Don't miss a story sign up to Sidmouth Herald's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

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

Yesterday, 08:17
The Mason Arms in Branscombe has been named number five in a poll by The Times.

The Masons Arms in Branscombe has claimed fifth spot in a national newspaper poll.

Read more
Yesterday, 06:30

An ‘indicative allocation’ of funding has been made towards protecting Sidmouth from flooding and coastal erosion – but the options are still being costed.

Read more
Mon, 16:45
Sidmouth Royal British Legion raised the Union Jack which was donated to Sidmouth Conservative Club. Ref shs 5980-19-15AW. Picture: Alex Walton

Sidmouth’s Royal British Legion chairman said it was ‘bloody horrible’ to see that the Union Flag had been stolen from the town’s Conservative club.

Read more
Mon, 16:02

District leaders are to make the case for a major project which could see East Devon join forces with other South West authorities to gain more independence from Westminster.

Read more
Mon, 07:17
Thomas King with his WW2 Medal. Ref shs 6995-48-15TI. Picture: Terry Ife

France’s highest military award has been bestowed upon two 91-year-old war veterans from Sidmouth.

Read more
Sunday, November 29, 2015
Eastleigh shed, 8 May 1959 (c) C Boocock

Enthusiasts have a unique opportunity to invest in part of Sidmouth’s rail heritage as a £300,000 locomotive restoration project has been put back on track.

Read more
Saturday, November 28, 2015
New Kennaway House manager, Nikki Dawkins, with Michael James, David Leach, Bryan Dawkins and Michael Gordon-Lee. Ref shs 4446-47-15AW. Picture: Alex Walton

A new manager and chairman have taken the helm at a charity-run arts centre with a growing reputation in and beyond the Sid Valley.

Read more
Saturday, November 28, 2015
Betty Williams with Lamb and Flag landlord, Ron Miles, and Ottery mayor, Glyn Dobson. Ref sho 4475-52-14AW. Picture: Alex Walton

A widow, whose generous gesture to people facing Christmas alone last year touched hearts around the world, has spoken of her delight that preparations are under way for another festive feast.

Read more
Friday, November 27, 2015
An ariel view of the PegasusLife plans for Knowle.

A developer lined up to buy the East Devon District Council (EDDC) offices at Knowle has unveiled its vision for a retirement community on the site.

Read more
Friday, November 27, 2015
The Sidmouth Friends of the Samaritans held their AGM this week. Pictured are chairman Sue Kensdale with from left Ron Harbour (treasurer), vice chairman Gerald Hayne and Denis Jones (sec). Photo by Simon Horn. Ref shs 3446-08-14SH. To order your copy of this photograph go to

The loss of Sidmouth’s Samaritans support group will have a ‘major impact’ on the running of the service, says the leader of the charity’s Exeter, Mid and East Devon branch.

Read more

Local Weather



max temp: 12°C

min temp: 11°C

Most Read News

Great British Life

Great British Life

Useful Links

Family notices
Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Submit a Story
Buy Photos
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Read the Sidmouth Herald e-edition E-edition

Local business directory

Devon's trusted business finder

Find a job in Sidmouth

Find planning applications