NEARLY £3 million has been invested in Colchester after the council sold off land and property over the past five years.

Between 2014 and 2018, Colchester Council sold ten pieces of land.

This amounts to more than £2,938,852 going back into the council coffers.

In total £819,857 of the income came from selling land at Cuckoo Farm Way in June 2014 to be used to build a restaurant.

A further £675,000 came from selling part of the Gosbecks Depot site in Gosbecks Road back in May 2014.

The sale of Gothic House in High Street, Wivenhoe, made the council £515,000 when it was sold in December 2017.

The sale of the former tourist information centre on the corner of High Street and Queen Street made £350,000 in October 2014.

The transfer of the council offices in Wivenhoe to the town council made £200,000.

A further £140,000 came from selling the Lookers site at Axial Way, £128,995 from selling an address in Portland Road and £110,000 from selling land adjacent to Berechurch Road.

The public toilets in Wivenhoe and Wivenhoe High Street car park were also transferred to the town council.

Research by the Bureau of Investigative Journalism found that councils across the UK raised a total of £9.1bn since 2013 by selling assets.

Colchester Council said the money was reinvested in a dedicated fund and goes towards projects such as the Northern Gateway leisure development.

A spokesman said: “The council’s recent policy has been to retain freeholds or long leaseholds, but there are instances where sites have been sold so that funds can be reinvested into income-generating schemes and community facilities at a time when central Government grants have decreased year on year.

“The Revolving Investment Fund was established in 2014 for the purpose of recycling capital, which has subsequently enabled the council to secure hundreds of thousands of pounds of additional income for the provision of frontline services and community amenities such as the Colchester Northern Sports Hub.”