Tuesday, January 12, 1999 Published at 13:13 GMT
Landmark UK cliff crumbles
Climate change has been blamed for soil erosion
A huge chunk of the famous cliff at Beachy Head near Eastbourne in Sussex crashed into the sea in a massive landslide.
The rockfall, which can be seen from three miles out to sea, has been blamed by some on climate change.
"It is basically down to climate change. The level of the sea is rising so bigger waves are hitting against the cliff base, causing bigger vibrations to reverberate up the cliff.
Freezing temperatures are believed to have expanded the water which seeped into the chalk, causing it to crumble and sheer off.
Coastguards have warned people to stay away from the edge of the cliff, a notorious suicide spot, as experts try to establish whether further falls could be expected.
Lighthouse nearer coast
His own lighthouse is being moved 70ft inland using a system of hydraulic lifts and rollers after a landslip last year. But he said tourists planning to visit Beachy Head should not be put off.
"But there is that small chance and I think people should be aware of that but not be scared of coming to Beachy Head."