Finding Neverland – the magic returns to the Shrubbery

Published Thursday, 26th September 2019

View of shrubbery with sleeping giant

Over the past year, the council’s parks team have been working hard to improve the area which was formerly part of the seafront attraction ‘Never Never Land’.

Earlier this year, the rockery was refurbished, along with repainting works on the six fantasy castles, by local artist, David Taylor.

Since then, the council has installed the sleeping giant, a huge grass figure growing out of the ground which will draw people into the magic that is the memory of so many from their childhood and will be future memories for  new residents and visitors. The body of the giant was landscaped by the council’s parks team using hessian bags filled with soil, and the head, which was sculpted by a member of the parks team, was installed earlier this month.

Now the team are pushing on with the completion the giant, planting in the rockery, and organising volunteering days to enable residents to get involved in helping to look after the area for future generations to enjoy.

Cllr Carole Mulroney, cabinet member for environment and planning, said: “The Shrubbery is part of so many local people’s childhood memories and I am delighted that it has come along leaps and bounds and will be loved once again by a new generation.

“The parks team has done a really great job to restore and enhance the area and residents, visitors and businesses alike have welcomed its return.

“The works to the giant should be completed shortly and I would urge anyone who has some free time and would like to get involved with managing and maintaining the area to either  visit the Make Southend Sparkle Facebook page for upcoming activities or contact the parks team on 01702 21501.”