Colchester City Council has been awarded £19.66m from the Government to support improvements to Colchester’s city centre.
The bid for the funding was submitted in partnership with Essex County Council and demonstrates the authorities’ commitment to tackling inequality and boosting the local economy.
The money will be spent on several high-profile projects that focus on improving the feel of the city centre, increasing footfall by creating a more attractive environment for visitors, reducing antisocial behaviour and tackling poor air quality and traffic congestion.
The scheme includes plans to improve walking and cycling routes in the city centre by including a new road layout and removing underpasses at St Boltoph’s roundabout. It may also create a new public space that helps build a traffic-free route from St Botolph’s Priory to Colchester Castle and Castle Park, while celebrating more of the heritage in the area, and providing a convenient new hub for storing and hiring bikes, e-bikes, e-cargo bikes and e-scooters.
The money may also enable the existing Town Deal ‘kerbless street’ route from Head Street to Queen Street to be completed, and to support businesses to improve shop fronts in the St Botolph’s area.
Cllr David King, Leader of Colchester City Council, said: “This award is great news for Colchester. It will help the look, feel and regeneration of the city centre and allow us to continue with ambitious plans to improve inequality and deprivation in the city. And to help us be a great place to live, work and visit. Together with the £19.2m Town Deal funding projects that are now underway, Colchester can expect a long-term boost to the city’s economy – improving life for everyone in our city.”
Cllr Lesley Wagland OBE, Essex County Council Cabinet Member for Economic Renewal, Infrastructure and Planning, said: “This funding will boost the Colchester city centre economy, helping make more of its unique heritage assets and enhancing the city centre for residents and visitors alike.
“Essex County Council is committed to our own Levelling Up Strategy, in which Colchester is one of our six priority areas, and we look forward to working with Colchester City Council to bring these plans to fruition.”
Will Quince, MP for Colchester who supported the Levelling Up Fund bid said: “I am delighted that the government has recognised the importance of the regeneration opportunities within the centre of Colchester. There are some exiting initiatives planned around our heritage sites and transport infrastructure, which I am looking forward to seeing the results of.”
This Levelling Up Fund bid supports the Town Centre Masterplan and builds on other successful funding bids, including £19.2m Town Deal, the UK Shared Prosperity Fund and Inequalities funding from the Health Alliance. All working to help the council tackle inequalities and ensure a thriving town centre for the future.
Read more about the successful Levelling Up bid here: Learn about the Levelling Up Fund
Page last reviewed: 19 January 2023