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This blog is no longer being updated. Please visit www.longpier.com for all the latest news, sport and features for Southend and surrounding areas.

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The ALL NEW Longpier.com is almost here...

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After months of discussion, debate and endless meetings in coffee shops in the Southend area, the all NEW Longpier.com will be launched on Saturday morning (22nd May).

Finally - after four years hard work - the website will transform itself from a "blog" style site into a professional news, sport and features portal for Southend and surrounding areas.

NEWS: Police hunt after serious assault in Southend

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Detectives have appealed for information after a man was seriously injured in a street attack in Southend. Details have just been released.

The 24-year-old man from Canvey suffered a fractured skull and fractured jaw in the incident in London Road at about 4.30am on Sunday May 16, 2010.

NEWS: Southend man sentenced for rape

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A man from Southend has been sentenced today (20 May) for the rape of a 21 year old woman from the south Essex town.

29-year-old student Chishala Bwalya from Norwich Avenue was sentenced to an indeterminate sentence and must serve a minimum of six years, before applying for parole. He has also been placed on the sex offender's register and will be deported when he has served his time in prison.

NEWS: Southend teenager sentenced for GBH and attempted robbery

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A 17-year-old boy from Southend has been sentenced to four and a half years in custody after pleading guilty to a variety of offences including attempted robbery and GBH.

His Honour Judge Christopher Mitchell lifted reporting restrictions allowing Ben Watkins of York Road to be named.

NEWS: New Southend Mayor sets out charity plans

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The new Mayor of Southend – Councillor Ann Holland – has revealed the good causes she is raising funds for whilst in office.

During today's lunchtime launch at Porters (19 May) – the Mayor's official residence in Southchurch Road – Cllr Holland announced that the Southend Mayor's Charity 2010/11 is supporting Stroke, Disability and the Arts.

NEWS: The long dispute between Leigh neighbours

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We've all had neighbourly disputes in the past, but has yours ever spanned 11 years?

Well, a long-running row between two Leigh-on-Sea individuals will finally be resolved at an Auction sale next Wednesday (26 May).

It was 1999 when Milica Markos first took her then neighbour Alan Goodfellow to court over a boundary dispute.

NEWS: Is Southend a "holiday friendly" location?

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Do you think Southend is one of the best places to take a vacation? Is it a friendly place to be? Would you consider our resort to be welcoming to visitors - whether they be day trippers or short stay holidaymakers?

Well a survey out today suggests Southend is the 8th most "holiday friendly" destination in the UK.

SPORT: Shrimpers' Crawford gets international nod

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Southend United's young striker Harry Crawford has been called up to the Republic of Ireland's Under 19 squad.

Crawford, who made his debut in March during Southend's 3–0 home win over Walsall, will join the squad in Ukraine immediately, and will compete in the European Championships elite round qualification.

NEWS: Big cycle challenge across Southend

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Eager cyclists from 16-years-old upwards are being urged to enter a unique and exciting competition called Urban Pursuit, which starts and finishes in Chalkwell Park.

The event, which runs from 10am until 3pm this Sunday (23rd May), features checkpoint challenges taking riders from one corner of Southend to the other in a bid to solve riddles and clues.

SPORT: Director quits Shrimpers

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One of Southend United's directors has quit the board at Roots Hall.

Paul Robinson - who owns and runs 'Paul Robinson Solicitors', on the London Road in Westcliff - is stepping down due to work and other commitments.

In a statement released this afternoon (17 May), the club website southendunited.

NEWS: Criticism over Rochford's SX Festival

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Numerous bands and revellers have hit out over the organisation of this weekend's SX Festival in Rochford.

The two day event - held over 15th and 16th May - was meant to feature more than 80 bands over five stages, but Longpier.com understands that several billed artists didn't turn up, due to what they called, "poor organisation".

NEWS: Street robbery in Southend

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Police are appealing for information in connection with a street robbery in Southend.

The attack happened when a 20-year-old man was walking along Priory Avenue shortly after 12:30am on Wednesday, May 12. He was accosted by two men who both punched him in the face before stealing his mobile telephone, a two-figure sum of cash and a bag containing a tracksuit outfit.

NEWS: Police hunt 'flasher' in Westcliff

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Police are looking to identify a man who indecently exposed himself to a woman in Westcliff.

The incident happened when a 39-year-old woman was walking along Inverness Avenue shortly before 8:30am on Friday, May 14. A man passed by and dropped his trousers, exposing his genitals. He then continued walking towards West Street and entered a property.

NEWS: Westcliff Art Trail 2010

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Westcliff's annual Art Trail has begun with more venues and artists taking part than ever before.

36 venues have been chosen including cafes, travel shops and individual's houses. It's free to view the art on show, with the option to buy prints and paintings direct from the artist. The trail should take no longer than two hours to complete and runs ffrom 14th until 22nd May.