People protesting against the filling cliff caves with concrete to allow seven holiday homes to be built on top will be gathering on the beach tomorrow (March 2).

Save Whipsiderry Cliffs Group hope as many people as possible will be turn up to the protest on Whipsiderry Beach, Newquay at 9am on Thursday.

Developers have permission to build seven terraced houses on top of the cliff and say they have to infill the caves underneath to create a stable clifftop site and stop cliff erosion.

Falmouth Packet: A digger is lowered down the cliffsA digger is lowered down the cliffs (Image: Save Whipsiderry Cliffs)

The organisers of the protest Lyndsey Young and Andrew Robey say they are gathering to show the Marine Management Organization (MMO), Cornwall Council, the developers (LQP Porth Limited) and the contractors (Teign Consulting & CDEC Limited), that they wholly object to what they describe as the “desecration and destruction of this natural environment and wild bird an mammal habitat”.

“This has been a complete failure of the planning and licence processes, which are very obviously biased towards the developers, and do not in any way, consider public & professional objections,” they said.

“This development of seven holiday homes in a town with a serious affordable housing crisis will benefit the developer only, and destroy one of the last ‘wild’ environments in the local area, as well as be a scar on the coastal landscape."

Falmouth Packet: The cliffs above Whipsiderry Beach The cliffs above Whipsiderry Beach (Image: Save Whipsiderry Cliffs)

However the MMO told the BBC that a full assessment of the impact to the environment and habitats had been carried out.

It said the works "involve infilling a maximum of three caves at the base of the cliffs with concrete" and it issued a licence, subject to several conditions, last year.

The MMO said its decisions are made "on the basis of the best available evidence, and we are satisfied that is the case with regards this licensing decision".

Falmouth Packet: A digger is lowered onto Whipsiderry BeachA digger is lowered onto Whipsiderry Beach (Image: Save Whipsiderry Cliffs)

There was a previous protest Saturday, February 18, just as the works started with over 150 people attending.

Over the last two weeks, the public have maintained a continuous presence on the beach.

The protestors say they have geological and ecological concerns as the cliffs are home to nesting Fulmars, bats and Cornish Choughs (a protected species) and will be a loss of wild space.


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The construction company have fenced off the caves with security and have been lowering a JCB and other machinery down the 200 foot cliff by crane onto the beach which is owned by the Duchy Of Cornwall.

The protestors say drilling and excavating the caves is making the cliffs even more unstable, distributing rock and debris around the beach

“Our primary aim is to persuade the MMO to halt the works, so the additional evidence supplied by the public and professional bodies can be considered, and for the MMO to withdraw the licence based on this evidence,” say Lyndsey and Andrew.

A statement issued by the developer said: "The proposal for seven terraced houses would provide far less traffic and disruption than the previous use of the site as a hotel. The development will enable the cliff repair works to proceed, protecting this element of the coastline.

"The most recent report on the condition of the cliff states that current hazards include sea cave advancement and the potential for large-scale rock mass failure through undercutting. These hazards threaten the overall stability of the cliff face and have the potential to result in the loss of land within the site boundaries."