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The press are talking about the Village Hall!
Shoreditch Works to create a Village Hall for the local startup community:
Shoreditch Works, founded in 2012, is a startup that provides a home for tech and creative startups in the Tech City area.
Where is Shoreditch?
Shoreditch is a special place in East London. Over the years it's always been a place that produces great stuff from weaving to making tables.
Recently, it's gone through a bit of a transition and thanks to the massive number of awesome startups and tech companies who have found a home here it's now affectionately called: Tech City or the Silicon Roundabout.
Some of those companies who have been here from the start include Last.fm, Dopplr, and Redmonk which was founded by Shoreditch Works cofounder James Governor. We've been in this area for a long time working on different projects and now we know what it needs to grow...
Why are we fundraising?
Shoreditch Works has a mission to help young companies get started and grow. We are a part of the Shoreditch village and want to create a focal point for that community.
The space we need your help to secure, as you've seen in the video, is stretched across four floors of an unloved 1950s warehouse. It's been sitting empty for months now and we're sick of seeing such fantastic potential go to waste.
The basement and ground floor will be the epicentre of our village hall, while the top two floors will be shared workspace for startups.
How does this help the community?
It's simple. We're going to build an events space that will comfortably hold 200 people seated. And we are giving 20% of slots for free to community groups that are important but don't necessarily have the cash to hire a big events space. A space where kids can come and code after school, where artists can present their work, where local meetups can take place and where our coworkers can meet and discuss their issues.
The ground floor is going to house a hotdesking area, Alex's coffee shop and (of course) The Awesome Wall, where all your names will go. This is a space that will be open to the public, people can come and drink coffee, work and meet other people. It's also going to have a shop where startups in our space who are creating physical objects (like The Good Night Lamp) can showcase and sell their work.
It's going to be amazing.
So far, we've opened three workspaces and transformed them from depressing traditional office environments into places where people choose to work and collaborate:
Whilst we've created a home for loads of awesome startups, we need a permanent hub for anyone in the community to benefit from.
Our long term plans:
Part of helping young businesses to be more successful is to help the next generation that are coming into the industry. The Shoreditch Works Foundation mission is to inspire and train local kids in Hackney and neighbouring boroughs, to help them understand the opportunities on their doorstep and get jobs in the Shoreditch economy.
This mission has already started - we’ve working with partners such as CodeClub, Hackney Council, and Rewired State to support IT education locally and nationally. The Village Hall is essential to making this vision real.
And it's not just for kids. We plan to create a structure for startups to take on apprentices, interns and work placements so formal career paths start to be forged, to give direction to all the talented people that would love a job in a young dynamic business but would otherwise never know that option was available to them.
What we can do with the kickstarter fund:
It's incredibly important to us that part of this project is funded by our community; the people we are doing this for. It's what allows us to get over the hump, get this open and start to house free events. Taking on the commercial lease and fitting out a building is costing in the region of £400,000, and we've been fundraising for a while to pull in a lot of that. By opening this up to the community, we expect to be able to get not only the funds we need but also people's input and creativity with the way the village hall looks. We're putting together a beautiful environment and we want our backers to have a part in that.
With your help, we make this real and make sure that our village hall is truly for the village.
What kind of events will we host?
We will run a series of events throughout the year on various topics including: Node JS, Big Data, The Cloud, New Bare Metal Architecture and Scailing Craft.
We pay attention to detail, you won't be drinking concentrated orange juice or luke warm beer. We want our village hall to be home to craft and exploration.
The Awesome Wall!
This wall is situated right next to our cafe area where everyone who is ANYONE will be. We will force them to look and make thanks to all those on there before entering the space you helped create, here's an example of how it will look:
Local artist prints:
We're surrounded by fantastic artists, who have been making interesting pieces for years and been shown at various exhibitions across London, some of whom are going to create a unique print and sign it!
This is great, you get access to over 200 coworking spaces across the world, click here to read more info. You can pitch up anywhere with your comp and get on with it, or sit and chill and meet people from the tech and creative scene and make new connections.
Designed by Ben Gatehouse, a London Based freelance graphic designer currently working at East End Film Festival.
Choose from our three designs, all inspired by the shape of the building and the philosophy of the village hall, "sometimes talking is better than tweeting"
If you want to talk to us and hear more about our story contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 020 3542 6421
Risks and challenges
The fit-out is going to be a challenge. We've done these before, on tight budgets, and managed to turn grim space into great space. However, we've never done it on this scale and this building needs a lot of love: heating, wires, damp treatment and walls knocking down (to name but a few).
With the extent of the work that needs doing there might be delays on the building work, that said we've spoken with builders, architects and more builders and we've come up with a solution: tiered opening of the building.
The coffee shop comes first (the most important aspect of any building) with somewhere for people to chill and get familiar with the place, then the hotdesking area so people can work, then the events space so we can start housing meetups and so on. This means that even if there are delays we can still start making use of this empty building even before it's perfectly finished.
At this point the total time needed on the building has been estimated at 12 intense weeks, so it's not that long to wait :)
It's worth saying that this Village Hall project is part of the bigger funding round to open the rest of the building as a workspace for local startups. We're taking a 10-year lease on the building and doing it up, and that's an expensive thing to do. The last 20% of the funding is coming from this campaign and is paying for the Village Hall.
With your help we can overcome these challenges and create an awesome place to be.
(No otters were harmed in the making of this production.)Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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