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The local area guide to living in Southminister

Southminster is an historic town that lies on the Dengie peninsula of Essex, ten miles south east of Maldon and three miles north of Burnham-on-Crouch, one of the UK’s leading yachting sites. The area has long been inhabited, with nearby Pandole Wood containing earthworks believed to date from the Iron Age, and evidence of Saxon and Roman settlements found nearby.

In more recent years, Southminster was celebrated for its horse market, which was held annually and, with its accompanying fair, was a major destination in the area. The earliest records of the market date from 1218 and the last one was held in 1937, more than 700 years later.

Today, Southminster is a lively little town that manages to combine rural charm with easy access to London, making it popular with commuters; the journey to Liverpool Street takes a little over an hour. The town itself has plenty going for it too: independent shops, a selection of great pubs and easy access to some of the UK’s finest marshes and wetlands.

There are also some fine open spaces within the town such as Southminster Orchard, which is maintained by volunteers who have provided seating and play equipment, and where an Apple Day celebration is held at the beginning of each autumn.

Information about the local residents

There were 4,272 residents of Southminster at the time of the 2011 census, compared to 4,021 on 2001, which suggests that, though it’s a popular commuter town, it hasn’t expanded far enough to lose its character.

It’s a fairly young town, with people aged 30-44 making up the largest part of its population and therefore is home to lots of families with smaller children. Southminster is home to an operatic and choral society, a football club and a dance academy, and has plenty of clubs for children, including Brownies, Scouts and a branch of the Young Farmers’ Club.

Nearby schools

The town itself has just one school, Southminster Primary School, which has been classed as requiring improvement, though Ofsted have also said that pupils are now ‘making faster progress’.

A few miles down the road is Burnham-on-Crouch Primary School, which is classed as ‘good’ and noted for having pupils who are well behaved and ‘demonstrate positive attitudes to their learning’.

Ormiston Rivers Academy, the local secondary school, is described as ‘good’ at both secondary and sixth form levels. Secondary and primary schools that aren’t within Southminster itself operate bus and coach travel to their schools.

Getting around

Southminster itself is small enough to be easily walked, with most of the shops and amenities being on or around Station Road; essentially Southminster’s high street. There are several bus routes that operate via the First Group, travelling between Chelmsford and Burnham, and servicing villages in between including Danbury, Purleigh, Steeple and Maldon.

Southminster lies at end of the Crouch Valley branch line, connected to Wickford at the other end. From Wickford there are regular services to London Liverpool Street and London Stratford to the west and London Southend airport to the east.

Local shops

The centre of Southminster is a conservation area, the highlight of which is the Parish Church of St Leonards, which is believed to date back to the 12th Century, and some 17th century houses and shops. One of these buildings is the Station Arms public house, a listed weatherboard building, which sells award-winning real ales and has been voted Essex CAMRA Pub of the Year five times.

Southminster has four other pubs, an Indian restaurant, a Chinese restaurant, a fish bar and a café to choose from, if you fancy a meal out. There’s a selection of small shops, such as the local store, charity shops, pharmacies and a gift shop, as well as a library and a bakery, and the usual selection of supermarkets located within easy driving distance.

Whilst every effort has been taken to ensure the above information is up to date, some inaccuracies may occur. If you notice any inaccuracies please contact

All information was correct at time of publication and is provided in good faith.