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Southend-on-Sea Local Information: 10 top things to know... more

  • 1. History of Southend-on-Sea

    The origins of Southend-on-Sea date back as far as the Doomsday Book in 1086 when there were two manors in the area: Prittlewell and Milton. Prittlewell Manor was divided up and Prittlewell Priory was formed. The priory had lands stretching down to the seafront and by the 15th century, a landing area (the south end of the lands of the priory) became known as South End. This are...Read morea eventually formed the start of the town. The town has many historic buildings, monuments and historic areas, including six sites designated as Scheduled Ancient Monuments: Prittlewell Camp, The "Danish Camp" at Shoebury Garrison, Prittlewell Priory, Southchurch Hall, the Cold War Defence Boom north of Shoebury East Beach and the World War II Caisson at Mulberry Harbour. Read less

  • 2. Now in Southend-on-Sea

    Southend is the largest town in Essex and boasts the longest pleasure pier in the world. This, along with its seven miles of seafront, make it a popular place for tourists, especially those wanting to escape the hustle and bustle of nearby London. The town has award-winning beaches and is popular for watersports. The University of Essex has a campus in the heart of Southend-on-...Read moreSea, forming a large part of town life. Read less

  • 3. Events in Southend-on-Sea

    The Ganesh Hindu Festival is held every year at Shoebury East Beach and is the largest Visarjan ceremony of Lord Ganesh to take place outside of India. Thousands of people flock to the event, which takes place in September. The Out of the Box Multi Cultural Festival runs for a month in October and includes a programme of events aimed at celebrating the town's rich and diverse c...Read moreommunity. The Southend-on-Sea Film Festival and Festival Fringe take place in May and include a packed programme of events based around the world of film and cinema, including film previews, independent cinema, world cinema, documentaries, classics, children's films and more. Read less

  • 4. Attractions in Southend-on-Sea

    Adventure Island is a theme park with over 60 rides and attractions including four rollercoasters as well as rides for younger children. There is a themed jungle café at the park as well as other food outlets. Southend Pier is the longest pier in the world at over 1.3 miles long. Visitors can take a railway to the end of the pier to enjoy the views and visit the RNLI lifeboat,...Read more café and gift shop. The pier's museum tells visitors all about the history of the attraction. The Central Museum houses collections of local and natural history and archaeology and has a hands-on discovery centre. The Planetarium, at the same location, has live presentations and talks which take visitors on a tour of the night sky. Prittlewell Priory Museum is a museum of the priory's history inside the 12th century building. The Sea Life Adventure Centre gives visitors a chance to see marine creatures such as crabs, starfish, clown fish and tropical sharks. Read less

  • 5. Things To Do in Southend-on-Sea

    Southend Marine Activities Centre offers windsurfing, canoeing, sailing, kayaking, jet-skiing, powerboat driving and banana boat rides. Kids Kingdom is a huge indoor play centre that includes a restaurant and outdoor play equipment in the summer. Prittlewell Square is the oldest park in Southend and dates back to 1855. Visitors can enjoy ornamental gardens, a pond and a fountai...Read moren. Read less

  • 6. Business in Southend-on-Sea

    Southend-on-Sea town centre has a mix of high street stores and independent retailers and two indoor shopping centres - The Royals and The Victoria. Farmers' markets and craft markets take place regularly in the town and Italian, French and German markets are held on set dates. Victoria Square, in the town centre, is an area used for roadshows and promotional, community and cha...Read morerity events. Read less

  • 7. Transport in Southend-on-Sea

    The main road into Southend is the A127, which links to the M25 as well as the A130 and A13. Trains from Southend-on-Sea run directly to London's Liverpool Street and Fenchurch Street and take about 45 minutes. London Southend Airport is two miles from the town centre and has flights to various European destinations. London Stansted, London City Airport, London Gatwick Airport ...Read moreand London Heathrow Airport are all within easy reach. The port of Harwich is 58 miles from the town and has services to Holland and Denmark. Read less

  • 8. Entertainment in Southend-on-Sea

    Palace Theatre offers a programme of live entertainment including comedy, music, drama and touring shows. Cliffs Pavilion is an entertainment complex containing a theatre and concert hall. Live shows include West End musicals, ballet, concerts and comedy. Chinnery's is the main live music venue in the town and hosts gigs by major touring acts as well as local bands. Talented lo...Read morecal performers play free concerts at the Southend Bandstand in Priory Park during the summer months. The live entertainment always takes place between 3pm and 5pm. Read less

  • 9. Famous Landmarks in Southend-on-Sea

    Southend Pier, built in 1830, is the town's most famous landmark. Extensions have been added to the pier over the years, making it the longest in the world. The last addition to its length was opened in 1929 and is named the Prince George Extension.

  • 10. Interesting Facts about Southend-on-Sea

    Southend Airport has been used in films many times, including a scene in Oscar-winning movie The Queen, when Prince Charles lands in England following the death of Princess Diana. Parts of James Bond movie Goldfinger were also filmed at the airport.

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