POLICE were granted special powers to prevent any further violence in Westcliff following last night's double stabbing.

Officers were given additional stop and search powers under Section 60 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994.

It meant police were able to carry out stop and searches in specific locations without the need to have reasonable grounds.

The order, which ran from 8.45pm yesterday until 6am this morning (Saturday, July 25), covered all of Chalkwell Park and ran along sections of Kings Road and Chalkwell Avenue.

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Essex Police says their officers will continue to carry out high visibility patrols throughout today.

Speaking when the order was issued last night, chief insp Ashley Howard said: “Officers were quickly on scene to deal with the disorder and continue to work throughout the night investigating the initial incident and patrolling the area to ensure our communities are safe.

“The additional stop and search powers will help prevent further offending and disorder, keeping people safe.

“We would like to thank witnesses that have assisted with our enquiries as information from the public is really important to bring offenders to justice.

“We urge anyone who information about the incident to make contact with our detectives in Southend CID on 101 quoting reference 1144 of today’s date.”

British Transport Police had previously authorised the use of the additional powers for the area in and around Chalkwell Railway Station and platforms and walkways to the Esplanade, the beach, promenade and bowling green.

Essex Police say detectives are continuing their enquiries to identify further people who may have been involved in last night's incident.

Officers were called to reports of a large group of people fighting, some with weapons, in Chalkwell Esplanade, near Chalkwell train station around 7pm last night.

The large group of people dispersed around the local area quickly after police arrived.

A force helicopter was also called to the area.

Two 15-year-old boys were taken to hospital. One had head and leg injuries, including a stab wound to the leg. The other had a stab wound to his arm. Their injuries are not life threatening.

An 18-year-old man from Basildon was arrested on suspicion of causing grievous bodily harm and possession of drugs, and a 20-year-old man from South Ockendon was arrested on suspicion of affray.

They remain in custody for questioning.