Colchester Orbital project receives £28,000 funding

Colchester Council have announced plans to support a new project aimed at highlighting over 14-miles of walks and cycle routes across the Borough.

The project known as the ‘Colchester Orbital Project’ will see a cash injection of £28,000 from Colchester Council enabling the work started by volunteers to be turned into a readily accessible resource online.

Mapping the 14-miles worth of walks and routes will include digital mapping of obstacles and heritage points of interest.

Rowena Macaulay, of Walk Colchester, said: “We’re really happy that this project has captured the imaginations of so many people and now resulted in this significant Colchester Borough Council funding support.

“We set out to create a route that celebrated all that is special about Colchester’s varied green landscape and biodiversity; one that encourages people to enjoy it in new ways and hopefully protect it longer-term.

“It was always important to us that the project be something of real longevity for the town, so it is exciting to finally be in a position to secure its immediate future.”

Walk Colchester, a community-based coalition between Colchester Green Links and Open Spaces who are behind the project, has spent the past few years identifying and mapping over 14-miles of circular walks and cycle routes around the outskirts of Colchester.

The ‘Colchester Orbital’ route links Colchester’s most important green spaces and will connect to heritage points of interest.

Cllr. David King (Lib), Portfolio Holder for Resources, said: “The Colchester Orbital is a project I am passionate about and proud to be supporting. We need to connect rural and town much better than we do, not by car, but by foot and bike. Our personal and community health benefits from fresh air and by accessing the many green spaces we have.”

Welcoming the extra funding and support from Myland Community Council, who will pilot more detailed community mapping, Cllr. King, added: “Colchester is a growing and changing town.

“We need to make it easier for new residents, as well as those more familiar with their parish, to connect with local clubs, organisations and facilities, to help them access services and to play their part in our many local communities.”

Plans for The Colchester Orbital will also expand the walking horizons of mobility restricted users, whilst strengthening car-free routes between Colchester, its suburbs and nearby villages.