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Living In Colchester

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Example of a typical street you might find whilst Living in Colchester

Steeped in history and located 40 minutes from the coast, Colchester is a charming Essex market town that lays claim to being the oldest recorded town in Britain.

Like much of the surrounding area, Colchester has been scouted out by commuters for its great connections to London, Norwich and Ipswich.

A traditional town with vibrant green spaces that made the transformation into a modern metropolis without losing its essence. A much cheaper option than London with high quality amenities and rustic charm.

Living in Colchester is great for:

  • Commuter links to London

  • Selection of Outstanding rated schools

  • Luscious green spaces

House Prices

  • Average house sale price in Colchester: £322,883

  • Value increase in Colchester in the last 12 months: 0.88%

  • Value increase in Colchester in the last five years: 25.47%

First question on a property owners mind is how much am I likely to get for my property? According to Zoopla, the average house in Colchester was valued at £322,883 and sold for £300,721 within the last 12 months. In this same period there were a total of 2,422 sales.

In the last 12 months the average value of a house in Colchester has risen by £2,801 or 0.88%, showing the increasing popularity of the location. There has been a 25.47% average increase in value across all property types in the area in the last 5 years.

In the last 12 months the average price per house type was £411,391 for a detached, £284,580 for a semi-detached and £255,521 for a terraced house.


Colchester has a selection of Outstanding rated Primary and Secondary Schools

Best primary schools in Chelmsford:

Best Secondary Schools:

As more young parents look away from cities for areas to raise their families, the quality of schools in Colchester becomes more of a consideration. Colchester boasts a fine collection of primary and secondary schools. The majority of primary schools have at least Good Ofsted ratings, with Hamilton, Home Farm, Montgomery Infant School, St Teresa’s and St Thomas More’s receiving Outstanding ratings.

Secondary school approval is just as promising, with five schools in the area receiving Good Ofsted ratings and Colchester County High School for Girls, Colchester Royal Grammar and The Gilberd School coming in as Outstanding.

Schools are primarily within a good distance of the town centre, with Gilberd School the furthest away in the High Woods area.


Train links to London from Colchester are frequent and convenient.

Average Train Journey to London Liverpool Street:

  • 1 hour, 1 minute

Nearest Airport to Colchester:

  • Southend SEW Airport

A commuter town relies on reliable and frequent trains. Thankfully Colchester Station (also known as Colchester North) has trains to London Liverpool Street every 15-20 minutes. Depending on the service you take the journey will last 1 hour 3 minutes, 55 minutes or 49 minutes with no changes. These trains run between 4:30 and 23:06 on weekdays. Colchester Station is located on the appropriately named Station Approach Road.

For local transport, the Colchester Bus Station can be found on Stanwell Street. A second station exists to serve the town in Colchester Town Station in St Botolph’s Court. You’ll find two trains per hour to Colchester Station and one per hour to Liverpool Street. This station is closed on Sundays.

For further afield travel the closest airport is Southend SEW Airport, which is a 52-minute drive from Colchester town centre.

Council Tax

Colchester Council Tax Band Amount
A £846.96
B £988.12
C £1,192.28
D £1,270.44
E £1,522.76
F £1,835.08
G £2,117.40
H £2,540.88

Colchester council tax band info for 2019. Source: essex.gov.uk

After location and transport links, council tax is the most pressing concern for prospective buyers. As a seller in the area council tax is a hurdle due to the proximity to London and Colchester’s historical heritage.

Council tax bands for Colchester generally have a £200-£400 incremental step between bands.

Living in Colchester

Central Park is a standout Colchester green area

Commuter links and schools are essential, buyers are also concerned with the quality of life in the area. Let’s take a deeper look into some of the other key variables to consider.

Colchester is a key historical British town, something of a hidden gem tucked away in East Anglia. It’s narrow streets, Roman walls and remnants of once-grand churches are not only lovely tourist attractions but reminders of how the town once was.

Should ill-health strike, Colchester Hospital and Oaks Hospital are nearby. Colchester Hospital has a 24-hour emergency service for urgent matters. There are a selection of surgeries in the town for GP visits.

Prospective buyers can rest assured that Colchester is a quiet area with a low crime rate. According to police.co.uk, Colchester has low crime rates, with low theft and robbery rates in particular making Colchester a safe place to buy.

Part of Colchester’s heritage is vast green spaces. This is an ideal area for a young family who enjoy days outdoors. Castle Park is the main natural attraction in the town, stretching from the centre to neighbouring rivers. It’s designated Grade II on the Register of Historical Parks and is a common location for town-wide events. High Woods Country Park and Green Island Gardens offer alternative options for days out enjoying lush open spaces, woodlands, lakes and stunning wildflower meadows.

Colchester has some cultural cache to its name. The hometown of Britpop staples Blur, there are lots of places to delve into art, music and theatre. The Mercury Theatre offers a mix of classics and new writing and is being redeveloped for September 2020. FirstSite is a beautiful conceptual art gallery hosting exhibitions, film screenings, talks and more. For live music fanatics Castle Park hosts yearly festivals while Charter Hall and Three Wise Monkeys offer quality concerts on a more consistent basis.

Colchester is famous amongst food fans for its oysters and The Company Shed offers the best seafood in town. Church Street Tavern and Grain are quality evenings out in modern settings, while La Balbooth is the top choice for fine dining.

Living in Essex location comparison table

Living in Colchester Living in Chelmsford Living in Southend-on-Sea Living in Harlow
Average house price* £322,883 £399,943 £306,888 £329,142
Highest Ofsted rated primary school Outstanding Outstanding Outstanding Outstanding
Highest Ofsted rated secondary school Outstanding Outstanding Outstanding Good
Commuter time to London by train (London Liverpool Street)** 47 minutes 35 minutes 1 hour 8 minutes 29 minutes

*Source: Zoopla

**Source: Trainline

The appeal of Colchester lies in its balance between modern convenient commuter town and historical gem built on narrow roads and a love of oysters. Houses in the area will be sold on quality of schools, excellent collection of lush green spaces and links to London, while being far away enough from the city.

If your thinking about selling your property, take a look at our Colchester estate agents guide or get in touch with one of our agents today to find out more.

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