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'The Walk', Canvey Island

Listed under Walking in Southend-on-Sea, United Kingdom.

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Round the sea walls of Canvey Island with fans of the Essex island's iconic R&B band Dr Feelgood, on the Friday morning nearest 10 May each year - that's the birthday of the late Lee Brilleaux, the band's singer, and the walk - or The Walk, as we call it - is a hoot and a gas. Start 10.30-ish from the Lobster Smack pub; finish with pints in the Canvey Club, Laaahvely!

Background by editor: Canvey Island is a large island in the Thames about 35 miles out of London. It’s built up, crowded with about 15,000 homes which gives you an idea of the islands size. Though a maze of council estates and refineries, is a route around the island along 14 miles of uninterrupted sea wall footpath, through estuaries and marshes which harks back to the islands rural past and is still a great trail for amblers and birdwatchers. The geometric, man made back drop only amplifies the beauty of what would appear more mundane in a totally rural setting. The Lobster Smack predates the era of the refineries to the 1860’s and appeared in Dickens’ ‘Great Expectations’ as a smugglers inn. Christopher Somerville recommends this walk to coincide with the pilgrimage of Dr. Feelgood fans, celebrating the life and the music of one of Canvey Islands greatest exports and rock legends.

Written by  Chris Somerville.

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