The flow of traffic is notably not lessened or smoothed by the removal of the roundabout, and the original architect's plan for a sweeping expanse of smooth paving has rubbed up against the hard reality that 'shared space' (where cars, buses and pedestrians are not separated by clear divisions such as roads and pavements) in a tourist town is a bit of a bad idea.
"Well, that wasn't on the artist's impression, Quentin!"
Yup, in order to ensure that visiting tourists (and the drunks, druggies and dropouts that flock to Southend in good weather) don't walk under a bus or taxi, because they aren't expecting those giant bollards and slight change in paving colour to be the demarcation of the road, the council has seen fit to plaster the area with yellow 'Warning!' notices.
Looks lovely, doesn't it?
And see the little man in the hi-vis jacket? Yup, you guessed it. He and his fellows (I counted two others when I took the snaps) are there to guide the people away from danger (by shouting 'OI!' at top volume to any hapless pedestrian about to disappear under a bus).
How long will they be there? Who knows - how long will the 'shared space' idea be a danger to seasonal visitors?
So, it's been a nice little job creation scheme for the council. And not much else.