Southend-on-Sea - popular seafront town with a varied housing stock.
Southend-on-Sea, known locally as Southend, is a large coastal town in south-east Essex, 40 miles east of central London. It has the longest leisure pier in the world. London Southend Airport is less than two miles from the town centre.
Southend-on-Sea originally consisted of a few fishermen's huts at the southern end of the village of Prittlewell. Its status of a seaside resort grew after a visit from Princess Caroline of Brunswick, and the pier was constructed. After 1960, it declined as a holiday destination with much and many original structures were lost to redevelopment. It is still popular with day-trippers and attracts 7 million visitors annually.
Southend is served by two National Rail lines. From Southend Victoria, a branch of the Great Eastern Main Line runs to London Liverpool Street. Running from Shoeburyness in the east is the London, Tilbury and Southend Railway. This runs west through Thorpe Bay, Southend East, Southend Central to London Fenchurch Street via Benfleet and Basildon.
Local public transport is provided by Arriva Southend and First Essex Buses.
The A127 connects Southend with London via Basildon and Romford, and the A13 goes to the London Docklands. Both connect to the M25.
Southend Airport offers scheduled flights to European destinations as well as corporate and recreational flights.
Apart from its famous pier, Southend's attractions include the Kursaal, once a legendary leisure centre and now a ballroom; Adventure Island amusement park, cliff gardens, beaches and a funicular railway. Annually the town holds a carnival and hosts the London to Southend classic car rally.
Southend has two shopping centres, the Royals and the Victoria as well as a number of theatres. The most famous are the Cliffs Pavilion, which hosts concerts and performances on ice, and the Edwardian Palace Theatre. The latter is listed building from 1912 and shows smaller plays and musical groups. The town has one cinema and is home to Southend United football club.
Most secondary schools around Southend are mixed-sex comprehensives. These include Belfairs Academy Cecil Jones Academy, Southchurch High School and The Eastwood Academy. Southend has retained the grammar school system since 2004 and has four schools in this system: Southend High School for Boys; Southend High School for Girls; Westcliff High School for Boys and Westcliff High School for Girls. Although it is not its main site, there is a University of Essex campus in Elmer Approach.
If you are looking to buy a property in Southend-on-sea you should be able to find all the support services you need, from estate agents to mortgage brokers in the town centre and neighbouring Westcliff-on-Sea.
Thorpe Bay is 4 miles east of Southend, with its own beach front, golf course, yacht club and railway station. Majority of the houses here were constructed in the 1920s and are arranged in a grid layout.
Thorpe Bay continues to attract premium prices for detached houses: A 5 bedroom property in the desirable Thorpe Bay Gardens with a sea view can command £2,000,000 or more. It is rare to find house with less than 5 bedrooms in Thorpe Bay, but if you do, you an expect to pay around £750,000 for a 4 bedroom detached home.
The original town of Southend, Prittlewell is now a small village with several churches, Priory Park Gardens and a few historical remains. You can find 2 bedroom flats here for £180,000 and a 3 bedroom semi-detached house has an average cost of £300,000.
Staying in the town centre of Southend, a 2 bedroom apartment can be bought for £250,000; a sea view increases the price. You could expect to pay £300,000 for something similar on Eastern Esplanade or Royal Terrace.