Two massive cliff falls in Sidmouth ‘in just half an hour

Huge plumes of red dust have loomed over Sidmouth today [Thursday – Owl] following two cliff falls in the space of 30 minutes.

[See devonlive for photos and video]

Chloe Parkman 

Jenny Pleasants, who captured the natural phenomenon on camera, was stood along the seafront when she noticed the huge dust cloud coming from Jacobs Ladder.

One eye-witness said: ”[There has] been two in half an hour now.”

This appears to be the first significant cliff fall in just over a month after a local resident captured an enormous landslide in the town back in August.

Devon Live has reported on numerous cliff falls within the town over the last few months.

In May, the area saw five separate cliff falls of note, with three taking place within 24-hours.

A spokesperson for East Devon District Council (EDDC) said: ““Cliff falls are a natural and unpredictable occurrence along the East Devon coast, this is because the rock from which the cliffs are formed is soft and therefore prone to rock falls and landslides, which can happen at any time, although periods of heavy rainfall such as the wettest February on record and now a long dry period, can cause an increase rate of falls.

“The Sidmouth and East Beach Management Plan (BMP) scheme aims to reduce the risk of flooding to Sidmouth by maintaining the standard of defences along Sidmouth Beach, and to reduce the rate of erosion to the cliffs to the East of the town (and therefore the rate of exposure of the East side of Sidmouth to coastal conditions).”

Ian Barlow said: “For now the simple message is unchanged from previous years keep off east beach it is dangerous.

“We are lucky to have miles of beaches around with the best water quality available for people to enjoy the seaside safely even with social distancing!”


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