Norfolk

Hemsby man told to stop protecting cliff-top home

Cliffs at The Marrams
Image caption The bungalows in The Marrams were left uninhabitable when the cliffs they were built on were washed away

A man whose cliff-top property was the only one to survive a crumbling cliff has been told to stop carrying out works to protect it.

The bungalows in The Marrams in Hemsby, Norfolk, were left uninhabitable when the cliffs they were built on were washed away in March.

Lance Martin saved his from demolition and has been moving concrete blocks and piling up sand ahead of the winter.

But the borough council has banned him from carrying out any more work.

Great Yarmouth Borough Council said it visited the site after it was reported a person was using a mechanical digger on the beach beneath the cliff.

It said it was not asked for permission for the work to be carried out and issued a temporary stop notice against the "unauthorised excavation works".

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Image caption Lance Martin moved his home to stop it from being demolished

Former soldier Mr Martin had saved his property from being knocked down by using a tractor with a winch to pull it back by 10 metres.

In order to help protect it from potential storms this year, he said he piled up the concrete blocks he found buried under the sand.

Mr Martin said: "OK, I didn't apply for planning permission. I didn't ask the Marine Management Organisation, but at the end of the day, everything takes so long in government and local councils.

"I'm a man of action and as much as I don't want to upset the councils and the authorities, I do what I've got to do to survive."

He said he had put "everything back as it should be".

The council said while it appreciated the intention of the works was coastal protection, "such engineering works cannot be undertaken without consent".

It warned people using Hemsby beach to take care and to avoid walking in the immediate area of the works, "given the uneven surfaces".

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