Has ‘StormVandal’ caused this damage to Sidmouth’s glass test panel?

The damaged wave barrier on Sidmouth Esplanade Picture: Philippa Davies

The damaged wave barrier on Sidmouth Esplanade Picture: Philippa Davies - Credit: Archant

Sidmouth’s glass test panel, installed to test the material’s resistance to storm conditions, has been damaged.

But there are reports that the cracks running through the entire glass panel were not caused by the sea, but by human hands.

There is a clear impact mark on the top right of the panel, which at first glance appears to have been made by a stone flung against it by the waves.

But passers-by examining the panel on Wednesday morning (March 11) said it looked as if the impact had come from the pavement side, not the sea.

Local councillor Stuart Hughes posted on Twitter saying that the panel had withstood Storm Ciara and Storm Dennis, but not 'StormVandal'.

The barrier was installed in mid-January as part of East Devon District Council's beach management plan.

The idea was to test whether a glass panel could be used, instead of a solid wall, to reinforce Sidmouth's sea defences.

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It was due to stay in place until spring.

East Devon District Council has been asked for a comment but has not yet responded.