More than 100 pieces of artwork inspired by living in the Westborough Ward of Southend will be on show throughout August.

Paul Miller’s exhibition is showing in The People’s Gallery, at Southend Forum and includes a selection of large canvases and smaller etchings.

His work is centred on his two characters, and alter egos, Bodger and Scarper.

The former stage designer, who worked for six years at the Palace Theatre in Westcliff, said: “The exhibition is staged by a disreputable duo calling themselves Bodgitt and Scarper. It focuses specifically on the multi-cultural Westborough ward of Southend,” said Paul.

“Bodgitt, the creative half, is a scatological elf and Scarper, the critic, is a murderous tom cat. They know nothing about Art, but they know what they like, which is the Dutch and Flemish Renaissance painter, Pieter Bruegel the Elder.”

Echo: Changing times - Paul depicts life in Westborough WardChanging times - Paul depicts life in Westborough Ward

Paul, 72, has also worked as a secondary English teacher for ten years and cartoonist, amongst other roles.

He was appointed by Chris Durham as designer of the Palace Theatre, Westcliff in 1975 and stayed there until 1981 when he left and moved to Harrogate. Paul then returned to live in Southend in 2005.

Echo: Artwork - Paul MillerArtwork - Paul Miller

“My work is It is not intended to be political, it is about life as I see it,” explained Paul.

“Westborough is the most densely populated area in Southend. Mostly I like it, the edgy charm, sometimes the edginess frustrates me because there’s no infrastructure. The charm of Westborough is slowly being eroded.

“It was originally built in 1912 and there have been so many changes, not all good. I am not bitter, just observe.”

The Forum Southend is located at Elmer Square, Southend, SS1 1NS. Visit