THE NHS has spent more than £100,000 renting a building that has been vacant for five years.
The three-storey building in St Botolph’s Street, Colchester has been leased by the NHS since 1995.
It has not been used for the last five years but the taxpayers have still had to foot the bill.
Steve Miller, owner of Miller Stationery in St Botolph’s Street, said: “It is disgusting. How many operations could that have paid for?”
The building is in the heart of what is known as the town’s Cultural Quarter, which is undergoing a regeneration project led by Colchester
Council and Essex County Council.
Ron Levy, secretary of Colchester Retail Business Association, said: “We are concerned that it does rather blight the area and make it look very run down.”
A Department of Health spokesman said it is in negotiations with an interested party on the lease.