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New road laid at Hemsby following erosion crisis - but way forward still unclear

PUBLISHED: 10:04 23 May 2018 | UPDATED: 10:33 23 May 2018

The new road at The Marrams has been completed Photo: Liz Coates

The new road at The Marrams has been completed Photo: Liz Coates

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A new section of road giving safe access to people living in erosion-hit Hemsby has been completed.

The new road at The Marrams has been completed Photo: Liz CoatesThe new road at The Marrams has been completed Photo: Liz Coates

The stretch replaces the clifftop lane leading to homes in The Marrams where a dozen chalets were torn down following a shocking erosion streak.

A 13th was pulled forward by its owner Lance Martin.

The original road is now closed to vehicles because although it has not moved since the storms it could become unstable.

John Weston, spokesman for the landowner Geoffrey Watling (Norwich) Ltd, said the main work to build the road had taken around two weeks but contractors were still on site finishing off.

He said: “The road was felt to be at risk so we had to put it further inland.

The new road at The Marrams has been completed Photo: Liz CoatesThe new road at The Marrams has been completed Photo: Liz Coates

“We have put it in as far as we can go, going round what is there. How long it will last I don’t think anyone will care to speculate given that this latest erosion caught everyone by surprise.

“No-one was expecting the degree of loss that we had this year. We were not forecasting anything like that amount.

“We are in the lap of the gods.”

He added that although people could walk down the old road they were advised not to because it was dangerous and intrusive for residents.

Meanwhile a coastal study being carried out by Great Yarmouth Borough Council is likely to issue its draft findings next month.

The study is looking at ways to manage the coast with a specific set of options set to be put forward for Hemsby.

Information gathered at a community drop-in last month together with new site inspections of the cliffs, dunes and defences are being used by experts to find a way forward and support funding bids.

The existing trial defence scheme at Hemsby will be considered as one option.

The study will then look at the possible costs of the options at Hemsby, and a draft report will be ready in the next few weeks which will be shared with the community as part of a public consultation.

Management options for the Winterton frontage will be considered as a later phase.

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