This film is part of Free

Tower Pier to Southend Pier and Back

The majestic ‘Royal Eagle’ Paddle Steamer transports eager day-trippers from ‘the smoke’ for some fresh air and fun on Southend Pier

Amateur film 1950 3 mins Silent

From the collection of:

Logo for East Anglian Film Archive


Leaving Tower Pier behind, the camera catches sight of other cruisers moored on the river, and the Paddle Steamer ‘Royal Eagle’ heads for the Thames estuary. Approaching Southend Pier, the Captain operates the bridge telegraph and offers a salute to the camera. The crowds disembark via gangplanks, which are then stowed for a return trip. The weary day-trippers enjoy a sunset as they pass silhouetted cranes and the unmistakeable chimneys of Barking Reach Power Station.

This footage is from a collection of films, spanning over fifty years, made by Harold William Jones, and donated to the East Anglian Film Archive by his daughter Liz Sutton.