The cliffed coastline of Sheppey is being actively eroded by a combination of rotational slipping, mud flows, debris slides and cliff undercutting. Erosion of the in-situ cliffs takes place largely by cliff undercutting. This is caused by wave action and is followed by collapse of the cliff along vertical joints opened by shrinkage of the clay during dry weather.
Warden Point - The rotation at Warden Point began in the 1970's and is still moving. When the rotation began, the road at the top of the cliffs carried on at least 50 feet below the clifftop level. Since that time these wartime bunkers have steadily made their way to the beach. The middle one finally reached the beach in 2011.
View looking East from Warden Point
Sound mirror debri. Originally high on the cliff this prewar sound mirror reached the beach in one piece, only to be smashed by a violent storm in the 1980's
2009 clay creep begins
The attempt to consolidate and stabilise the cliffs at the end of Warden Bay Road involved the laying of many thousands of tons of rock imported from Norway. This was meant to protect the houses nearest to the cliffs from subsidence. It was successful in that it prevented the sea from washing over the cliffs, but the engineers failed to take into account the nature of the slumping on Sheppey. As you can see in the pictures below the clay is creeping over the pathway and onto the rocks. It wont be long before the clay completely covers the rocks. In my opinion a completely useless and unsuccessful bit of engineering and a complete waste of money.
February 2014 the path from the gravel car park is now covered over for most of its length. The sign warning walkers of the danger of soft mud and unstable cliffs is now almost totally swallowed up by the oozing mud which is now moving across the 'sea defences'. The net result of this very expensive attempt to save the houses nearest to the cliff from subsidence is a failure, as the cliffs continue to march towards the waters edge only to be washed away by the sea. No amount of rocks will stop them.