Our resident and stakeholder-led 2050 ambition:
An important conversation has been happening across Southend-on-Sea since the summer of 2018 called ‘Southend 2050’.
Southend 2050, has been an opportunity to explore what kind of place we all want Southend-on-Sea to become and to understand what we all need to do to create it.
Thousands of people have participated across the borough, through numerous events, workshops, forums and surveys.
The feedback from Southend 2050 has shown some clear messages about the kind of Borough we all want, and this has been used to develop a long term ambition for Southend-on-Sea.
The year is 2050. How does our borough, Southend-on-Sea, look and feel?
Inevitably the place has changed a lot since the early years of the century, but we’ve always kept sight of what makes Southend-on-Sea special. Prosperous and connected, but with a quality of life to match, Southend-on-Sea has led the way in how to grow a sustainable, inclusive city that has made the most of the life enhancing benefits of new technologies.
It all starts here – where we are known for our creativity, our cheek, our just-get-on with-it independence and our welcoming sense of community. And so, whilst the growth of London and its transport network has made the capital feel closer than ever, we cherish our estuary identity – with a seafront that still entertains and a coastline, from Shoebury garrison to the fishing village of Old Leigh, which always inspires. We believe it’s our contrasts that give us our strength and ensures that Southend has a vibrant character of its own.
People are proud of where they live – the historic buildings and well-designed new developments, the seafront and the open spaces. The city centre has generated jobs, homes and leisure opportunities, whilst the Borough’s focal centres all offer something different and distinctive. With its reputation for creativity and culture, as well as the draw of the seaside, Southend-on-Sea is a place that residents and visitors can enjoy in all seasons. Above all we continue to cherish our coastline as a place to come together, be well and enjoy life.
Public services, voluntary groups, strong community networks and smart technology combine to help people live long and healthy lives. Carefully planned homes and new developments have been designed to support mixed communities and personal independence, whilst access to the great outdoors keeps Southenders physically and mentally well. Effective, joined up enforcement ensures that people feel safe when they’re out and high quality care is there for people when they need it.
Southend-on-Sea has grown, but our sense of togetherness has grown with it. That means there’s a culture of serving the community, getting involved and making a difference, whether you’re a native or a newcomer, young or old. This is a place where people know and support their neighbours, and where we all share responsibility for where we live. Southend in 2050 is a place that we’re all building together – and that’s what makes it work for everyone.
Southend-on-Sea and its residents benefit from being close to London, but with so many options to build a career or grow a business locally, we’re much more than a commuting town. Affordability and accessibility have made Southend-on-Sea popular with start-ups, giving us the edge in developing our tech and creative sectors, whilst helping to keep large, established employers investing in the borough. People here feel valued, nurtured and invested in. This means that they have a love of learning, a sense of curiosity and are ready for school, employment and the bright and varied life opportunities ahead of them.
Southend-on-Sea is a leading digital city and an accessible place. It is easy to get to and get around, with easy parking for residents, visitors and businesses. Everyone can get out to enjoy the borough’s thriving city centre, its neighbourhoods and its open spaces. Older people can be independent for longer. It is also easy to get further afield with quick journey times into the capital and elsewhere. Our airport has continued to thrive, opening up new business and leisure opportunities overseas – but it has done so in balance with the local environment.