The 'sinking' yacht club had been earmarked for demolishment

Two teenage boys have been arrested in connection with a fire at a former yacht club building at Southend.

Essex Police were called to assist the fire brigade with road closures and crowd control after the fire broke out at the Alexandra Yacht Club building at Clifftown Terrace shortly at about 11.45pm on Saturday.

Two boys aged 16 and 17, both from Westcliff, were arrested on suspicion of arson after being stopped by police in Westcliff at about 3am. They remained in custody today and have been bailed until 12th September pending further enquiries.

Alexandra Yacht Club had been considered unsafe as a building and last April a decision was taken for it to be demolished.

Some 30 firemen took several hours to control and extinguish the blaze, which was extinguished by 1.43am.

PBO contributor Terry Pond said: ‘This must be the final coupe de grace of this old building, the club being one of the oldest in the country.’

Investigation underway

The cause of the fire is unknown at this stage, Essexx County Fire and Rescue Service and the police will carry out an investigation.

Incident Commander-Station Officer Steve Parker said: ‘The fire started in the iconic Alexandra Yacht Club on Southend seafront just before midnight on Saturday night, the building was derelict and was situated on the side of the cliff on stilts.

‘A total of 30 firefighters tackled the blaze into the early hours of this morning and the aerial ladder platform was used to pour water at height onto the burning structure. The building has been completely destroyed by the fire.’


Alexandra Yacht Club. Credit: Terry Pond

Fire pics credited to: Kyle Marlon Aldridge