HAPPY BIRTHDAY: Protestors celebrate a year at their Southend campsite.
ROAD protesters on Priory Crescent celebrated 12 months' occupation with a cake and candle on Saturday.
The weekend marked the official first anniversary of Camp Bling being set up on council-owned land.
The Parklife group is attempting to stop Southend Council widening the road. Campaigners insist contractors should not be allowed to fell 111 trees or remove a rare Saxon burial tomb discovered in 2003.
A Parklife spokesperson said: "We wanted to keep the anniversary a low-key event, as our purpose is simply to stop the road and protect the land for the people of the town.
"To this end, we welcomed people along to join us to celebrate what, in effect, has become a wonderful community project."
Southend Council remains defiant that it will evict the protesters, although the estimated £1 million cost has so far forced officials into a stand-off.
The cost of widening Priory Crecent stands at £25 million.
An original figure of £3.5 million was agreed with central Government in December 2000.
More than 20,000 signatures and letters have been collected in opposition to the scheme, although many drivers are believed to be in support of the new road scheme.
What do you think? Send your views to Steve Neale, Southend Yellow Advertiser, Acorn House, Great Oaks, Basildon, Essex, SS14 1AH, or email Letters@YellowAd.co.uk