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Who should pay for demolition of Hemsby clifftop homes?

PUBLISHED: 18:42 28 March 2018 | UPDATED: 18:42 28 March 2018

Home were demolished following severe erosion in The Marrams, Hemsby. Picture: Nick Butcher

Home were demolished following severe erosion in The Marrams, Hemsby. Picture: Nick Butcher

Archant © 2018

The cost of taking down clifftop homes in Hemsby should be shouldered by the government not the local taxpayer, officials have said.

Work has started on the demolition of the homes that are now overhanging the cliff on The Marrams, Hemsby. 
Picture: NICK BUTCHERWork has started on the demolition of the homes that are now overhanging the cliff on The Marrams, Hemsby. Picture: NICK BUTCHER

So far the operation to demolish and clear away the storm-battered homes on The Marrams that were beginning to collapse has cost Great Yarmouth Borough Council around £24,000.

Cllr Carl Smith, deputy council leader, said: “At the moment we believe that we should be able to recover the costs through a scheme administered by the government and therefore at this stage we do not intend to bill anyone.

“However we will need to continue to liaise with individual residents who are insured, and the government, to ensure we cover our costs so these do not fall to the local taxpayer.

“This is a national issue and whilst we will do everything we can to support our residents we will also need to continue to lobby central government for further help on our behalf.

Several properties have now been demolished. Picture: Antony KellySeveral properties have now been demolished. Picture: Antony Kelly

“We have already started that conversation with our local MP who has been very supportive.”

Five homes have been taken down by the council.

Another eight properties to the east of The Marrams which are said to be at significant risk of being lost through further settlement of the cliffs are being monitored.

The council has advised people not to move back into these properties and has been continuing to talk with and to support those affected residents who need housing, a spokesman said.

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