Why is Colchester Castle turning blue?

Colchester Castle in blue

Colchester Castle is being lit up blue for the next few days - Credit: Colchester Borough Council

An Essex landmark has joined hundreds of historic buildings and landmarks across the country by turning blue for the next few days.  

Colchester Castle has been illuminated to help mark the upcoming census and its importance to communities.

The event has been organised by The Office for National Statistics (ONS) to raise awareness of the census, a survey that happens every ten years and gives a picture of all the people and households in England and Wales.  

Other landmarks taking part in the project include the Wales Millennium Centre in Cardiff, BT Tower in London and Blackpool Tower.

The census helps inform the provision of public services throughout the UK, such as determining the appropriate number of school places and hospital beds that are needed to properly serve their communities.  


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Adrian Pritchard, chief executive of Colchester Borough Council said: “It is vitally important that as many of our residents complete the census as possible. We use the data gathered to help us make planning and budget decisions for our services across the Borough, and with your help we can build strong communities for the future. Census Day is Sunday, March 21, please take part." 

Pete Benton, ONS director of census operations, said: “The census is such an important undertaking that helps inform the vital services we all rely on every single day within our communities.  We wanted to shine a light on the buildings and landmarks that matter most to their local areas, highlighting the importance of the census in helping shape the communities we live in. 

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“We’re thrilled with all the support we have received so far and would like to thank Colchester Borough Council for their participation. Now is the time for everyone to complete their census and be part of history.”  

The castle will stay blue until March 22. 

Every household in England and Wales should have now received their census letters with unique access codes enabling them to fill in their census online.  Paper forms are available for those who need it, plus a range of other support.

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