The ‘Greasy Spoon’ Cafe

Operated from the Early-1960s to c.1984

Founder/Director – I.C.& S.S.

If ever this cafe had an official name, then it would seem to have been lost to the sands of time as to most, it was simply known as the ‘Greasy Spoon’. Its moniker was probably inspired by the ATEL cafeteria, although this particular eatery was only ever accessible to ATEL employees and the staff of ATEL related airlines. Initially, the ‘Greasy’ was only accessible from SEN’s airside, although it was eventually opened to all on the airport and to those amongst the general public who knew of its existence, it being located in a white and brown timber building next to the former Southend Municipal Flying Club hangar and the somewhat infamous Flarepath Club.

Operated for much of its life by the catering wing of I.C & S.S. it was run by a no nonsense German lady named Vera who would gladly knock you backwards should you lean back and abuse her chairs. Rumour had it that this particular location became famous for its full English breakfasts, chips, its butter laden toast and for some unknown reason, its brown sauce. It would appear that this cafe closed down some time around the mid-1980s after which time local flight school and charter operator Skylane moved into the premises and it became the Skylane Flight Centre. The building itself was pulled down in 1995 along with the aforementioned SMFS hangar and Flarepath Club building.

With thanks to Brian Mells, Jim Brazier, Tony Mullinger & Peter Clark for much of the information above


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Many thanks from the SAAD Admin Team.