WORK is underway to build a new school in Colchester... but it comes at a cost.

A developer is willing to pay more than £200 to change the colour of school windows to a slightly different shade.

Essex County Council is working with developer Strutt and Parker to build a new school at the former Alderman Blaxhill School site in Paxman Avenue, Colchester.

Plans for the new secondary school were approved in January, but Barnes Construction have reviewed the approved scheme and are now making a non-material amendment.

The proposal is to change the window colour from a light grey, to a slightly darker one - but it comes at a flat-rate cost of £234.

Strutt and Parker wrote to Essex County Council telling them about the proposed change.

They said the new colour "is a standard colour which requires less maintenance and is easier to obtain".

When approached about how the cost was justified, a spokesman for Essex County Council added: "This isn’t something that we recognise, however Essex County Council is managing this project budget, having appointed the contractor from our construction framework."

The building work started last month and the £14 million school is on track to open in autumn 2019.

It will house 900 secondary school students in Colchester.

It includes a three-storey building with 20 classrooms, a library, a suite of science labs, technology workshops and a sports hall.

The new school was designed by Concertus.

The old school, which opened in 1955 and was named after educationalist and former mayor Alderman Blaxill, had a turbulent history, twice being saved before finally closing three years ago.

A new name for the school has not yet been chosen, this is something the sponsor will decide when one has been appointed.