Storms cause £4m damage in Cornwall

Newlyn Green Sea defences, walls and footpaths have been damaged, including at Newlyn Green

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Storms have caused more than £4m worth of damage across Cornwall in a month, the local authority has estimated.

Much of the damage is to sea defences but flooding has also forced the closure of the main Exeter-to-Newton Abbot railway line in Devon.

Strong winds and heavy rain are again spreading across south-west England.

Communities across west Cornwall have reported power cuts, including Penzance, Newlyn, Marazion, Madron, Heamoor, Gulval, Sancreed and St Just.

More than 400 homes were left without power in the Alverton area of Penzance, Western Power confirmed.

Engineers were working to find the faults, it added.

Sea defences

The Met Office has issued a yellow alert for high winds in the South West from 15:00 until 23:00 on Wednesday.

A flood warning was in place along the south Cornwall coast for high tide on Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning, the Environment Agency said.

Trees were reported felled by high winds across part of the Cornwall, BBC South West Travel tweeted.

The Tamar Bridge between Plymouth in Devon and Saltash in Cornwall was closed to all traffic for a period after wind speeds surpassed 70mph, police said.

More than 65 reports of fallen trees requiring police to attend were reported across Devon and Cornwall in an hour, officers added.

Cornwall Council's Silver Command asked drivers not to make unnecessary journeys on Tuesday evening.

After Devon and Cornwall were battered by heavy weather over the weekend, the scenes were repeated again on Monday.

Strong winds and high tides flooded several places, including Looe, Fowey, Newyln and Mevagissey.

Geoff Brown, Cornwall Council's portfolio holder for homes and communities, said on Friday the estimated repair bill since 4 January was £3m.

But, following the more recent storms, he said it had increased his assessment to more than £4m.

Newquay sea wall On Monday, the sea wall in Newquay was damaged by the high tide and large waves

He said: "Engineers are still assessing the damage caused across Cornwall.

"Most of it has been caused to sea walls and sea defences, such as in Portreath, Newquay and in Newlyn.

"We're now hoping for a break in the weather to assess and repair the damage."

Mr Brown said engineers were trying to repair walls and defences to "minimise any further damage".

A senior Cornwall Council officer said the weather was "stretching our resources very, very hard".

Start Quote

You just get on with it and you help your neighbours out”

End Quote Edwina Hannaford Cornwall Council, Looe

Dave Owens, assistant head of environment, said: "We have 300 miles of coastline and about 3,500 miles of watercourses in Cornwall, so it's challenging for all of our teams.

"We're making sure they also get good rest periods so they are ready to go over the next few days."

Cornwall councillor for Looe, Edwina Hannaford, said community spirit was helping people brave the events.

"We're resilient, we're stoic," she said. "You just get on with it and you help your neighbours out."

Near Exeter in Devon, firefighters rescued a man from a vehicle stuck in floodwater. His condition is unknown.

Elsewhere in the county, train operator First Great Western had initially said the Exeter-Newton Abbot line would only be closed until Wednesday as a result of the "poor weather conditions".

It has now extended the closure until Friday.

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