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VIDEO: Work begins demolishing coastguard cottage at Birling Gap

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Builders have begun to demolish one of the coastguard cottages this week after the building was left teetering on the cliff edge following recent erosion.

The edge has been gradually creeping towards the row of cottages over the past few months and now, after around three metres of rock has tumbled into the water below so far this year, the end-of-terrace property is just 15cm away from the edge at the narrowest point.

A team of builders has descended upon the site to start the four weeks’ worth of work to knock down the house, while preserving the neighbouring properties.

The cottage once formed a terrace of seven ex-coastguard properties but due to the erosion, two cottages had to be demolished in 1994 and in the early 2000s, and now a third one is set to follow suit.

Mark Hodgson, contracts director at Best Demolition - which is carrying out the work, said, “We have been brought in fairly quickly to carry this out.

“We need to do more work to the interior of the building so we can get scaffolding built to carry out rendering to the cottage that is going to remain - number four.

“Most of the work will be carried out from large cherry pickers, so we don’t have to put anyone on the ground around the outside of the building, because the cliff could really go at any time.”

This morning (Wednesday, March 19), builders were removing the roof slates. Once that is done, the builders were work from top to bottom until the property is completely demolished.

 

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