City Guide



Introduction to Colchester

Colchester is 51.2 miles (82.4 km) northeast of London, and is less than 30 miles (48 km) away from Stansted Airport and 20 miles (32 km) from the passenger ferry port of Harwich. At the time of the census in 2011, it had a population of 121,859, marking a considerable rise from the previous census and making it one of Britain's fastest growing towns. 

Walking through Colchester is a walk through 2000 years of Britain’s eventful past. As the oldest recorded Roman town in Britain, Colchester is claimed to be the oldest town in Britain – and it was, for a time, the capital of Roman Britain. Colchester is home to Colchester Castle (pictured), and the River Colne runs through the town. But it’s not all heritage – there's a cosmopolitan range of cafés, bars and restaurants in and around the town. 

The University of Essex is located to the east of Colchester in Wivenhoe Park, in the civil parish of Wivenhoe, while Colchester Institute is a large provider of further and higher education, and includes the Colchester School of Art, Faculty of Creative Arts, the Centre for Hospitality and Food Studies, and the Professional Training Centre.