Why are the cliffs at Walton retreating so rapidly?
There are many factors that contribute to the rate of retreat at Walton-on-the-Naze.
The structure of the cliffs at Walton contributes to the heightened rate of erosion as the cliffs have a porous layer of Red Crag near the top of the cliff. This allows rain water to drain through it. Once it has reached the impermeable clay the rainwater has nowhere to go therefore the surface of the clay becomes saturated. This forces the layer of Red Crag (and all above it) to slip of the cliff via mass movement as there is reduced friction.
The waves also have a large effect on erosion in different ways. The first is because they are mostly destructive as they are very powerful…