Squatters have taken over Southend’s iconic Kursaal bowling alley and soft play after it was made vacant.

A dog unit vehicle and a poster stating squatters had moved in and would be staying were spotted this morning.

A video was shared across social media which shows a man well know for occupying empty buildings in Southend giving a speech outside the now vacant building.

In the video he said: “This here is an iconic building – the most iconic building in Southend.

“Now in two months, the building has been empty twice. This time, I am taking this building because this deserves to be Southend’s museum. Not a £60million project further down the line.

“This building here, with a couple of million thrown in, this is the museum.

“So the reason why I am taking this building here is because the council own the freehold to this building. They can turn it into a museum. Southend museum at the Kursaal.”

Concerns were raised last week after seafront visitors said the site had closed again for a second time in recent months.

Seafront visitors say the bowling alley, soft play area and arcade is completely shut down. Owners, Disco Bowl Ltd have refused to comment. In February the attraction shut suddenly as former owners MFA Bowl went into administration. Days later Disco Bowl Ltd took over the site.

It then shut again temporarily as parents found a mouse in the soft play area.

A council spokesperson, said: “Without knowing the circumstances of the individual squatters we can’t know whether they are homeless or not and it would be wrong to make assumptions.

“Our Housing, Homeless and Rough Sleeper strategy looks at a number of key issues such as developing new homes, reducing empty homes, preventing and eradicating homelessness and taking a proactive approach to meeting central government housing targets.

“We will work closely with other agencies and charities to assist those without a home, to find suitable accommodation.”