Clacton 150 anniversary flights

Whilst we would love to bring you a full Airshow line-up and ground event this year, unfortunately due to COVID-19 restrictions throughout the planning stages this couldn’t happen.

However, this year’s event will be replaced by the Clacton 150 anniversary flights.  The Red Arrows will fly over Clacton on two days this summer to commemorate the town’s 150th anniversary. Along with the world-renowned Battle of Britain Memorial Flight (BBMF), the ace Royal Air Force (RAF) display team will grace the skies on August 26 and 27.

Further details will be shared in the coming weeks.

To keep updated, visit our website, follow Twitter @ClactonAirshow or our Facebook event page or for more information about the Clacton 150 commemoration events log on to

Council unveils flower display in a nod to Clacton’s past

CAS Badge Bed
Two new floral tributes to mark Clacton’s history have been unveiled by Tendring District Council’s (TDC) Open Spaces team.

The two flowerbeds located next to the Memorial Garden along the town’s seafront portrays the Clacton Airshow logo, one of the region’s most successful events, and the Clacton 150 logo, a project of exciting activities to mark the 150th anniversary of Clacton.

The floral beds in the gardens are planted twice a year; in late May for the summer and again in October for the following spring. The numbers of plants used across the Tendring District is in the region of 250,000 per year.

Designed by a member of TDC staff, the displays are planted and maintained throughout the year by staff and volunteers.

Michael Talbot, TDC Cabinet Member for Environment, said the talent and hard work that goes into the gardens’ maintenance is admirable.

“The seafront gardens are often described as the jewel in the crown of Clacton and are admired by locals and visitors alike,” Councillor Talbot said.

“I hope that people will take their time to appreciate the extra work taken in creating these displays.”

Councillor Alex Porter, TDC Cabinet Member for Leisure and Tourism, added: “It is a historical year for Clacton in 2021, marking 150 years since it was formed. We are proud of our town and want to celebrate that fact.

“This striking display is wonderful to see I and encourage everyone to take a look.”

Winning Octopus Ahoy! sculpture arrives in Clacton by jet ski

Children have been making waves in a sculpture design competition as part of the summer art trail project Octopus Ahoy!  The art and charity event features more than 100 octopus sculptures and has been organised to celebrate Clacton’s 150th anniversary and 400 years since the Mayflower set sail to the New World from Harwich.  The octopuses will create a public art trail across north Essex.

Winning school
Primary schools were invited to take part in the celebration of art, culture and history.  Now the array of large professionally painted and smaller community painted octopus sculptures will propel their way across Essex to form an art trail across high profile locations for residents and visitors to follow.

A total of 60 school-designed sculptures took their seats at the Electric Palace cinema in Harwich for the final judging with a panel from Clacton Pier choosing the winner.

Nigel Brown, who was head of the judging panel from Clacton Pier, said: “We chose Holland Haven Primary School as we like the design, the name of Unity and the fact they have incorporated a large number of pupils’ drawings into the one octopus.”

Head teacher of Holland Haven Primary School Due Bardetti, said: “We are absolutely delighted to have the winning octopus.  The children have thoroughly enjoyed producing designs to be part of the final sculpture. They were thrilled when we told them we had won and we are excited about the presentation.”

The winning sculpture design was delivered by TDC’s Clacton Beach Patrol via sea from the Martello Tower to Clacton Pier to applause from the school children watching on the beach.

Clacton Beach Patrol

Katie Skingle, director at KAT Marketing, who are delivering the Octopus Ahoy! project on behalf of Tendring Council, said: “The energy the schools have put into their sculpture designs has been incredible.  The pupils have really loved getting stuck in and that enthusiasm shines through with the quality of the designs that have come back to us.  “They are going to look fantastic when they hit their venues on June 25.”

The Clacton Breeze open top bus was also unveiled at Clacton Pavilion this weekend by Clacton Rocks and the Octopus Ahoy! crew.
Octo bus

The Octo-bus marked the start of the Clacton Rock bus routes heading around town this summer.

Davina Langley, marketing manager at Hedingham Omnibuses, said: “We are thrilled to re-launch our Clacton Breeze Bus Tours and join forces with Octopus Ahoy! as it’s a fabulous way to take in the town and beautiful seaside”

The free Octopus Ahoy! app is now available to download from Apple and Android stores from today.  The app will help people to plan their route and list which prizes they want to scan and win via the QR codes at the bottom of each octopus base.

The free activity will lead to prizes ranging from octopus keyrings to free afternoon teas.


(Information and images from Clacton Gazette 01/06/2021).

The Essex Coast, Experience the Unexpected

Essex is famous for traditional seaside towns but the rest of its 350-mile-long coastline is not so well-known. Stretching from the Thames estuary, the county’s meandering coast winds through miles of saltmarshes, sandy and shell-covered beaches and dramatic wild landscapes until it reaches the banks of the Stour at Manningtree.

River Stour Tendring

It’s not just locals that love the coastline, A-list Hollywood stars, Tom Hiddleston and Claire Danes, recently filmed ‘The Essex Serpent’ by Sarah Perry, along the county’s shoreline and the crew from Downton Abbey were recently filming in Harwich’s historic streets.

Harwich Street View

Nature thrives along the Essex coastline, it is home to native oysters, seals and many species of wading and migrating birds, making it the perfect place for lovers of the great outdoors to explore over a long weekend or mini break. For inspiration on places to stay, eat and explore visit

Visit Essex Logo

Coastal Communities Logo

Visit our Essex Sunshine Coast news blog for the latest updates.

Celebration-on-sea!  The 150th anniversary of the founding of Clacton-on-Sea

Clacton 150
2021 is the year Clacton-on-Sea celebrates its 150th anniversary and to commemorate this momentous occasion the National Lottery Heritage Fund (NLHF) are funding a seafront heritage trail in Tendring from Jaywick Sands to Holland Haven but also incorporating Clacton town centre to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the founding of Clacton-on-Sea. The trail will cover over 5 miles of beautiful coastline and will include new technology to help bring it to life as well as a fun and engaging way to convey Clacton’s story. Listening benches and audio posts will also be added to join and connect individuals with the stories of Clacton through the years.

Octopus Ahoy!

There are many other projects and celebratory events linked with the trail some of which includes:
Octopus Ahoy! art sculptures. As part of the celebrations, for 10 weeks in this summer of 2021, from 25th June to 5th September, the Octopus Ahoy! art sculptures will form a public art trail across Harwich, Tendring and the wider Essex area to celebrate 150 Years of Clacton and the Mayflower 400™️. To take part, download the Octopus Ahoy! app this summer and win prizes for scanning each octopus whilst enjoying locating the sculptures and admiring the amazing art by local artists. Visit for more information.

Octopus Ahoy

A flower feature to mark the celebrations will be on display in the chain plot located next to the stunning memorial garden along Clacton’s seafront. The Memorial Garden contains beds with high quality formal bedding displays and a central area with seating around a War Memorial to those who died in the First and Second World Wars. This garden is a popular meeting place for both residents and visitors.

Memorial Gardens

Clacton150 Anniversary Wheel. Clacton Pavilion has installed an observation wheel which towers above Clacton’s seafront to mark the celebrations. The wheel consists of 24 gondolas, with many adapted for wheelchair access, and can hold a total of 144 guests at a time. Tickets can be purchased individually; however, afternoon teas will also be available to pre book which includes a ride on the anniversary wheel for free. Visit for more information.

Clacton 150 Wheel beach view

To keep up to date and for more information on the celebrations visit our page our Visit our Clacton150 web page, log on to our Clacton150 Facebook page or email us at

Click here to read the latest Essex Sunshine Coast news & blogs.

Tendring beaches keep three Blue Flags

Seven beaches in Tendring have been handed prestigious awards by Keep Britain Tidy – including three of the top Blue Flags.

Beaches at Brightlingsea, Dovercourt Bay, Harwich, Frinton, Walton-on-the-Naze and the town’s Albion beach, and Martello Bay in Clacton have all been given Seaside Awards in recognition of their quality.

In addition the beaches at Dovercourt Bay, Brightlingsea and Walton’s Albion beach kept their Blue Flag status, which Walton was awarded for the first time last year.

It means all Tendring seafronts have kept their accreditation from 2020.

Blue Flag 2021 Walton Cllr Alex Porter Ben Burrows Henry Speck Scott Lawrence

Alex Porter, Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Tourism at Tendring District Council (TDC), said the awards were well-deserved recognition of the beauty of the area’s seafronts.

“The Essex Sunshine Coast is stunning, a brilliant asset for residents, visitors and the whole tourism industry,” Councillor Porter said.

“Recognising this is why we invest so much into them, with our Beach Patrol service in the high season, regular improvements to seafronts and promenades, or creating and protecting them with new beaches and cliff stabilisation projections.

“The awards are a great advert for the Essex Sunshine Coast, and it must be recognised that it is not easy to keep Blue Flag and Seaside Award status.

“Due to the Covid-19 restrictions we are anticipating a busy summer season – possibly the busiest ever – and these awards will boost that. We have been preparing for some time for this possible influx, and hope it will help our district get back to business.”

Brightlinsea beach

Keep Britain Tidy’s Chief Executive Allison Ogden-Newton OBE said: “This year, more than ever, we are going to be relying on our country’s beautiful beaches to escape for a much-needed break after all the stresses and strains of the past year.

“Last year, due to the pandemic, we did not have the opportunity to celebrate all the great award-winning beaches around the coast so this year we are delighted to have even more winners than we did in 2019, thanks to the incredible work of the teams around the country that make our beaches clean and safe for us all to enjoy.

“From environmental education for the local community and ensuring responsible beach use, to cleaning regimes and an increasing number of recycling facilities, it is a full-time commitment to create beaches worthy of these awards.

“As we all plan our 2021 holidays much closer to home, thanks to the Blue Flag and Seaside Award those choosing to holiday at a destination with an award-winning beach can be assured it will be clean and safe and meet the highest standards for water quality and management.”

RNLI – sea safety

The RNLI are experts on sea safety. Whether you’re heading to the beach, to the coast, or out to sea, They have put together essential safety advice so you can make the most of your time on the water.

RNLI boat at sea

Heading down to the coast or out on the water is a great way to have fun and stay active. But, if you’re not careful, it’s a lot easier to get into trouble in the water than you might think. Conditions can change quickly and, if you’re not prepared, you can easily get caught out.

The RNLI are sea safety experts that have collated all their advice in one place, so you can find the information you need to make the most out of your time at the coast. Whether you’re going to the beach, exploring the coast, or venturing out onto the water, there’s a host of sea safety advice to help you stay safe.

Thinking of going kayaking? Angling? Surfing? The RNLI safety experts have created activity guides covering a whole range of watersports and hobbies, so you can prepare yourself properly for the challenges of your chosen activity. There’s even advice for your dog!

If you’re looking for water safety activities for kids, check out Swim Safe – a free summer water safety session for children aged 7-14. They have also put together some beach safety advice to help you find a safe place to enjoy the sun, sand and sea in the summer.

For those after more detailed advice on RNLI sea safety, you can find some specialist sessions that provide in-depth guidance and cover a range of safety topics at

For more information on visiting our coastline click the links below:
Tendring’s seafronts & beaches
Beach safety
Tide tables
Public launching ramps
Beaches with animal bans
Changing places for disabled people
Cycling on our seafront promenades
School trips to the beach
Clacton seafront & garden walk
Beach huts

English Tourism Week 2021

English Tourism Week is fast approaching and will run from 22 – 31 May 2021. It’s a chance for tourism businesses all across England to celebrate our exciting and diverse visitor economy sector and showcase what we have to offer locally, regionally and nationally.

For more information or to become involved visit

Visit England Logo

Appeal for memories of Clacton as part of anniversary celebrations

Clacton residents and holidaymakers past and present are being asked to share their memories as part of an anniversary project.

This year the town celebrates its 150th anniversary, and a series of events and projects to mark the occasion are being held – helped with a £250,000 grant awarded in September 2020 from the National Heritage Lottery Fund

The year 1871 is seen as the founding of modern Clacton when a group of businessmen built the Pier and Royal Hotel to spark the creation of a new holidaymaker resort, with the town officially incorporated in 1872.

Now those working on the Clacton 150 project, which is taking place in the area from Jaywick Sands to Holland-on-Sea, want to hear your memories of the town – or even family links back to the founding in 1871 – ahead of activities this summer.

Councillor Alex Porter, Tendring District Council Cabinet Member for Leisure and Tourism, said: “We’re already working really closely with the Clacton and District History Society and other community groups, who are brilliantly supportive and helpful, but we also want to hear your personal stories.

“Whether it’s happy memories of going to Butlins, ice creams on the beach, watching a show on the Pier or going on the rides on the Pavilion – maybe the first ever Clacton Airshow – we want to hear your stories. And if you have pictures – or even video – then so much the better.

“Your memories don’t have to go back 150 years, we’re looking to chart the town’s history since 1871 so anything from then to more modern times is welcomed.”

Historical Clacton

Anne Jenkins, Director, Midlands and East, National Lottery Heritage Fund, said: “We are delighted to support this project which, thanks to money raised by National Lottery players, will mean that more people will be able to get involved with, protect, and learn about the exciting heritage right on their doorstep.”

Information provided will be used as part of the heritage trail around the town, and could also form part of listening benches or other exhibitions.

People can share their stories and pictures by emailing or posting them for the attention of Clacton 150 to: Town Hall, Station Road, Clacton, Essex, CO15 1SE. Please include a stamped address envelope so items can be returned afterwards.

For details on how the council will hold the data supplied, visit

Visit our Clacton 150 web page  or Clacton 150 Facebook page for further information.

The Sustainable Development Fund grant funding is now open for applications for Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty in Essex

Up to £70,000 of grant funding is now open for applications across two Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty in Essex and Suffolk.   Closing 17th May 2021.

The Sustainable Development Fund opens to applications for projects that benefit the Coast & Heaths Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty or the Dedham Vale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. 

The Sustainable Development Fund is available to a variety of community and conservation organisations (or individuals) to support projects for the conservation and enhancement of the Coast & Heaths AONB and the Dedham Vale AONB.

The AONB is seeking applications from local community projects that are innovative, socially inclusive, sustainable, that benefit the public and involve partnership working.

Whether you have a project that works in the arts, media, conservation, learning, heritage, food, health, accessibility, and diversity, to give you but a few examples, we welcome your applications.

There is no limit to the amount of funding projects can apply for.  In 2020-21 the Sustainable Development Fund awarded in the region of £500 to £4,700 per project.  In 2020-21 the Sustainable Development Fund supported 43 projects across the AONBs.  Previous projects that have been funded by the Sustainable Development Fund include climate change awareness courses, art workshops for tackling men’s mental health, training for canoe trips, and improving access to nature for people on the autistic spectrum.

The following grant is now open for applications:

Sustainable Development Fund  – For projects in a defined geographical area covering both AONBs.  Applications to be received by 17th May 2021 for projects running between July 2021 and end of March 2022.

Coast & Heaths AONB Sustainable Development Fund

Dedham Vale AONB Sustainable Development Fund

Applicants need not necessarily come from, or be based in, the AONB. However, projects must further the conservation and enhancement of the AONB.

The Sustainable Development Fund is a fund provided by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) to enable local communities and other organisations to make a difference in AONBs by promoting and achieving sustainable development, partnership, and social inclusion.

These projects focus on integrating the environment, local communities, and the economy so that the unique landscape of the AONB is conserved and its natural beauty enhanced, making it more enjoyable for all.

The closing date for applications to be received for the Sustainable Development Fund is Monday 17th May 2021. For more information, visit or or contact Oka Last, Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Grants Officer, on 01394 445225 or