My home is metres away from falling off a cliff – I have to DRAG it back to stop it crumbling like my neighbours' houses | The Sun
A FORMER soldier whose home faces toppling over a cliff edge is to drag it back inland this week – for the second time.
Lance Martin, 65, first pulled his home back from the cliff edge at Hemsby, Norfolk, in 2018 after he lost 40 metres of his back garden to erosion.
Today he said he was planning to drag it back a further 40 metres this week with a tractor after several neighbouring homes were demolished at the weekend.
The moves comes comes after Great Yarmouth Borough Council earmarked his one-bedroom, chalet bungalow home for demolition.
Ex-Grenadier Guard Lance was one of five residents of The Marrams in Hemsby to be evacuated last Thursday after a 3.5-metre tide threatened their homes once again.
Three homes have now been demolished due to public safety risks as they teetered on the edge of the sand dune cliffs.
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Lance lost four metres from his back garden over the weekend, which he had reinforced with rocks and fencing to slow the erosion. His home now lies just one metre from the cliff edge.
The retiree said: "The overwhelming feeling amongst the neighbours is one of despair. I keep a smile on my face.
"I haven't broken down yet. I crack on with it- there's nobody to blame, you just have to accept it and move on."
When he first moved into his £95k detached one-bed in 2017, which faced 40 metres of sand dunes before the beach and sea beyond.
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He was told by an environmental impact study that he would have up to 40 years before the cliffs reached his house, but they now stand just one metre away from his backdoor.
He hasn't been able to return to his home since Thursday evening, staying in a chalet nearby.
He was forced to clear out his belongings in case he lost his house over the edge across the weekend.
The charity which owns the land, Watling Norwich Limited, have now offered him land on the opposite side of the road for free- he just has to drag his house into the gap.
Lance has been given until the end of the week to move his house back across the road by 20 metres, after dragging it forward by 10 metres into his front garden in 2018.
The former soldier will use a tractor to literally drag the bungalow for around 40 meters.
Lance, who lives alone, said: "I've set up talks about dragging the house forward again.
"In 2018 we reinforced the inside and rebuilt the floor joists east to west in case we had to do it again.
"Once we clear the land in front of the house there are 20 metres to pull it forward, plus the 10m the house is standing on now.
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"I've been hedging my bets but in hindsight, I should have moved it again a while back."
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