A number of big-name and up-and-coming brands have announced plans to open in Southend High Street this year.

American burger giant Wendy’s is set to unveil its newest restaurant at the former Ponden Interiors store after plans were approved earlier this year, while trendy coffee chain Black Sheep Coffee could soon open in the old Post Office building.

As more businesses show interest in the High Street, including Poundstretcher which opened its doors last week, we asked our readers what they would like to see in the city centre.

John Campbell gave a vision for a revitalised High Street.

He said the it "needs to be an activity-based spot", saying that "there’s no stopping the change of shops becoming online only".

He added: "The only things that will survive are things that require human engagement.

"Like crazy golf, ice-skate rinks, bowling etc."

The idea of changing the High Street into a location for leisure activities appears to be a popular one, with many residents agreeing with Mr Campbell’s vision.

Meanwhile, Emma Keeling is thrilled that Wendy’s is heading to the city, describing their burgers as "proper nice" adding that the fast food chain is "amazing".

Ben Jimmick, however, advises that the city makes an effort to distinguish itself by attracting independent shops rather than big chains.

Some residents, though, including Valerie Pamela Smith, lamented a perceived lack of certain shops, calling for "real shops to buy clothes".

This was supported by Yvonne Barwick, who called for a "better class" of women's wear and men's department stores.

Similarly, Janine Armitage said: "We desperately need more boutique shops, department stores, clothing stores and believe it or not homeware store."

Ellen Patricia Sullivan suggests that, instead of more fast food outlets, the High Street would benefit from a more varied range of shops.

Paul Caseley recommended the establishment of a salad bar for those seeking a healthier dining alternative.

Elsewhere there were calls for a florist, a children's soft play area and a pet supplies shop, as well as a number of restaurant suggestions and calls for Woolworths to make a return.