TWO of Southend’s biggest fans returned to the very spot they got engaged - having finally tied the knot after a five year wait.

Newlyweds Alfie and Jade Hillier stopped by at Chalkwell Lifeguards Club for a few snaps on their wedding day which took place on Monday, refusing to let the bad weather rain on their parade.

With the latest restrictions limiting guests to just 15 and the ongoing Covid pandemic, the lovebirds were forced to ditch their plans for a big white wedding and instead finally got married at a registry office.

They then embarked on an emotional visit to Chalkwell Promenade - the very place Alfie got down on one knee back in 2015.

The 29-year-old said: “We go to Southend basically every year, whether it’s to the seaside, the Sea Life Centre, whatever it is - Jade would rather go there than anywhere else, so we got married at Southend Registry Office.

“It’s not quite how we imagined the day, but it was a fantastic wedding despite the circumstances. Obviously it was a bit sad not having all our loved ones there, but we still had our maid of honour and best man there, with their partners and another of our closest friends too.

“Two years ago we’d planned a big church wedding and we also booked a holiday getaway, but that was cancelled because of Covid.

“Our wedding day was planned for our seventh anniversary and so we thought let’s just do it.

“We didn’t want to have to wait another year or maybe even two years to do it, we don’t know what the situation will be even further down the line and we worried Covid would push it back even further.

“We’re planning on doing a big celebration in Southend on our one year anniversary next year with all our friends and family.”

And after their pit stop at the lifeguards club, the Harwich couple headed to Barru on Hamlet Court Road for some celebratory drinks and food, before returning to their hotel by 10pm.

Mr Hillier added: “I proposed to Jade in 2015 along Chalkwell Promenade, on the bench by the lifeboat.

“Jade absolutely loves Southend - the seafront, the usual fireworks, the atmosphere, she’s a big fan of just everything and so we decided to get married here- so she probably wouldn’t have had it any other way!

“We first met when we were both working on Clacton Pier. We had a connection straight away and we’re so happy to finally be married.”