Get involved: Send your news, views, pictures and video by texting SUPIC to 80360 or email us.
Beachy Head crumbling after wet and freezing weather
8:10am Sunday 10th February 2013 in News
Wet weather and freezing temperatures are crumbling iconic Beachy Head.
The famous white cliffs have succumbed to the elements as they become sodden with water - causing more falls.
As the water in the cliffs freezes it also expands, worsening the crumbling.
Mike Smith from Eastbourne Borough Council, which owns Beachy Head, said: “The cause of recent cliff falls at Beachy Head is due to large amounts of rainfall seeping into the chalk followed by periods of freezing weather which causes cracks to open up and sections of the cliff face to fall.
“There are warning signs permanently in place all along the beaches highlighting the danger of cliff falls and we would call on walkers to use common sense and not walk close to the bottom of the cliff face.
“Cliff falls are a natural and recurring part of the cliff erosion process at Beachy Head, and in the last 12 months we have not seen an increase in activity based on previous years.”
There are similar problems at nearby Seven Sisters but experts believe, despite the falls being more frequent, the same amount of cliff is eroding each year.
Geri Silverstone from the National Trust, which owns nearby Birling Gap, part of Seven Sisters, said: “What we are experiencing this year because of being so unusually wet is that we have seen very consistent falls throughout the winter rather than one big event which we usually see.
“Coasts are eroding all the time, every three to four years there will be a big fall. But this year we are having small but consistent falls.”
He added: “There is nothing you can really do to stop a natural process but we try to inform people about what's happening.”
Another popular seaside walking route in Brighton is still closed after a risk of rock falls.
The spokeswoman added: “The path has been closed as a precaution until the cliff is stable again.
“The area will be checked regularly, at least once a fortnight, and the path re-opened as soon as possible.”
See the latest news headlines from The Argus:
- Business owners fight back over Brighton and Hove bin strike
- Troubled nursing home will close down
- Culture bids worthwhile says Hastings Borough Council after failed bid
- Council leader denies inappropriate texts
- Woman killed in A22 accident near Uckfield is named