Southend have snapped up Garry Richards from Essex neighbours Colchester.
The Shrimpers have paid an undisclosed fee for the 21-year-old defender, who has penned a two-year deal at Roots Hall.
"Garry told me that he wanted to play regularly and put himself on the transfer list towards the end of last season," Colchester boss Geraint Williams told the club's official website.
"At the end of the season we offered him the chance to come off the list and come back after the break focused and ready to go, but he declined that chance at that time.
"When a club came in and made an offer for him, we made Garry aware of that opportunity. We had discussions with Garry and his agent and I told him I couldn't guarantee him a start, so the two of them felt his interests were best served by moving on."