An update on progress by Colchester Borough Council to deliver on Cabinet’s change and support priorities was endorsed at last night’s meeting (12 October 2022).
The meeting heard that over 30 key individual actions have been taken so far this financial year, towards delivery of the council’s strategy, including:
- To help residents through the cost of living crisis, many hundreds have been helped in many ways. From direct advice, support and or financial relief to help those who help others, like foodbanks. And additional funding for the Household Support Fund scheme for Colchester to ensure the maximum number of people receive payment direct to their bank rather than vouchers.
- The council continues to work with partners to celebrate city status and strengthen Colchester’s heritage and cultural offer, including the installation of Parklets in the High Street and the archway over Short Wyre Street and the current work on developing the City Centre Masterplan.
- Proposals were endorsed for Cymbeline Meadow to be created into a nature reserve as part of the Woodland & Biodiversity Project and for tree planting across various sites including St Nicholas Square, parts of the River Colne and New Town – all helping to improve the life of Colchester residents.
- Further steps have been taken to tackle the climate emergency and reduce littering and graffiti. There has been a decrease of 4.3% in Council's carbon emissions for financial year 2021/22, compared to pre-Covid figures and the first five fully electric vans joined the fleet as part of its transition to low carbon fuelled vehicles by 2030. There is now a dedicated Graffiti Team to tackle graffiti across the Borough and monthly Community Action Days to tackle ‘grot spots’.
- All 100 homes in last year's 100 Homes project have now been acquired (to supplement the Council’s housing stock). Eighty-two have been let, three are being advertised and the remainder in the process of being prepared for letting. Just six months into the current year, the council is well underway to delivering the target of 40 homes, with 11 homes and have 26 in the legal processes, supporting its commitment to bringing forward affordable housing.
Cllr David King, Leader of Colchester Borough Council, said: “Despite our challenging circumstances some excellent progress has been made to support our residents and businesses and to address some of the key issues facing Colchester.
“Like many residents struggling with a sharp rise in the cost of living, the council faces some very stark financial challenges over the coming months and years. But we are determined to remain ambitious and look to the future needs of our residents.
And with others to co-design a new Strategic Plan for the council from April 2023. I am pleased to say we have now launched the public consultation, the responses to which will be crucial. As we shape the future operation of the council and the way we will deliver key services, with others, for years to come.
“I encourage all residents to complete the survey and be part of the council’s transformation, so we can continue delivering the best services possible for our residents.”
To take part in the survey, please visit: www.colchester.gov.uk/future-of-Colchester-consultation/
Page last reviewed: 13 October 2022