We have now reached the end of the period when residents were able to purchase their restrictive covenants/freeholds for properties on the Burges Estate from Thorpe Estates Limited.
If you still wish to purchase the restrictive covenants/freehold for your property you will need to negotiate with Pier Management on an individual basis and should send a letter to Daniel Harrison at the following address:
Pier Management Ltd
16-18 Warrior Square
In the Essex Records Office you can find Deeds of Arrangement, circa 1871, which show that areas of Shoeburyness, known as ‘Title of Thorpe Hall alias South Thorpe and North Thorpe’, were given as marriage presents to members of the family by Colonel John Burges. It would seem that no covenants were placed on these areas. Of course people living in these areas are now benefiting from this, as it is common knowledge that on the modern day Burges Estate, which runs from the golf course east to Maplin Way and in the north from the railway line south to the estuary, is covered by covenants. As with any rule there are exceptions and in roads to the east such as Church Road, Leitrim Avenue, Ulster Avenue and Waterford Road and, in the west, West Burges Terrace and Gloucester Terrace covenants can be found.
Covenants were put into place to protect the integrity of the estate, the core covenants were generally the same, for example: –
- a license must be sought from the freeholder for alterations to the property
- only a single-family dwelling house per building plot
- no business to be run from the property
Other covenants exist but are not standardised throughout the estate and there appears to be no mutual enforceability clauses, which means we have to rely on the freeholder to uphold the integrity of the estate. The covenants that Colonel Burges set in place were put there to protect the estate from over-development and to maintain its character. The Burges family probably saw themselves as benevolent freeholders whose duty was to uphold the integrity of the local environment . This attitude would sit well with most residents even today. Yes charges were made to modernise properties but those charges were minimal and were put in place to cover the costs of the agent that upheld the covenants.
Why are residents so concerned about covenants in today’s climate?
In 1984, the interest of the Burges family died with the death of Ynyr Alfred Burges. The freehold of the Burges estate was purchased by the Lintott family and renamed Thorpe Estate Ltd. Rumour has it that at the time the Lintott family did not realise that they were purchasing the whole of the estate, but only that part in Station Road where there was motor vehicle showrooms (which of course are now retirement flats).
Licenses for developments were still being handled by local architects Ayshford & Samson and although charges did increase, they still seemed to be of a reasonable amount, the actual amount depending on the nature of the alteration. The Estate was again transferred in 2001 to the Regis Group (Thorpe Estates Ltd). However, over time the purpose of covenants has changed and Residents are now concerned that they no longer appear to protect the character of the estate and the environment in general.