Colchester City Council has announced that it will be hibernating two of its wholly owned trading companies, Colchester Amphora Homes (CAHL) and Colchester Amphora Energy (CAEL). The decision is being made considering the current economic climate and the council's need to reduce its financial risk.
CAHL was established to deliver high-quality mixed-tenure housing, while CAEL was set up to progress the delivery of a low carbon heat network. However, the council has concluded that it is not currently possible to deliver these projects in the way originally envisaged.
Suspending operations of CAHL and CAEL will not affect the delivery of the council's other commercial activities, which will continue to be carried out by Colchester Amphora Trading Ltd (CATL). CATL is responsible for a range of services, including events management, CCTV, helpline operations and improved fibre connectivity.
The Leader of Colchester City Council, Cllr David King, said: “Much has been achieved through the Amphora group of companies, from great events and services raising much-needed income to the creation of Colchester Sports Park and the Leisure Park.
“But this council, like many, faces many pressures and a deep financial crisis, made worse by rising demand, increasing costs, and less support from the government. We must respond by looking at spend and risk across the council, including in our companies.
“I thank our skilled staff in CAHL and CAEL for their dedication. They have achieved a great deal, and we will do all we can to find them new roles and opportunities. We are confident that a smaller, more focused Amphora group of companies has a bright future.
“The smaller Amphora group of companies will support the delivery of council projects throughout Colchester, continue to deliver great entertainment events for the city and beyond, and help keep local people and visitors safe through our CCTV and helpline services, all underpinned by our expanding fibre network. These services will be profitable and help us provide essential services across the city.”
The council is committed to supporting the staff of CAHL and CAEL and will be working with them to explore opportunities for redeployment within the council or elsewhere. It also remains committed to supporting the delivery of affordable housing and a low carbon heat network in Colchester and will continue to work with partners to make these projects happen in the future.
Page last reviewed: 13 November 2023