MP shares sympathy for family and friends of dog walker who died in cliff collapse tragedy at Thorpeness

The scene of Saturday's incident seen from the beach at Thorpeness. Photo Rob Potter.

The scene of Saturday's incident seen from the beach at Thorpeness. Photo Rob Potter. - Credit: Rob Potter

A Suffolk MP has offered words of condolence following the death of a man who was crushed underneath a collapsed cliff in Thorpeness yesterday afternoon.

The rescue scene in Thorpeness

The rescue scene in Thorpeness - Credit: Archant

Police, paramedics, firefighters and the coastguard attended the scene at about 1.25pm, and were joined in the desperate rescue attempt by members of the public.

The search also involved a rescue helicopter from Lydd and Aldeburgh lifeboat station.

The coastline at Thorpeness. Photo: Mike Page.

The coastline at Thorpeness. Photo: Mike Page.

The man, believed to be in his late 50s, had died by the time rescuers were able to reach him. His dog was also trapped but survived.

One eyewitness said: 'The emergency service response was tremendous. There were 50 or 60 people who were desperately trying to dig the man free.'

The scene at Thorpeness, as rescuers attempted to free a man trapped underneath a collapsed cliff. P

The scene at Thorpeness, as rescuers attempted to free a man trapped underneath a collapsed cliff. Photo: Nick Boulter. - Credit: Nick Boulter


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Suffolk Coastal MP Therese Coffey said: 'This is a tragic incident, highlighting the risks of walking on or under crumbling cliffs, particularly after the tidal surge and strong winds we experienced on Friday.

'My sympathy goes to his family and friends.'

The scene at Thorpeness, as rescuers attempted to free a man trapped underneath a collapsed cliff. P

The scene at Thorpeness, as rescuers attempted to free a man trapped underneath a collapsed cliff. Photo: Nick Boulter. - Credit: Nick Boulter

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A Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service spokeswoman said: 'We received a call at around 1pm to say a man was trapped at the cliffs.

'A man and his dog were partially trapped by a section of the cliff face.

'Five fire engines went to the scene – who, along with coastguard, RNLI, members of the public and police, all helped out.'

UK Coastguard received multiple 999 calls reporting the cliff fall.

Bev Allen, Maritime Operations Controller for the UK Coastguard, said: 'This was a large scale search and rescue effort in which multiple agencies worked together to free the trapped person.

'We would remind people to be mindful when out walking on the coast. Standing on cliff edges and at the base of a cliff are dangerous places to be as it is impossible to predict when the next piece might fall or how big it will be.'

Police are treating the death as non-suspicious and will prepare a file for the coroner.

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