East Devon's annual cliff inspections are carried out to ensure the continued safety of the public

Detailed inspections will be carried out week commencing 19 February at Budleigh Salterton, Beer East Beach, Sidmouth Connaught Gardens and Seaton West Walk

Detailed inspections of the cliffs at Seaton, Beer, Sidmouth and Budleigh Salterton are due to be carried out by East Devon District Council between 19 February and 27 February 2018 – weather depending.

The annual cliff inspections are undertaken to ensure the continued safety of the public using facilities situated beneath the cliffs, such as walkways, beach huts and other assets.

Rope access specialists Abcas UK will be tackling the inspections, which will be supervised by engineering geologists from John Grimes Partnership. Loose debris on the cliffs will be removed either by using hand tools or will be managed through engineering interventions, such as rock netting to catch any falling material. The netting will also allow for long term planning of the management of these cliffs.

The inspections also aim to ensure that the distinctive character of each section of cliff is maintained in way that is sympathetic to the internationally-significant features present at each location, such as the fossilised animal burrows at Budleigh Salterton. This section of cliff has been awarded Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) status.

East Devon’s coastline attracts thousands of visitors to the district every year and the beaches and walkways adjacent to the cliffs are used by many people to enjoy these beautiful locations. The district’s beaches and coastline are also a much-loved area enjoyed by residents, so ensuring the safety of people visiting those areas is hugely important to the local economy.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      

The council’s inspection schedule of the cliffs is as follows:

  • Seaton West Walk - 19 to 20 February
  • Beer East Cliffs - 21 to 23February
  • Sidmouth Connaught Gardens - 26 February. To ensure public safety during the inspections, the walkway below Connaught Gardens will be closed for the duration of the works and walking diversions will be put in place, while rolling cordons will be set up at the remaining sites to allow for continued access.
  • Budleigh Salterton Promenade 27 February 

Councillor Tom Wright, East Devon’s portfolio holder for the Environment, said:

We really appreciate the public’s cooperation during these essential works, which are part of East Devon's ongoing programme of inspection and maintenance. Ultimately, the works are being carried out to ensure the safety of people using our stunning beaches.   

There is an interactive map on the East Devon website showing the council’s cliff ownership.