UK's top co-working facilities - all you need to know
Anyone thinking the tech sector begins and ends in London is very much mistaken.
The tech property market is big business, with co-working facilities appearing in every corner of the country.
Co-working spaces can offer vibrant environments to work on your tech idea, not to mention the chance to collaborate with other like-minded businesses and individuals. New offerings are springing up across the UK all the time, meaning there are numerous options for you and your start-up.
Here we round up the offerings in Belfast, Cardiff, Leeds, Birmingham, Bristol, Newcastle, Glasgow and Manchester.
Catalyst Belfast FinTech Hub (pictured above), on the ground floor of Danske Bank’s city centre headquarters, opened in September and is dedicated to the growing cluster of local early stage technology companies in the finance space. The space offers 24/7 access for members and features dedicated office suites, permanent desks, hotdesking space, a break-out coffee area and a unique event space inside a former safe that can seat up to 50 people for meet-ups and workshops. It also provides members with access to a dedicated growth adviser and community manager, as well as the networks of both organisations. It’s the first time Catalyst Inc has had a presence Belfast’s city centre and members can also access its other sites in Belfast’s Titanic Quarter, Derry/Londonderry, Letterkenny and Ballymena. Prices start at £39 for lounge membership, which includes access to common areas of an open-plan work area. Hot desking is available at £167, offering access to a desk in a secure open plan area, while for £249 per person per month, members get a dedicated desk in an open plan area plus reception services. Top-level membership, at £329 per person per month, includes a dedicated office space for two, four or six people and a dedicated desk for each member.
Ormeau Baths is a co-working space and tech community giving start-ups access to new networks, funding and expertise based out of a historic former bath house. Memberships start from £99 per month, to include 40 hours’ access to a drop-in desk from 9am-5pm, access to events, free printing and two lots of one-hour room hire per month. Resident membership is £249 per month for 24/7 access to a dedicated desk with all of the above plus mail facilities and access to global partner sites in Dublin and Barclays’ Eagle Labs. A third membership option at £349 per month offers a private office for four to 12 people, first access to free events and eight lots of one-hour meeting room hire per month.
Blick Shared Studios is a social enterprise that provides fully serviced, creative and affordable shared space, facilities and resources for creative and digital start-ups, freelancers and small businesses. Set up by a group of creative entrepreneurs to fill a gap in the market for suitable workspace for creative businesses in Northern Ireland, it provides studio and office space within three Belfast addresses, as well as offering virtual services and running events to support the creative and design community. At Malone Road, prices are £125-£150 per month for individual desk space or £100 per desk space if booking two or more desks. Hill Street in the Cathedral Quarter offers individual desk space for £150 per month, two desks for £125 per desk per month or £100 each for three or more desks. Cotton Court, in a converted cotton warehouse in Wareing Street, charges £100 per month per individual desk space, £90 each for two desks or £75 each for three or more desks. Private offices are also available.
Innovation Factory is a purpose-built hub part-funded by Belfast City Council, Invest Northern Ireland and the European Regional Development Fund and managed by Oxford Innovation, who manage a growing network of centres across the UK. Hot desking starts at £10 per half day, dedicated desk prices start at £105 per month and private office space is from £395 per month.
Turf @ Good Space (pictured above) is in the heart of Newcastle city centre and open Monday to Friday from 9am to 9pm. It’s housed in the cultural hub of Orbis, made up of seven floors containing more than 300 artists, charities and businesses, so co-workers have access to a wider community. A half day, under four hours, is £3.50, while users pay £7 for a full day, with free Wi-Fi, unlimited tea and coffee and access to a community of charities and start-ups included. Those who co-work can also book a meeting room, ranging from £6-£12 per hour dependant on the size.
Co-working network Regus has two sites in Newcastle, the Cloth Market and Rotterdam House at the Quayside. Office space is available for £5.70 per hour, while co-working is priced at £5 per hour, to include kitchen access, refreshments, high-speed internet and meeting room hire.
Toffee Factory provides office space in the refurbished Victorian Maynards Toffee Factory at the mouth of the Ouseburn Valley. It offers 23 fully serviced offices, shared office space and virtual office services for creative and digital sector businesses. All offices include the cost of heating and electricity and have raised floors with internet, telephone and power points located in floor boxes.
WeWork has two sites in Manchester, its first being No 1 Spinningfields in the city’s business district. Spanning three floors, the building offers co-working spaces and private offices, a café and wellness rooms. Hot desking starts at £250 per month, with a dedicated desk costing £285pm, while private offices begin at £460pm for one seat and go up to £10,650pm for spaces that would accommodate 21-50 people. Prices include high-speed internet, refreshments, printing and professional and social events. WeWork’s second Manchester site is across three floors of the 14-storey 1 St Peter’s Square, with co-working space, private offices and bike storage available on site. Prices start at £250 per month for a hot desk, £290pm for a dedicated desk, with private offices ranging in price from £460pm to £14,800pm depending on the size of the workforce.
Bruntwood has co-working facilities in four Manchester buildings: 111 Piccadilly, Lowry House, Neo and Trafford House, where prices start from £100 per month for a hot desk. Customers pick a seat in any Bruntwood lounge for superfast Wi-Fi and refreshments, as well as a 25 per cent discount on any meeting room booking. Dedicated desks, from £295pm, provide customers with their own workstation in a shared office, with private lockable storage for individuals or groups of up to four people. Dedicated desk customers still enjoy the flexibility of hot-desking in any Bruntwood lounge, as well as the same meeting room discount.
Newcomers to the market in Manchester include Windmill Green, which is nearing completion with Our Space already signed up to take 13,000 sq ft of space on the ground and first floors. The base will offer an on-site bike centre, with cyclists able to pedal into the building via a dedicated entrance. A rooftop terrace will offer 360-degree views of Manchester.
LJ Real Estate, which specialises in the regeneration of office buildings, owns Canada House (pictured above) and The Albert Estate in Manchester. At Canada House co-working starts at £175 per month and includes Wi-Fi and reduced rates for meeting and screening rooms. Headspace operates 15,000 sq ft of space at 2 Mount Street, on the Albert Estate, where facilities include a nap room, themed meeting rooms and private work booths. An on-site team organises social and professional events, from yoga to workshops. Co-working starts from £199 per month and private offices are from £1,000pm.
Tramshed Tech is home to creative and tech businesses in Cardiff, allowing them to grow with support from a collaborative community. Day passes are available for £20 and include access to the co-working space with high-speed Wi-Fi, free tea and coffee and printing, plus access to meeting rooms from £15 per hour. For £100 per month, members get 60 hours’ access to the facility, plus two hours’ meeting room allowance and discounted room hire at £10 per hour. Unlimited access is available for £200pm and includes four hours’ meeting room hire per month.
Rabble Studio (pictured above) offers a co-working studio on the third floor of 103 Bute Street, a Victorian building with high ceilings, wooden floors and lots of light. A large communal work area offers 16 hand-built desks, a lounge for relaxing, eating and casual working, a kitchen and a meeting room. Permanent desk space is priced at £200 per month, offering 24/7 access, lockable storage and free use of event space. Regular work space is available for £120 per month, aimed at those who are happy to set up their laptop in any of the studio’s available spaces. Weekday access is from 8am to 6pm and members can make use of free event space and shared storage space. A final co-working option is £65 per month and offers access six days a month during the week from 9am to 5pm in a communal working area.
Indycube starts with memberships at £10 per month for one desk day every month. Five monthly desk days are priced at £60pm, including two hours’ meeting room hire, a business address and access to all Indycube locations; £100pm gets users ten desk days and unlimited use is available for £180pm, which includes personal desk space plus other benefits. Cardiff locations include The Bay, Trade Street, St Mary’s and Fab Lab.
ODI Leeds is in central Leeds on the top floor of Munro House, with a co-working space offering views across the city. It has 36 co-working desks, ten of which are available for drop-in coworking or new monthly users. On top of superfast Wi-Fi, unlimited free tea, coffee and water, it offers events such as Friday lunchtime lectures, hack days, data drives and tech meet-ups. Drop-in fees are £15 plus VAT a day and include access from 9am-5.30pm, while the next level of membership, at £99 plus VAT, offers access up to ten days a month plus printing facilities, events and community support. Unlimited access is £225 plus VAT per month and includes all of the above plus a locker and meeting room discount, while a £299 plus VAT membership fee provides 24-hour access.
Bruntwood’s Platform Building (pictured above) offers space for businesses of all sizes in the heart of the city. From co-working desks to serviced offices, meeting rooms and larger spaces, there’s something to suit every business, with Bruntwood’s prices starting from £100 per month for hotdesking and £295pm for a dedicated desk.
Leeds Beckett University’s Leeds Digital Hub offers a tech office and co-working space, with resident businesses able to access the university’s expertise. Access is 24/7 and membership includes support and mentoring, access to executive business lounges, network events with guest speakers and access to graduate talent. Desk space starts from £100 per month, while private office space is available from £250pm.
Winter 2018 will see the launch of Dock Work, Allied London’s new co-work and flexible workspace spread over 9,585sq ft of waterside units at Leeds Dock, open seven days a week from 7am-11pm.
Birmingham’s Moseley Exchange (pictured above) offers a modern flexible space in central Moseley in a local enterprise hub surrounded by coffee shops and restaurants. It’s owned and operated by Moseley Community Development Trust, meaning all profit is reinvested back into the community. For £34 a month, users can drop in for ten hours per month and receive a 20 per cent discount on room hire rates. Regular users pay £50 for 40 hours’ access and four hours’ room hire every month, while top-level membership is £106 and offers unlimited co-working and eight hours’ room hire.
Headspace will open a 36,000 sq ft space in Birmingham in January 2019 on Temple Street in the city. Members will benefit from an onsite gym, manned reception, secure underground bike racks, multiple break-out areas and a large roof garden terrace. Fees have not yet been released for the space, but will include high-speed internet and calls packages, a gym and discounts on meeting rooms.
AlphaWorks offers a variety of workspaces, breakout areas, meeting rooms and quiet areas 24/7, with free refreshments, a coffee bar, showers and changing facilities. There’s a programme of social events open to members, with AlphaWorks situated on the 20th, 21st and 22nd floors of the city’s Alpha building. Hotdesking is £20 for a day pass, £250 per month, while co-working from a dedicated desk with storage facilities starts from £300 per month. Private offices are priced from £450pm.
Bruntwood also has a Birmingham site at Cornwall Buildings, with prices starting from £100 for a hot desk and £295 for a dedicated desk.
DeskLodge (pictured above) is an award-winning space offering co-working, hotdesks, fixed desks, private offices and meeting rooms at two sites in Bristol. DeskLodge Bristol is minutes from Temple Meads railway station and offers memberships, the chance to become a resident or simply hourly fees, with users offered access to events, meet-ups and end-of-month socials. There’s unlimited internet, phone booths and quiet areas, plus free tea and coffee. The newer DeskLodge House, on Temple Way, also has railway access and offers six floors of private offices, fixed desks and co-working space. Flexible workspace options include private office space for six to 100 people. Other benefits include free yoga classes, subsidised circuit classes and discounts from other businesses. Hotdesking starts at £3 per hour/£20 per day and is available 8.30am-6pm, Monday to Friday. Memberships start from £10 a month, to include six hours’ hotdesking per month, £30pm for 30 hours every month, £100pm for 60 hours a month and £150pm for unlimited access during office hours.
77 StokesCroft supports creative entrepreneurs and offers anything from an individual desk to open-plan space up to 3,000 sq ft. Standard desk space is priced at £150 per month, while a larger desk is available for £180pm, to include high-speed internet, tea and coffee and use of meeting rooms. Two large office spaces are also available to accommodate 15-17 people at £1,800pm.
Regus has co-working and office space in several Bristol locations, including Castlemead, Temple Quay, Broad Quay, Aztec West and Almondsbury Business Park. Prices at all five range from £4.60-£6.60 per hour for office space and £4.10-£5.70 per hour for office space.
Pollen Place offers entrepreneurs, tech freelancers and innovators a series of co-working studios and desk space in Stokes Croft. At night, the venue hosts a programme of networking events, creative workshops, supper clubs and talks. Flexible hot desks are priced at £20 per day, while £55 per month gets you 30 hours’ desk time a month. For unlimited desk time, 9am-6pm, the membership fee is £120pm, and a £170pm fee gets you a fixed desk and lockable storage, with access 24/7.
Collabor8te, in the heart of Glasgow, offers two floors of co-working space, with a range of hotdesk choices, meeting and training rooms, a lounge and café areas. Membership packages start at £40 per month for 16 hours, a mailing address and phone number, with £95pm offering 40 hours per month. For 80 hours’ access, members pay £150pm, while top-level membership is £225pm for 128 hours’ use.
RookieOven (pictured above) began in 2011 as a way to bring tech start-ups together. Co-working offers access to a like-minded community, high-speed internet as standard and an office environment that includes pool tables, games consoles and a freezer stocked with ice lollies. Prices start at £120 for hotdesking, available Monday-Friday, and £175 for a fixed desk, with seven-day access.
Prestwick-based Sharespace offers casual desk rental from £15 per day for a minimum two days, which includes free parking, high-speed internet, coffee and free printing, with access available 8.30am-5.30pm. Fixed desks are available for £200 per month.
The Whisky Bond has been open since 2012, originally built as a bonded warehouse for highland distilleries, and The Distillery is its co-working space, housing software developers, artists, designers and photographers. Fixed desks are priced at £175 per month, hot desks are £100pm or £60 for five days’ access a month. Day rate access is £20.