Public warned to stay away after cliff slide blocks coastal road

The cliff slide at Overstrand which has blocked a coastal road.

The cliff slide at Overstrand which has blocked a coastal road. - Credit: Emma Brennan

People have been warned to stay away from a crumbling cliff after tumbling rubble blocked a coastal road just days after another slide had been cleared.

The rubble, which covers an access road to Overstrand promenade from Clifton Way, fell on Saturday March 27, after a slump which had covered the road for years was removed by an excavator on Thursday March 25.

Members of the public are strongly urged to stay away from the top and bottom of the cliff as slides are now being reported on a daily basis.

It comes after a cliff collapse at Trimingham in January, warnings of further falls in Happisburgh and another fall in Sheringham.

North Norfolk district councillor Angie Fitch-Tillett said that while the slips are minor at the moment, members of the public should avoid the area in any circumstances.

The area has Europe's most dynamic coastline making it ripe for cliff slides.

She said: "I cannot possibly stress enough how important it is for members of the public, now we're allowed out again, to keep away from the bottom and the top of the cliff.

"I want to put that out as strongly as possible, anywhere where there is cliffs keep away from them and check the tide times."

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Ms Fitch-Tillett said the drift would be cleared up again by the same workers who removed the first slide as they need to use the road to get to their plant storage in order to carry out other work.

Goats are released on Melbourne slope in Cromer to help with keeping the slope vegetation clear. Pic

North Norfolk district councillor Angie Fitch-Tillett. - Credit: Mark Bullimore

The district council had initially thought it was best to leave the first slide of rubble as removal would encourage more debris from the former Overstrand Hotel to fall.

She said there was no point in installing sea walls as it was ground water pushing through the cliffs causing the slides and not sea water.

Ms Fitch-Tillett said: "It's something I'm afraid we live with all of the time, particularly because there is so much ground water.

"What's really irritating is that engineers were there on Friday clearing one lot and then of course another lot has come down.

"A consultant came to have a look and said they thought that probably it would be okay to clear the slip, so they moved that so they can get other vehicles down from their storage.

"But what they're hoping to do when the ground water has stabilised is to put some gabions there, which are those wire baskets full of flint to try and retain any further slippage.

Cliffs overlooking Overstrand beach.

Cliffs overlooking Overstrand beach. - Credit: Casey Cooper-Fiske

"We've got them down by the Zig Zag Cafe and they're holding it back there, it's just waiting for the right sort of weather, we don't want any more rain."

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