In November 1971 there was a gas explosion outside the post office in Lower Southend Road. Press Gas Contractors were brought in to carry out a repair on the gas main.
As signs of the times, we can see a Ford Anglia just along the road, a pram left outside the post office, the happy men chatting nearby, whilst one of the workmen in the hole is enjoying a cigarette. (It was before the introduction of the 1974 Health and Safety at Work Act!)
Priority House is just behind the telephone boxes, and the bypass didn’t exist.