WORK has started on a £27,000 revamp of the bus station beneath Chelmsford’s High Chelmer car park - and convicts on community service are pitching in to help!

Building work on the station, which provides access to the city’s popular retail market, started last Friday and is expected to be completed by mid-May.

Surfaces are set for a deep clean, bird netting will be replaced, concrete surfaces will be redecorated, the bus shelters replaced and footpaths and roadways leading in and out of the interchange will be repaired.

Essex Probation Service is overseeing the retreatment of railings and metalworks, with convicts repaying their debt to society by carrying out the work.

The council said it does not foresee there being any disruption to bus services while the works are carried out.

Ian Grundy, Chelmsford City Council’s cabinet member for safer communities said: “I am pleased to say that these essential works have now begun and look forward to seeing the finished result.

“With Chelmsford becoming a more and more popular destination for shoppers, commuters and tourists, it is important that we provide a quality environment for visitors entering the city.”

Pete Mangan, lead director for the Essex Probation Community Payback Scheme, said: “Essex Probation provides between one and two million pounds worth of free labour every year for the community in Essex.

“We are delighted to be extending the scheme to help with this very important refurbishment, and look forward to contributing more towards a better environment in the area.”