Southend-on-Sea is a seaside town, situated on the estuary of the River Thames. It is quite famous, or perhaps a better word would be notorious, having somehow acquired a reputation for being rather unpleasant, noisy and dirty. At a glance, this is the impression given to potential tourists. However, take time to look around and it isn't really that bad. Southend's greatest claim to fame is that it is home to the world's longest pleasure pier. At the end of the pier are restaurants, souvenir shops selling seashells and Southend rock, and a museum about Southend's lifeboats.
The beaches of Southend-on-sea have won numerous awards;- in 2002, three of the beaches were given permission to fly a Blue Flag - a privilege showing that each beach fulfils the requirements for recognition as a top European beach. There is a stretch of road that goes along the seafront, known to the locals as 'The Golden Mile'. This is where the arches are to be found, along with the 'Adventure Island' ['Adventure Island' was formerly known as 'Peter Pan's Playground'. ] amusement park , and numerous game arcades. On summer nights, it is lit up by coloured lights depicting dolphins, smiley teddy bears,Continued page 2/4