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  1. ITV Report

Brendan Lavery: Inquest rules cliff collapse death as 'accidental'

Brendan Lavery, 58, was declared dead at the scene at Thorpeness Credit: ITV News Anglia

The inquest into the death of a 58-year-old man who died when a section of cliff collapsed onto him on a Suffolk beach has be ruled as 'accidental'.

Brendan Lavery, who was 58, was walking his two dogs along with his partner Lynne Tibbert in Thorpeness in January 2017.

Emergency services said Mr Lavery died "instantly", when part of the cliff collapsed, trapping him underneath.

A post mortem examination showed that Mr Lavery died from "massive multiple injuries".

Mr Lavery's death was descibed as a Credit: ITV News Anglia

His partner Lynne Tibbert was at the Coroner's Court today speaking of the moment it happened.

She said the pair had gone out on that Saturday morning to walk their two dogs.

They walked along the beach to Sizewell during high tide and Mr Lavery was walking close to the cliff face.

I could see as if a bird was pecking at the cliff face and I could see sand coming down and a small whole in the cliff.

I said, "look at that" and he looked up.

There was a rumble like thunder, coming from the cliff.

I ran towards the sea, he was under the cliff.

It sounded like an avalanche behind me.

– Lynne Tibbert
Brendan Lavery died of multiple injuries after the cliff fell on him Credit: ITV News Anglia

Ms Tibbert described how she was buried from the legs down and saw tonnes of mud where Mr Lavery was.

She blew her dog whistle repeatedly and kept calling for Mr Lavery.

She managed to get out and get help, but despite the efforts of locals and the emergency services, Mr Lavery died instantly.

Ms Tibbert said they were in "the wrong place at the wrong time".