A BLIND charity has set up a base in Colchester after winning more than £210,000 in Lottery funding.

Essex Blind Charity has taken over the former Castle Bookshop, in Osborne Street, and it aims to play a part in helping more than 45,000 people with sight problems across the county.

Vanda Watling, accounts and funding administrator at Essex Sight Centre, said the new base will offer users craft sessions and book groups, but she also hopes more volunteers will come forward to allow the charity to begin holding mail reading sessions.

Mrs Watling said: “Giving people the opportunity to have their mail read is important because that’s one thing they just cannot do if they are by themselves at home.”

She added: “We’re very happy to have opened the centre in Colchester.”

The new centre is one of six in north and mid Essex.

Essex Sight Centres are run by the Essex Blind Charity.

To volunteer, call 0870 2405418.