Live updates

Work starts on Exmouth's infamous sink hole

It is thought the sink hole has been caused by a blocked water pipe underneath Credit: ITV News

Work starts today on Exmouth beach to try to fix a giant sink hole. Engineers believe a blocked water pipe underneath the beach is responsible. The two metre hole has opened a number of times over the last two months - especially after heavy rain.

“We are working with the tides, so digging will start as early as possible in the morning. We’re very confident we can resolve this problem and open up that area of the beach again for everyone to enjoy.”

– Nick Christo, East Devon District Council

More clues on origin of mysterious Exmouth sinkhole

This large sinkhole on Exmouth Beach has opened up three times over the last six weeks. Credit: Maritime and Coastguard Agency

More light has been shed on the mysterious sink hole on Exmouth Beach, which has opened up three times over the last six weeks.

Council engineers discovered a blocked water pipe deep under the sand - and now South West Water thinks it knows where it comes from.

"We believe the pipe in question is a surface water drain from the Foxhole Hill area of Exmouth.

We will be working with East Devon District Council to investigate further when the present wet weather has passed through and surface water levels have returned to normal."

– South West Water

The hole - measuring around two metres - seems to open up after heavy rain and the council’s streetscene team has cordoned off the area each time.

On the two previous occasions, the sinkholes have remained for a few days before sand and other beach materials washed up through the natural actions of the tides have refilled them.

Advertisement

Is the mystery of the Exmouth beach sink hole solved?

Large sinkhole on Exmouth beach could be due to blocked pipe Credit: Maritime and Coastguard Agency

The mystery behind the Exmouth Beach sink hole which has opened up three times over the last six weeks may finally be resolved.

East Devon District Council engineers have discovered a South West Water pipe deep under the sand which looks like it has become blocked in some way.

The engineers will now be working with South West Water and contractors over the coming weeks to resolve the problem.

Once the council has completed its investigations, it will be able to confirm a more accurate timescale.

The hole - measuring around two metres - seems to open up after heavy rain and the council’s streetscene team has cordoned off the area each time.

On the two previous occasions, the sinkholes have remained for a few days before sand and other beach materials washed up through the natural actions of the tides have refilled them.

We’re very confident we can resolve this problem and open up that area of the beach again for everyone to enjoy.

– Nick Christo, East Devon District Council’s Streetscene Manager for the west of the district

Large sinkhole re-appears on Exmouth beach

Large sinkhole re-appears on Exmouth beach Credit: Maritime and Coastguard Agency

A large sinkhole on Exmouth beach has re-appeared following heavy rain.

It was first spotted at the beginning of the month but following recent bad weather the area has been cordoned off once again.

The coastguard fears the ground could way to a much larger chamber beneath.

Exmouth's new lifeboat has official dedication

Hundreds turned out to the official dedication of Exmouth's new lifeboat Credit: ITV News

Hundreds of people turned out to the official dedication of Exmouth's new lifeboat.

The new Shannon class boat is faster, safer, and more manoeuvrable than its predecessor and, as John Andrews reports, has already proved a lifesaver.

Three young men, Jared Cloclough, Richard Smith and Daniel Morton whose speed boat sank almost certainly owe their lives to her.

Roger Jackson helped pluck them from the water.

"One of those shouts we can honestly say we'll always remember just because when we got there, there they were kind of splashing about, desperately trying to cling on to whatever they could and they were very lucky lads actually."

– Roger Jackson, Dep coxswain

Much of the cost of one-and-half million pounds came from a legacy from a couple in the Midlands as a tribute to an ancestor.

"A distant relative in the 1850s who's life was shortened at the age of 37 by helping on the coxswain of the Spurn Head lifeboat at Hull."

– Annette Richardson, Neice of R and J Welburn

He'd surely be proud, and amazed, at the new craft.

See John Andrew's full report below:

Advertisement

RNLI save four people from sinking motorboat

Exmouth RNLI leapt into action at the weekend after a motorboat began to sink with four people onboard.

Crews were alerted to the rapidly sinking boat about half a mile off Budleigh Salterton shortly before 3pm. They originally thought the 18-foot boat had broken down, but within minutes a Mayday call for immediate help came in.

Inshore lifeboat, George Bearman crew volunteers stay on scene to watch over the sinking motorboat Credit: Exmouth RNLI

We realised we were on our way to a more serious scenario and once on scene, found four casualties in the water with the hull of their 18 foot motorboat sticking out of the water. Since only one casualty – a 13 year old child was wearing a lifejacket, time was of the essence.

– Coxswain Steve Hockings-Thompson

Once safely rescued from the water, the casualties, who had swallowed sea water, were taken to an awaiting ambulance at Exmouth Marina.

After returning to the scene, the volunteers established a tow line to the power boat and took the vessel to Belchers Slipway for recovery by the owner.

All-weather lifeboat Shannon class R and J Welburn launches on Exmouth Beach Credit: Exmouth RNLI

Toddler gets toilet training seat stuck on his head

Devon and Somerset Fire & Rescue Service has come to the rescue of a three-year-old boy who got a toilet training seat stuck on his head.

One crew was called out to Richards Close in Exmouth this morning and released the child by cutting through the plastic seat with snippers.

The firefighters said the little boy, who had managed to ram the loo seat down past his ears, was a bit "perturbed" when they got there but was fine as soon as it was removed.

Dog owners warned after dog falls off Devon cliff

Owners with rescued dog Credit: Exmouth RNLI
Launch of RNLI Credit: Exmouth RNLI

People are being warned to keep their pets under control on cliffs after a dog had to be rescued in Devon.

Exmouth RNLI was called out last night after a jack russell fell from Orcombe Point while chasing rabbits. The crews picked her up from the beach as the tide was coming in and reunited her with her owners

Volunteer Deputy Launching Authority, Rachel Hughes said: "The owners were very grateful for our assistance, but needless to say there won’t be any more chasing rabbits for Paula now and they will invest in a long retractable lead!

"Please keep your dogs under control whilst walking along cliffs. Paula’s owners realised the dangers of the fast approaching tide and did the right thing in not putting themselves at any further risk by attempting the rescue themselves."

Load more updates