Gorleston boy tells of mudslide near miss

A 12-year-old boy from Norfolk who was moments away from being crushed by a wall during a mudslide has spoken of his "terrifying" ordeal.

Rhys Chaplain said he was on some steps by the wall in Gorleston on Wednesday when he heard a "crackling" sound.

He said he ran up the steps and crossed the road, at which point the wall completely collapsed.

The mudslide, between Cliff Hill and Beach Road, followed a thunderstorm on the east coast.

'Wave of mud'

Rhys said: "I saw the rain coming down, mixing with the mud, and it flooded the road.

"I went up and then I heard crackling so I ran up, and I got across the road and then it all collapsed."

His mother Danielle said: "It was mad - I've never seen anything like it. It was like a wave of mud.

Image caption The steps have been shut off by the council

"The most frightening thing is it had fallen on to the steps - it was massive bits of concrete as well.

"It could have potentially been very, very dangerous, but luckily for us he's all right.

"If he'd walked a bit slower it would have fallen on him."

Karen Carr, who lives near the steps leading from Beach Road to Cliff Hill, said: "I saw rocks and water rushing down the hill.

"I came out and the wall was giving way. Sand, mud, all just gushing down the steps.

"Just before the wall went, a young lad had run up the steps and just managed to get to the top, literally, as the wall came down."

Fire crews were called out at about 17:30 BST and structural engineers also attended to assess the damage and make the area safe.

Witnesses said nearby roads were covered in sand and silt after they saw water burst through the wall.

Norfolk County Council said the steps had been shut off and part of Beach Road would remain closed while debris was cleared and the necessary repairs were completed.

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