FURTHER remedial works have begun to tidy up the derelict site of a historic cinema.

Following pressure from Colchester Council, Blumarble Property has begun work on improvements to the old Odeon, in Crouch Street.

Painting of the building started at the weekend and workmen were at the site yesterday completing safety works.

The site has become a blight on the once prestigious Colchester shopping street.

A long-awaited £10 million redevelopment scheme for the building, which would have seen 57 apartments created, stalled late last year when Blumarble admitted the plans were not financially viable.

In June, Colchester Council issued the firm with a second section 215 notice for the site, ordering further remedial works following concerns from traders in the area.

READ MORE: Developers of former Odeon site told to tidy it up

The order says Blumarble has until August 24 to board up all of the windows in the property, block off the front recess of the building, clean and paint the outside walls, remove vegetation and repair or replace any damaged guttering.

Gazette: Remedial works at the old Odeon have startedRemedial works at the old Odeon have started

Matt Ellis, the man behind the redevelopment scheme, said the works were ongoing to comply with the notice.

He said discussions were also ongoing over the redevelopment of the site.

“We are still in talks with the council but no decisions have been made,” he said.

Crouch Street traders have repeatedly hit out at the state of the premises which has been empty since the cinema giant moved to Head Street in 2002.

READ MORE: Developer promises talks ongoing over old Odeon site

Rachael Boucher, manageress of Dilly’s florists, said: “We want something done with it, we do not care what it is. We have been in Crouch Street for 11 years and it drags the road down.

“Since they have boarded it up it has stopped some of the anti-social behaviour and there aren’t homeless people sleeping in the doorway any more. But a lick of paint is not enough. It will not make any difference.

“We are desperate for something to be done about it. It is a blight on the road.”