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Royal Marines Called In To Help Landslip Victims

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7:43am 15th January 2014
(Updated 7:43am 15th January 2014)

The military is being called in to help villagers cut off in Calstock.

It is after a road collapsed after the ground got saturated with water on Christmas Day, leaving more than thirty cars stranded.

Cornwall Council has been paying for locals to use hire cars since a big chunk of Lower Kelly plunged away at the height of the bad weather.

Officials have been examining a series of options to get free the trapped vehicles.

On Wednesday Royal Marines will ferry the vehicles one-by-one down the Tamar to Cotehele Quay - using specialist landing craft normally use for troops.

Colonel Garth Manger, Commanding Officer of 1 Assault Group, said: "The Royal Navy is delighted to come to the aid of the civilian authorities who would normally assist the public. In this case we are using Royal Marine expertise in providing amphibious boats where there is no other feasible access to repatriate vehicles to the national road network. 

"My men train to conduct disaster relief around the world and while this is slightly different it is a fantastic opportunity to do some real training while helping the community in which we live. The car owners will also have a chance to accompany their cars on the specialist landing craft normally used to transport troops and amphibious vehicles.''

"It is fantastic that in a moment of great difficulty, public services can work together in such a positive and creative way. Brilliant!," said Councillor Bert Biscoe, Cornwall Council portfolio holder for Transport and Waste.

"I am delighted to have the marines come to our rescue and I look forward to seeing the rescue effort," said Councillor Dorothy Kirk, Cornwall Council local Member for Gunnislake and Calstock. "The residents have been wonderful in working together to support each other and with us and I am sure they will be delighted to have this assistance."

7:43am 15th January 2014

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