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isolated-sun-and-sea_1025-281   - editor David Wilson  07714772707 -   Journalist,   07917730238

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As part of Southend-on-Sea Borough Council’s annual voter registration canvass households will soon be receiving a form. It will ask them to check whether information on the electoral register for those living at their address is correct.

The aim of the form is to ensure that the electoral register is up to date and to identify any residents who are not registered so that they can be encouraged to do so.

 Alison Griffin, chief executive of Southend-on-Sea Borough Council said: “To vote in any election, residents must be registered on the electoral roll and the household canvass is part of ensuring we have up to date information. To make sure you are able to have your say, simply check the form when it arrives, carefully read the instructions and respond as promptly as possible.

 “It is important that anyone who has recently moved address looks out for the form and checks whether they are registered.

This year householders can respond to their form online, by text message, or by telephone. Full details of how to do this are on the front page of the form.

Any residents who have any questions can contact the elections team by calling 01702 215010 or visiting

Household Canvass

Plans to replace the ageing train system on the wold’s longest pleasure pier are continuing to progress, as the tender process is in full swing.

This summer has seen the launch of a tender to replace Southend’s pier railway trains after setting aside £3.25m in its 2019-20 budget. The tender is now in its last few weeks and the successful bid will be appointed in September.

 The current diesel trains have been transporting thousands of visitors into the estuary since 1986, and at the time had a projected 20-year lifespan. Outstanding servicing has kept them going way beyond their expected life, but now it is time to replace them.

 In February, the council approved an ambitious budget in which £18m was earmarked for pier improvements. Longer term plans include a new landmark visitor attraction on the site of the former bowling alley.

 Recently, a new visitor entrance was officially opened and many damaged deck boards, sun shelters, hand rails and benches have been replaced.

 Cllr Kevin Robinson, cabinet member for business, culture and tourism, said: “The trains are an important part of our town’s heritage and visitor offer, as well as making a trip to the end of the longest pier in the world accessible to all. This summer is a great time to experience the trains and visit the pier head.

 “The current train system is now literally reaching the end of the line as replacement parts are obsolete and there are of course many improvements in technology.

 “Replacing the trains represents just one part of a multi-million pound investment earmarked for bringing the jewel in the town’s crown back to glory and making it a fun, relevant and memorable experience for future generations of visitors.

“Very few specialist companies will be able to deliver these trains and there is a unique nature of the work along with kudos associated in working on such a major landmark.”


Bumper summer for Southend Pier


Following a series of record-breaking visitor numbers for Southend and good weather forecast throughout the school summer holidays, pier staff are preparing for a bumper summer.


Visitors can indulge in fresh fish and chips, following the long-awaited return of the popular dish earlier in the year. The ever-popular beach huts on the pier will be open throughout the summer, selling fish and chips, alcoholic and non-alcoholic refreshments, as well as various art exhibitions, music and the nine-hole mini-golf course


On Saturday 3 and Sunday 4 August, the pier will welcome back various puppeteers for the 31st annual Southend Pier Puppet Festival, where visitors can enjoy traditional seaside puppet comedy.

Replacement pier trains on track

On the 10 th of August 2019, Age Concern Southend opened the doors to their new community hub,

The Haven for a day of craft stalls, local charities, music, dancing and storytelling.

The open day was a great success with around 200 people attending and shopping with local artists,

authors and makers as well as joining in with a free Strollercise class and storytelling with Spinning

Yarns Theatre during the day time and another 60 people attending the evening gig from local 60’s

band, The Boomers.

The event raised just over £600 for Age Concern Southend, an independent charity working to make

Southend a better place to age by providing support, advice and services for older people across the


Claire Slack, Development Manager of Age Concern Southend, said, “We are so grateful to have the

support of our community and that so many people turned out for our event despite the howling

wind and rain that morning. The money raised will make a huge difference to our small charity.”

All money raised will go directly to helping finish renovations and repairs at the charity’s new

community hub, based in the grade II listed, ex-Havens department store on Hamlet Court Road. The

charity have now raised well over £330,000 of the £460,000 needed to complete the project.

The Haven Community Hub will open fully from September this year, welcoming a new community

café, dementia day centre and services such as bereavement counselling, podiatry and hairdressing

with the first floor already open as the home of Club 50+, a social club offering social, creative and

fitness activities for over 50’s.


Open Day and 60’s gig at The Haven Community Hub

Raises over £600 for Age Concern Southend

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Voluntary and community groups running health-related projects are being encouraged to apply to the Provide Foundation for grants to support their work.

 The Provide Foundation, which is administered by the independent charitable trust Essex Community Foundation, was set up in 2012 and has awarded grants totalling £362,100 to support local projects and activities.

 The aim of the funding programme, which offers grants of up to £5,000, is to improve access to community health services for local people by supporting voluntary organisations working across Essex.

 Projects eligible for support include those that keep people out of hospital, help them to leave hospital and return home, stay healthy in their community and encourage older people to have greater access to services and activities through the use of technology.  

 The deadline for applications to be received by ECF is 5pm on 2 October 2019.

 Previous grant recipients include:

Chelmsford Community Transport: £3,151 to provide door-to-door transport to medical appointments for older and disabled people

Braintree Mencap Society: £5,000 to provide healthy eating classes to people with learning difficulties

Headway Essex: £4,042 to provide a series of workshops on how to cope after a brain injury

 Derrick Louis, Chairman of Provide said: “Supporting local charities and voluntary organisations is part of our ethos as a community interest company.

Chelmsford Community Transport received £3,151 to provide door-to-door transport to medical appointments for older and disabled people.

Chelmsford Community Transport

Grants available to improve health and wellbeing in local communities