A brand new college campus is set to be built on the site of Basildon Market.

Basildon Council approved plans for the state of the art three-storey South Essex College campus which will replace the soon to be former market site in Market Square.

The new site, which was approved last night will focus on IT, digital technologies and science.

The development is also set to include car parking, public open space, a substation, shops, access and landscaping.

David Dadds, vice chairman of the council's regeneration committee, said: “I am delighted that full planning permission has been granted for this state-of-the-art campus in Market Square, which will provide fantastic opportunities for young people from across the borough and beyond.

"We are committed to creating opportunities for all and doing all we can to support education and employment providers.”

The existing buildings on the land will be demolished to make way for the new college building.

The council said it marks the "next key step in the transformation of the town centre", accompanying the redevelopment of East Square with a ten-screen cinema operated by Empire Cinemas and six new restaurants.

Anthony McGarel, chief executive of South Essex College, added: “We’re delighted that our exciting plans to deliver high quality education and training in the heart of Basildon town centre has been recognised by the council.

"We’re excited to get going with the development to equip young local people with the skills to work in the growing digital technology industry.

“This decision is a significant milestone in our ambitious regeneration plans for Basildon, which will bring more life into the town centre and boost the economy. We are confident that it will become a destination of choice rather than convenience.”