Easton Bavents cliff top house facing demolition up for sale

Easton Bavents
Image caption The house for sale is about 8m (26ft) from the edge of the cliff following December's surge tides

A house facing demolition on an eroding cliff top in Suffolk is going on the market for £25,000-£50,000.

The sellers said the property at Easton Bavents near Southwold comes with rights and financial help to build a new house elsewhere.

The agents said any loss could be off-set by the value of a new house in an area which has high property prices.

Waveney District Council said help would still be available in its scheme for new owners of blighted houses.

The house, at the end of Easton Lane, is about 8m (26ft) from the cliff edge.

The land it is on was estimated to have been about 1 mile (1.6km) from the coast in the 17th Century, but there has been continuous erosion since then, including an estimated 60cm (2ft) during the surge tides this month.

'Sounds crazy'

The property is being sold by insolvency practitioners McTear, Williams & Wood.

Andrew McTear said: "It may sound crazy to try selling a house that close to the edge of an eroding cliff, but by owning this property you could potentially get planning permission for another plot of land that you wouldn't otherwise be able to.

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Media captionDecember's surge tides eroded the cliff further

"Plots of land near Southwold with planning permission are clearly highly sought-after, so we hope to be able to sell the cliff top home, even in the knowledge that it will have to be demolished."

Waveney District Council's Pathfinder scheme has offered nine Easton Bavents landowners up to £25,000 towards building and moving costs.

Councillor David Ritchie, chairman of the Pathfinder board, said: "If you are in danger of losing your property to erosion and you sell it, the new owner would still have planning rights to build elsewhere.

"The whole policy is an attempt to deal with coastal blight, so it could work to buy a house on a cliff top and move inland and take their planning permission with them."

Caravan living

The council said it expected the owners of cliff top properties to have them demolished before they fell on to the beach and financial help was available for this.

Laura Martin lives next door to the house which is for sale.

The 57-year-old said she could not afford to buy or build another house elsewhere and her long-term plan was to live in a caravan in her back garden, which was further inland than her house.

"I've got no plans to try and demolish my house because it's not in immediate danger," she said.

"But you can't make predictions about the future rate of erosion - nobody can."

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