5th March 1941

Work has just begun on a new 12” water-main running along the W. side of Mersea Road. It began in Portland Road by St. Botolph’s Corner, crossing right over Mersea Road by Knopp’s [Shoe] Factory. In this cross cut was what I think was a definite trace of Roman road and ditch on the E. side of it, and above that a fairly modern brick foundation, obviously the base of old Knopp’s garden wall, as it was more than 30 years ago, before the “Empire” Cinema was built and the road widened.

The Empire Cinema in Mersea Road had been built in 1911 and was originally called the Vaudeville Electric Theatre. The cinema was demolished in 1971.

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