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Council relents on controversial cliff netting at Bacton

A council that put up netting to stop sand martins nesting in cliffs has promised to take some of it down - after facing staunch criticism.

North Norfolk District Council put up the barrier on Bacton cliffs to encourage the birds to move further along the coast.

It needs to do work in that area to build up the beach and protect homes and the Bacton gas terminal from erosion.

A sand martin tries to get through the netting Credit: @NorfolkBea

But the move sparked serious concern from bird lovers and conservation groups including the RSPB.

The council insisted careful consideration had gone into the plans.

But today (Tuesday 9 April), it relented, agreeing to take down some of the netting.

"Following positive discussions with the RSPB and Natural England today, we have instructed contractors to remove the upper levels of netting on Bacton cliffs. Minimum levels will be retained to assist in progressing with this critical project to protect people’s homes and national infrastructure.

"Following this, ongoing discussions will take place between NNDC and the RSPB about the material to be used on the lower section of cliff to allow this to happen."

– North Norfolk District Council
The netting at Bacton Credit: ITV News Anglia