Crag collapse: Gilwern Lower-Gilwern West

Just in case any of you keen climbers use the Gilwern Lower-West area, we have received the following information and photographs from Alan Bowring of Bannau Brycheiniog National Park Authority:

“I took the chance to get out to Gilwern Hill earlier and attach the results. We’re talking of the Gilwern Lower-Gilwern West area covered at: where I’d estimate that an area about 20m high and 20m long has collapsed. Most of the rock has fallen from the upper half of this fractured limestone cliff and the debris has been corralled by the grassy promontories beneath. A rough estimate is that we’re looking at up to 200 cubic metres or about 500 tonnes of material that has come down – the largest blocks are the size of a car.

“So far I can see it is rock to the right of route 29 (Gilwern Lower | Sport Climbs UK) which is affected. The rest of the cliff which sports numerous routes must now be treated as highly suspect. It is probable that further material will fall in the coming period and the debris will settle further. Local residents say the collapse took place in the early hours of last Sunday. We’ve had a lot of rain of late and, as is the case with the cliffs of the Jurassic Coast, cliff-falls are most likely after prolonged wet weather. 

“The minor road directly above the quarry face has been closed for some years but extra barriers and warning signage have been put in place by (presumably) Monmouthshire County Council.”

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