Service updates

Due to Coronavirus some of our services are currently disrupted. Check back regularly for updates on what services are running as normal, are disrupted, or closed.


  • Benefits and local council tax
    Housing support, benefits and Council Tax services are operating as normal.

  • Helpline

    Helpline is running as normal to provide an alarm, response and monitoring service for older and vulnerable people living in Colchester and North Essex. Call 01206 769799 or visit

  • Community services
    Community 360 are supporting residents in need with food and medical supplies.

  • Parking
    All our car parks are open and we encourage visitors to use MiPermit to make contactless payments.

  • Colchester Castle
    Colchester Castle is now open. To visit you will need to reserve a time slot in advance. Please call 01206 282939 to book. Please note face masks will be mandatory from the 8 August.

  • Business support
    The Council has awarded over £33 million in grants eligible businesses.

  • Housing
    Visit Colchester Borough Homes for the latest service updates

  • Parks and countryside sites

    Parks and countryside sites are open, but visitors must follow government guidelines. Car parks have reopened. Highwoods Country Park Visitors Centre will be open from Monday 17 August.

  • Recycling and rubbish
    Recycling collections are operating as normal. Households can put out one additional 60-litre black bag of non-recyclable rubbish on a Blue Week on their usual collection day. Textile collections remain suspended.

  • Visitor Information Centre
    Colchester’s Visitor Information Centre is open to the public.

  • Charter market

    Essential traders continue to operate. From 15 June, our regular stall holders will begin a phased return to the High Street on Fridays and throughout the Town Centre weekly from between 7am and 4pm. Follow @ColchMarket on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for updates.

  • Colchester Leisure World and Tennis Centre
    Colchester's Leisure World and Tennis Centre are open. Facilities that are now open include the leisure pool, Activa gym and the fitness pool. Customers will need to book a session online for all activities before visiting the centre.


  • Playgrounds and outdoor gyms
    All playgrounds and outdoor gyms are open, except Westland Country Park main playground. We ask that you read our COVID-19 playground and outdoor gym guidance before your visit. 

  • Animal services
    We are currently only providing a pest control service for wasps and the external treatment of rats within your property.

  • Bereavement services
    The crematorium and cemetery are open for funerals with up to 20 mourners. The Book of Remembrance, Prayer Room and the crematorium office are still closed to visitors. Visitors must follow current guidelines.

  • Environmental
    You can report environmental and noise concerns. Our Pest Control service is operating, however bedbug treatments are currently unavailable

  • Planning and building control
    While planning applications are being processed as usual some site visits will be conducted virtually and site notices will be issued by email.

  • Aqua Springs
    Aqua Springs Spa is closed, but customers can book beauty treatments online. To visit, you will need to reserve a time slot in advance. Please visit the website for more details.


  • Hollytrees Museum and the Natural History Museum

    Hollytrees Museum and the Natural History Museum are currently closed.

  • Highwoods and Tiptree Leisure World

    Leisure World Highwoods and Tiptree are currently closed.