Police are appealing for information about an attempted robbery in Kismet Park, Canvey, at around 10.50pm on Friday, May 5.
A man was approached by two men who threatened him with a knife before demanding cash and his mobile phone.
The victim refused and was punched in the face and slashed with the knife, suffering a minor cut to his back.
He managed to run off before alerting a passerby who contacted police.
One of the men is described as being of a mixed heritage, aged in his 20s, around 5ft 10ins, of a muscular build and was wearing a blue hooded top.
The other suspect is described as being a white man, aged in his 20s, around 5ft 8ins and of a skinny build.
They ran off towards Eastern Esplanade empty handed.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Southend CID on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.