Beginning at the Cliffs Pavilion we start our walking tour by looking at the battle of the Thames Estuary and how this very spot was part of the anti-aircraft measures to defend London.
We then uncover the incredible story of a Cromwellian shipwreck that lies a mile off Southend pier!
Following the picturesque promenade we pay our respects at the War Memorial which was designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens (who famously designed the Cenotaph at Whitehall) and cover some cases from Southend’s WWI roll of honour.
Continuing along we take a pit stop along the cliffs and study how Southend defended itself during both WWI and WWII; including zeppelin and gotha air raids, as well as the Luftwaffe and V1 and V2 rocket attacks!
We pass the beautiful Royal Terrace and uncover a fascinating tale involving Lord Horatio Nelson and Lady Emma Hamilton (with a special link to the Crimean War).
We end our tour outside the magnificent Palace Hotel where we learn about its use in WWI as a Red Cross hospital, as well as a darker aspect of the pier involving German prisoners of war!
This is a walking tour with a couple of stopping points, however, accessibility issues should be considered.
Parking nearby the Cliffs Pavilion can be found. Fees vary.
Recommended age: 14+