NATIONAL treasure Bruce Forsyth revealed Southend was one of his favourite holiday destinations as a youngster.

In his new book, Bruce, 87, he describes some of his most treasured memories of his childhood as being his families’ visits to the town.

In his book, StrictlyBruce: Stories of My Life, he describes Southend as a great place for a day trip back in the 1930s.

“Southend-on-Sea – or Southend-on- Mud as we used to affectionately call it – was pebbly, but still a super place for a day trip,” He said.

“When the time came to head home to Edmonton, North London, we kids would be miserable, but before we left dad would buy saveloys and pease pudding from one of the seaside stalls.

“The smell as we ate it in the back of the car is another special childhood memory.”

In a childhood picture, taken in 1933 when Bruce was just five years old, he is seen with his family in the town.

He added: “I’m pulling a daft face or maybe I’m on the brink of one of my regular tantrums. My brother John’s wearyexpression suggests I’ve been up to no good all day.

“My mother Florence and father John are in the back row, and it’s lovely to see Mum clutching a bunch of flowers. I bet Dad picked them for her.

Mysister Maisie is sitting in the centre, flanked by one of her friends.

“You can just about make out a beach ball at Dad’s feet. The five-year age gap between my brother and I meant we didn’t playmuch together at home, only football occasionally.”

He says his father worked so hard in his business that he didn’t really have much time, but holidays were the exception.

After reading about Bruce’s family holidays to Southend, the town’s enterprise and tourism councillor Mary Betson said she was thrilled to hear he had such fond memories of the town.

Echo: Nice to see you – a young Bruce Forsyth, centre, with his family on a day trip to Southend in the 1930s

She said: “Southend is a national treasure, so we feel especially honoured to win such accolades about our town from another national treasure like Sir Bruce Forsyth.

“It is great to learn what a marvellous impression Southend made on the young Brucie and are very pleased that he remembers wonderful family outings here.

“Sir Bruce is extremely welcome to come back to see how Southend continues to thrive and happily host memorable excursions for millions more residents and visitors too.”

  • Strictly Bruce: Stories of My Life (Bantam Press, £20) is out now.