History of Southend

Historic parish churches in Southend

There are many parish churches in the City of Southend-on-Sea. Some of these go back almost a thousand years and originally served scattered rural communities together with the small fishing village of Leigh and the areas main settlement of Prittlewell. Some show evidence of even earlier churches on their present sites. Other parish churches were built to serve the city's rapidly expanding urban population in the 19th and 20th centuries. All are important for our heritage.

Further information about the churches listed below can be downloaded from our related downloads.

  • All Saints Church, Southend built in 1886 and extended in 1934, is a fine example of Gothic Revival Architecture.
  • St Mary's Church, Prittlewell contains a Saxon arch, but the majority of the building dates from the 12th to 15th centuries.
  • Holy Trinity Church, Southchurch is made up of two parts, the original 12th century 'old church' and the larger 'new church' built in the early 20th century.
  • St Clement's Church, Leigh dates from the 15th century and has served countless generations of seafarers.
  • St Margaret's Church, Leigh was built in 1930 and is one of Southend's more recent churches.
  • St Alban's Church, Westcliff was founded in 1892 as a daughter church of St Mary's Prittlewell.
  • St Andrew's Church, Shoebury is a fine example of a small Norman parish church founded to serve a scattered rural and fishing community shortly after the Norman conquest.
  • St John's Church, Southend was built in 1842 and was Southend's first parish church. It played an important role in the life of the growing seaside resort.
  • St Laurence's Church, Eastwood spans 12th to the 17th centuries. It's basic design is typical for a country parish church of this period and many similar ones can be seen throughout Essex.
  • St Mary's Church, Shoebury is a small 13th century country parish church which has retained much of its character and attractiveness.

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