Our Planning Work

The Society encourages the best modern architecture and is prepared to comment on planning matters at every level. We respond to consultations on planning issues, from specific sites to the more general Local Plan. We also support the conservation of our older buildings of merit – buildings that are of historical importance, add to a street scene, are architecturally pleasing or simply of sentimental value within the community. We often raise our concerns about the condition of such buildings.

A recent example of where the Society’s intervention yielded a positive result is shown here.


Bow window in Colchester High Street

The Bow window restored!

Planning Applications large and small

The society was actively involved in opposing the proposed Alumno Development alongside Firstsite and worked with Colchester Borough Council and OMCI (Greyfriars) in opposing this at the planning enquiry.This is just one of many applications that the society comments on or objects to on an ongoing basis.

A more recent example was the Society’s opposition to the proposal by Lion Walk Shopping Centre to paint a mural on vestry wall of Holy Trinity Church. The Society actively opposed this application for Historic Building Consent and helped to raise considerable opposition from ward councillors, historians, members of the society and other concerned residents of the town. The application was called in by  Castle Ward Councillor Mark Goacher and went to a full Planning Department hearing, at which John Burton (president of the Society) spoke on our behalf. Significantly the application was also opposed by the Conservation Officer and the Historic England Inspector in reports which largely mirrored the points in the Society’s objection (see link below). With such a weight of opposition it was no surprise that the application was refused.

Colchester Civic Society comments on or objects to planning applications both large and small.

Listed here are the results of the most recent applications to have been considered by the Colchester Planning Department, for which we offered comments or objections. This is followed by new applications which we commented on or objected to which have yet to be considered by Planning.

May 2024

Planning Applications commented on or opposed

240071 12 The Avenue Led illuminated sign for dentist works . Object.

240263 44 Maidenburgh Street . replace all windows in UPVC IN 2020 . Comment to oppose.

240480 The Twist 25 Military Road .  Comment re replacement of timber framed windows with UPVC

240048 The Arts Centre , Object to signage/poster frames to outside wall of a Listed building .

240528 High Street support for Sir Bob Russell’s application for the Twinkle twinkle site

240666 Wendy’s 20 High Street . Object to style of signage in the Conservation Area.

Comment on the Essex Minerals Plan Review .

240706 83 Lexden Road comment re Application to replace timber windows with UPVC.

240887 Charles May House ,Church Walk. Replacement windows in extruded aluminium for 1980’s extension .

Comment to avoid precedent.

240915 Land at 42 Smthies Avenue for I bed bungalow . Object.


Applications decided.

240333 3 Culver Street East to convert g/f restaurant to 3 x 1 bed flats  Approved

231296 2 Culver Street West  2 x 1 bed flats above Loofers restaurant. Approved

240071 Smile Clinic ,12 The Avenue  LED illuminated signage to listed building . Refused.

240445 133 High Street (Chaiiwala ) LED signage Refused.

240263 44 Maidenburgh Street replaced timber windows in UPVC .Refused.

240092 2 Priory Street for a mortuary at the Mosque . Refused after strong objection from Historic England.

232517 Silk Road conversion of rooms to Office plus fitting Juliette balcony to French doors  on first floor goods entrance.  Approved !

240009 The East gates Inn ,Harwich Road change inn to 8 room HMO . Withdrawn .

240190 28 Salisbury Avenue replacement of timber door by composite modern door. Refused.

2327126 7 Queen Street Erection of scaffolding to remove damaged render and renew. Renew first floor window.   Approved232790 former Odeon ,Crouch Street .

232790 former Odeon ,Crouch Street 120 room hotel . retain façade and replace entrance canopy. Approved.