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VIDEO: Cornish Cliff Collapses Could Close Paths For Good

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6:01am 8th February 2013

Pirate FM has learnt some of Cornwall's cliff paths may never reopen.

There have been 35 collapses since November and 19 footpaths have had to be closed.

Experts are putting it down to the torrential rain.

"Council staff can't recall a more challenging time for the management of beaches or footpath network across Cornwall" said David Attwell, Cornwall Council's Principal Countryside Officer.  

"We have seen repeated cliff falls as a result of the severe weather conditions we have experienced throughout November, December and January, resulting in many paths being closed or diverted inland."

Walkers are warned to take extra care while teams check things out.

Dave in St Agnes walks his dogs on the coast. He said: "When we've been on the beaches we've been looking up to check there haven't been any major rock falls. So far it doesn't look like there's been anything major around here but yeh - it's a bit scary and we're not going too close to the cliff's edge.

"I wouldn't know what to look for so I'd just say stay away from the edge really, seems like the most sensible thing to do."

Richard Hocking, the Council's Soils and Materials Engineer, said some paths are so badly hit they may never reopen, with diversions inland being put in place: "There are routes that can be developed inland. The whole idea is to try and keep the footpath as close to the edge of the cliff as possible but sometimes it's just impossible to do that."

His tips are to:

* Look for tensions cracks
* Look for signs of subsidence
* Look for strange alignment.
* If you spot anything don't walk over it but turn back the way you came and report it.

There is more advice for walkers here.

A list of all footpath closures in Cornwall is here.

You can report landslips here.

Here is the moment a chunk of cliff collapses near Mevagissey...

6:01am 8th February 2013

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