out by South West Water.

Read more
7 minutes ago

The Rotary Club of Exeter Enterprise is holding a polio lunch in Topsham on Sunday, November 20, starting at 12.30pm for 1pm.

Read more
5 minutes ago

Police warn trespassers to stay out of ‘dangerous’ site for their own safety

Read more
53 minutes ago

Find out what’s going on in Bideford this October half term with the full Wicked Week programme here.

Read more

Police efforts to monitor ‘boy racers’ on Exmouth seafront have revealed that cases of drivers speeding in the area are rare.

Read more

Officers stop eight drivers during a three-day operation using marked and unmarked police vehicles

Read more

Barnstaple hotelier completes huge renovations, gutting the restaurant and bar and completely revamping the bedrooms - take a look inside.

Read more

Ticketholders at the Lyme Regis Town Mill’s recent fundraising talk left The Malthouse inspired and informed after spending an evening with gardening experts Anne Swithinbank and Professor Sir Ghillean Prance.

Read more
Yesterday, 19:30

Runners completed a gruelling 16-mile race, with over 1km of vertical ascent, between Sidmouth and Beer.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 14°C

min temp: 7°C

Most Read News

Place a family notice

Family Notices 24

Newsletter Sign Up

Find a job in Devon

Local business directory

Devon's trusted business finder

FFind planning applications