"Thundersley" in Benfleet Parish

The Confusing Southern Boundary of Thundersley Parish

Go to Hadleigh Park Avenue and the locals will tell you they live in Thundersley and King John School still bears a Thundersley address, but both are clearly situated in the old parish of South Benfleet, so what is going on?

In the 22 April 1965 edition of The Stage, it referred to “the Hollywood Restaurant and Club, Thundersley”, but the Hollywood stood in Shipwright’s Drive, so in South Benfleet parish.

I think the answer lies in the old postal district served by Thundersley Post Office. It was easier to deliver extra items across the south side of Kiln Road, rather than bring them all the way up Vicarage Hill from South Benfleet (before Essex Way was built).

In fact, the Thundersley Parish Boundary runs for the most part along Kiln Road (the A13), diving south only across Thundersley Glen and to the west through the centre of Jarvis Hall. All the area to the south of this has always been part of South Benfleet parish.

The parish boundary then makes it way west roughly parallel to the north of Bowers Road before coming up what is now New Park Road until once more joining the London road on its way to Tarpots.

Ironically, it seems that unlike the residents either side of Shipwrights Drive, there are not many living just south of the London Road west of Bread and Cheese Hill who regard themselves as part of Thundersley, but they are!

So anyone with a story of living within this area of this southern fringe of Thundersley would be most welcome to put this on this website, rather than on our sister archive at Benfleet.

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  • It’s an interesting article as I lived with my parents in the sixties and seventies in Kiln Road, on its south side, between Hadleigh Park Avenue and Victoria House Corner. Our address was always written as Kiln Road, Thundersley, Benfleet, Essex, although I can now see that we actually lived in Benfleet parish. However, I went to Hadleigh County Primary and Junior school and we had a Southend-on-Sea telephone number!
    Whenever our family and friends mentioned us, they always said we lived in Hadleigh and we always corrected them by saying we lived in Thundersley!
    I always felt that I had much more of an allegiance with Hadleigh though, rather than Thundersley or Benfleet, both of which seemed miles away!

    By Neil S (21/05/2020)

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