Canvey Island is a civil parish and reclaimed island in the Thames estuary in EssexEngland. It has an area of 7. Lying only just above sea level it is prone to flooding at exceptional tides, but has nevertheless been inhabited since the Roman invasion of Britain. The island was mainly agricultural land until the 20th century when it became the fastest growing seaside resort in Britain between and The North Sea flood of devastated the island, killing 58 islanders and leading to the temporary evacuation of the 13, residents.
Canvey Island is also notable Canvey island essex united kingdom its relationship to the petrochemical industry. The island was the site of the first delivery in the world of liquefied natural gas by container ship, and Canvey island essex united kingdom became the subject of an influential assessment on the risks to a population living within the vicinity of petrochemical shipping and storage facilities. Excavations on Canvey have unearthed a collection of early man-made objects comprising axes from the Neolithic era,  a bracelet dating from the Bronze Age and Iron Age pottery.
In the Elizabethan antiquarian William Camden noted in his work Britannia a topographical and historical survey of all of Great Britain and Ireland that Canvey Island which he called Island Convennon was documented in the 2nd century by the Alexandrian geographer Ptolemy.
However, the difficulties faced in determining the location of land areas in Ptolemy's ancient work have led modern researchers to question the correlation between Ptolemy's island and contemporary Canvey. MacBean and Johnson, 18th century historians, contend Counus Island would have existed much further out to sea or even likely to be the Isle of Sheppey so any similarity between the names is mere coincidence.
Without any suitable island matching Ptolemy's Counus Island, 20th century historians White and Yearsley posit the documented island to Canvey island essex united kingdom been lost or reduced to an insignificant sandbank by subsidence and the constant effects of the sea.
The settlement and agricultural development of Essex by the Saxons from the 5th century saw the introduction of sheep-farming which would dominate the island's industry until the 20th century. The Norman conquest saw the area of Canvey recorded in the Domesday Book as a sheep farming pasture under the control of nine villages and parishes situated in a belt across south inland and coastal Essex.
The existence of several place names on modern Canvey using the wick suffix denoting the sheds in which the cheese was made shows the influence of the early Saxon culture. By the 12th century, Essex and subsequently Canvey were in the possession of Henry de Essex who inherited the land from his grandfather, Swein, son of Robert fitz Wymarch.
Canvey island essex united kingdom on John Norden's map with the second word "insula" with the traditional middle "s", facing the ' Isle ' of Grain rather than a Latinised "Sheppey insula" to the southeast, is a close eastern division which is perhaps the part which later almost wholly merged into the present island, with a ditch being the current boundary, having the same far eastern points as the Canvey Point and Leighbeck Point marshes.
Two Tree Canvey island essex united kingdom to the north is Canvey island essex united kingdom recognisable, if halved in length. The third eastern island or mudflat could well be the Counus i. If so Counus occupies an area from the Canvey Point Sand Bank until just before Shoeburynessthe eastern point of the relatively straight estuary so stretched the whole length of Southend on Seagiving a reason for the tidal flats along this shore being so shallow see for instance the world's longest pier which is in the town.
Cana's People were descendants of both Canvey island essex united kingdom and the Catuvellauni. If a boundary point, Counus would then be in tribal terms placed at the southern border of the Trinovantes on the eastern extent of the loose tribes also seen as the Tames Thames. During Edward II's reign — the land was under the possession of John de Apeton  and the first attempts were made at managing the effects of the sea with rudimentary defences,   but periodical flooding continued to blight the small population of mostly shepherds and their fat-tailed variety of sheep for a further years.
William Camden wrote of the island in that it was so low that it was often quite flooded, except the hills, upon which the sheep have a place of safe refuge. InSir Henry Appleton a descendant of John de Apetonand Canvey's other landowners  instigated a project to reclaim the land and wall the island from the Thames.
An agreement was reached in which stipulated that in return for inning and recovering the island, the landowners would grant a third of the land as payment for the work. A relation of Croppenburg's, the Dutch engineer Cornelius Vermuyden present in England at the time of the project on a commission to drain the Fens and involved in repairing the seawall at Dagenhamhas led to speculation that Vermuyden oversaw the project, but proof appears to be vague,  nevertheless the work was completed by around Dutch skilled in the construction of dykes and other sea defences.
A broad drainage ditch was dug inland off the area facing the river while smaller inlets were filled in. Excess water would have collected in the broad ditch and then been discharged into the river by the means of seven sluices later known as Commissioners Dykes.
In a hexagonal lighthouse was constructed by the engineer James Walkera consultant lighthouse engineer at Trinity House at the time. The lighthouse was demolished in due to its poor condition.
Philip Benton reported about Canvey Chapel in That ancient pub was itself described by Charles Dickens in Great Expectations. So out of the way and therefore the smugglers was the inn behind the sea wall, in the 18th century it was known as 'The World's End'. In the 19th century, the isolation made it an ideal point for the meetings of pugilists. The row of Preventive Men's Cottages has survived against the odds.
Today they are surrounded by a small housing estate. The fight lasted for three hours and 65 rounds, and was finally declared a draw when it became too dark to see.
Sayers won at the rematch a month later in London. Sometimes the bouts were between local families, the best known being that between champion Ben Caunt and Nat Langham.
The fight arose from a family feud and Caunt took Langham to 60 rounds in September Langham was knocked down 59 times during the bout and due, it is said, to his sportsmanship Caunt agreed to settle their differences with a handshake. During the Victorian era Canvey became a very fashionable place to visit, and its air was promoted as having healing properties. This started inafter the Black Monday floods, when an entrepreneur called Frederick Hester bought Leigh Beck Farm, and started what was to be called Southview Park estate.
The project started well with thousands of plots sold, however by the scheme had fallen apart due to materials not being delivered Canvey island essex united kingdom issues with land ownership with the laying of the mono rail.
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Hester was declared bankrupt and everything was sold off at an auction held at Chimney's Farm. A new sea front was developed in the s, with Canvey Casino - an amusement arcade and park opening as the first building on what would become Eastern Esplanade.
Canvey Island remained a popular holiday and weekend destination until the cheap foreign package holiday became popular in the s. During the Second World War the island was a part of the GHQ Linea line of concrete pillboxes constructed as a part of the defence against the expected German invasion.
Some of the old pillboxes are still in place. Also, concrete barges were used extensively just off the south coast of the island, partly as a sea-barrier and also as a mounting point for anti-aircraft guns; one of which was beached on the east end of the island and remained for many years as a point of interest for visitors and a play area for many generations of the island's children.
It has since been demolished by the Island Yacht Club as it was considered a risk to health and safety.
Along with the Coalhouse Fort at nearby East TilburyThorney Bay on the southern coast of the island was the site of a degaussing station built to monitor the effectiveness of the equipment on board the allied ships passing along the Thames. The structure is the last intact degaussing station on the north side of the river, and was still operating in Known as the Canvey loop, the building was occupied by the Women's Royal Naval Service and used for monitoring merchant ships.
The building has since been re-opened as a museum dubbed the "Bay Museum" and has First World War exhibits on the ground floor and Second World War exhibits on the first floor. On 1 Februarythe Canvey island essex united kingdom North Sea Flood hit the island during the night and caused the deaths of 58 people.
Many of the victims were in the holiday bungalows of the eastern Newlands estate and perished as the water reached ceiling level. This included the Red Cow pub which was later renamed the King Canute in reference to the legend of the 11th century Danish king of England commanding the tide to halt with the sea lapping at his feet. The King Canute pub was closed in May In a scheme to convert the building into retail space and apartments was proposed.
After the flooding ofa new seawall was built, which was then replaced with a significantly larger construction in the s. The southern area of the Canvey Island West ward at Hole Haven has predominantly existed as petrochemical site since the first construction of an oil terminal there in The gas terminal built by the British Gas Council was designed to store and distribute imported gas to the whole of Britain via the facilities at Thames Haven and the local refinery at Shellhaven in Coryton.
The first delivery of 2, tonnes arrived on 20 February from Lake Charles, Louisiana by a specially Canvey island essex united kingdom liberty ship Normarti renamed The Methane Pioneer. The success of seven further deliveries over the following 14 months  established the international industry for transporting liquefied natural gas LNG by sea,  but the discovery of oil and gas in North Sea limited further British development. Canvey continued to receive 50 shipments of LNG per year from Arzew Algeria, until aboutBritish gas closed the site in In Occidental Petroleum began construction of an oil refineryaccess roads, about 20 oil-storage tanks, a river jetty and a concrete chimney were constructed, but work was halted in pending a major design study review following the oil crisis of and OPEC 's increase of oil prices.
On 28 March planning permission was granted to United Refineries Ltd to develop a site to the north of the Occidental refinery site for the construction of another oil refinery. The report of 30 April recommended revocation and further expert evaluation of the totality of risks facing people who lived in and around Canvey.
In March the Secretaries of State for the Environment and Employment asked the Health and Safety Commission to investigate the risks to health and safety of various installations on Canvey and the neighbouring part of Thurrock. In the HSE concluded that the residents of the island faced a risk more than five times higher than those in neighbouring South Benfleet. On 27 July Castle Point District Council asked the Secretary of State "to revoke the planning permission granted to United Refineries Canvey island essex united kingdom in accordance with his Inspector's recommendation at the exploratory inquiry in ".
The issue of risk was again highlighted in an attack by the IRA in January on a storage tank at the island's Texaco oil terminal.
A bomb was detonated at a tank containing aviation fuel, but failed to ignite with the fuel escaping into a safety moat. Safeway had planned for the 2,ton chimney to be demolished on 18 September in front of a large crowd of invited guests.
This would have been the first time Fred Dibnah's demolition technique of pit props and fire without explosives had been attempted on a concrete chimney and it was also the tallest chimney he had ever attempted to fell. However the chimney unexpectedly collapsed the previous day whilst Fred and his team were making the final preparations for the controlled demolition, fortunately without Canvey island essex united kingdom.
The incident is described in detail in various biographies and by Fred himself in Canvey island essex united kingdom public speaking events afterwards.
Fred Dibnah later presented Safeway head office staff with brass paper weights made from material salvaged from the chimney stamped "The Great Canvey Island Chimney Disaster ". Calor Gas Ltd now operate the former British Gas site. The site imports, stores, bottles and exports liquified petroleum gases LPG propane and butane. There were plans in to convert the plant back to the import of liquified natural gas LNG but the planning application was rejected.
The site offers a bulk liquid storage facility for refined petroleum products.
Neither of the refineries proposed in the s were completed or commissioned. The Texaco site was demolished and the tanks removed, the former Texaco river jetty is still extant. The island is separated from the mainland to the north and west by Benfleet Canvey island essex united kingdom, East Haven and Vange creeks, and faces the Thames Estuary to the east and south.
Before reclamation, the surrounding area contained a number of islands separated by tidal creeks. The drainage system consists of sewers, culverts, natural and artificial dykes and lakes which feed seven pumping stations and gravity sluices that discharge the water into the Thames and creeks.