Councillor BENSLEY was Canvey’s first Urban District Councillor Chairman.
Mr H.J.A BENSLEY first came to Canvey in 1919 and very quickly interested himself in the political and social life of the Island. In 1925 he was elected as one of Canvey’s representatives to the Rochford District Council, and during his term of office displayed an intelligent insight of the Island’s requirements.
In April 1926, Canvey obtained Urban District powers, and at the first election Mr Bensley was returned at the head of the poll, and automatically because the Council’s first Chairman, and by virtue of this office Canvey’s first Justice of the Peace.
When he arrived on the Island he owned and lived in a property described as “rear of Bohemia”. This was on the Oysterfleet estate and called Benzfolli. Later described as down Long Road.
In Spring 1921 he applied for planning additions to a property down Waarden Road (presumably Dee bee) which his sister ends up living in.
To locate the property, Dee Bee was on the same side of Waarden road as the lake, opposite Thistledown.
Thistledown was on the northern corner of Waarden Road and DelfZul road.
On 17th June 1924 Canvey Parish Council held a Parish meeting to consider the question of whether to apply for Urban Powers for the Parish and to pass a resolution there-on.
They assembled in a hall loaned by Mr Hartfield. Mr Bensley as well as Mr Marsh were appointed at the Tellers, and the Islanders voted 100 for, nil against.