Sightseers who ignore cliff warnings to be publicly shamed
- Credit: WESTRUNTONCAFE/FACEBOOK
A fed-up cafe owner has revealed she has been subjected to a barrage of abuse by visitors to the coast who are ignoring warnings against climbing the area's crumbling cliffs. Now she plans to publicly shame them.
Louise O'Shea, who runs the beach cafe at West Runton, has spoken out in an effort to avert a tragedy.
She revealed she has even witnessed people sledging down the cliffs - speeding up coastal erosion and raising the risk of a cliff collapse.
There are also concerns it could lead to the loss of vital links to the area's past at the spot where one of the most complete skeletal remains of a mammoth were discovered 26 years ago.
Louise said: 'Everyday I ask people not to climb the cliffs, it's really dangerous and is having an adverse effect. Usually this is met with: 'What's it got to do with you?'; or, 'it's okay, I'm local.'
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'In the last few months I have witnessed people sledging down the cliffs, rolling down the cliffs, sliding down on body boards, and running down with babes in arms.
'I have decided that I am going to take pictures and publish them (on social media), just maybe it might make people think about what they are doing.'
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The cafe owner, whose business overlooks the beach, recently became one of the first in the county to sign up to a new initative, the two minute beach clean, to help keep the coast clean.
And it has already won support from several high profile faces, including North Norfolk MP Norman Lamb.
Adding her support, Councillor Sarah Butikofer, who represents the area on North Norfolk District Council, said: 'It is incredibly dangerous, the cliffs are fragile and landslips occur all the time. This is a constant worry and I too am trying to raise awareness. The coastguard and the lifeguards have also been trying to stop and warn people.'