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Colchester's economy buoyant say councillors
2:30pm Thursday 13th September 2012 in News
BUSINESS is buoyant in Colchester according to a review of the town’s economic plans.
Councillors welcomed news of Colchester’s thriving business community and said they backed efforts to keep the trend going.
Supporting entrepreneurs and helping new companies grow was the best way forward for the town said Colchester Council ’s policy review and development panel.
The committee debated the authority’s economic development strategy for 2010-2015 during a meeting this week.
Bringing super-fast broadband to the town centre, more rural business parks and residential areas is a key aim of the council for the coming year, with talks beginning this week with a broadband company.
The council also hopes to increase the number of apprenticeships on offer, secure funding for the Wall’s project turning the Eld Lane area into a ‘Brighton Lanes’-style area, and promote the night-time economy with Purple Flag accreditation.
Paul Smith, councillor responsible for business, said: “Although the country is in recession the Colchester economy is still growing, albeit slowly.
“More needs to be done but it cannot be something the council does alone.
“There are some negatives. Colchester ranks 13th for house prices but 40th for wages and that is a huge gap and a great problem for our labour market.”
The committee decided it was satisfied with the progress made so far in helping Colchester beat the recession, but urged senior councillors and officers to keep up the good work.
Councillor Barrie Cook said: “It has been an extremely interesting meeting, but I would be rather worries if it fell on stony ground. It is too important for that.”