PERILOUS steps at Birling Gap will be moved as the sea continues to erode the iconic beauty spot.
Wealden District Council has already secured planning permission in advance to relocate the Birling Gap steps so access to the beaches around the Seven Sisters are maintained.
Johanna Howell at the council said, “The staircase, which provides the only access down to one of the most photographed locations in England, becomes more vulnerable as the cliff behind it is continually eroded.”
“The staircase is designed to be periodically moved back to the cliff side as the rock face is washed away by the sea. With another season of winter storms on its way, we felt it was best to be prepared so that any necessary re-siting can be carried out as quickly as possible.”
Safety checks are regularly carried out on the Birling Gaps steps to ensure they are safe for public use.
The Seven Sister cliffs from Beachy Head to Seaford are a Site of Special Scientific Interest and part of the South Downs National Park.
The ongoing erosion of the chalk cliffs means that the start of the staircase and viewing platform will need to be located at least three metres inland from their current position. The staircase was last moved in 2002. The new planning permission will remain in place for three years.