The Cliff Lift

We regret to announce that the funicular cliff lift will be closed while general maintenance work is carried out. The lift at Pier Hill remains in operation. We understand this may be disappointing but we will work to get the cliff lift up and running again as soon as possible.

Take a journey on an iconic feature of Southend's rich heritage with fantastic views of the Pier and estuary.

The lift can hold up to 13 people (which includes the operator) and has a ramp for disabled access and pushchairs. The maximum number is dependant on how many pushchairs/wheelchairs are on board.

The Cliff Lift runs between Western Esplanade and Cliffton Terrace, where you will find The Royals shopping centre within a short walking distance along the promenade.

The Cliff Lift is open Monday to Sunday 10:00 til 18:00 

Please note: The Cliff Lift is operated by volunteers so times may vary, please see the Visit Southend website for updates or call: 01702 215620.

Fare Prices: One journey in either direction £0.50.


  • on August Bank Holiday 1912 the Cliff Lift was opened for the first time. It was built by Waygood and Co
  • in 1930 improvements were made to the lift including adding a new carriage
  • in 1959 more improvements were made to the lift including new upper and lower stations, refurbished electrical and winding gear and another new carriage
  • in 1990 a third carriage was added with new ramps that improved access for pushchairs and the disabled
  • in 2003 a malfunction brought operations to a halt and the lift was out of action for 7 years
  • we received funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund to restore the Cliff Gardens including the Lift stations
  • in 2006 the work on the Cliff Lift stations was completed
  • on Tuesday 25th May 2010 the Cliff Lift was officially re-opened by the Mayor of Southend-on-Sea

Page last updated: 19/09/2019