Essex

Canvey Island 1953 flood disaster marked on sea wall mural

  • 2 July 2014
  • From the section Essex
Sea wall mural
The idea behind the mural is to tell people about the history of Canvey, the floods, and sea defences

Floods which devastated an island in 1953, killing 59 people, have been remembered on a 262ft (80m) sea wall.

Almost every one of Canvey Island's 13,000 inhabitants had to leave their homes during the North Sea tidal surge.

The floods have been depicted on panels along a mural on Concord Beach, painted by professional artists and Canvey inhabitants.

The project was made possible with a £10,000 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Fourteen miles of sea defences were built to protect islanders following the 1953 floods

The idea to paint the mural was put forward by the charity Friends of Concord Beach.

Its chairman, Colin Letchford, said the mural was intended to "involve and educate the community".

He said school groups and others had already been to visit the wall and learn about the history of the island and its relationship with the sea.

"People have wept at the pictures because of the memories they've brought back. They've also wept with joy," he said.

The mural also depicts the impact the flooding had on the Netherlands, where more than 1,800 people died

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