A short while ago, we put up this post about the possibility of our Alternative Estuary comrades setting up a social space in Southend-on-Sea – A social space for Southend? 2.3.23. We’re pleased to report that there are signs of interest in getting this project off the ground. In these increasingly dystopian times, having a social space where people can meet to plan the kind of future they want – sane, sustainable and equitable – is absolutely vital. The aim for this space is to promote and support positive alternatives.
As mentioned in our previous post, one of the locations that did serve as a bit of an alternative hub for Southend, The Railway Hotel in Clifftown Road, has gone and it doesn’t look like it’s coming back. We used to love The Railway Hotel but, it had its limitations. Also, it was a pub and for a variety of reasons, not everyone is comfortable visiting a pub. On that basis alone, it is vital to have a space that everyone who wants to change the world for the better feels they can access and be made welcome.
Having an alternative social space would be a great way of carrying on the legacy of the counterculture in Southend. A counterculture that was exhaustively documented in this excellent publication put together by Graham Burnett: Southend on Zine – a review 15.8.22. Hopefully the next post we put up on this potential space will have some positive news about how things are progressing.