Warning to teenagers performing somersaults from Gorleston cliffs

Boys climbing on Gorleston cliffs.

A climber can be seen at the top of the cliff south of Gorleston promenade. - Credit: Submitted

A Norfolk man has urged teenagers to avoid climbing on coastal cliffs due to the possible dangers involved.

On Wednesday, David Lewis witnessed three teenage boys climbing on the cliffs south of Gorleston promenade.

Mr Lewis, a retired Metropolitan police officer, said: "They were quite high up and there appeared to have been a platform gouged out into the cliff."

A boy with his thumb up by the cliff in Gorleston.

The boys told Mr Lewis that they will return to climb on the cliffs. - Credit: Submitted

Mr Lewis saw the teenagers perform "aerial somersaults" before landing further down the cliff, loosening the sand on the cliff face.

"Having been a hill walker for most of my life, I realised the danger they were putting themselves in," Mr Lewis continued. 

"I warned them that the sand cliff was dangerous and they should desist.

"The youngsters said nobody had the right to tell them what to do, and that they would continue with it on a daily basis.

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"At this point they just continued climbing."

A boy climbing the cliff near Gorleston.

A part of the cliff had been dug out, giving the climbers a platform to perform "aerial somersaults". - Credit: Submitted

Norfolk constabulary said: "Police were called to reports of a concern for safety at 5.17pm on Wednesday, September 8 on cliffs near to Gorleston Golf Club in Warren Road.

"Three young men were seen climbing on the cliffs.

"Police are investigating the incident."

Councillor Mike Smith-Clare, Labour's county lead for children and young people, said: "It’s no surprise that many young people want to make the most of the recent warm weather and enjoy our coastline.

"I just hope that they keep safe and don’t spoil the enjoyment of others. 

"We need more organised opportunities for young people to participate in outdoor adventure activities.

"Sadly many are unaffordable or locally non existent.

"It’s no surprise that they’d make their own entertainment.”

HM Coastguard Gorleston (HMGC) said: "Cliffs are inherently unstable and fragile, especially after high winds and driving rain.

"Our position is that youngsters desist from such practices, which could injure to the point of being life changing or worse."

HMCG offered the following advice for people near cliffs:

  • Stay away from the base of cliffs.
  • Avoid scrambling up the face and keep away from edges at the top.
  • Stick to marked cliff paths.
  • If walking a dog, keep on a lead.

If you see anyone in trouble around our coastline call 999 and ask for the Coastguard.