We’ve discovered these vintage photos from the glamorous days of the Southend Carnival.

They are from the 1930s – a decade that some might say was the golden age of the historic parade.

Echo: Famous comedian Stanley Holloway dressed as headless Anne Boleyn at Southend Carnival 1937. He is pictured in his costume chatting to a bewildered but hopefully not scared to death, little girl at the carnival.

The images show plenty of action from the carnivals which always attracted crowds of tens of thousands of people.

One of the photos shows well know comedian, singer and actor of the time, Stanley Holloway, dressed up as a headless Anne Boleyn chatting to a seemingly bewildered young girl.

Echo: Bawling babies - the bonny baby show at the 1934 Southend Carnival didn’t go down well with all the tiny tots entered in to the contest

Perhaps she was wondering who was really inside the costume?

Another photos shows film actress Jessie Mathews – one of the biggest box office stars of the 1930s – crowning the 1937 Southend Carnival queen.

Echo: Not lagging in the fashion department – a group of young women at the 1937 Southend Carnival dress as convicts

Sadly there was no Southend summer Carnival this year but there’s plenty to look forward to with the third annual Halloween Parade set to be unleashed on the city on October 28.


Children carry balloons while dressed in detailed costumes at the 1937 Southend Carnival

Echo: Regal smiles - members of the Southend Carnival carnival court of 1932 are happy to be at the procession

Echo: Hilda Wordsworth, aged 21, from Leigh is crowned by film star Jessie Matthews at the 1937 carnival