A man has taken to hospital with serious injuries after falling 20ft from a North East clifftop following reports of an altercation involving four men. 

Emergency services were alerted to a disturbane on a cliff at Whitburn, South Tyneside, at 8.30am.

Multiple emergency services converged on the scene, including police, ambulances, coastguard and the Great North Air Ambulance. 

One man fell 20ft onto the beach below, where he was treated before being taken to hospital.

A Northumbria Police spokesperson said: “Just after 8.30am this morning (Friday), police received a report of a disturbance on Whitburn Cliffs at Whitburn Beach in South Tyneside. 

“It was reported that four males had been involved in an altercation when one of the men has fallen approximately 20ft onto the beach below.

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“Three men have been arrested on suspicion of affray and are currently in police custody.

“The fourth man is being transported to hospital with injuries that are described as serious but non-life-threatening.

A North East Ambulance Service spokesperson said: “We received a call at 8.37am this morning (Friday 15 December) to reports of an incident at the cliffs in Whitburn.

"We dispatched four crews from our Hazardous Area Response Team (HART), an ambulance crew, a clinical team leader, and requested support from our colleagues at the Great North Air Ambulance Service (GNAAS), the police, and the fire service.

"One patient was taken to hospital by air for further treatment.”

A spokesperson for the Great North Air Ambulance said: "This morning at 8.44am, our team was activated to reports of an incident near Whitburn, South Tyneside.

"Pilot Nigel flew paramedic Hollie and Dr Ally to the scene, where they worked alongside Search and Rescue, North East Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust and the police to assess and the treat the patient.

"Our critical care team performed procedures normally only available at hospital, before airlifting them to a nearby major trauma centre for further treatment."

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Northumbrian Police via 101 or the ‘report’ pages of our website, quoting log NP-20231215-0194.”