Sharrow path is open again

Looking down to Sharrow beach
Published : 24 Nov 2016 Last update : 01 Aug 2018

After a good deal of head scratching and hard graft the cliff path at Sharrow is open again.

Erosion caused the footpath leading down to Sharrow to be closed for a couple of years whilst the team looked at how best to shore up the cliff. Luckily they found a solution and the path down to the golden sands of Whitsand is open again.

The big issue that led us to close the path was around a 100 tonnes of fragile cliff overhanging the path. We brought in a team of contractors who did a fantastic job at dislodging the loose material. They spent two weeks with pneumatic breakers removing the unsafe material, although some large lumps, about a tonne each, only needed to be pushed out of the way.

Once that was done the site had to settle before the team could work out what else needed doing. At that stage the cliff was still proving to be unstable and a risk to people using the path. The next job was to put up drape netting over the fragile area to protect the cliff and to capture any debris. After this the ranger team got on with digging out drainage run-offs and steps, clearing debris from the path and stream and cutting out new steps down onto the beach. They are also planning to install gabion baskets to stop the stream from undermining the steps.

The path at Sharrow is a very popular access point to the miles of sand at Whitsand Bay. We are very grateful to the hard work put in by the rangers, engineers and contractors to get it opened up again.

This work reminds us how fragile our coastline can be and we ask everyone to stay safe on cliff edges and coastal paths, making sure you check weather conditions before you head out, looking at tide times if you're heading down to the shore so you don't get cut off.

We hope you enjoy spending time at Sharrow as much as we do. Why not post a picture on our Facebook page to share your experience with us?