WHILE many of us still enjoy a quiet drink at our local, the heydays of the community pub are sadly behind us.

In recent years, all too many once-popular venues have been forced to close or rebrand, but happily some of south Essex's best-loved and most iconic venues are still thriving.

This selection of pictures from the Echo archives features a variety of pubs as they once were.

Some have been demolished, others remain in another guise, while a healthy number still look almost identical decades later.

TGF Churchills Bar and Diner, in London Road, Leigh, was home to Bellini Bar and Grill and is now the Oakleigh bar. Who remembers 'Arry Stottles opposite?

Meanwhile The Commodore, in Timberlog Lane, Basildon, was demolished in the early 2000s, with a block of flats, appropriately named Commodore House, now sitting in its place.

What about the Cork and Cheese at the bottom of Victoria Plaza in Southend? A true real ale pub.