Grandma living on Happisburgh cliff top may be homeless for Christmas

Bryony Nierop-Reading by her garage on Beach Road, Happisburgh. The garage will soon fall into the s

Bryony Nierop-Reading by her garage on Beach Road, Happisburgh. The garage will soon fall into the sea and she has untill December to move.PHOTO: Nick Butcher - Credit: Nick Butcher

A grandmother living next to a crumbling cliff-edge faces being made homeless by Christmas.

Bryony Nierop-Reading in her garage which is teetering on the cliff edge at Happisburgh. PHOTO: Nick

Bryony Nierop-Reading in her garage which is teetering on the cliff edge at Happisburgh. PHOTO: Nick Butcher - Credit: Nick Butcher

Bryony Nierop-Reading, 71, is appealing to council chiefs for a few more months to sort out her life before she quits the Happisburgh site forever.

The clock is ticking for Mrs Nierop-Reading who has three weeks to leave her temporary caravan home after losing an appeal against eviction last year.

She has been in the Beach Road caravan since 2013 when her nearby bungalow had to be demolished after it started slipping over the cliff top into the sea in the wake of the devastating storm surge.

Now Mrs Nierop-Reading's garage is heading the same way after recent heavy rainfall and high tides which have left one corner of it just 50cms from the drop and she has been battling to empty it of personal belongings and demolish it before it goes over.


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She has written to North Norfolk District Council (NNDC), which wants her off the site, asking chiefs to act on a statement made by the Planning Inspectorate inspector who rejected her appeal.

According to Mrs Nierop-Reading the inspector said the council could choose to extend the one-year grace period he granted her to comply with the enforcement order. It is due to end on December 10.

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She says that in April her daughter, son-in-law and their three children will be leaving a house she owns in Witton Heath and she will be able to move back into it.

She has also been waiting for the outcome of a complicated planning application to the council which could see her receive nearly £40,000 which she said she would use to buy a motor home, allowing her to move off the site.

But Mrs Nierop-Reading claims council delays mean the application is now not due to be decided until the end of this month – just 10 days before she has to leave the site.

'Time is running out for me and I need answers from the council – it's very worrying,' said Mrs Nierop-Reading.

Judy Oliver, NNDC cabinet member for legal services, said: 'The council is currently considering a request from the homeowner to extend the period of compliance until April.'

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