The “unsellable” street: Catastrophic cliff falls threaten homes

14:18 14 February 2013

A view of the eroded cliffs from one of the gardens in Cliff Road Sidmouth. Photo by Terry Ife ref shs 7660-06-13TI To order your copy of this photograph go to www.sidmouthherald.co.uk and click on myphotos24

A view of the eroded cliffs from one of the gardens in Cliff Road Sidmouth. Photo by Terry Ife ref shs 7660-06-13TI To order your copy of this photograph go to www.sidmouthherald.co.uk and click on myphotos24

Archant

‘Three years’ from home loss, says longest-standing resident

A CLIFF-TOP resident who thought he had decades left in his home fears “catastrophic” coastal collapses could claim it in just three years.

John Radford, 62, says a pair of massive landslips in the space of a few weeks decimated around 15 feet of his garden – and that more major falls are inevitable.

Mr Radford, who has co-owned 1 Cliff Road for 45 years and is the street’s longest-standing resident, said: “The houses here are unsellable and unmortgageable. The people living in them are trapped. Insurance doesn’t cover erosion.”

A scheme to remedy Sidmouth’s receding eastern coastline looks to be two years from becoming a reality. Wet weather at the end of last year led to several major cliff falls that saw residents rename Pennington Point as “Pennington Cove”.

Retired solicitor Mr Radford said: “Before the disaster of November, I was reasonably sanguine and thought we’d get another 20 to 25 years. We could be out in three.

“The amount of garden we lost in the course of six weeks was more than in 12 years.

“They were catastrophic and certainly the two biggest falls I’ve ever seen. The difference between the end of November and a year before is absolutely astonishing.

“We are very lucky to be second home owners. I feel dreadfully sorry for people in the road, who are older than me, who are not.

“I’m worried about my property, but I’m equally concerned about Alma Bridge and the town. We’re getting to the stage where banks of the River Sid will be exposed – and that stands between Sidmouth and flooding.

“It could be 24 months before we get a scheme. So much will have been lost by then.”

Paul Griew, leader of the Cliff Road Action Group, said November’s landslips had been “quite disasterous”.

He said other residents in the street expected to lose their properties within around 20 years.

“Talks are going at half the speed that one would like, while the cliff erosion is accelerating,” he said.

0 comments

Other News Stories

Yesterday, 12:21
Police have cordoned off the area around Coopers Jewellery after an apparent robbery attempt.

Police warn members of the public to ‘remain viglant’ as they hunt suspect who was believed to be armed.

Read more
Yesterday, 11:30
Honiton Triathlon is hoping to attract 100 people this year.

The event has set its sights on drawing in more than 100 competitors when it’s held on Sunday, July 26.

Read more
Yesterday, 11:15
Gertrude 'Topsy' Hindley who recently celebrated her 103rd birthday has lived her life without a television. Ref shs 8215-22-15SH. Picture: Simon Horn

A lifelong shun of television means a 103-year-old Sidmouth woman has missed out on some of the world’s most historic moments.

Read more
Yesterday, 10:00
Eric and Joyce Salter with dogs Shanti, Melsa and Boots. Picture: Sarah Howells

In one of the ‘most difficult rescues’, North Devon’s RAF Chivenor Sea King crew saved a couple from peril when a coastal walked turned to disaster...

Read more
Yesterday, 09:53
Katy Gooding outside her shop in Budleigh. Ref exb 7383-22-15TI. Picture: Terry Ife

A Budleigh shop owner is asking for public support after being nominated for a national award.

Read more
Yesterday, 09:53

The A377 is currently blocked after a collision between a lorry and a car.

Read more
Yesterday, 09:40
Charmouth Primary School pupils celebrate their  Ofsted ranking

Village primary praised by Ofsted inspectors for the quality of its teaching and pupils’ achievements

Read more
Yesterday, 09:00
Sue Stoneman's culinary talents will be available for all to see as she appears on television next week. Ref exe 7722-22-15SH. Picture: Simon Horn

An Exmouth cook will be showing off her culinary skills on a BBC cooking show next week.

Read more
Yesterday, 08:49
Fire engine

Braunton crew called out to deal with chimney fire yesterday (Thursday) evening.

Read more
Yesterday, 06:50
Jailed again: Simon Berkowitz

A notorious burglar has been jailed for another six years for breaking into a retired couple’s Sidmouth home - just 16 days after he was given early release.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 11°C

min temp: 9°C

Most Read News

Great British Life


Great British Life
Family Notices 24


Devon's trusted business finder