What would you change about Colchester?

I went around Colchester town and asked people one question; “if there was one thing you could change about Colchester, what would it be?”. Here’s what they had to say.

David Russell, 68, Colchester, retired

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David Russell

“I like the town but I’ve always had a problem with the roads. I don’t think they’re managed very well, in terms of getting in and out and getting around – there’s always traffic. They’ve tried different means of changing that but none of them have worked. It’s not just the rush hour, it’s all the time. The system for bus routes and the bus-only lanes also doesn’t work when you’re going down the high street and want to turn off into Queen’s road, you just can’t do it. You used to be able to. That’s just annoying really and I think everybody agrees with that. Apart from that, I think more pedestrianized areas would be good.”

Alexandra Mitchell.jpg
Alexandra Mitchell


Alexandra Mitchell, 19, Colchester, student

“It’s (Colchester town) kind of full of a lot of shops and would be good to have some other things that you can do. And it’s got a certain demographic of people that live here, it would be nice to have a bit more of a variety.”




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Tony Malle

Tony Mallett, 52, Colchester, IT department in the Houses of Parliament

“I only moved in today but I would say the parking should be changed. I’ve just bought a place round the corner from the town centre and it’s got no parking, I have to pay £8-£10 a day just to park – which is just bizarre really for a resident, you’d think they’d do something about it. But I really like it, compared to places like Clapton, it’s got a lot going for it. At the moment I’m pretty pleased with it. With the pubs and gyms, there seems to be a lot about here, though I’m still exploring.”


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Julia Sestakova

Julia Sestakova, 21, Wivenhoe, student

“I would change the buses, especially the first buses because they don’t usually come on time. It’s really annoying, especially on some days when they come five minutes earlier when you were expecting them to come on time and you have to watch them drive away. And when you’re partying in town and want to leave at one, there are no buses so you have to book a taxi. It’s really inconvenient.”



Margaret Francis, 80, Hardy’s Green, retired

“I would certainly put the bus station back to where it was before; they moved it because they built something that did not leave room for the bus station, but it was much more convenient where it was before. I also think Colchester is looking very dowdy, I would like to see it improved among the shops. Most of the shops are empty and there are a lot of charity shops. At one stage we were going to have John Lewis here, and I think we need more shops like that. I suppose parking is another problem because it’s expensive and a lot of people who come to Colchester have nowhere to park. Tollgate is now getting bigger and bigger. Unfortunately you get more charity shops and shops just come and go more quickly. A shop opens up and is empty again. It’s certainly lost something compared to Chelmsford. It needs brightening up and some better shops. You go to other places and the shops are really good. We’ve got Fennicks which is a nice shop but people just aren’t coming in as much as they used to.”

Megan Courtney, 16, Colchester, student and part-time McDonalds employee

“I would change the perception that people have about people my age. Everybody always assumes we’re going to be loud and a nuisance and most of us aren’t. I’m not saying there’s no one like that but we’re not always like that. It happens everywhere. Sometimes when you’re waiting for a bus the older people act like they have more of an entitlement. You try and be well-mannered but sometimes they take your kindness as if you’re trying to be rude. But we’re just not like that.”


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Keira Naran

Keira Naran, 22, Colchester, university graduate

“I would change this (around Primark and BHS) part of the town centre. It’s just empty, nothing is really here. If you were to go to Primark, you would probably do so through the High Street because there are no other shops here.”


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Beatriz Perdigão Reis


Beatriz Perdigão Reis, 19, Braintree, fulltime student

“I don’t spend much time here apart from college but maybe add more green spaces around the town. Also, my bus stop is about ten minutes from the actual college so I need to walk, there needs to be more bus stops.”


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Keith Sufflet

Keith Sufflet, 68, Colchester, maintenance

“I would change the market; I think it’s in the wrong place. It should be here (Culver Square), the only thing that where the market currently is is takeaway foods. It isn’t what is used to be. Now when you go down there, all you see is pizzas and kebabs and all these foreign foods – that isn’t a market place. There’s too many fast food restaurants.”



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